What are the types of beauty products you'd skimp on?

Hair care (I don’t spend that much now, and I don’t use that many products regularly) and body care (body wash, moisturizers, scrubs). I use both affordable and expensive products in these categories, but I think I’d be happy enough with the affordable options if I needed to save money — mascara, eyeliner, makeup remover, and maybe even lipstick.

— Christine
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Dry shampoo & hairspray. There is an expensive one I love and an inexpensive one that I really like. The inexpensive one gets a LOT more uses for 1/3 of the price so the expensive one, while a great product, isn’t worth it to me. My sea salt spray is expensive because it works so much better than the inexpensive one I use and both get the same amount of uses so the value is there. I use a mix of inexpensive and expensive shampoos, conditioners, and body lotions… but those last me such a long time that paying top dollar doesn’t bother me as much. I really don’t “get along” with most drug store makeup so tend to go high end, but if I’m putting a costume together or need something in a pinch I will go to the drug store. I also buy cheap nail polish because it tends to chip of quick anyway with my horseback riding and working at the barn regardless of how “nice” the product is.

Body care for me too. I love my Aveeno Positively Ageless body lotion. However, I do like to add Argan oil on dry spots like my elbows and heels of my feet, so I guess that’s my splurge.

Mascara. That thing expires too quickly to fit the cost-per-wear rationalization I use to purchase (more) makeup.

Mascara — I haven’t found the high-end options to really outperform the drug store varieties, and since I have to toss it every 6 months, it’s just not worth the splurge.

Hairspray and mousse — I only use them a few times a year so it’s not worth having something expensive.

Hand and body lotion — I just need basic moisturization so basically anything works for me as long as I don’t hate the scent. I often use the Lush Charity Pot, which is more expensive than drug store but cheaper than most Lush products. And I’m also perfectly happy using up travel sizes from hotels, LOL.

I’ve completely converted to drugstore mascara! Mostly brow products at this point is well, although I’d love to see one of the affordable brands come out with a good brow pen. I haven’t seen one yet.

I usually skimp on mascaras, but that doesn’t mean I don’t use high end mascaras sometimes. 😀 I simply `refuse` to buy full size mascaras, since with Sephora perk points and gifts with purchase, along with MAC orders, I can get myself a good sample / mini anytime.

The only body care item I skimp on is the body SPF I use for running / hiking in the summer, since I need tons of it and I mostly sweat it off. Otherwise I invest in skincare / bodycare, especially since I don’t use products that contain fragrance and other irritants; I’m quite high maintenance for skincare and bodycare, but that doesn’t mean I don’t try drugstore / inexpensive products, just that I don’t skimp on purpose.

I think I could skimp on almost everything except foundation, concealer, mascara and shadow. I have not found cheap versions that work for me as an aging person. Before I stopped buying products tested on animals, I also bought inexpensive hair care. Unfortunately the inexpensive CF hair care hasn’t worked so well for me, other than dry shampoo and hair spray, which I don’t use very often.

After 25 plus years of wearing makeup and skincare:
– Mascara. L’Oreal is just fine for me. I’ve tried so many luxe ones via beauty boxes and free samples. For something that lasts me 1-2 months I go drugstore

– Moisturizer. I prefer to use Avene, but sadly it’s double to triple the price in the States! It was affordable in the UK at Boots. I still consider it affordable though. I have so many allergies to essential oils and other ingredients, the simple stuff is best. And yes, I’ve tried La Mer and Sisley and other high end ones. They are nice, but I keep it additive free as much as possible.

– Brushes. I have a few higher end ones, but my favorite ones are from Sephora or the drugstore.

– Lip gloss. Revlon has made some great ones. I always gets loads for samples as well.

– Blush. Colourpop has made me a convert to good cheap blushes. I also have a few K-beauty ones that are affordable and fab!

I moved from Europe to US in 2016 and I’m still amazed sometimes that how some brands are expensive on one side of the Atlantic, while inexpensive on the other. 😀 Mostly the price is spiked due to availability on the market (it’s easy to sell at a premium if most retailers don’t promote the brand).

Almost anything, as long as the quality is just as good! My favorite mascara is cheap as dirt, Maybelline Full & Soft WP. One of my favorite blushes, Essence Satin Love is super inexpensive, too. Essence also makes my favorite jet black, highly waterproof/smudgeproof/flakeproof gel eyeliner, Midnight In Paris. And the list goes on: Simple Face Wipes, Aveeno Foaming face wash for Sensitive Skin, generic Walmart baby oil with aloe to remove my waterproof and/or glittery eye makeup without having to rub too vigorously, etc.

I agree with you, Christine, I don’t spend that much on body care items. Any old drugstore shower gel would work fine for me. I am not saying I wouldn’t love an expensive, really great smelling body wash but there are so many inexpensive ones and I would rather use the money elsewhere. The other product that I usually don’t spend much on is eye brow products. I am not a fan of doing my eye brows in the first place and yet I really need to do something as I have bald spots so I use to use a lot of expensive things and I still do use them but I think that a lot of drugstore brands work just as well. My issue with DS brands for brow products is not being able to swatch them to get the right colour. Once I know what shade I am then I am fine.

I actually pay more for body wash exactly because I don’t want a great smelling one 😆 ; I need everything fragrance free (personally I don’t want to smell like my body wash or cream… I just want to smell clean) and sometimes they don’t come cheap. Most fragrance free body care is either baby products (smaller package, same price per bottle as adult/regular ones) or sensitive skin targeted products (there’s always a small price increase with that `Sensitive Skin` tag). Not to mention that the only fragrance free conditioner I can get is the Paula Choice one; $17 per bottle isn’t luxury pricing, but it’s still 3 times higher than most drugstore conditioners.

I’m with you Ana Maria — I’ve had to search long and hard to find scent-free shampoos, conditioners, body washes, and lotions (obviously, some of those categories are easier than others), and they’re inevitably higher-priced than their scented equivalent.

Alecto, my husband uses the A’kin Hypoallergenic Shampoo (which retails here for about $10) as he gets asthma with all the scented products. He finds it to be a really good shampoo and I have tried it too – excellent.

I would add that I’m not against scent in general (except around my face, and except when the scents come from oils that shouldn’t be on human skin), but I do have ridiculously sensitive skin. TBH, the main reason I go for completely unscented products is because I have a custom-blended perfume that I worked a long time to achieve, and it drives me crazy to have that scent interfered with by my grooming and skincare products.

Hair and body products, facial cleanser, mascara, eyeliner are all products I’ll buy at at the drugstore. I’ve gotten enough high-end minis from Sephora or Ulta in those categories and I haven’t found any that are better than drugstore brands. Although I do really like Hempz body lotions, but I can always find those at TJ Maxx.

Body care , I mean I use a moisturizing shower gel and body lotion but they’re moderately priced .
Hair care , I’m licensed so I can get good hair products at cost , I do spend extra on things like Julie Hewitt organic Camielia oil and use that on my hair, body ,and even a few drops in my mascara .
Last I think would be Mascara. There are great drug store brands now that are pretty comparable with the Higher End .
Lately I did venture out and splurge on a couple of higher end mascaras out of curiosity and felt there wasn’t much difference .

I’d love to save money on mascara! – I’m curious that so many other people have found ones they like as well as HE. I’ve never found a ds brand that didn’t smudge/flake/irritate really fast, and stopped trying at a certain point. I can go cheap on eyebrow pencil (W&W), the occasional ds blush/bronzer that Christine reccs., but I try to avoid ingredients I know are carcinogenic – so no products w/ talc, and most reg. lipsticks are out which often pushes me toward pricier options. Don’t use or invest in many hairstyling products – if I do they’re usually ds.

There are lots of beauty products I skimp on because some of the DS brands offer such great products at a reasonable price, and even better when they are on sale. We have a couple of great budget beauty shops here in Aus – Priceline and Chemist Warehouse and lots of items are often on sale. Even higher end skincare products. My list includes:
Foundation – L’Oreal’s True Match in Rose Porcelain
Mascaras – I am not fussy, but as long as the mascara doesn’t clump, I use whatever brand is on sale.
Eyebrow pencils – Generally a Maybelline one in Soft Taupe
Brushes: Real Techniques, Nude by Nature or Eco Tools
Primer – Nude by Nature Airbrush Primer is the one I have used for a number of years and it can be used as an eyeshadow primer too.
Sunscreen – La Roche Posay’s Ultra Light (you have to be very quick if that is on sale) or the Aviene one. I use a supermarket (Coles) 50 + sunscreen for the rest of me.
Facial Oils – either Argon Oil or Chia Seed oil
Moisturisers – Currently loving the A’kin range, purchased on sale at Priceline.
Body Moisturisers – Cetaphil
Lipsticks – I have a love/hate relationship with Maybelline because I love their lipsticks, but we only get a fraction of the range and quite often the shade I want is not available.
So these are my skimp products.

Eye makeup removers and wipes from Target, Walgreens, sometimes CVS. My skin can’t handle most wipes, not even the sensitive skin wipes for babies. Makeup removers and all sorts of wipes from drugstores are often too damn harsh so it’s not always easy to skimp on these items. I still love having them on hand to quickly wipe brushes, remove lipstick, get makeup off of my hands before leaving the house. My steering wheel looks like a clown in grease paint was driving it!

More and more I shop for makeup and skincare during sales which ends up making most products I use near drugstore prices.

I don’t skimp on anything for eyes due to allergies. However, blushes are another thing. As I don’t use them often I have only one, which was discontinued by the brand. I found cheap blushes perform as good as the expensive ones on my skin.

Face cleansers- I have always used Pond’s Cold Cream to remove my makeup and St. Ives Fresh Skin Apricot Face Scrub in the shower to exfoliate.
Body care- I used to love Body Shop’s body butters for my dry skin but have found Glysolid (for my feet & hands) and Jergens Deep Conditioning Shea Butter Crème to be super cheap & just as effective.
Blush- I really love my Essence Satin blushes, although I doubt I’ll ever hit pan on my Chanel & Cle de Peau blushes I bought years ago
Lipliner- Rimmel’s Exxagerate Lipliners beat all the high-end lipliners I have tried in ease of application, longevity, and being less drying to my parched lips. East End Snob is my MLBB I’ve stocked up on.
Kajal- My husband is Indian so I stock up on great quality (yet very inexpensive) kajal- style eyeliner. Himalaya Naturals is a favorite – for a little over $1 it applies easily and allows you to smudge it for about a minute then sets to an intense matte black that stays on til you take it off.
I’m still looking for a cheap mascara that I like- most flake or smear irritating my contact lenses and giving me racoon eyes within hours. I have also found that cheaper mascaras dry out quicker than cheapies – so an $8 mascara that dries out in a month is really that much cheaper than a $25 that dries out in 3 months.

I don’t have to skimp on anything but I’m always going to choose affordable value rather then not, unless it’s something really special.

I use H&S dry scalp care or Hask shampoo & conditioner because they are better suited to my hair than any salon brands I’ve ever purchased.

Nivea Soft body cream over Le Labo – I want my skin to feel moisturized, not smell like a box of spendy Japanese incense all day.

DB Cosmetics Absolute Lash or WnW Volume Max WP over Lancome or Shiseido mascara (though I do have to say Shiseido lipsticks are totally worth the spend, Lancome not nearly so much)…

And my Natio Rosewater facial moisturizer is a third the price of the Clinique one I bought before Christmas, contains half as much again volume, smells nicer and works better, so.

Mascara for sure.
I use high-end if it’s a trial size. There are so many great affordable ones. Plus it expires too quickly for me to justify shelling out big bucks.

You really got me thinking, Christine.
Ultimately skin care is where I tend to go for the affordable. I’ve worked in the beauty industry in many forms and have had access to high quality skin care, hair care, clothing…

I never have, nor do I buy designer clothing now.

I sometimes buy, but ultimately never reach for, the drugstore cosmetics I buy. Not sure why,

I do spend money on my hair products, from experience these do matter with my very long and colour treated hair.

But I’ve never found expensive face cream/toners does any better for me than a health food/drugstore brand (for example: Jason or Thayers) does.
Now saying that, I’ve been blessed with clear and smooth skin, but I have moisturized my skin (face and body) since I was a young teen, thanks to my mom.
My skin is still good in middle-age.

I also buy inexpensive (like Cetaphil or Alba) but not cheap, body lotions/creams, I nearly drink that stuff I use it so much.

On the other hand:
I have to admit to being really drawn to the samples of the water creams I’ve been getting thru Sephora lately. I’m not sure they do anything for me, but darn, they feel good going on–such nice slip and they don’t ball up under primer.
And recently, I’ve become attached to Keilh’s Creme de Corps dry body oil spray.
Yet I still don’t find these more premium products to be a true necessity.

Not much, really…. Probably lip gloss (it’s not my favourite product and for the most part, I find drugstore glosses to be just as good as those that cost 4X as much) and also bronzers. I only have a very few bronzers because it’s a product I don’t use much at all. Most of the bronzers I have are either high end purchases or high end points perk/beauty gift ones but I do like the less pricey ones I have from WnW, etc. and since it’s not a priority item for me, I’m happy not to drop a lot of money on bronzer. Third would be mascara, for the reasons so many other stated…invariably, I don’t finish them within the recommended window deemed safe so spending a lot seems really wasteful, especially since most of the high end ones I’ve tried haven’t been very good.

I did this backwards, I think — I read the “wouldn’t skimp on” question before I read this one, so I think I answered both questions there. To sum up: I’d be fine skimping on everything except sunscreen and some other forms of skincare. I could live the rest of my life with no makeup, but given the choice, I would at least have a ColourPop foundations stick, a setting powder, a single eyeshadow, a basic mascara, a basic warm pink blush, and lip balm — all except the CP product would be just fine to come from a drugstore.

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