We all know that top skincare products do not come cheap these days. A whole collection of serums, exfoliants, masks, and moisturisers can rack up a huge bill, making budget skincare all the more tempting. You can take care of your skin on a small budget, but there are plenty of tips out there that are enough to make a dermatologist run for the hills. We’ve compiled a useful list of 6 important budget skincare dos and don’ts alongside some common advice that is best avoided.
DO – Go for Natural Remedies
There’s no doubt that there are loads of age-old skincare tricks that can give you a glowy complexion or clear up some angry acne. DIY face masks and treatments made from gentle ingredients like yoghurt or oatmeal can be great for soothing your skin, plus it’s so fun to make them at home! Always ensure you patch test before applying a face mask, and ensure you moisturise your skin if you have used any exfoliants.
DON’T – Treat Everything with Home Remedies
As great as the internet is for useful skincare tips and tricks, there’s also plenty of misinformation out there that can do you a lot of damage. You’ve likely heard of facemasks containing lemon, cinnamon, or coffee grounds in your face masks – if you read these ingredients, alarm bells should be ringing. These are way too harsh to be using on your face and, even if you don’t have sensitive skin, can cause irritation.
Extremely acidic ingredients like lemon juice have a very different pH level to your skin, and mixing the two doesn’t just lack any benefits, it can actually damage the surface of your skin. The same goes for toothpaste – a popular internet craze for curing acne. Similarly, large particles like coffee grounds pushed vigorously into the skin can result in micro-tears, which will make you more prone to redness, dry patches and skin damage. It’s often safe to use these more abrasive scrubs on your arms and legs in the shower, but for the more sensitive skin on your face and neck, it’s best to avoid these harsh ingredients.
DO – Keep your Routine Minimal
If you’re short on money and time, a 26-step beauty routine featuring masks, jade rollers and several eye serums may not be the best route for you. As well as being a super expensive routine, it can also throw off the balance of your skin and actually do more harm than good. Unless you’re an experienced amateur dermatologist, your best option is to pare back on the skincare routine and opt for a simple cleanser, toner, moisturiser, and sunscreen, alongside an exfoliator to be used twice a week.
DON’T – Skimp on the Important Stuff
Streamlining your beauty routine should not mean sacrificing the key steps. Some products, like sunscreens, are staples that deserve a little splurge. Most importantly, SPF protects us from skin cancer and blocks harmful UV rays, but it also prevents early signs of aging, discolouration, and uneven texture. Re-budget the money that you might have spent on a new anti-aging serum and invest it in a high-quality sunscreen, like Supergoop’s SPF 50 Play Everyday Lotion. When it comes to sunscreen, try your best to opt for a 30 SPF or higher to ensure maximum protection. Even though it’s winter, harmful UV rays can still be aging your skin, so apply liberally every morning under your makeup.
DO – Research
With the wonderful online world of beauty bloggers, product reviews, and YouTube tutorials, there is no excuse for not knowing your Huda Beauty from your Hoola Bronzer. Make sure that if you are investing in a beauty product that is a bit of a splurge, it’s definitely worth taking a chance on it. Ask yourself – is it the right product for your skin type? Will it fit well with the other skincare and makeup currently in your routine? Are there dupes on the market that cost half the price and work just as well?
Check out Youtubers with similar complexions, concerns, or skin types to you and try to find out what they think of certain products and brands. This way, if you do invest, it’s unlikely to be a waste of your money and time.
DON’T – Get Sucked into a Trend
While it’s great to integrate yourself into the beauty community, don’t start buying every trendy skincare product you see doing the rounds online. You might remember a few months ago when everyone’s For You Page on TikTok was filled with teenagers doing peel-off charcoal masks. It was so satisfying to watch, and everyone doing it seemed to have such clear skin afterwards! Sales of peel-off masks sky-rocketed, only for dermatologists worldwide to emerge and tell us that they were, in fact, terrible for your skin. Rather than satisfyingly ridding you of all your blackheads and oil, peel-off masks often strip your skin’s natural barrier and leave you with excess redness, itchiness, and dry patches.
Gua Sha stones, LED face masks, and sonic exfoliating brushes are all likely to end up in the back of your cupboard as money you could have saved. So when browsing for your next beauty purchase, stop and consider if it’s simply a passing fad or the kind of product you’ll want in your makeup bag for a long time.