Not all skin care products have to break the bank. In fact, I’ve tried some very pricey products and found cheaper alternatives that work just as well, if not better. Today on the blog, I round up the 10 best skin care products under $40 that I love!
Sunscreen is hands down the most important anti aging product and you should be using it daily. Once I discovered La Roche Posay’s Anthelios Ultra Fluid SPF 60 face sunscreen, I haven’t looked back. I love its light weight formula that doesn’t leave your face feeling oily or tacky. You can mix it in with your daily face cream or pat it on over your face cream. It lasts me for 3-6 months and is a great deal for only $29.
I use this regularly as part of my first step in my quick foundation free daily make up routine. First Aid Beauty is a great brand for people with sensitive skin. What I love about this product, is that it’s a primer and moisturizer in one. You can wear it alone to give your face a more flawless finish, or under your every day make up. I do however have different primers for different needs. If I’m getting really dolled up for a big party, I’ll use a silicone based primer, but don’t recommend it for a daily basis, as it clogs your pores. The only con is that it doesn’t last as long as I’d like. I’m usually having to buy a new one every 2-3 months, but for $35, I don’t mind.
I first tried this as a free sample and instantly fell in love. I use it at night time and wake up to refreshed, dewy more youthful looking skin. It’s a $30 cream that works like an $80 cream. It’s suitable for dry and sensitive skin. It contains hyaluronic acid which gives your skin a boost of hydration with a weightless feel and anti oxidants to protect against environmental factors that cause aging. It’s a great anti aging cream for those looking to prevent visible or early signs of aging.
Raise your hand if you have a bad habit of picking your skin? I get this twisted sense of satisfaction from squeezing out blackheads, whiteheads or the head of a big pimple. I know that I shouldn’t, but I can’t help it. Before discovering tea tree oil, everytime I’d pick my skin, the area I’d pick would turn into a big pimple. It’s because I’d be squeezing something out and then not sanitizing the area properly, allowing for dirt and bacteria to get in, causing it to form a pimple. My aesthetician taught me to dab a bit of pure tea tree oil to a clean finger tip and dab it onto the infected area. It helps kill all the germs. It’s also great for if you have a big zit, just dab some tea tree oil and it’ll help dry it out. This bottle costs $19 on Amazon and will last you well over a year!
Indulge in a bit of luxury with SK-II’s award winning facial treatment mask. The active ingredient is Pitera – a fusion of vitamins, amino acids, minerals and organic acids – which addresses uneven skin tone, dryness, large pores and oiliness. It’s great for when your skin needs a pick me up, before attending a big occassion or after a flight. SK-II’s Facial Treatment Mask deeply moisturizes the skin, leaving you with noticeably softer, firmer and more youthful looking skin. It doesn’t come cheap however. Each individual mask is sold for $22, but it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than going for a facial. Bonus fact – after using the mask, don’t throw out the package. There’s plenty of essence left inside that you can use for several days after!
Ever since I discovered the Korean Skin Care Regime, I’ve learned that the North American approach to managing acne prone/oily skin is completely wrong. In North America, it is suggested to use strong products that dry out your skin, because the excess oil is causing your acne. In South Korea however, their belief is that hydrated skin is healthy skin. Just because you have oily skin, doesn’t mean that it’s hydrated. In fact, if you use products that dry out your skin, your skin will have to work twice as hard to hydrate itself, thus producing more oils, which in turn will lead to more breakouts. I discovered this toner by accident when I realized I had forgotten to pack a toner, so I purchased it on the fly at the airport. Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Toner. It’s a non-alcohol formula, suitable for all skin types. Its mild and gentle formula leaves your skin hydrated and your skin’s pH balance in check. Great skin is only $25 away!
Another favourite I discovered with the Korean Skin Care Regime is cleansing oil. In South Korea, the typical routine consists of an oil based pre cleanser, followed by a non oil based cleanser. Oil cleansers are used as a make up remover, which is then followed by a gentle cleanser to do a deep cleanse. Banila Co.’s cleansing balm is a solid oil that you massage into your face when it’s dry and you’ll see the make up melt off. You can even use it to remove your eye make up. Once you’ve massaged the entire face, you wash it off with water. You can pick this up from Amazon for $40 but can find better deals on eBay or online Korean shops.
Skin Food’s Black Sugar Mask is the cheaper alternative to Fresh’s Sugar Face Polish, at a fraction of the price! Fresh’s Sugar Face polish goes for $76 at Sephora, while you can pick this exfoliator for under $20 off of Amazon. This scrub is a gentle exfoliator that can be used several times a week or even daily if you wish. It’s made with all natural ingredients (black sugar) and very gentle and non abrasive on the skin as the the sugar beads melt into your skin as you massage it in.
I’ve tried the fancy $30 Lise Watier make up removing wipes, and the more reasonably priced $15 ones from Sephora. While the Lise Watier wipes were great (the Sephora ones, not so much) and left my skin feeling smooth; it wan’t superior enough to justify spending $30 when you can pick up these Neutrogena wipes for $8. Don’t EVER go to bed without removing your make up, but if you insist on being lazy, at the very least, reach for a wipe and remove it. I love how these wipes remove your make up without stripping all the oils, so you wake up with hydrated skin. I also use this to remove eye make up and lip stains.
My aesthetician recommended this $6 mask for acne spot treatment. If you’re suffering from a zit – be it above or below the surface, simply apply a thick layer directly on and around the area of the zit and let it dry. Once fully dried (wait about 30 minutes), peel it off. You’ll immediately notice that your pimple is smaller than before. Repeat next day if necessary. I haven’t applied it to my entire face as I can imagine it being too harsh, but I definitely recommend it for spot treatment.