Not everyone can afford the prices of high-end cosmetic lines. And there are many who do not want to spend a lot of money on cosmetics, either. There are several brands that offer great, more inexpensive alternatives for your cosmetic hauls.
This is a short list to help direct price-conscious consumers to cost effective products that actually work. Many more drugstore cosmetic lines are coming out with products that are made to rival higher-end items. Scrimping on price does not have to mean scrimping on quality, as these top ten beauty essentials prove.
Avoid the brand names and go for Boots' own body and face moisturisers with self-tan, which give a lovely subtle glow. And these are impossible to mess up, even for the most amateur of self-tanners.
2. Sun cream
Sunscreen should always be worn on the face, even in the winter months, but is particularly necessary as UV rays get stronger during the summer. Put it on instead or as well as moisturiser, protect yourself from skin cancer, and ward off those wrinkles.
You’d be hard pushed to spend very much money on a deodorant, but if times are particularly hard, go for Tesco’s own brand version of the well-known brands. Just as effective, and more than half of the price.
4. Face cream
Don't waste your money on overpriced ‘miracle’ creams, since a) they probably won’t make the blindest bit of difference and b) you’re far too young for wrinkles anyway. This range has face creams for all types of skin, which are just as good as the pricier ranges.
Boots expert face creams, from £2.99, www.boots.com
5. Lip balm
There's no point spending lots of money on an everyday balm, as the cheaper ones are just as effective. Lip balm should be worn all the time, even under lipstick. Carmex is particularly good as it contains petrolatum and beeswax, which are particularly good moisturisers, and cetyl esters, a natural skin moisturiser. The menthol within the balm also leaves your lips with a wonderful tingly feeling.
6. Shampoo & Conditioner
Hair in ideal condition should stretch by roughly one third before it breaks. Contrary to popular belief, dry hair is the result of a lack of moisture, not a lack of natural oils, hence the need for re-moisturising products. It is essential to choose a product for your particular type of dry hair – be it fine and dry, thick and coarse, frizzy, or straight and dry.
The classic cover up, Rimmel is cheap, effective, and comes in 11 different shades. When the weather gets hotter, it may be wise to exchange your usual foundation for something lighter, with an SPF.
Whereas cheaper eyeliners are often a false economy, as they rub off easily, these eyeliners have great sticking power. Choose from kohl, liquid or smudgable crayons, in quirky colours. Their eyeshadows are also particularly good, and come in as many colours as MAC, for a fraction of the price.
Barry M eyeliners, from £2.95, www.barrym.co.uk
There’s a reason why one of these mascaras is sold every 5 seconds – it’s absolutely fantastic. As a self-confessed mascara fiend, I have shunned the more expensive brands, and have found nothing better than this. It lengthens, plumps, layers, doesn’t clog, and generally ticks all my eyelash boxes. The waterproof version is also very good for avoiding panda eyes.
This is a very good version of the iconic YSL Touche Éclat. Not that we’re suggesting that a student would ever have a hangover, but if, perchance, you did, paint a bit of this under the eyes, dust a light smattering of blusher over your face, and no-one would ever know that last night involved several bars and very little sleep.
Whichever look you go for, be it an English rose with a dab of blusher, or the ‘I just spent the weekend in St Tropez’ with bronzer, it is essential to pick one which looks natural. This powder comes in different shades of blusher and bronzer, and won't clog up your skin.