We all like to be fabulous and pretty (or handsome) and have glowing skin, right? Right! Since most of us can’t afford weekly facials or fancy beauty products, I’m bringing you my tried and true beauty tips for the broke and/or frugal among us. Stay fabulous, dear readers.
1. When you use the expensive stuff, make it last two days.
I may be a thrifty shopper, but I don’t skimp on makeup. Yes, I use the hard stuff, like Stila, Urban Decay and Benefit. Benefit mascara and Stila/Urban Decay eyeliners are so high-quality and so pigmented that if you’re careful, you can make your dramatic cat eye last two days. Just be careful not to rub your eyes, don’t sleep on your face, and touch up the wing tip the next morning, if necessary. Join the mailing lists of your favorite brands and take advantage of sales and coupons. I got ten 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils from Urban Decay for $29 in December because I paid attention to their emails.
2. Know when to buy cheap makeup.
NYX makes high-quality, paraben-free, beautiful makeup at drugstore prices. I don’t know how they do it, but I’m happy to take advantage of it. I swear by their matte cream lipsticks ($6) and concealer sticks ($5). Instead of $40 high-end BB cream, I use Ulta’s ($12.50, but I got it during a sale for $6). I splurge on eyeliner and mascara but have learned that my concealer, BB cream, and about half my lipstick needs are satisfied by NYX and Ulta.
3. Samples, samples, samples!
Most high-end retailers offer samples these days, including Lush and Sephora. Lush makes fresh samples for you, usually generously sized. It’s a great way to try all their amazing products without draining your bank account. If you love the samples, then you know splurging on them will be worth it. Many people don’t know that you can ask for samples at Sephora of skincare products you want to try. So do it! When you’re taking advantage of a sale on Ulta.com, make sure you get the free samples when you check out. If you get samples in the mail, in a magazine, from a friend, try them! Or share them! I have so many skincare samples that I can probably avoid buying moisturizer or face wash for a good six months.
4. Make your own exfoliating scrubs.
Sure, you can spend $20-40 on an expensive exfoliating scrub, or you could spend $5-ish making one yourself. Choose your favorite oil (I like olive and coconut), mix with brown sugar or sea salt, add fresh lemon juice and/or your a few drops of your favorite essential oil(s) and voila! Scrub down your body with this yummy, natural, homemade exfoliant for bright, soft skin. Play with the ratio of ingredients until you find what works for you.