I read and watch lots of blog and vlog reviews of skin care products, many of which have a hefty price tag. If you are on a tight budget, then buying expensive skin care products may not be possible or certainly not a priority. So, I decided to write a short post on my favourite affordable and effective skin care products which cost less than £15. It is also worth bearing in mind that Superdrug and Boots own brands are regularly on offer such as Buy One Get One Free, Half Price, 1/3 off, 3 for 2 and such likes.
I am almost a proud 47 years of age and my skin type is dry/oily combination, black heads and blocked pores around my nose and chin, fine lines and wrinkles and hyperigmentation on my forehead due to melasma.
Ok, so here goes, I am just going to list the products to avoid turning this post into a book! For more information please click the links.
- *Superdrug Naturally Radiant Hot Cloth Cleanser £5.99 for 150ml - this is often compared to cult fave Liz Earle's Hot Cloth Cleanser
- Asda Skin System Creamy Face Wash for dry/sensitive skin £0.99p for 150ml - this is not as rich and creamy as the Superdrug one, but does the job and for the price, you really can't go wrong.
- Boots Botanics Organic Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm £8.99 for 70ml
- Superdrug B Glycolic Cleanser £7.99 for 125ml - you could also use this as a chemical exfoliator or face mask after cleansing and toning.
Chemical exfoliant toners, skin brightening, uneven skin tone and texture
- *Superdrug Naturally Radiant Glycolic Acid Pads - £5.99 for 60 pads. Aldi are currently selling the same product with the exact same ingredients for only £2.49 for 60 pads. They are in the "special buys" section so not currently part of their standard skin care range but may well be in the future. Both the Superdrug and Aldi glycolic acid pads are similar to the Nip and Fab brand which are £12.95 for 60 pads.
- Superdrug Naturally Radiant Acid Toner £5.99 for 100ml
- The Ordinary Glycolic Toner £6.80 for 240ml
Hydrating and Soothing Toners:
- Boots Rose Water and Glycerine £2.39 for 200ml - you could also add 1 to 2 pipettes of the Ordinary's Hyaluronic Acid to this
- Superdrug B Essence £6.99 for 140ml
You could also buy an empty spritz bottle and decant a little to carry in your handbag.
- *Caudalie Grape Water (aerosol spritz) £10 for 200ml or often on £15 for 2. This is also great for soothing irritated skin. I have written a full review of this product here.
- *Neal's Yard White Tea (sensitive skin) or *Frankincense Hydrating (mature skin) Mists £13 for 45ml
Antioxidants - to protect the skin against envrironmental stresses
- The Ordinary Vitamin C range - I personally use the *23% Vitamin C (at night time) but there are also other vitamin C products in the range which are not quite so strong so more useful for beginners to vitamin C. The price varies depending on which product you buy.
- *The Ordinary Reservatrol with Ferulic Acid - £5.50 for 30ml.
- The Ordinary Salicylic Acid to deep cleanse the pores and help with acne and spots - £4.20 for 30ml
- *The Ordinary Alpha Arbutin for hyperpigmenation and uneven skin tone - £7.00 for 30ml. I just use this on the areas where I have patches of darker skin.
- *The Ordinary Buffet (suitable for AM and PM) - a cocktail of anti ageing peptides - £12.70 for 30ml.
- *The Ordinary Retinol range (Night time use only) - I am currently using the 0.2% Retinol in Squalane, then moving onto 0.5% and then 1%. If you look back through my reviews you will find a monthly review of my use of this product. The price varies depending on which product you buy.
- The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid - this can be used as a serum and you can also add it to your toners - £5.90 for 30ml.
- *Aldi Lacura Q10 Day Moisturiser with SPF20
- Aldi Lacura Q10 Night Moisturiser
All these are only £1.69! for 50ml. The Aldi Q10 range contain the antioxidant Co Enzyme Q10, come in SPF 20 for the day time creams and are available in Renew (for younger skin) or Restorative (for mature skin or prematurely ageing skin)
- *Aldi Lacura Q10 Night Cream - again, available in Renew or Restore
- Superdrug Naturally Radiant night cream - lightweight formula
- Boots Botanics All Bright Hydrating Night Cream - this is another lightweight formula
The Acid toners and pads or B Glycolic Cleanser mentioned above in cleansers and toners.
For those who prefer physical exfoliators, the Boots Botanics Microdermabrasion Polish which is £9.99 for 120ml. This product used to be about £3.50 but since they repackaged the Botanics range, the price went up. I don't think it is worth £9.99 but if it is ever on offer, it is worth buying. It has very fine grains that are moderatley abrasive so not for those who like a really gentle face polish.
If you have sensitive, reactive skin that doesn't respond well to acid toners or physical exfoliants, then I would recommend massaging the Boots Botanics Organic Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm into your skin and remove it with a towelling wash cloth or muslin cloth.
Superdrug Vitamin E Moisture Mask £2.59 for 75ml - lush creamy, moisturising mask that I have also used as a sleep mask.
For a purifying clay mask, I would recommend buying your own Clay and making your own. Simply mix 1 to 2 teaspoons with a little water, aloe vera gel or toner and apply to your face. You can find cosmetic grade clay online in many places at very affordable prices.
For sensitive, reactive or irritated skin, I would recommend Organic Aloe Vera Gel, see below.
I haven't found any face masks in the £15 and under price bracket that are any more effective than those mentioned.
Lifeplan Organic Aloe Vera Gel £7.49 for 200ml - multi purpose SOS product for insect bites, burns, stings, sunburn, to soothe irritated or inflamed skin. It could also be used as a hydrating, soothing face mask.
Neal's Yard Calendula, Aloe/Lavender or Stellaria Creams all £7 for 30ml and again are great rescue creams to have in for irritations, bites, rashes, burns etc.
If I had the uneviable decision of choosing just one out of each category it would be:
- Cleanse: Superdrug Naturally Radiant Hot Cloth Cleanser
- Tone: Neal's Yard Frankincense Hydrate Mist
- Serum: The Ordinary Buffet
- Antioxidant: The Ordinary Vitamin C 23%
- Moisturise: Aldi Lacura Q10 Renew Day and Night Cream. Whilst they are meant for younger skin than mine, the texture is lighter than the Restore.
- Exfoliate: B Glycolic Cleanser
- Misceallaneous: Organic Aloe Vera Gel and a bag of white kaolin clay for Face Masks.
- The ones marked with a * are repeat buys for me, so holy grails within my favourites list
- If you have reactive skin, please patch test all new products before using them all over your face.
- Some of the products listed above can increase the risk of sunburn (Retinol, Vit C, Acids except for Hyaluronic Acid) so plese read the instructions carefully. Also wear at least SPF 15 during the day time, reapply every 90 minutes to 2 hrs if you are sunbathing, gardening, sitting out etc.
- As with all skin care products, these products may or may not respnd well on your skin or your product taste in terms of the overall feel or consistency. However, at these prices if you are intrigued then I would say that they are definitely worth a try.
Well that is all folks, I hope this has been of help to you.
Until next time