We all love to treat ourselves to a beauty purchase every now and then, but it is often mistakenly assumed that spending more always results in a higher quality beauty purchase.
Honestly, there are hundreds of affordable, high-quality beauty products on the shelves of our supermarkets and pharmacy shelves that don’t cost a fortune.
Knowing where to spend and where to save on beauty products can help you get a quality bargain. Here are 20 products that you can pick up easily and cheaply the next time you head to the big store.
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$5 and less
Ecostore Manuka Honey & Kelp Soap Bar, $2
You can’t beat a bar of soap for price efficiency. This triple milled option, with nutrient-rich kelp and soothing Manuka honey, is a great choice for those who love a good scrub, or could use a little extra exfoliation.
Nivea Cream Jar, $4.49
You will never regret having an old-fashioned, multi-purpose cold cream in your bathroom cabinet. A thick ultra-moisturizing cream that helps to remove dry patches on your face or body that can appear in colder weather.
Lady Jayne Wet Care Comb, $5
A wide-toothed comb in the shower will change your hair game. Comb through your conditioner and say goodbye to knots and tangles.
$10 and under
Rexona Clinical Protection Roll On Summer Strength, $6 (on sale)
If you’re really a sweaty betty, you know that sweating isn’t just a summer problem, and you’ll try anything to keep that fresh morning feeling under your arm. Go to Rexona Clinical Protection, which claims to be three times stronger than a standard antiperspirant.
Palmolive Fashion Girl Detangling Spray, $7
This detangling spray is aimed at kids, but you don’t have to be a fashion girl to reap the benefits. It works on all strands that suffer from knots and tangles. Delicately scented with rose petal extract, it can be used on wet or dry hair before combing through.
Flower Beauty Pyramids Pigments Cheek Color, $9.69 (on sale)
This compact, from Drew Barrymore’s cosmetic brand Flower Beauty, is an all-in-one blush and highlighter mosaic that delivers a radiant, soft wash of color.
Rimmel Wonder Full Eyebrow Gel, $9
A swipe of clear brow gel can work wonders for making you look more awake and more groomed without looking ‘done’. I like that this one is non-sticky and doesn’t make your brows feel like they’re set in concrete.
$20 and under
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, $11
This universal favorite cleanser has been specially formulated by dermatologists as a facial cleanser for sensitive skin and contains gentle and non-irritating ingredients. Simple, yet highly effective, it’s gentle enough to use on even the driest and most sensitive skin types.
Earthwise Nourish Orange Cedarwood & Sage Body Wash, $11
Liquid body wash fans will be pleased that Earthwise’s offerings come in large 1 liter bottles so you don’t have to refill them as often. I like the luxurious woody scent of the orange, cedarwood and sage version.
MCoBeauty Pout Shine, $12
This is the lip gloss that has officially put me back on the glossy lip train. Soft, transparent and radiant, it’s nothing like the tacky glosses of yesteryear.
Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunscreen Lotion, $17
Independently tested by Consumer NZ and verified to meet SPF50+ and broad-spectrum protection claims, this is a good oil-free option for those wanting a lightweight and non-glossy finish.
Aveeno Dermexa Daily Emollient Cream, $17.50
Made with oat extract, flour and oil plus ceramides, this unique fragrance-free lotion soothes dry, itchy skin and relieves redness and flaking. Good for dry, sensitive and eczema-prone skin.
Alya Skin Vitamin C Serum, $19 (on sale)
If you’re looking for a youthful glow (who isn’t), turn to vitamin C, a potent topical antioxidant that brightens, plumps and boosts collagen production. This version draws its strength from a blend of four Australian native plants – Kakadu Plum, Desert Lime, Finger Lime Caviar and Lilly Pilly. Use in the PM after cleaning.
Essano Gentle Resurfacing Toner, $20
This gentle toner harnesses the exfoliating benefits of glycolic acid, a type of alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA), to stimulate the skin’s natural renewal process, reducing enlarged pores and uneven texture to reveal fresher, healthier-looking skin.
Maybelline Fit Me Matte & Poreless Foundation, $20
I first came across this mattifying foundation when TikTok favorite Mikayla Nogueira demonstrated it on her account. It claims to control shine and blur pores while leaving a natural, seamless finish. Yes please. Another positive point: it is available in 40 shades.
$30 and under
Neutrogena Advanced Acne Serum, $23 (on sale)
This serum contains a trio of AHA, BHA and PHA ingredients to gently exfoliate and dissolve dead skin cells and excess sebum that can clog pores, promoting a clear and even complexion without drying out your skin.
Mcobeauty Salicylic Foaming Facial Cleanser, $25
Not just an eye-catching bottle, this is a gentle gel to foaming facial cleanser that fights blemishes by dissolving excess oil and pore-clogging dirt, makeup and sunscreen without drying out skin or causing redness, sensitivity and tightness.
$35 and under
Dose & Co. Vanilla Collagen Protein Powder, $34 (on sale)
Opinions differ on collagen supplements, but those who love them really love them and give them credit for improving their nails, hair and skin.
This Dose & Co powder contains 10 grams of combined Type 1 & 3 collagen per serving, as well as 20 grams of whey protein to boost energy and support muscle recovery.
$40 and under
Olay Luminous Niacinamide + Hyaluronic Super Serum, $36 (on sale)
There is hardly any skin that does not benefit from this deeply moisturizing hyaluronic serum. The fast-absorbing and non-greasy liquid is also packed with niacinamide, also known as vitamin B3, which can help a range of skin concerns such as redness, oiliness, dryness, fine lines and even the appearance of pores.
La Roche Posay Redermic R Retinol Anti-Aging Moisturizer, $45
Retinol is a common ingredient to target visible signs of aging and uneven skin tone. This face cream targets fine lines, wrinkles and age spots, but is gentle enough for sensitive skin.