Firstly let me say, I’m no Caroline Hirons. I’m not claiming to be a skincare expert, I’m just an average gal with a desire for glowy clear skin. So take everything I say with a pinch of salt, and do your own research before purchasing anything…
I recently spent £100 on skincare, and it hurt me a bit. Read: a lot. For some of you, that might be normal. Is that normal? Please tell me. I know I’ve never spent that much money on skincare in one go!
Personally, I’m not a high end make up gal – I’m a whatever is cruelty free in Boots or Superdrug kinda gal. I think the products you can find there are often just as good as some of the high end brands. However, when it comes to skincare, I am a bit more torn.
Does a higher price mean better quality? Can you find good skincare without breaking the bank? Let’s chat about it.
I’m more willing to spend money on skincare than make up. I think it’s important to take care of your skin as best as you possibly can. So buying a new moisturiser doesn’t pain me quite as much as buying a new foundation does – weird, right? I suppose the more I spend on my skincare, the less I feel the need to spend on make up.
I thought I’d do a rundown of some of the skincare products that I alternate between, tell ya how much they are and if I think they’re worth it. All of the products I mention are cruelty free and many of them are vegan too!
We’ll keep it basic and compare cleansers, face masks, moisturisers and an oil or two. I’m hoping by the end of this I’ll come to a coherent conclusion, but don’t hold me to it…
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not claiming to have the most extravagant skincare products in the world. You’ll shortly see that Superdrug and The Body Shop are popular picks, however I’ve recently got into Tropic Skincare which does feel pretty luxurious to me.
Superdrug Vitamin E Hot Cloth Cleanser – 200ml for £4.99
Without a doubt, this is the best value for money out of all my cleansers. I love this for taking my make up off. It’s affordable, hydrating and doesn’t break me out. I personally don’t think the popular Liz Earle version is any better than this, and it costs at least £20 more.
Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser – 177 ml for £15
I’d say the milky jelly cleanser is one of the skincare items I’m least fussed about. Now I’m not saying I don’t like it, but I could definitely live without it! I don’t think it’s potent enough to take your make up off, so I tend to use this as my morning cleanser just to get the sleep off!
Tropic Smoothing Cleanser – 120ml for £16
This is the most expensive cleanser of the bunch. However, I am obsessed with it. It makes my skin feel incredibly clean without stripping it or making it dry. It may just be a coincidence, but I’ve definitely not had as many breakouts since I started using this product.
Lush Skin Drink – £19.95 for 45g
I’ve always loved Lush skincare, but I do feel that they’ve got pretty expensive over recent years. Hence why Skin Drink is not something I will purchase regularly despite absolutely loving it. It is incredibly gentle and hydrating, but it doesn’t last long! I rarely purchase this because of how quickly I go through it.
The Body Shop Vitamin E Intense Moisture Cream – £14 for 50ml
A little goes a long way with this moisturiser. It was my go to moisturiser over the winter when I was really struggling with dry skin. This is better value than Lush’s Skin Drink, but again it’s still not cheap!
Tropic Skin Feast Nourishing Cream Concentrate – £24 for 50ml
Ouch that’s expensive. I do really enjoy using it though. I’d say it’s lighter than both The Body Shop and Lush moisturisers, so it’s perfect for using under your make up. However, at night time I do always follow it up with an oil and a treatment.
The Ordinary Rose Hip Seed Oil – £9 for 30ml
You really can’t fault The Ordinary’s price tag on their oils. It is 100% organic, cold-pressed oil – all natural, no added ingredients. It adds moisturise back into my skin and is meant to help reduce redness too! Like with most face oils, a little goes a long way with this. It is pretty heavy and it won’t sink into the skin instantly, so I would recommend only using this at night.
Tropic Super Greens Face Oil – £42 for 30ml
I actually can’t believe the difference in price between these two oils. First off, let me say… I definitely could not afford to pay £42 for a face oil at this point in my life. Even if I could afford it, £42 seems ridiculously expensive. However, I bought a bunch of Tropic Skincare products in a bundle which meant I saved a lot off the hefty price tag.
Super Greens isn’t as heavy as I expected it to be, so I enjoy using it in the morning after my moisturiser when I feel like my skin needs a good drink! It does a great job at leaving my skin looking brighter and healthier.
Tropic Clear Skin – £20 for 50ml
This mask is designed for people with more oily skin for me, however Tropic do also say you can use it on individual blemishes which is what I do. This means that the face mask is probably going to last me forever. So it might be expensive, but I do think it’s worth the money. It has really helped calm down my breakouts, and I think it has actually helped them go away faster!
The Body Shop Japanese Matcha Pollution Clearing Mask – £17 for 75 ml
I love this mask. It’s a tad more gentle than the Tropic mask, so I use it all over my face. It doesn’t strip my skin, and it always leaves my face feeling a little bit brighter! I would definitely purchase it again.
Lush Fresh Face Masks – £7.50 for 75g
I’m pretty sure I’ve tried every single fresh face mask that Lush sell. Even though they are the cheapest face mask of the bunch, I actually wouldn’t say they’re better value for money. Due to them being fresh, they have to be kept in the fridge and used up within a couple weeks. I often find that I don’t get the chance to use them up completely, so it feels like a waste of product and money!
Price is not always indicative of quality. Yeah, the packaging is probably nicer on your £20 cleanser compared to your £5 one, but does that matter? Nope.
Don’t buy out of your budget. Just because everyone and their mum is speaking about some Sunday Riley serum, does not mean you should be dipping into your overdraft to get it.
Buy what works for you – whether it’s a tea tree cleanser from Poundland or a caviar infused moisturiser from who knows where.
Look at the ingredients. If you’re cautious about the ingredients you’re putting on your skin, take a look at the Think Dirty app. It’s a free app that will tell you how safe the ingredients in your products are. It’s handy to look at it if you’re having an issue with a certain product – it might give you an idea of what ingredients to steer clear of!
Before you buy, ask to try. If you’re going to a counter in Boots or Debenhams for example, chances are they’ll have little samples or they could even do a skincare consultation with you there and then. Places like Lush and The Body Shop will also be able to give you a sample – just remember to ask nicely!
With the likes of Superdrug’s own skincare range, you unfortunately won’t be able to get a sample. However, the price point does mean it’s not necessarily the end of the world if something doesn’t work for you. I’m sure your mum/sister/cousin/brother/dad/random person the street will appreciate the hand me down if it doesn’t work for you!
While I definitely can’t afford to buy products from Tropic Skincare regularly, I do love everything I’ve tried so far. I really appreciate that everything is made freshly with natural ingredients, and using their products feels like a special treat! However, saying that, you’ll still find me using my Superdrug hot cloth cleanser every single day…
Do you spend a lot on your skincare? If so, do ya think it’s worth it? What’s your favourite skincare brand? I’d love to know!
Are you all caught up? Last week I chatted about how we can reduce mental health stigma
Wanna see more of me? I post almost daily on Instagram!