9 Cheap Skin Care Products That Actually Work

When it comes to skincare it can be tempting to splurge on premium products before trying out budget skincare alternatives.

While I like personally enjoy using a mix of both high and low-cost products in my beauty routine I have noticed that drugstore skincare products have improved leaps and bounds in the past few years. Not only are they trying to compete with the more luxury brands but including better and stronger ingredients into their products.

Read below to discover my own budget skin care picks that I feel perform just as good as more expensive options!

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Moisturiser (£12.99)
- Often half price!
Described as a refreshing water-gel moisturiser that contains a unique Hyaluronic Gel Matrix to instantly lock in intense hydration and continuously release it, this is my go-to daily moisturiser for my combination skin. While it doesn't moisturise the face as it's a fairly basic product (you can include a few drops of facial oil if you wish) it hydrates it and that is often what the skin is desperate for!

Think a totally lightweight refreshing gel that soaks in a dream, making it an ideal AM skin choice. I'm on my 3rd pot so this is definitely a recommended product for me and one I'm tempted to say is a slightly lighter version of Clarins HydraQuench Cream but without the price tag!

La Roche Posay Effaclar Duo+ (£12.00)
Throughout my 20's I've gone back to this product time and time again when I've had problems with my skin. Although it's a simple enough moisturiser by the initial look of it, it tackles both shine and spots really well without drying out the skin even for those with a dry skin type!

The other benefit of Effaclar Duo is that with continuous use it does smooth out the texture of the skin on a visible level which really is a plus. It also works well under makeup too.

The Ordinary Chemical Exfoliators
It wouldn't be a complete skincare post without mentioning The Ordinary a brand that have pretty much-taken skincare lovers worldwide by storm!

If you are looking for a range of recommendations then you may want to check out my Top 10 Products from The Ordinary post, but today I wanted to focus on three of their best acid exfoliator products because I simply can't get enough of them as they perform so well.

First up, a product that doesn't stay in stock for long! The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7%Toning Solutions (£6.80) is perfect everyday chemical exfoliator that is often compared to Pixi Glow Tonic. An ideal option for those that want to keep dead skin cells at bay for a brighter smoother complexion.

However, if you had sensitive skin or just prefer serums, then The Ordinary Lactic Acid 5% + HA 2% £5.50 (available in Lactic Acid 10% here) is another good option for tackling both an uneven skin tone and texture in your PM skincare routine.

Lastly, if you are after something more potent then you can't go wrong with The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution (£6.30). This multi-acid solution tackles both blemishes and dull skin. Applied as a 10-minute mask this really is a wonder treatment for the skin and is sure to leave it renewed and smooth. My go-to when I really feel like I want togive my skin an at-home facial! 

The Body Shop British Rose Petal Soft Gel Toner (£9.50)
Over the past few years, The Body Shop has certainly upped its game, creating a solid range of skincare products for all skin types. Although the prices aren't as cheap as the drugstore you can always rely on them to do their job. Which is why I had to share this stunning gel toner that perfectly hydrates and softens making ideal for the cold season and dry skin types.

It's also a toner ideal for applying after a drying clay mask even for those with oily skin as it hydrates but doesn't clog the pores. I also really love the look of this product with the real rose petals!

Read my full review here.

The Body Shop Camomile Sumptuous Cleansing Butter (£10.00)
If you are serious about skincare then you will have most likely tried a cleansing balm, however, have you tried a cleansing butter? I hadn't until quite recently and when I did I couldn't believe what I'd been missing out on. 100% vegan this creamy cleansing butter is easy to apply and massage over the skin melting makeup with ease.

Even when wearing waterproof mascara you can be sure that this cleansing butter will tackle it without having the rub at the delicate eye area and will leave the skin thoroughly cleansed yet soft and hydrated. This really does rival my favourite cleansing balm; Emma Hardie Amazing Face Moringa Cleansing Balm which says a lot! 

L'Oreal Pure Clay Detox Mask (£7.99)
When it comes to face masks I'm all about clay masks that dry down and draw out all the impurities in the skin and pores - I can't get enough of them. But after trying Glamglow Supermud Mask I was certain nothing would come close to it, and although this isn't a dupe it does pack some punch in a similar way to the aforementioned mask.

Drying down in minutes this is a perfect face mask for oily/blemish prone skin as it clears out pores and helps prevent and dry out spots without sucking the moisture out of the skin! The other face masks in this range are also worth trying with a handy set of their 3 masks in mini form available here for only £7.49.

B. Face Mask Pods (£2.49 each in-store)
Last but not least I wanted to share some new and affordable clay pod masks with you that I've been trying out. The four new masks come in a Hydrated Mask, Glowing Mask, Purifying Mask and Detoxified Mask meeting differing skin needs.

So far I've tried 2 of the 4 and really was impressed with the results of the Glowing Mask as it was almost a multi-purpose mask exfoliating at the same time as being a mask. And while my skin did initially look red on removal it soon settled down feeling much softer and with a fresh kind of glow.

However other than these being really nice face mask pods I wanted to include them as I absolutely love that if you enjoy one of the pod masks you can then go on to purchase it full-size (£7.49 here)! I really do love this concept a lot and may pick up my favourite pod mask in jar form soon.

What budget skincare would you recommend?

Let me know in the comments!

Fee xo.

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