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47 Cheap Beauty Products That Work SO Well You’ll Wish You Got Them Sooner

17 min read

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Behind every cult-favorite beauty product are thousands of fans screaming their praises. And thanks to the advent of the internet, affordable and effective skin, hair, and makeup products are easier to find than ever before. No longer are we forced to wander drugstore aisles, reading every label and desperately searching for the best moisturizer or lip gloss that $10 can buy us. Affordable beauty has become a lot more specialized and potent in recent years, which is good news for us budget beauty lovers. Gone are the days of stripping off the top layer of your skin with abrasive scrubs or dabbing toothpaste on your face to get rid of a zit: Now we can find inexpensive chemical exfoliators and pimple patches on every virtual shelf.

Whether you’re searching for for the cure for dry, frizzy hair or a holy grail solution for oily skin, there’s a wallet-friendly option out there for you, with countless five-star reviews to back it up. These 47 cheap beauty products are packed with research-backed ingredients and proven techniques to maximize results. And best of all, the most expensive product on this list is $17, though many don’t even scratch the $10 mark. They’ll work hard head to toe to help you look and feel like your best self — without breaking the bank.

1

A Multi-Use Facial Scrub To Revitalize Dull Skin

Clear built-up oil, dirt, and grime off of your face with the Lava Magik face cleanser, a three-in-one cleanser, scrub, and mask. Formulated with nutrient-rich, exfoliating ingredients, using it a few times a week will leave you with bright, revitalized skin. It rings in at less than $7, and is even cruelty free and vegan to boot.

2

An Effective Exfoliating Solution For All Skin Types

Give your skin a brightening boost while sealing in moisture with the Bliss jelly glow peel gentle non-abrasive exfoliator. As you scrub your skin, the natural fruit enzymes work to gently loosen dead skin cells, while cellulose fibers cling to them and roll them away as you rinse. It’s an effective exfoliator for oily and acne-prone skin, but sensitive and dry skin types won’t be irritated by the paraben-, phthalate-, and sulfate free- formula.

3

These Biodegradable Facial Pads With Three Types Of Exfoliants

Glycolic acid is beloved by dermatologists and beauty lovers because it’s an ultra effective exfoliant that won’t overly strip the skin. These Glycolic Fix Night Pads Extreme use a combination of powerhouse ingredients, including 5% glycolic acid, lactic acid, and hyaluronic acid, to improve skin texture and provide moisture. Swipe one of the biodegradable pads over your skin up to three times a week to brighten, decongest, and plump oily and acne-prone skin.

4

This Hydrating, Refining Toner With A Minimal Ingredient List

Pump some moisture into your skin with this rosewater facial toner, a daily vegan and cruelty free essence that will help it glow once again. Made with hyaluronic acid, rose flower oil, and aloe vera to deeply replenish your skin, this toner has a relatively short ingredient list — so you know that everything in there is working hard to benefit you. It works best for dry to combination skin types, and can help reduce the appearance of fine lines.

5

A Strong Retinol Formula To Enhance Skin’s Texture & Appearance

If you’re already using a retinol or retinoid and you’re ready to kick things up a notch, try The Ordinary’s retinol 1% in squalane solution. It’s a strong formulation that aims to improve the texture of your skin, including clearing up current acne and scars. Ease it into your routine one to two times a week before bumping it up to every other day.

6

This Acne Treatment That Targets Cystic & Hormonal Pimples

For pervasive, cystic or hormonal acne, there are few products on the market more relied upon than Differin Gel acne treatment. Over the course of eight to 12 weeks of regular use, reviewers saw their acne clear up (check out the before and after photos in the reviews for proof!). Over 30,000 people rate this dermatological staple five stars.

7

This Detoxifying Mask That Helps Improve Breakouts & Clear Pores

Most of us can’t travel to the Dead Sea to experience its miracle-working, skin-boosting properties, but we can mask up once a week with this Dead Sea mud mask, which contains natural mud with a high concentration of salts and minerals. The mask helps restore skin’s glow, and detoxifies pores to remove built-up grime and dirt. Similar to clay masks, you’ll find that this mask helps with blackheads, whiteheads, and general breakouts.

8

A Set Of 12 Sheet Masks For Multiple Skin Concerns

Any student of Korean beauty knows that the skincare capital of the world considers sheet masks an essential part of a skincare routine, and this 12 pack of masks will have you stocked. Whether your goal is to hydrate, refresh, or soothe your skin, this set has you covered. Ingredients like shea butter, aloe, and tea tree give your complexion total TLC.

9

This Moisturizer With A Hydrating, Dermatologist-Developed Formula

It’s hard to make a better choice for dry skin than a dermatologist-developed moisturizing cream like CeraVe body and face moisturizer. The fragrance-free formula can be used anywhere on your skin, and contains hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid and ceramides. It’s a great choice for those with normal to dry skin, as well as for those with eczema.

10

These Acne Patches That Absorb Pimple-Gunk

If you’re one of those people who enjoys watching pimple-popping videos, you’ll get a similarly satisfying effect from using Mighty Patch hydrocolloid pimple patches. Instead of treating the surface of a pimple, these patches absorb the gunk out of it. They take about six to eight hours to work and blend in almost seamlessly with your skin, so you can wear them overnight or out and about.

11

A Rosemary Scalp Treatment That Strengthens & Soothes Curly Hair

Nourish brittle and damaged hair with this rosemary mint scalp and hair strengthening oil. Made with nutrient-rich ingredients specifically for curls — including natural hair, protective styles, and braids and weaves — it can be used as a scalp treatment or to heal split ends. Rosemary and mint, along with biotin, help with length retention, smoothing brittle and dry hair, and encouraging growth.

12

These Microfiber Scrunchies That Dry Hair Gently

Sometimes, even allowing your hair to dry before you leaving the house is too tall an order. These microfiber towel scrunchies allow you to stylishly throw your hair up while still wet. They absorb water and are gentler on hair than blow drying or traditional hair elastics. Also, they’re available in a number of cute prints that disguise their true purpose.

13

A Conditioning Hair Detangler Made With Gentle Ingredients

If my mom had had access to this sweet orange vanilla conditioning detangler when I was little, we might have had a smoother hair-brushing experience… It contains nourishing argan oil, shea butter, jojoba protein, and quinoa extract to soften hair while it detangles. It’s also free from parabens, synthetic fragrances, dyes, silicones, and more, and has not been tested on animals, so it’s safe for the whole family to use.

14

This Styling Pomade That Gives Textured Hair Shine & Moisture

Natural curls get a dose of moisture with this Mimosa Hair Honey shine pomade, a styling product for all types of curly and wavy hair. It can be used to smooth, control frizz, and nourish styles, all while moisturizing the hair and scalp and adding shine. One reviewer with 4C curls wrote, “This is an amazing moisturizer… It provides moisture, shine, and a light pleasant scent.”

15

A Grease-Absorbing Dry Shampoo That Makes Styles Last

For refreshing your hair in between washes, try a spritz of the ever-popular Batiste dry shampoo. Lightly scented with lavender and musk, the waterless formula absorbs oil, dirt, and grease to make every day a good hair day. You can also use this dry shampoo to add volume and revitalize the texture of hair to keep your style intact for another day.

16

This Argan Oil Mask That Deeply Hydrates & Strengthens Hair

If coloring or heat styling your hair has it feeling a little dry, give it some TLC with this hydrating argan oil mask. The ingredient list includes deeply conditioning argan oil, which works to penetrate follicles to revive from the inside out. One reviewer wrote “I recently bleached my hair, and thanks to this mask my curls are bouncy and healthier than ever.”

17

This Special Towel That Dries Hair Quickly & Looks Cute

If you’re still using a regular bath towel to dry your hair, it may be time to upgrade. Using this microfiber hair towel wrap is not only less bulky and heavy than wrapping a full-size towel around your head, it’s also easier on hair than heat-drying. It has a helpful tie-hoop to keep it securely in place, so you can waltz around the house if that’s your post-shower mood.

18

This Thickening Leave-In Conditioner With Biotin & Collagen

This plant-based leave-in conditioner is full of ingredients to help keep hair soft and moisturized, while encouraging growth, shine, and thickness. Made with biotin and collagen — and without sulfates, parabens, dyes, and other additives — this spray gives hair body and leaves it ready to style. Reviewers advise daily use for a few weeks, and to use it on wet to damp hair for best results.

19

This Specially-Designed Comb To Trim Hair At Home

There are so many possibilities for using this hair cutter comb, and all of them will result in fewer trips to the salon. Use it for trimming bangs or overall length, adding layers, or thinning out your hair: It includes several types of blades and combs for different purposes. Even if you’ve never cut your own hair before, this tool will help you make basic changes without the help of a professional.

20

A Rinse-Out Hair Treatment That Enhances Texture & Shine

Eight seconds is all it takes for L’Oreal Paris Elvive wonder water to work its hair magic. Massage the lightweight treatment into the length of your hair after shampooing for an instant boost of moisture and shine. One dose is enough for fine to medium hair of all textures, but you can always double up if you have long or particularly thick hair (measurements are pre-marked on the bottle.)

21

This Sponge That Cleans Makeup Brushes Quickly & Efficiently

Dirty makeup brushes happen to the best of us, which is why the color removal cleaner sponge by TailaiMei is so useful. Remove pigment from your brushes just by swiping them over the activated carbon scrubbing sponge. If you don’t have time to clean your brushes with soap and water, this is a great alternative with no drying time involved, and it’s reusable over and over.

22

This Reusable Face Roller Made Of Oil-Absorbing Volcanic Stone

The Revlon Oil-Absorbing Face Roller sees blotting papers and raises them reusable volcanic stone. Gliding the mattifying roller over your face feels like a mini massage, with the bonus of soaking up excess oil but not makeup. It’s much more environmentally friendly than blotting paper — just rinse with a gentle cleanser then air dry.

23

A Waterproof Eye Primer That Helps Eyeshadow Last

Nothing ruins a great eyeshadow or eyeliner look faster than creasing and smudging. Prepping your lids with this Elizabeth Mott primer sets the stage for enhanced pigment with less fallout and longer-lasting results. It evens out skin tone and prevents oily lids from destroying your hard work at the vanity. (And it’s even Leaping Bunny-certified, which means it’s cruelty free!)

24

This Massive Eyeshadow Palette For Less Than $20

Get a makeup artist’s arsenal of eyeshadows in one package: the SHANY natural fusion 88 color eyeshadow palette. It’s packed with a range of shades — 29 mattes and 59 shimmers — for all makeup looks and occasions. It’s rare to find shadow palettes this big at such an affordable price, so you’ll want to jump on this deal for yourself or your favorite makeup lover.

25

A Primer That Gives A Dewy Look With Or Without Makeup

Make your skin look like it’s shimmering from the inside out with e.l.f.’s ELF+ Glow Primer Stick. Infused with coconut and shea butter, this primer preps skin for makeup looks of all kinds and leaves it dewy and radiant. You can wear this by itself or under foundation for a natural, no-makeup-makeup look.

26

Foolproof False Eyelashes That Use Magnets Instead Of Glue

Top off any makeup look with these magnetic eyelashes, and you’ve got an ultimate recipe for glam. High-strength magnets in this five pack eliminate the need for glue, which can be tricky to apply and reposition. Simply apply your normal eyeliner look with the included magnetic eyeliner, and place a set of lashes on top, repositioning as needed until you get the placement just right.

27

A Glossy Lip Plumper That Helps Lips Look Full

Make your lips appear instantly fuller with the help of this KISSIO lip plumper. Made with natural ginger extract, vitamin E, and other ingredients that promote collagen synthesis and cell regeneration, this plumper enhances the growth of lip cells while softening and moisturizing your lips. It also adds shine, so is great to carry around as your go-to lip gloss.

28

A Liquid Liner That Delivers Rich, Sharp Pigment

When it comes to black liquid eyeliner, it’s ideal for it to be richly pigmented, with an easy-to-use brush and a no-skip gliding tip. The Maybelline Hyper Easy Liquid Pen delivers on all of that, and is waterproof to boot. With a satin finish and their revolutionary flex tip brush, your cat eye or graphic liner will be sharp enough to stop everyone in their tracks.

29

These Color-Theory Concealers That Cover Up Redness, Undertones, And Dark Spots

Sometimes, skin-toned concealer isn’t enough to cover up redness, dark circles, and other skin discolorations. Try color correcting with the L.A. Girl Pro Conceal HD concealer before going in with complexion products to achieve an even skin tone. Work with the color wheel to determine what shades work best for your purposes: For example, green concealer helps cover redness, while lavender neutralizes yellow undertones.

30

This Magnetic Palette That Easily Transports Your Favorite Makeup

Keep all your favorite eyeshadows, blushes, and other makeup products in the same place: this magnetic palette. Repot your most-used products into magnetic metal iron pans, and slip them inside the protective cover. It’s perfect for travel where you don’t have space to bring all the products in your collection, and can store up to 18 one-inch diameter pots.

31

This Mascara With A Cult Following That’s Less Than $5

I’m really, really picky about my mascaras, and can testify that the essence Lash Princess mascara is worth the hype. It defines, separates and lengthens lashes, and my absolute favorite part is that it adds significant volume without looking clumpy. My lashes are naturally pretty short, so I love the falsie effect without the hassle —and the price is nothing to shake a stick at either.

32

A Clever Back Scrubber For Hard-To-Reach Areas

This textured back scrubber makes it easy to clean and exfoliate even the hardest-to-reach areas of your body. There’s a handle on either end of the double-sided scrubber, which measures about two and a half feet long. It lathers up in a breeze, and can be put in the washing machine to keep it sanitary and usable for years.

33

This Body Oil That Hydrates & Softens Skin For Hours

For moisturized, supple skin, this French Rose body oil is a sumptuous choice. Use it in place of body lotion, add a few drops of it to a warm bath, or even apply to the ends of your hair to deeply hydrate, soften, and show your body some love. Reviewers report that the scent is strong but not overpowering, and that it lasts for several hours.

34

These Exfoliating Bath Gloves That Make Body Scrubbing Easy

These dual-texture bath gloves make exfoliating your skin feel oh-so-satisfying. Lather them up with your favorite body wash, scrub, or body oil to remove dead skin and activate blood circulation. The gloves are made from a similar material as loofahs, and are textured on all sides so you’ll get a thorough scrub.

35

This After-Shower Lotion That Helps Quench Thirsty Skin

Skin is nicely receptive to moisture after showering, so that’s the best time to apply Jergens Deep Restoring Argan Oil Moisturizer. Apply it before toweling off, and let the oil-infused shea butter formula sink into your body for deep hydration and radiance. One reviewer wrote “I have [extreme] dry skin so I was looking for a strong moisturizer, this stuff works wonders when used daily.”

36

A Teeth Whitening Kit That Works For Sensitive Mouths

If your teeth are normally sensitive to whitening products, you’ll love this teeth whitening pen set. Twice a day after brushing and flossing your teeth, twist the dial at the bottom of the pen to release the gel formula and apply a thin layer to dry teeth. It promises to dramatically whiten and help remove years worth of yellowing and stains caused by coffee, wine, and other foods.

37

This Moisturizing Luminizer That Makes Skin Look Glowy & Radiant

Give yourself an all-over glow with this waterproof body luminizer, which works like a liquid highlighter for arms, chest, legs, and more. Available in rose gold, metallic gold, and glistening bronze, this luminizer helps all skin tones look sun-kissed and radiant. Massage it anywhere on your body to instantly brighten skin, or mix it with your favorite foundation for a glowy, strobe effect.

38

A Set Of Facial Massage Tools To Cool & Relax Skin

This two-piece roller and gua sha facial tool set is perfect for those looking to combat puffiness and headaches, and tighten the skin. Made from black obsidian stone, the roller is designed to improve circulation and massage the face, while the gua sha tool helps reduce inflammation and tighten skin. Pro tip: Keep them in the refrigerator for an extra cooling effect that will further assist with puffiness.

39

A Detangling Hair Brush For Even Sensitive Heads

The right hairbrush can make all the difference in your haircare routine — if detangling is your mission, then this glide thru detangling brush makes an excellent sidekick. Use it on wet or dry, curly or straight hair, to smooth out knots without pulling or tugging. The flexible bristles are gentle on hair and scalp, and minimize breakage.

40

This Heat-Resistant Silicone Mat For Hot Hair Styling Tools

Protect your hot styling tools — and yourself — with this heat resistant travel mat. It works as a safe place to set down your curling iron or straightener, and doubles as a storage pouch when the tool is unplugged. Heat-resistant up to 480 degrees and slip-resistant for safety, this affordable tool is also compact and easy to bring with you wherever you go.

41

This Scrubber Mat That Makes Cleaning Makeup Brushes Easy & Thorough

Make sure your makeup brushes are thoroughly cleansed on this brush scrubber mat that helps remove every last bit of product and dead skin cells. With a suction cup on the back and a variety of textures for scrubbing, this mat can wash everything from foundation to eyeshadow brushes. Simply wet your brush, apply a little cleanser, and rub your brush in a circular motion as needed until it rinses clean.

42

This Pain-Free Hair Remover That’s Just Ten Bucks

The Lumina Painless Hair Remover is an ideal tool for removing any amount of hair from the face. With a built-in light to see what you’re doing, the pivoting head gently removes hairs from your upper lip, cheeks, brows, and more. With this tool you can remove hairs easily and quickly, without the expense of a professional or the pain of waxing, tweezing, or shaving.

43

A Three-In-One Cleansing Brush For Daily Exfoliation

This facial cleansing brush comes in two adorable pastel colors and with three brush heads for different types of exfoliating and cleansing. Use them daily to remove dead skin, help prevent acne formation, remove blackheads, and cleanse deeply within your pores. Best of all, many similar brushes run from $60-100, while this one is only $14.

44

A Peel-Off Cuticle Guard For Sleek & Clean Manicures

Despite my best attempts, I never fail to get nail polish all over the surrounding skin. But with the help of this cuticle guard barrier protector, it’s easy to apply nail polish as normal, then simply peel off the cuticle guard when done to remove any excess. You’ll be left with clean, professional-quality manicures that are way more affordable than hitting the salon.

45

This Powerful Foot Repair Cream That Exfoliates & Moisturizes

If you spend a lot of time on your feet or have particularly dry skin, then this intensive foot repair ointment may be your new best friend. It uses salicylic acid to soften the heels and balls of your feet and remove dead skin, which allows the moisturizing formula to penetrate more deeply.

46

A Hydrating Foot Lotion For Extremely Dry Skin

For daily foot care, try this Healthy Feet Foot Cream. Made for extremely dry skin, this cream works to penetrate deep within the skin and also creates a protective moisture layer to help prevent further dryness. A little goes a long way, so make sure not to over-apply to avoid stickiness.

47

A Keratin Nail Treatment That Strengthens Brittle Nails

Chipping, brittle nails can get a hefty dose of strength by applying this three-day keratin nail treatment. Use the clear formula it on its own as you would nail polish, or as a base and top coat with a nail color. Keratin amino acids help stop peeling and chipping, and encourage nails to grow in healthier and stronger.

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