All year long, I bounce around from beauty event to beauty event, checking out the latest products. (I know. Poor me.) I love discovering new cosmetics that defrizz my crazy hair or chase my eye bags away, but my secret passion is finding affordable products that deliver. Sure, I love to treat myself to a $65 bottle of custom-blended foundation. But there’s nothing like the special thrill of finding a product that’s just plain awesome and only eight bucks.
1. Yes to Cucumbers Face Cleanser ($8.99) at Target
I have very sensitive skin, and this cleanser treats it just right! The formula is thorough enough to remove makeup but gentle enough not to dry it out or leave your skin feeling tight. Application is easy: Use a washcloth, cleansing brush or your hands.
2. Garnier Skin Renew Anti-Puff Eye Roller ($9.99) at Target
If you’re like me and wake up with puffy eyes, give this roller a try. The silver ball massages the skin, cools it and helps to disperse any puffiness. The light, oil-free formula contains caffeine and mint, which work together to stimulate circulation, reduce the temperature under the eyes and banish those bags.
3. Burt’s Bees Lip Shine ($5.48–6.99) at Target
I have two tubes of this in my purse … and one in every coat pocket. I’m a little obsessed! But it’s the perfect blend of lip balm and gloss and results in a soft, sheer tint. Available in nine colors, the product feels really nice (creamy, not waxy) and nourishes the lips with apricot wax and sunflower oil.
4. Hard Candy Glamoflauge Foundation ($7) at Walmart
I love the Hard Candy Glamoflauge Concealer, so my eyes almost popped out of my head when I spied the foundation! The creamy, oil-free formulation provides coverage all day, so you don’t have to worry about touch-ups. It contains kaolin clay for oil absorption, meaning it’s great for oilier skin but is definitely suitable for dry-skin types as well. Note: I found the Glamoflauge Foundation shades to be lighter than the Glamoflauge Concealer shades, so your color may not be the same in both products.
5. L’Oréal Paris Brow Stylist Plumper Brow Gel Mascara ($8.99) at Drugstore.com
When it comes to brows, I’m usually a clear-gel girl, and I fill in with powder when I want to take things up a notch. I’ve never been a fan of tinted gels because I end up making a mess applying them. This one, with its tiny brush and semi-sheer formula, goes on perfectly, giving brows a thicker appearance while keeping unruly hairs in place all day.
6. Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Top Coat and Colors ($7.97) at Walmart
These polishes are easy to apply and remove. They seriously last and have a quick drying time, so you can forget about the time-consuming curing process associated with regular gels. What’s really cool is that the Miracle Gel Top Coat($7.97) can help extend the wear of your regular polishes, too.
FACE AND BODY
7. Aveeno Active Naturals Daily Moisturizing Lotion ($8.79) at Walgreens
After using this product for months, I’m still not clear as to whether it’s for the face or body, but never mind that! I keep a travel size of it in my makeup bag for when I need on-the-go hydration for my face, hands, knees, elbows and just about everywhere else. In addition to nourishing ingredients like oat flour and glycerin, the lotion contains dimethicone (found in many makeup primers), which protects the skin from the elements and lends a smoother appearance.
8. Suave Professionals Moroccan Infusion Body Lotion ($4.99) at Drugstore.com
This is a fabulous cure if you struggle with dry body skin but hate the feel of rich body creams or don’t have the time to wait for them to absorb. It’s a lightweight lotion that’s easily as effective as the richest body butters. Plus, it has a very pleasant, refreshing scent.
9. Schwarzkopf Ultime Styling Products ($6.97) at Walmart
Meet my latest addiction: a Schwarzkopf line designed with German model Claudia Schiffer. The result is a collection of the best hair products I’ve ever tried. I use the “Curls & Moisture” items, but there are styling products for all hair types. You won’t believe the performance for the price.
10. SoapBox Argan Oil Shampoo and Conditioner ($4.99 each) at Target
Target’s new SoapBox hair-care collection is really good! There are several options for different hair types, but I really enjoy the argan oil version for my dry hair. The price is awesome, and SoapBox donate a month’s worth of clean water to a community in need through Splash, a nonprofit organization that provides water and education to the needy around the world.
Target: Get $5 off $50 on select items. Shipping is free on all orders.
Drugstore.com: Enjoy free shipping on $35 or more.