Thirty under €20

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A Pharmer’s Journal reader recently requested my favourite budget beauty buys… and ’til then I hadn’t noticed I’d been hanging a heavy on the high end recently.

I LOVE drugstore/pharmacy finds, (eh hello, I work in a pharmacy all day long!), and so I set myself the challenge of a ‘Fifteen under €15’ post… That was until I realised my holy grail cleanser is actually €18.50, and so the budget was upped to €20 (but to compensate I doubled the quantity of gems!).

My one rule – Every product must be something I currently use, and have repurchased. Thereby ensuring true ‘favourites’ worth!

And so, starting with face masks (my achilles heel)…

Originally I panicked at the thought, as the majority of masks I use currently are admittedly high end (Guinot, Glamglow, Dermalogica etc). But then I remembered these two gorge bags – Lush’s Mask of Magnaminty, and No7’s Beautiful Skin Hydration Mask.

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Mask of Magnaminty €7.95 Lush
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No7 Hydration Mask €17.50 Boots

Mask of Magnaminty is a clay mask I’ve only recently discovered, and I’m already on tub number two. It’s amazing as a detoxing mask – it clears the skin, exfoliates and tightens pores. Plus it smells amazing. Win, win, win.

No7 Hydration Mask is one I discovered many years ago when robbing my Mum’s beauty stash. I love hydrating masks – this little beauty moisturises, brightens and soothes the skin.

Side Note: Use those ten million No7 vouchers in your bag for this one. Side, side note: The vast majority of products mentioned in this article also qualify for a Boots 3 for 2 offer…

Micellar Water

I use micellar water by the bucket – in the gym, to remove eye make-up, when cleansing make-up brushes, doing damage limitation on dodgy eyeliner… The vast majority of micellar water falls under the €20 bracket anyway, BUT whilst I do love Bioderma, the difference between it and the likes of this Garnier version is negligible.

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Garnier Micellar Water €4.50 from most pharmacies

 

Cleansing Oil

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Camomile Cleansing Oil €18.50 The Body Shop

I ADORE this magical elixir. It has replaced my Dermalogica Precleanse, as it’s totally on par yet half the price. Full review of this beaut right here!

 

Moisturiser

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Vitamin C SPF30 Daily Moisturiser, €20 The Body Shop

Here’s where La Roche Posay Hydraphase instantly jumped out. Alas it just missed the €20 cut off, leaving me with a moisturiser I actually enjoy using far, far more now that I think of it – The Body Shop’s Vitamin C Moisturiser. This cream noticeably brightens, hydrates, provides SPF30 and  adds some luminosity to your face.

Face Scrub

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St. Ives Apricot Scrub €5.99 Boots

To be honest, there are very few budget exfoliatants that I use, as I prefer using chemical exfoliants which generally retail that little bit higher. However I always have a physical face scrub in my shower – which I use to remove the last of pesky clay masks. This St. Ives one is gorgeous, takes me back to my tweens, smells incredible and brightens my skin.

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Botanics Radiant Youth Polish, €7.99 Boots

The Botanics Radiant Youth Microdermabrasion scrub is totally worth a mention here too – When used gently it’s fantastic for blasting away dry skin and getting the glow…

Toner

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La Roche Posay Serozinc €11 (vast majority of pharmacies)

La Roche Posay Seronzinc is the only toner I’m currently using – and I can’t see me upgrading any time soon. I either spritz my face in the mist, or spray a cotton pad and use on my T zone. It’s fantastic for blemishes or irritated skin.

Lip Balm

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Luxe Reve de Miel Lip Balm €11.75 Cloud10Beauty

The Nuxe Reve de Miel balm is glued to my bedside table – It’s incredibly soothing and hydrating.

The comparison’s to Creme de la Mer’s lip balm are in constant occurrence, and for very good reason.

Face/Body/Hair Oils

I’m all about beauty oils… Bio-Oil is one I’ve been using for fifty million years – I use it as a night oil on my face, as a body moisturiser, as an after-sun, as a bath oil…

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Bio-Oil from €6 (Penneys/Primark, Boots, independent pharmacies)

 

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Pure Coconut Oil €9.99 Holland and Barrett

Fret not, I’m not one of those coconut oil cult groupies – I enjoy buying beauty products waaaaay to much to settle for a one-cures-all product.

But to be fair, this one is pretty awesome. I use it mainly as an overnight hair treatment, and hope to one day gain the courage to start oil-pulling (vom). As a face oil/make-up remover/body moisturiser, I personally find coconut oil too greasy, but whatever you’re into…

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Neutrogena Body Oil €9.99 Boots

This Neutrogena body oil on the other hand is gorgeous. It’s rarely in store so if you see it, GRAB it!

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Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse €19.25 (Independent Pharmacies, Sam McCauleys, Boots etc)

Nuxe is up there as one of my favourite skincare brands; fantastic quality, smells insanely gorgeous, affordable etc etc. I slather myself in this stuff after showering, and also whack it through the ends of my hair when it’s violently frizzy. Ditto for face when it’s violently dehydrated.

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L’oreal Elvive Extraordinary Oil €12.99 Boots

My hair is literally gasping for oils and serum 24/7. The L’oreal Extraordinary Oil totally holds its own against the likes of its Kerastase sibling… This smoothens frizz and silkens my mane without being too heavy.

Hair Care

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H’suan Wen Hua Hair Mask €12 from Lush

I’ve lost count of how many pots of this ridiculously named hair mask I’ve ploughed through. (FYI Lush have a Back-to-Mac type scheme where they exchange five empties for one freebie)… This smells vile but transforms my hair when used as an overnight mask.

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Bleach Silver Shampoo, €7.99 Boots

This Bleach purple shampoo is amazing – I always have a bottle in the shower. It tones brassiness far more effectively than its drugstore competitors, and has replaced my Shu Uemura Art of Colour toner – that is until I can justify a repurchase of the latter!

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Kebelo Clarifying Shampoo, €14.99 LookFantastic

 I haven’t bought a budget shampoo since I had my first Brazilian blowdry back in university… Back then I made the switch to sodium-free shampoos as opposed to the sulfate free versions popular at the moment, and haven’t looked back. Annoyingly, these are always pretty expensive, and so I’ve yet to find a decent one to fit the under €20 bill.

However I fell in love with this Kebelo clarifying shampoo earlier this year and am now on bottle number three. I use it roughly once a fortnight, and it manages to turn my unruly hair silky. No mean feat.

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CoLab Dry Shampoo €3.99 (Penneys/Primark/Cloud10Beauty)

The CoLab range seems to have totally divided opinion, but I adore it. In saying that, my hair rarelu gets greasy, and so I use dry shampoo for texture/scent as opposed to oil-absorption, but the CoLab range gets my vote every time. I spritz my roots at night, pin my hair up and by morning it looks freshly blowdried.

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Tangle Teezer, €10 Sam Mc Cauleys

Tangle Teezer brushes are anabsolute life saver – Must have, holy grail, LOVE!

Body

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Soap and Glory Whipped Clean €9.99

I am so, so in love with Soap & Glory’s Whipped Clean. This is an in-shower body conditioner, smells incredible and leaves your skin super hydrated. Obsessed.

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Nuxe Prodigieux Shower Oil €12 Cloud10Beauty

My other favourite body product being this incredible Nuxe shower oil. Adore! This hydrates your skin, leaving your body with a subtle golden shimmer, and smelling insanely gorgeous.

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Neroli & Orchidee Hand Cream, €10.50 L’Occitane

There are so many amazing budget body moisturisers – Soap and Glory, The Body Shop, Lush and Aveeno all spring to mind. However I’m currently obsessed with L’Occitane hand creams – They’re incredibly moisturising and totally worth the extra few euro. In winter there’s always one floating around my handbag, and I always have one on my bedside table for my disgustingly dry feet. yolo.

Tanning

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Cocoa Brown 1hour Tan €7.99 (Cloud10Beauty, Pennys/Primark and many, many pharmacies!)

No-one does budget bronzing like Cocoa Brown; It’s totally in a league of its own.

Cocoa Brown is so affordable and accessible, whilst still ticking the tanning boxes – Nautual colour, not too heavily scented, no streaks…

Make Up

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Soap and Glory Kick Ass Concealer €13.50 Boots

 Under eye concealers are where I’m stuggling big time to find one I love, both budget and high end. This Kick Ass concealer is one of my current favourites. It reminds me of Benefit Boi-ing, and comes with an under eye setting powder (plus a decent mirror).

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Soap and Glory €15 Boots*

In keeping with the S&G theme, I couldn’t not mention Glow All Out – one of my favourite budget powders/highlighters. I actually smashed a brand new one into smithereens this morning in my gym bag, sigh. Read my full review on this gem HERE!

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L’oreal Infallible 24H-Matte, €12.29 Boots

 

 Foundation wise, it’s a toss up between L’oreal Infallible and L’oreal True Match. Both I adore, both I continuously repuchase. Infallible has it by a pinch though, I think. This gives flawless coverage, doesn’t dry out the skin, gives a dewy glow and is long-lasting. Sure what more do ya want!?

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L’oreal Volume Million Lashes Couture, €14.99 Boots

L’oreal have it when it comes to mascara as well – I adore their Volume Million Lashes.

This totally compares favourably with my favourite high end wands, and I’ll happily repurchase again and again.

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Real Techniques Stippling Brush €14.50 Cloud10Beauty

 Those Chapman ladies played a blinder when creating the Real Techniques collection. These compare with brushes far more pricey – yet are totally affordable. I’ve washed mine a billion times yet the bristles remain soft and full with no fall out. Winning.

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Soap  Glory Solar Powder, €15 Boots

 The last of the Soap and Glory big-ups, I swear! There’s a reason why makeup artists adore the Solar Powder bronzer – It’s subtle, buildable, never orange and always natural.

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NYX Matte Lipsticks €9 in various pharmacies (Boots, Bradleys, Hickeys)

There are sooo many amazing drug store lipsticks – I adore Rimmel, Bourjois, Topshop…

NYX lip products just have ‘it’ though – and I have pretty much the entire collection – lipsticks, pencils, butter glosses…

So there ya have it! I’d ADORE to hear your thoughts and suggestions – If any of you know a good BrightMud budget dupe, I’m all ears! Or eye creams in general for that matter…

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