We all want value for money, particularly if we’re on a tight budget. One way to ensure you get it is to look to smaller brands. Big brands have big expenses - marketing, PR, office costs, wages, keeping shareholders happy… and that’s usually reflected in the price. If you do find a bargain, it’s often at the expense of the quality of the product itself.
The other day I was comparing cocoa butter body butters. One was from a well-known brand, the other a solo entrepreneur like me. They were similar prices. The ingredients list for the big brand product was very long, and most of it was unpronounceable, apart from the main ingredient: water. Yep, it had been watered down and then mixed with a tonne of preservatives, artificial perfumes, colours and so on. The small brand cocoa butter had three ingredients: organic cocoa butter, coconut oil and sweet almond oil. Which would you rather spend your money on? Not only would you get far better results with the second product, it would also last a long longer, as you’d need to use a much smaller amount than the watered down version.
The same goes for my heel balm – you only need a tiny amount, and all the ingredients are beneficial. At £9.50 I think it’s a steal, as you’re likely getting as many as 50 effective applications.
Another way to keep costs down is by using ingredients in their purest form. Coconut oil, for example, costs around £10 for a large jar. It’s a great body moisturiser and, again, a little goes a very long way. A fingernail amount can be used as an overnight facial oil, for instance.
Oats are a key ingredient in many of my products, as they do an excellent job of nourishing the skin. You can also use a handful tied up in some old tights as a really luxurious bath cream; they leave skin soft and are very effective at soothing eczema and other skin conditions.
If you’re on a really tight budget, you may need to decide what your beauty priorities are. For instance, you might spend less on a shampoo, that will get washed away, so that you can splurge a little more on a moisturiser. You can pick up a gentle, natural shampoo for around £5, which isn’t much more than a cheap high-street one laced with chemicals.
I’d love to hear what your budget beauty secrets are. Tweet me at @NaryndaSkincare to share them.