Sunday, 18 May 2014

Affordable Skincare

I know not everyone wants to or has the money to spend on skincare. Which is why I've put together a little routine featuring affordable, effective skincare with no nasties that will damage your skin. 

The most important thing about skincare is the INGREDIENTS. Not the price. Know your ingredients, what to look for and what to avoid. Just because it's expensive doesn't mean it isn't full of nasty, cheap ingredients that will actually make your skin worse. 

Below is a small list of the MAIN things I like to avoid in skincare and why: 

Mineral oil/petrolatum/parraffinum liquidum/petroleum jelly: Nasty, cheap, pore clogging, skin dehydrating yuckiness. AVOID.

•Alcohol: Will dry out  and dehydrate the skin. Can also make skin very red and sensitive. 

•ANYTHING foaming: Your skin has a protective layer, called the acid mantle. This is made up of oil (sebum) and sweat. It protects your skin, keeps it anti fungal and waterproof. If you use harsh, foaming products on your skin, it breaks down the acid mantle. This will put your skin in a condition called alkaline. Basically, a breadinrg ground for bacteria which will cause spots. Also, because you have stripped your skin of all it's natural oil, your skin will over compensate and produce more, also leading to more spots. So, yeah.. Don't use foaming products. 

•Sulphates (SLS): This is the ingredient that make the foam, avoid for the same reasons.

•Makeup wipes (Don't get me started.) Full of alcohol, doesn't actually clean your face, dehydrating, drying, just.. yuck.

•Fragrance/Parfum: Can be irritating to the skin, especially more sensitive skin.

Okay, so first of all..


For a start, DITCH THE WIPES. I don't care if they were on 3 for 2 or buy one get on free in Boots, they are nasty and bad for your skin.

Cleansing is one of the most important parts of your skincare routine, it's what CLEANS your face. You want a nice, nourishing cleanser that's going to effectively remove all traces of makeup without stripping your skin.

 My personal recommendation is the Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil from The Body Shop. This will cost you £10 for 200ml and will last you MONTHS. 

One pump will remove all makeup, (including stubborn mascara) and leave your skin feeling super hydrated and plump. It's suitable for all skin types, YES, even oily skin! (Oil is fantastic for oily skin as it helps to balance everything out and give the skin the nourishment it needs which will make it produce less oil. Makes sense?) 
So even though you got your wipes on a deal, you'll go through them much quicker than this which means you'd actually end up spending MORE money than if you were to buy this at £10. Plus this is actually cleaning and helping your skin.

I also use Bioderma which is a Micellar water.

 This is a makeup remover, however I only use it in the morning as a refresh. I like it round my eyes especially because it's cooling and refreshing. You can buy a 500ml for £15, which I know to some may not be adorable, so I found the Garnier alternative which is £5 for 200ml. 
This is very similar, I just found that it stung my eyes which isn't very helpful. But overall, it's a good alternative.

If you're going to use a Micellar water to remove your makeup, I recommend following up with something more nourishing as Micellar waters do not contain any ingredients that are going to give your skin the moisture it needs. You could remove the bulk of your makeup with a Micellar water and then go in for a second cleanse with something like the silky camomile cleanser. Then your skin is clean, makeup free and nourished. 

Next up is TONER.

A lot of people dismiss toner but for me it's one of my favourite steps. I've picked another Body Shop item for this one. The Aloe Calming Toner. I like this as it contains only SIX ingredients, three of them being aloe juice, water and glycerin. Ingredients that are going to keep your skin hydrated and fresh. Yay! It's also alcohol free (A MUST). £8 for 200ml.

Okay as for day moisturiser, as Caroline Hirons would say: 
"Your moisturiser is your coat/protection.
People tend to spend far too long choosing their moisturiser and far too little taking care of what goes on beforehand. For example, using a quick swipe of a wipe, slapping on a £150 face cream and then wondering why their skin isn't great."  Yes, that is a direct quote from her blog. 

So in all honesty, don't worry too much about your moisturiser. As long as it is 
1. Suitable for your skin type
2. Free from nasty ingredients (refer to list earlier)
It would also be good to have an SPF in as well. An SPF of at least 15 would be fine. I get mine from my foundation with has an SPF 30 (Dr Jart BB cream) so I don't need to worry about having it in my skincare. Just make sure your wearing one, whether it's through your makeup or skincare. 


I've got a couple here that serve difference purposes. I've chosen the Una Brennan Deep Clean Tea Flower mask. This is your typical clay based mask. 

It's a detox mask, so it's great for drawing out impurities, removing excess oil, cleaning out blocked pores and blackheads (that's what I use it for the most, I've got blackheads on my nose and after using this, it's completely clear.) 
It's clay based and balanced with lots of oils such as orange extract, honey, avocado and elderflower so your skin is still getting nourishment and moisture. It also contains salicylic acid. This is an ingredient that goes into the pores and flushes out dirt and congestion from within the skin. Una Brennan masks come in at about £7-9.

I then have a mask for moisture and hydration. The Vitamin E Sink in Moisture Mask from The Body Shop. 

love this one as it's really cooling and refreshing on the skin. Vitamin E is great for helping protect your skin from damage cause by free radicals and environmental pollution. It repairs and replenishes the skin cells. I like to use this by applying a thin layer over the skin and leaving it for an hour or so, it's just like giving your skin a drink. It's so nourishing and after your skin feels really fresh and plumped up. £12 for 100ml.

I also like the Vitamin E Serum In Oil. 

This is great to use after the mask to continue to replenishing and protect the skin whilst you sleep. Just massage a couple drops of the oil into the skin and in the morning your skin will look and feel so fresh and hydrated! It leaves no oily residue on the skin at all as it's light consistency makes it really easy for the skin to absorb. £12 for 28ml.

As for treatments I've got one that I love so much I just couldn't leave it out, even though a lot of people won't find this "affordable"
It's La Roche Posay Effeclar Duo. This stuff is amazing. 

It's an unclogging and correcting serum. 
This contains salicylic acid (like in the mask I mentioned before this), this ingredient goes deep down into the pore and flushes everything out from beneath the skin, which will stop spots from forming in the first place! It's obviously important to clean the surface layer of the skin but if you think about it, if there's bacteria and congestion underneath the surface layer spots will form regardless. If you run your hand over your skin and feel an uneven, bumpy texture THAT is congestion. Your pores are blocked from underneath the skin. Effleclar Duo will completely get rid of that, revealing a smooth surface. It's not instant, it does take a couple weeks and remember, it works on UNDERNEATH the skin, so don't be annoyed if it doesn't clear up spots that have already surfaced because it's stopping ones forming in the first place! Amazing, amazing product. It costs £15, worth every penny. I use this about 2-3 times a week at night. 

I know a lot of people suffer from marks left behind by blemishes. The Body Shops Tea Tree Blemish Fade Night Lotion is great for fading and evening out the skin tone.

It is in the tea tree range, which is great for blemished skin as tea tree is anti bacterial and stops any infection spreading over the skin. This lotion is designed to be applied to the skin at night and will help to fade the appearance of any marks/dark pigmentation on the skin, whilst treating any existing blemishes with the tea tree oil. £9 for 30ml.

I would not suggest using something like this every day as I think it could get slightly dehydrating.
Just like any treatment product they are designed to be used only about 2-3 times a week. The ingredients in treatment products tend to be more concentrated, making them too harsh for every day use.

Okay, so I think that is it! My little affordable skincare routine. And yes, I have thoroughly tried and tested all of these products and use them regularly in my routine, just mixed with other products too!

I hope you enjoyed this and found it helpful!
Thanks for reading :)

Zoe x

1 comment:

  1. Face masks for the skin are a staple of any woman's skincare routine. Look through her medicine cabinet or vanity drawers are you are sure to find a tube or jar of some sort of clay-like looking substance, or perhaps a sticky-looking gel. Or perhaps you've seen your spouse, sister, or mother walking around with a green face. Face Mask