In this day and age, pretty much any product on the market can be found at both very high and very low price points, both of which can also be profoundly effective, too. Gone are the days of drugstore products being of objectively lesser quality than their luxury counterparts. Thanks to years of innovation in the beauty industry, both luxe and affordable products can do the trick, whether you’re looking for an acne-safe cleanser or a rich night cream.
While we all love to save money wherever possible, it’s also always nice to treat ourselves to something pricier now and then, especially when that something is a beauty product that is sure to upgrade your self-care routine. Whether you’re in the market for a fancy new product to add to your vanity or something a bit more wallet-friendly, here is a tried-and-true guide to beauty essentials at every price point.
Cleansers Low and High
Cleansing is an essential step in any skin-care routine, vital for removing makeup, product residue and excess oil, and for prepping skin for future product application and targeting concerns like dullness and congestion. If you aren’t cleansing your face properly with the best cleanser for your skin’s needs, it’s hard for everything that follows in your routine to go right.
When it comes to effective, affordable cleansers, Brandefy developed their antioxidant-packed Superfood Nourish Cleanser ($12) at an accessible price point while still being packed with cleansing and brightening ingredients that help to whisk away impurities and makeup while preventing pore buildup and promoting a healthy pH level.
On the more luxury end of the spectrum, one of the most popular cleansers on the market right now, known for its green smell, green color and green superfood ingredients like kale, spinach, and green tea is Youth To The People’s Superfood Cleanser ($39). This non-stripping , gentle gel cleanser removes makeup and dirt while the superfood antioxidant ingredients kick up the efficiency and efficacy of the radiance-increasing actives.
Eyeshadows Low and High
When we’re looking for something dewy and easy to blend or layer, we turn to cream eyeshadows for their innate ability to elevate an otherwise neutral makeup look with their luxurious textures, making them a favorite among beginners and pros alike. Cream eyeshadows also offer a fast, no-fuss application, free of the fallout we often see in pressed powders. You can simply tap on the pigment with your finger without needing to spend extra time buffing it out.
If you’re looking for a cream shadow that is sure to elevate your day-to-day makeup routine without breaking the bank, Clove + Hallow’s Plush Pigment Eyeshadow Sticks ($16) are a great option for a shimmery, ultra-blendable shadow stick that makes getting ready so easy—just swipe on and blur with your fingers and you’re done!
“Darlings, you asked for MORE GLOW and I am giving it to you!” said Charlotte Tilbury on Instagram about her new limited-edition Eyes to Mesmerize Cream Eyeshadows ($35). Enriched with vitamin E, this buildable, water-infused formula has soft-focus pigments that blend out beautifully. A long-lasting cream eyeshadow that features an easy, non-creasing formula, this product is the definition of maximum impact with minimal effort.
Shaving Cream Low and High
“Your shave is only as good as the cream you use” might not be an age-old saying, but for many, it’s true. Whether you’re shaving your whole face or detailing around a beard, using the best shaving creams for men can make all the difference.
Aveeno Therapeutic Shave Gel ($5) contains oatmeal and Vitamin E to soothe dry skin, hydrate and prevent shaving irritation. Formulated to be gentle on dry skin, this lubricating shave gel provides a close, smooth shave and helps to prevent razor bumps, burns, nicks and cuts. Recommended by dermatologists for over 70 years, Aveeno Therapeutic Shave Gel has no added fragrance or soaps, is allergy tested and is proven to be gentle on skin.
DIOR Sauvage Shaving Gel ($70) has translucent, non-foaming texture which allows for a precise shave, ideal for grooming beards and mustaches. The smooth texture enables your razor to glide right through, while also helping protect the skin from micro-cuts and irritation from razor burn, leaving skin scented with the fresh and woody notes of Sauvage.
Moisturizers Low and High
There’s nothing like a good, rich moisturizer to satisfy your skin after a long day. One of the latest and greatest ingredients making a name for itself in the world of luxe creams is caviar, but you can also find the sea-based staple in budget-friendly products, too. Mario Badescu’s Caviar Night Cream ($22) is a treat for the skin. The ultimate moisturizer for dry and sensitive skin in need of some quenching, the concoction of luxurious ingredients inside this face cream will nourish depleted skin, leaving a radiant appearance without dry lines and wrinkles.
One of the pioneers in caviar-based skin care, La Prairie’s Skin Caviar Cream ($595) revives the skin’s metabolism to restore its youthful structure. Strongly supported by clinical studies, after 8 weeks instrumental measurements have recorded increase in epidermal thickness, density of collagen and increase in skin elasticity. This luxurious cream also contains the exclusive Cellular Complex—La Prairie’s science signature ingredient for skin to appear lifted with continued use—resulting in enhances firmness and elasticity and the reduction of fine lines.
Hair Treatments Low and High
Hair bonding treatments work to undo everything from major breakage and dullness to the minor tangles and major split ends. Every product is different in how it “bonds” the hair back, but they all repair hair from within by mimicking internal bonds. When the bonds in the hair are repaired, the moisture of the hair holds better, creating shiny, silky and stronger hair while also preventing hair color from fading as fast.
Not Your Mother’s Intense Bonding Treatment ($15) is a pre-shampoo treatment that delivers a high concentration of Active Bonding Technology, which protects bonds from initial breakage and repairs broken bonds from severe damage. After a single use, hair is instantly smoother, softer, and bouncier, all for under $20!
OLAPLEX has a patented bond-building technology that is exclusive to the brand with over 160 worldwide patents. This novel technology penetrates the hair cuticle and forms strong, covalent bonds in order to repair the inner cortex of the hair in minutes. By working on a molecular level to re-link the broken disulfide bonds, the OLAPLEX No3 Hair Perfector ($30) dramatically improves the strength of the hair while making it more durable and resilient toward future damage. Although many products tout bond-building, none can do it in the way OLAPLEX does.