Since I’ve started looking after my skin my purse has definitely gotten lighter. After all, a pack of face wipes and the occasional moisturiser isn’t going to break the bank. As my routine has changed, so have my spending habits.
I now do most of my skincare shopping at Cult Beauty or Space NK, with occasional trips to Boots or Feel Unique for more high-street items. I no longer think anything of spending £35 on a cleanser or £70 on a serum, after all, I only get one face, right?
I’d recently run out of a few items so I logged onto my favourite websites and filled my baskets, I usually constantly buy product (I’m a shopping grazer rather than binger) so when I’d added in all my products which I’d normally buy throughout the months, I was a little shocked. Spending £35/£70 here and there didn’t seem like too much of a dent but when one basket came to over £450 (and they didn’t stock everything I wanted) I knew I had to re-look at what I was using.
I went home and totted up the value of my skincare shelf, I couldn’t believe it. There was nearly £1000 worth of product sat there. The bulk of this cost was oils/serums (Sunday Riley, Chanel, Aurelia etc) but there was still the £18 I spent on a Pixi Cleansing Balm last week and £35 on the NeoStrata Oil Control Gel (which is excellent, by the way) the week before.
Unlike Carrie Bradshaw, my money wasn’t in my closet, it was in my bathroom cabinet.
So, I couldn’t help but wonder (sorry), how much of this do I actually need?
My routine always incorporates cleanse, acid tone, spritz, serum/oil and moisturise. I’ve tried in the past to pair it down but it works for me and my skin is so much clearer as a result. My skin is the best its ever been so I’m very reluctant to begin skipping steps, therefore the only way for me to spend less would be to buy cheaper product.
I asked a few ladies on Instagram how they spend their money when it comes to skincare. The general consensus was that they would spend more money on serums, treatments, oils and masks, spending around £50-£100. Cleaners came in as the item which everyone would spend less on, generally under £20.
I’ve used cleansers ranging from £4 right up to £50, my beloved Emma Hardie is £38. Cleansers stay on the skin for moments and as long as they remove all make-up and grime surely they are doing their job? I could replace my Moringa Balm for a cheaper version without damage to my skin quite easily.
Spritz’s, acid toners and moisturisers are all also products where cheaper versions can be used quiet happily. For example, Caudalie Grape Water can be bought for £6.00 and lasts for months, Nip+Fab Glycolic Pads are £7.45 for 60 pads, Una Brennan does some great moisturisers, all under £10. There are even cheaper versions of these readily available on the high street and I assume that as demand increases and more companies get involved, the prices will keeping decreasing.
It is generally agreed that serums, treatments and oils have the most active ingredients and research behind them and, as such, the price point is generally higher. However, with the recent arrival of Deciem’s The Ordinary serums, which all come under £9, this argument seems a little in-valid. This is certainly the area where I spend most of my money.
Serums and oils do only use 2-3 drops at a time so they tend to last for ages but most go out of date within 18 months. I always have 4-5 on the go at once and mix them up depending on my skin needs. I think these are also the products where skincare ‘addicts’ (for want of a better word) tend to have a few of them. Most of my friends, who have no interest in skincare will probably buy one which works and then use it all up before purchasing a replacement, or don’t use one at all.
I’m not prepared to give up my serums but after trying The Ordinary products, I’m no longer thinking that the more I spend the better the product I’m getting. Once I’ve finished my current stash I’m going to think long and hard about their replacements.
I’m afraid this blog post is a little open ended as I don’t really have an answer. I can definitely swap out some product for cheaper versions but I think the main thing is to have less options on the go. I really don’t need every new serum or oil which is made.
However, I’ve also been trying to justify my large stash to myself, and I know it sounds mad, but I think I enjoy spending money on my skincare.
I love researching exactly what I want, deciding on my choice and then making the big purchase. I love getting it home and opening the over-the-top packaging (the Sunday Riley oils are always brilliantly packaged) to get to my goodies. I like how they all look, lined up on the shelf.
I’ve decided that over the past couple of years its become my hobby, some people build model trains, I’m building a small Space NK in my bedroom.
I’d love to know what you spend most of your skincare money on, and if anything, what would you cut out? Also, would you consider skincare your hobby?
Hope you had a great weekend,
p.s. I know that absolutely none of these products are an ‘essential’ and that spending this amount of money on skin is mad. I buy what I’m lucky enough to be able to afford and, fortunately, my husband and cat are very cheap to run.
The wonderful ladies who helped answer my questions on Instagram are: