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8 Affordable Skincare Products — All Under $15!
Do you want to drastically reduce your wrinkles? To the point that they have appeared to vanish? Do you want soft + smooth skin? And to never hear the dreaded... "you look tired?"
Well... that's what I've achieved. And the best part? It's super affordable.
Don't get me wrong, many factors play into the health and appearance of skin, but developing a regimen that works for you is essential. I'm going to lay out my holy grail products so that you can try them and see for yourself! Many of you should be able to relate to my skin type: normal to oily, with acne that still appears here or there, a lack of sleep sometimes shows under my eyes, and my face may feel dry or greasy depending on the day.
However, for me, I have truly found a product line that works: The Ordinary.
The Ordinary is an effective AND affordable skincare line created by DECIEM. They state that all of their products are: "free of parabens, sulphates, mineral oil, methylchloroisothiazolinone, methylisothiazolinone, animal oils, coal tar dyes, formaldehyde, mercury, oxybenzone" and that they do not "test on animals and does not pay others to do so." Many are also alcohol-free, oil-free, silicone-free, nut-free, vegan, gluten-free and cruelty-free.
I want to mention that this isn't a paid opinion. These are products that have worked for me personally and are so accessible! I cannot recommend them enough. Here's another recommendation: if you try them, remember to always start with a freshly cleansed face!
Here are the 8 skincare products that will revolutionize your routine:
1. I make a lot of facial expressions. It's typical to find me rolling my eyes far enough to see my brain, or scrunching my forehead in "what did you just say?" fashion. For this reason, and many more, my favorite The Ordinary product is "Buffet." It is a "Multi-Technology Peptide Serum," and has dramatically reduced my deep forehead wrinkles to the point that they are almost gone. I am not exaggerating (and they were deep, man!). My crows feet have disappeared entirely, too. It has smoothed, softened, as well as plumped, my skin! I apply it to my forehead, lip area and around my eyes, twice daily, every day. You can also apply to your entire face for some extra oomph! According to DECIEM.com: "This formula combines a comprehensive array of studied technologies to target multiple signs of aging at once." Obvi, I use it so people think I'm 20 instead of 30.
Cost: $14.80 USD for 30ML (It's most expensive product of the 8. Yes, I said the MOST expensive yet effective product is under $15.)
However, I do use two products prior to applying Buffet:
2. Salicylic Acid 2% Solution to treat acne of course! After I cleanse my face, I use this product before any of the others. I apply it to any acne spots or breakouts (because, yes, I still have acne at 27... and that's not uncommon). It works quickly as compared to other acne solutions I've used. It dries the blemishes and, depending how bad the ance is, I notice results the very next day. DECIEM states that it: "helps exfoliate the inside walls of pores to fight the appearance of blemishes and for better visible skin clarity with continued use." This product can be very drying on your skin, so make sure to use it less if you experience dryness.
I use this product twice daily, every day.
Cost: $5.30 USD for 30ML
3. Caffeine Solution 5% + EGCG for underneath my eyes, as it reduces the lovely appearance of my eye contour and puffiness. At first, I was a little disappointed because I didn't notice results as quickly as I did with the other products. BUT, it does work. It just takes time. So keep at it! In fact, it's worked so well that I no longer wear under eye concealer to work... and not a single person has told me that I "look tired." Now, if that hasn't sold you, I'm not sure what would! DECIEM states: "This light-textured formula contains an extremely high 5% concentration of caffeine, supplemented with highly-purified Epigallocatechin Gallatyl Glucoside (EGCG) from green tea leaves. Independent studies have shown that topical use of each of caffeine and EGCG can help reduce looks of puffiness and of dark circles in the eye contour. Additional studies have shown that caffeine can also reduce the appearance of cellulite."
Cost: $6.70 USD for 30ML
I use this product twice daily, every day. A little goes a long way!
4. Granactive Retinoid 2% Emulsion. It sounds a bit harsh, right? Well, it sort of is! This is a night product, and you need to stay out of the sun when using unless you want irritation! But its an unbeatable product to fight the signs against aging. Make sure to use this retinoid product after any water base serums (like "Buffet").
How does this one work? See below:
DECIEM: "This formulation combines two forms of next-generation retinoid actives:
a) A 2% concentration of Granactive Retinoid which is a complex of solubilized Hydroxypinacolone Retinoate (HPR). HPR is a highly-advanced form of retinoid which is, in fact, a non-prescription ester of all-trans direct retinoic acid that offers a multi-fold better effect against signs of aging than retinol, retinyl palmitate and nearly all other forms of non-prescription retinoid;
b) A sustained-delivery form of pure retinol in a protective capsule system which supports both the delivery and the effect of Granactive Retinoid.
Both forms of retinoid used avoid the irritation associated with retinoids (including retinol) use while delivering better visible results against signs of aging."
Cost: $9.80 USD for 30ML
I use this product once a day, at night, every night.
5. 100% Cold-Pressed Virgin Marula Oil. This is the product that led me The Ordinary line. I was previously using Drunk Elephant Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil, and just didn't want to keep paying the big bucks for it. Even though the results were there. Drunk Elephant's marula oil goes for $40 USD for 15ML and $72 USD for 30ML! So ya girl Googled and Googled until she found an affordable, but comparable, alternative in The Ordinary! I took the plunge and purchased it, and I do not regret the switch. This oil hydrates my face and makes my skin feel baby soft every morning! Marula oil has antioxidants that helps hydrate the skin and restore a "radiant tone." It is marvelous in every sense of the word and insanely affordable!
DECIEM: "This formula contains the highest quality cold-pressed virgin Marula oil that is naturally aroma neutral and non-greasy."
Cost: $9.90 USD for 30ML
I use this product once a night, every night.
Feeling dry? Try these products (6+7) after the others:
6. Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5. It's a natural acid found in our skin for hydration support. Kinda cool, right? Well, according to DECIEM: "Hyaluronic Acid (HA) can attract up to 1,000 times its weight in water. The molecular size of HA determines its depth of delivery in the skin." In essence, it is our surface's natural hydration. Which is why I use it whenever I need a little extra moisture, and, in this case, hydration at 1,000 times it's weight. 😉 It is a bit gooey - so be aware when applying!
"Note: Hyaluronic Acid is found in the skin naturally but its natural function within the skin is not hydration. Many products have used HA to claim hydration benefits, but HA is too large of a molecule to penetrate the skin and instead sits on the surface and can draw moisture out of the skin making the surface feel soft and hydrated temporarily, while making you feel like you need more HA after the product is rinsed. This formula uses three forms of HA with varying molecular weights, as well as an HA crosspolymer, to offer multi-depth hydration and visible plumping without drawing water out of the skin solely to improve temporary surface hydration." - DECIEM
Cost: $6.80 USD for 30ML
I use this product as needed.
7. Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA. This product makes my skin feel comfortable + smooth. Be aware that it is a lotion, whereas all of the others are oils. Sometimes I use this more as a facial moisturizer, alternating it with one from a different line.
According to DECIEM: "Natural Moisturizing Factors (NMF) are elements that keep the outer layer of the skin protected and well-hydrated. MF are made up of multiple amino acids, fatty acids, triglycerides, urea, ceramides, phospholipids, glycerin, saccharides, sodium PCA, hyaluronic acid and many other compounds that are naturally present in the skin."
Clearly, the science is working because my skin looks 7+ years younger than I actually am! 😉
Cost: $7.70 USD for 100ML
I use this product as needed.
Last but not least:
8. AHA 30% + BHA 2% Peeling Solution. A 10-min exfoiliating facial that exfoliates the top surface of your skin to fight visible blemishes while also providing a more even appearance. This product is bright red! You, essentially, look like a strawberry. And it feels a bit tingly! I can really feel it working, and highly recommend to not leave it on ANY longer than 10 mins. Seriously. This product contains a very high concentration of free acids! After rinsing off this strawberry-looking solution, my face feels like the skin of a BABY! Like, if you could feel a baby's face and then my face, I would challenge you to tell the difference! 😂 ... really, though!
This one is quite effective, but a little intense, so I recommend reading up on it: AHA + BHA
Cost: $7.20 USD for 30ML
I use this product no more than once a week. DECIEM recommends no more than twice a week.
Total cost of all 8 items: $60.20 USD
I'm sorry, what? Wondering if you read that right? YOU DID! All 8 of these effective skincare products cost $60.20 in total (before taxes with free shipping). AND they last me anywhere from 1-2+ months!
TIP: Apply Buffet + Marula Oil to your neck and the back of your hands. Telling signs of aging go beyond our faces, our necks and the back of our hands tend to age just as much as they do! Don't forget about these often neglected areas!
Wondering where to purchase The Ordinary? Well, of course from the company that created the line: DECIEM.com or sometimes I buy from Beautylish.com. Both have the same prices and provide free shipping over $25-35 USD. If you want the stickers that I use to keep track of the order use, purchase from Beautylish.com (they're free with any The Ordinary purchase).
I hope you have found this helpful and that you're ready to take the plunge like I did! If you decide to try the products, let me know what you think!
I am SO happy with my results. Truly.
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