Beauty vs. the Budget Beast

makeup-shoppingBeauty may only be skin deep, but it makes a pretty serious dent in the wallet when purchasing products and services that “maintain” beauty. While a number of beauty products and services are not essential, they are nice to have. Can a girl have her beauty and her budget too?

Name Brands?

Don’t be shy to purchase no name beauty products. They accomplish many of the same things at a fraction of the price.  You may be partial to certain name brands when it comes to cosmetics, but for items like shampoos and moisturizers, buying generic brands can help your bottom line big time.

What’s in the Box?

Designer fragrances, cosmetics and creams can cost a fortune. Over the last few years, there have been a number of new online beauty clubs, called beauty boxes, that charge a reasonably low monthly fee. In return for membership, members receive a monthly shipment of sample-size beauty products. While it is true that you could receive a number of these samples yourself by visiting these cosmetic companies’ counters in department store for free, that is not always viable, since these are usually sourced from a wide array of suppliers.

This also has the benefit of letting you try a number of products before you buy- which will help make sure that you get what you want.

Follow Promotions

Lots of major cosmetic brands have frequent promotions, and it pays to pay attention to when they are scheduled.  If you have a particular brand that you are fond of, with the purchase of one product, companies often give away a grab bag of additional products from the same line. This is an excellent way to stock your supply chest.

Go Homemade

Really looking to save money? Think organic- as in homemade. Homemade hair treatments (using food like bananas, coconuts, eggs or beer) offer benefits for a fraction of the price. Similarly, homemade facial treatments, using things like cucumber, apricots and honey work well too. A quick internet search will give you a variety of recipes to try out for far less than a spa visit, or expensive creams and cleansers from the store.

Host a Spa Night

Long for the luxury of a spa visit, but lack the funds to do it as often as you like? Host a spa night with some girlfriends, where each is responsible for bringing a beauty product.  You can give each other facials, manicures and pedicures very inexpensively while sharing some laughs and catching up, in the comfort of your own space for far less than a “real” spa visit.

Back to School

A number of beauty schools offer discounts for hair and spa services to clients who are willing to offer themselves up to students to practice on.  While this type of activity requires a little more bravery (as in a leap of faith of the hair cut kind!), the results are usually very good and can save you lots of money.