Fashion icon Coco Chanel was in danger of contradicting herself when she said: ‘The best things in life are free. The second best things are very, very expensive.’ As the founder of a high-end brand, the anomaly is, perhaps, a hint that she placed a high monetary value on material things. Especially ones that she designed. When it comes to anti-ageing skin care products, cost often has no bearing on performance. If your purse can’t afford to be relieved of its contents for a posh pot of promises, it may be comforting to know you don’t have to spend a small fortune to rejuvenate your looks.
Active ingredients are commonly cited by premium brands as the reason for jumbo price tags – even though some of the most advanced are now available in products that are dirt cheap in comparison. What you could be paying for is an exclusive scent or additives such as silicones. They can make a product smell and feel more opulent, but have little impact on its overall effectiveness. You also have to factor into the price things like luxury packaging and marketing. While it is true that research and clinical trials are incredibly expensive, not all top brands have their own laboratories. And you can bet your bottom dollar, any ground-breaking technologies will sooner or later filter down to boutique and more obscure brands.
Retinol, hyaluronic acid, peptides and even marine collagen are now accessible to those on the tightest budgets. You can benefit from these clinically-proven constituents for much less in fuss-free packaging from brands that prefer to rely on word of mouth to attract patronage. They may not be household names or undertake internal research, but their products can be fantastic.
How To Identify A Bargain For Mature Skin
I am a firm believer in routine being a greater factor than the price of the products used. If you can find a half-decent brand that suits your skin, you will see benefits. Just make sure you stick to a regime. Retinol serums are a good example of where you can save money. You can spend around £30 to £80 on ceramide capsules or under £10 for a high-strength serum in a plain bottle.
Experts will tell you that capsules protect ingredients from being degraded by sunlight, but aren’t a lot of anti-ageing skin care products now sold in brown glass or solid colour containers for that very reason? And, let’s get real, how many of us keep our lotions and potions on a windowsill? The same experts may also claim that the potency of an ingredient will diminish every time you open a bottle or jar because of exposure to air. I am prepared to take a chance on that. You? Some strength of a decent property is better than none!
There are two ways to decipher the likely effectiveness of a skin care product – ingredients and reviews. Checking a long list of contents to determine just how much of the potent stuff you are getting for your hard-earned dosh can be tricky. That is why I place a higher value on customer reviews. I can learn more from one sentence written by another woman than a mere list that could resemble the small print of a mortgage. Besides, my eyesight isn’t what it used to be.
Check Out These Highly-Rated Cheap Anti-Ageing Products
I have spent hours poring over reviews for cheap anti-ageing products that users swear by. They may not have a deluxe fragrance or feel as light and elegant as their more expensive counterparts, but they have got just as much chance of tackling the signs of ageing.
All the products featured below have been rated by users four stars or higher out of five.
Bielenda Argan Face Oil is a handy product to have purely for its versatility. Coming in at under a tenner, it is the cleanser that goes the extra mile. While it gently removes make-up and other impurities, it moisturises and smooths the skin. This product also contains hyaluronic acid, so a real bargain.
Currently priced* at under £8, this 2.5% Organic Retinol Serum is high-strength and perfect for your night-time routine. It is formulated from pure Vitamin A, known to reduce fine lines and wrinkles. Brand Eclat says it is suitable for vegans and that research found it delivers an impressive 148% increase in skin plumping after 14 days of use.
This is another multi-purpose bargain. From the Eco Masters stable, it works as a cleanser and brightening serum. At under £7*, it is a steal if you want an effective cleanser that will double-up as a serum and tackle some of the more bothersome signs of ageing. As well as offering high-strength Vitamin C, this product is also infused with Hyaluronic Acid, Aloe Vera and Tea Tree.
Australian pink clay masks can be on the pricey side, but not this one. As well promising to detox the skin and brighten it at the same time, this one costs under £9* and has attracted a following for its ability to improve the complexion. It is balancing and minimises pores.
This Gentle Peeling Exfoliant from e.l.f. will peel away dirt and dead skin cells to reveal a younger, rejuvenated you – for under £12*. It is suitable for all skin types and is recommended for those who want to cultivate a natural glow.
Fadeout has been around for years but you may not have seen the Advanced version. Coming in at around £10*, it could be just the job if you are looking for a product that will even the skin tone and provide good protection from damaging UV rays. Fadeout Advanced Even Skin Tone Day Cream has an SPF of 25 and boasts ingredients such as Niacinamide and Lactic Acid. Its makers say it brightens skin in a month.
Another gem from ROSVANEE. This Retinol Moisturizer Advanced Anti-Wrinkle Formula will set you back under a tenner*. The cream is packed with powerful ingredients and is perfect for use over a Vitamin C serum at night. Deeply hydrating, it can be used on the neck as well as the face and can also be applied around the eye area. It contains 2.5% Retinol. Other properties include Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamins E & B5.
Under £7* and look what you get… This Q10 eye cream from NIVEA targets fine lines and wrinkles while delivering a shot of Vitamin C to brighten the skin. Rich in antioxidants, it is perfect for those who want firmer, smoother skin. It will also reduce the appearance of ‘tired eyes’ and give you a fresher look.
If you think Sanctuary Spa is only good for bath-time treats, think again. Its Power Peptide Awakening Eye Serum will set you back under £10* and over-delivers. Refreshing and literally packed with potent ingredients, including matrixyl synthe six, Persian silk tree extract, hyaluronic acid, beautifye, and caffeine, it can transform the delicate eye area in a month. It will tackle all the major signs of ageing.
Naissance 246 Rosehip Seed Oil retails at under £8 and is formulated from all-natural ingredients. As well as hydrating the skin, it will nourish it. Recommended as a moisturiser, this product is cruelty-free and includes vitamins and essential fatty acids.
*Price guides correct at the time of publishing.
Today’s note to readers: There is nothing wrong with splurging cash on expensive skin care products – if you can afford it. If you can’t, it is worth knowing there are cheaper alternatives available. When buying any product, I take its overall review score into account. While I enjoy reading individual comments, I don’t let the odd negative one put me off a purchase. This is because reviews are subjective and can be influenced by a multitude of factors… Someone having a bad day, not liking the packaging, misreading product information before buying or moaning about an issue outside of the manufacturer’s control such as a delivery problem.
I am pleased to report that Michelle Cooper has received her runner-up prize which she won in our website launch competition. I sent her a PHOERA foundation bundle and a skin care set in a case.
A quick reminder that my activity, both on this website and across our social media channels, will be restricted for a month from next Monday when I start radiotherapy. I will keep all platforms updated but the volume of content is likely to dwindle a bit. Please bear with me. I’m nearly at the end of my breast cancer treatment!