When to splurge and when to save on beauty products

While it would be nice to have a limitless beauty budget, most of us don’t – so it’s crucial to get bang for buck when it comes to buying products.

So, which products are worth investing in, and where can we afford to take the cheap and cheerful route?

Here’s your expert-led guide to knowing when to save and when to splurge.

Which beauty products to scrimp on


You can stretch your budget further by getting your hair colour right from the outset, says EdwardsAndCo founder Jaye Edwards.

“You can save in the long run by investing in a future-proof colour,” he says.

“Sun-kissed blondes and sparkling brunette tones that complement your natural hair colour and style will increase the longevity of your colour, meaning you won’t need to visit the salon so often.”


Makeup artist Julia Green says mascara doesn’t have to be expensive.

“I have found numerous cheap cosmetic brands do incredible mascara formulations,” she says.

“You may need to try a few different ones to find your fave, but colour depth, formula and staying power are at the same high standard as the luxury brands.”

And she says lipstick and lipgloss are getting better and better in the budget brand category.

“Quality, colour and staying power of these products definitely rival the big brands,” she says.


Sinclair Dermatology consultant dermatologist Dr Lara Carvalho says when it comes to the core skincare products of moisturiser, cleanser and sunscreen, “the brand doesn’t need to be expensive to be good”.

Just make sure the product matches your skin type and concerns.

But budget anti-ageing products may not always deliver the results you’re expecting, Dr Carvalho cautions.

She says it’s usually better to see a dermatologist who can prescribe the right kind of medication to target skin ageing concerns.

Which beauty products to splurge on


Jaye says you get what you pay for when it comes to hair, and that includes the products you use.

It’s best to use salon-quality brands for shampoo, conditioner and other styling products, he says.

“After forking out in salon for a beautiful colour and cut, it can be tempting to cut corners on your regular everyday products, however in doing so, you risk reversing all your hard work,” says Jaye.


Julia says there are four products in particular worth spending more on – the first being foundation.

“Luxury brands have the backing to invest in scientific technologies that create superior textures and finishes of a foundation. Meaning the product sits on the skin beautifully and is long wearing,” she says.

She also believes more expensive face powders, eyeshadows and blushes are worth the investment.

“Expensive face powders are generally more finely milled and even go through this process up to three times more than cheaper versions,” Julia says.

“This means that each particle is much smaller and therefore silkier and smoother on the skin, which creates a more skin-like appearance. The same goes for eyeshadows and blush.

“On top of being smoother to apply they are often more highly pigmented than their cheaper counterparts and so a little goes a long way.

“Plus, the colour pay-off is accurate to how it appears in the pan, which is a makeup artist’s dream.”


Dr Carvalho says that when it comes to skincare splurges, look at investing in professional treatments such as laser therapy or microneedling rather than over-the-counter products.

“(Treatments can) penetrate the superficial and deep epidermis and make a difference in terms of stimulating collagen production and treating pigmentation,” says Dr Carvalho.

Written by Tania Gomez