Greetings fellow financially frustrated friends and welcome back to Broke Today Rich Tomorrow!
Let me just start off this post by saying that I’m going to be keeping it 100% real with you today.
This is not some whack post about how to DIY your own deodorant or why you should shower less to save money (eww).
Nope. Nope. And nope.
What we are going to be talking about today involves real beauty tips tried by real people that actually work in real life.
Don’t worry, there’s no need to break out the good old baking soda & apple cider vinegar for any of today’s tips!
Seriously, who came up with the idea of “no pooing” and can it please get off my feed already?
No thank you!
What we are going to be talking about today is the price of beauty, because let’s face it, beauty is expensive. Like, walk into Sephora and drop-half-my-pay-check-expensive.
But you know what, from one broke girl to another?
No one says it has to be.
The other day, I was casually browsing the web while looking for the Lancome Genifique Serum, a product which I had previously sampled and loved. The serum was hydrating, it wore well under makeup and left my skin feeling lovely.
Sadly, our little romance came to an end when I discovered that the serum was on sale for only $210.
My tiny frugal heart was shattered.
I mean, the product is great, but my expectations are greater.
If you’re going to charge me over $200 for a serum, it better sing, dance and pass all of my finals next week.
Otherwise, I’m sorry Mr. Serum, but I ain’t taking you home with me.
Which brings me to why I am writing today’s post: why on Earth must mainstream beauty come with such a hefty price tag?
Yes, as women and men, we want to be beautiful. We want to look our best and be desired. We want to be sexy.
But you know what else is sexy?
Not being broke!
“But Corinne,” I hear you say, my dear FFFF “How does one not become broke if even Target expects me to drop $90 on a set of brushes?”
Well, my dear fellow financially frustrated friend, let’s figure it out together.
Invest In The Basic Beauty Staples
Although ironic, the very first beauty tip is to actually invest in decent beauty staples. As a broke girl, it literally hurts me to splurge on expensive beauty products, so I feel your pain. However, when it comes to the essentials, being frugal can actually work against you. A $5 foundation is never a good idea, nor is that $2 eyeliner. Trust me, there have been one too many instances where I have ended up looking like a melted raccoon.
From a good foundation to a decent perfume, you need to invest in good quality beauty staples. Anything that is crucial to making you feel and look fabulous deserves at least a few dollars behind it. Of course, don’t spend too much, but at the same time, don’t be afraid to pay for value.
Don’t Cut Your Own Hair
I am saying this to you because I love you and I care about you: don’t cut your own hair. Don’t get your mom to do it either. If neither you nor anyone else around you has any idea what to do with a pair of scissors, don’t even think about touching those luscious locks.
Seriously! Just get a cheap haircut. I get mine done by hairdressing students at a local beauty academy for less than $20. Also, this goes without saying, but if your hairdresser is charging you an arm and leg for your monthly trim, run. They are not a keeper!
Embrace Your Natural Beauty
I’m going to try to make this point without getting all preachy and giving you the “let your inner beauty shine” speech. I’m not going to ask you to think about your insecurities and then make them all disappear with my magical-feel-good-words, because they won’t. We all have things we don’t like about ourselves and it’s alright to want to change them.
Instead, what I am going to do is you to think about your assets. What are the things that make you go “Damn, I’m gorgeous!” when you look in the mirror? What is something people always compliment you on? Those things are your assets and make up your natural beauty.
Now, this can mean different things to different people. Also, this isn’t necessarily skin-deep. It can be anything from the way you laugh to the way your hair reflects the sunlight. Just find the things that make you, the most beautiful you.
I think so much of hype around expensive beauty is based on us not necessarily knowing our assets. You don’t need to spend anything on improving what you already have. If you have amazing brows, you don’t need a brow pencil. If you have a great body, you don’t need shapewear. Just because a beauty expert says you need to follow latest beauty craze, it doesn’t necessarily make it true!
Always Buy Beauty Products On Sale
This little inside tip has been with me for as long as I can remember. Never, ever, ever buy beauty products full price. There’s simply no logic to it! Why buy something full price when it will probably go on sale eventually? If you can afford to wait, do so.
One of my favourite things to do is to walk into the drug store, spend half an hour picking out beauty products and then walking out. I always make sure to sign up to the store’s mailing list, so that I may be informed whenever they are having a sale. Just this week, one of my favourite brands hosted a half-price sale, enabling me to restock on my favourite foundation.
Repeat after me: I shall always buy beauty on sale!
Never Shop Without A Plan
It only takes one semester of studying Marketing 101 for me to be completely honest with you: the odds are against you! As soon as you walk into the store, you are already trapped. Everything, and I mean everything in the store is positioned to encourage spending. Everything, from the bright lights, to the super friendly shop assistant, to even the smell of your surroundings, is a carefully chosen stimulus designed to make your part with your money. This is the same with online shopping as well!
I know, I know, the Earth is flat, the Illuminati is real and the world is out to get you. Well, not necessarily you, but definitely your money. Even I can vouch that I always end up with a few more products at the end of a shopping trip.
What’s the battle plan? Have a plan to begin with!
Next time you’re shopping, remember that you are constantly being inflicted by stimuli encouraging you to splurge. Instead of letting it get to you, make a list of exactly what you want to buy and stick to it. If you want to take it to the next level, you can even figure out precisely where the products you want are in the store and go directly to them, avoiding any distractions.
Develop A Proper Skin Care Routine
Imagine a world where makeup was obsolete and we all just had flawless skin. Now that’s a world we’d all love to live in. Unfortunately, this is reality and there’s no such thing as perfect. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t do something to get us close!
Developing a proper skin care routine can make a huge impact on your overall beauty. Not only will it help your skin radiate and shine, it can also potentially save you a lot of money. This can be tricky at first, as you have to go through a bit of trial-and-error phase when it comes to skincare. Some products will cost close to nothing and work amazing on your skin, while others may be super expensive and break you out (or vice versa).
The best broke girl tip I can give you is to figure out your skin type and what works for you. I personally have combination skin, where my skin is both dry and oily (it’s the worst of both worlds). I took me a really long time to figure out that I can only use gentle cleansers and that thick moisturizers aren’t my thing.
Also, make sunscreen part of your daily routine. The sun is your number one enemy when it comes to skincare, so make sure you lather up.
Take Advantage Of Coupons And Free Trials
It is common knowledge that you can save by singing up to your favourite beauty store’s rewards programme by collecting points. However, why not take it to next frugal level and cut some coupons while you’re shopping? Whenever I shop online, I always scan the web for coupons, whether it is to buy pizza or makeup. For my beauty products, I personally use the web extension Honey*, which is a program that basically scans the web for coupons and applies them for you at check out.
Another frugal beauty tip would be to sign up for free trials. Believe me when I say that there are companies out there willing to send you a sample of their product in exchange for a honest review. I personally use Social Soup, an app designed for consumers to try out new and upcoming products. You don’t have to be a massive influencer to sign up, just have to be relatively active on Instagram or Facebook and be willing to do an honest review. When I started on Social Soup, I had less than 150 followers, yet they still ended up sending me over 5 full sized products to sample!
Well, my beautiful FFFFs, these are my best broke girl beauty tips. I hope they help you become even more fabulous and even save you some cash!
As usual, let’s get chatting! What is your number one beauty tip?
Let me know in the comments below!
Being broke is temporary. Being rich is a journey.