Beauty Recommendations on a Budget

It can be hard to know where to go to get quality products on a budget, so contributors Dominic Bramley-Carr and Eszter Gurbicz have compiled everything you need to know about their beauty recommendations on a budget.

Words by Dominic Bramley-Carr

I will begin by saying I have found that with some products, especially when it comes to makeup, it can be worth splashing out once you’ve found something that’s right for you. You often get what you pay for. However, there are a couple of parts of my routine that are not only on a budget, but I also genuinely think they are better than the more expensive equivalents I have tried.

The first is ‘The Ordinary High-Adherence Silicone Primer’. I have experimented a lot with different primers as my skin is a combination, and so I’ve found it hard to achieve an even finish with my makeup. I’ve tried products from more expensive brands like Lancôme, but they didn’t give me the base I was looking for. This primer blurs out my pores and regulates my skin tone whilst creating a good even base to apply foundation or concealer on to. I often use it even if I’m not wearing makeup, as I find it just gives a slightly smoother look to my face. Selling for £3.90 at Boots is an absolute steal.

At the other end of my makeup routine, I’m going to be talking about setting spray. For a long time, I used the cult favourite, the ‘Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray’, which definitely lives up to the hype and is good to get if you’re willing to spend a bit of money. However, when I ran out, I bought the ‘E.L.F. Makeup Mist and Set Clear Spray’, which you can get at Boots for £5. It sets my makeup fantastically whilst also achieving a nice dewy, airbrushed look. Also, the low cost means that you can be a bit more liberal with your application to ensure everything is set properly. Primer and setting spray can really make or break a makeup routine, but you tend to want to spend less because it’s not as visible as other products. That’s why these products are so convenient because you get amazing results for a reasonable price. On top of that, having a good base and finish means that even if you don’t want to splurge on the other products you’re using, you can still achieve an amazing look that you can be confident will stay gorgeous whatever you end up doing.  

Words by Eszter Gurbicz

I’ve certainly been one of those girls who didn’t know much about skincare before uni. Although luckily, I never had big problems with my skin. It has always been very dry, especially during winter. I just thought it was normal. Little did I know that a good moisturiser could solve this easily! Of course, when I told my friends about my dry skin, they were quick to recommend me some products. While the process of building up my skincare routine came with some bad experiences and purchases I regretted, one product has been a must in my routine ever since I found it. The Inkey List’s “Vitamin B, C and E moisturiser” worked wonders for my skin, and I’ve never had any dry patches or peeling ever since. It absorbs very well, keeps my skin moisturised throughout the day, and it’s also great under makeup. Oh, and it only costs a fiver in Boots which is an amazing price for a moisturiser! 

Having a good concealer is a must for everyone. It’s a lifesaver, especially after an all-nighter when you have to show up outside and want to hide those dark circles. I have tried several brands and products, from balm to liquid and stick concealers, but I’ve never been fully satisfied with any of them. Then, I was recommended Collection’s “Lasting Perfection Concealer” by a friend who has been using it for a while. It turned out it is amazing indeed, and so far, I’ve had the best experience with it as a concealer. Previously, my biggest struggle with some other products was that they didn’t last too long on my skin. Collection, however, worked very well for me. It lasts the whole day, doesn’t get messy and provides perfect coverage. It comes in a variety of shades and is super affordable too! I liked it so much I ended up buying one for my sister since this brand is not available in our country. 

Lastly, I have to mention e.l.f. ‘s “Wow Brow Gel”. I’ve never been a big fan of eyebrow makeup products, I found them so difficult to apply well, and I don’t like that bulky eyebrow look. I ended up not using anything on my brows for a while. That was until I was getting ready for Halloween, and a friend gave me this product to try. I fell in love immediately! It’s not too bold, so easy to apply well, and doesn’t feel heavy at all. This product is perfect for people like me who already have dark eyebrows and just want to make sure they stay in shape the whole day. It only costs £6, so it’s perfect for students on a budget. I would also like to mention that e.l.f. has many other amazing products. They are great quality, 100% vegan and cruelty-free! I’ve very recently tried their skincare line too, and so far, I have been very satisfied. I am already considering trying some of their other products.