In the crowded beauty market, it’s hard to tell which products are expensive for a reason and which ones you can skimp on a little. Do you NEED $30 lip balm? Do you NEED a $200 curling wand? It’s hard to tell, I know. So here’s a little road map as to what you should spend a little more on. Trust me – I have cabinets and cupboards and drawers FULL of this stuff.
Splurge on conditioning masks and treatments if your hair is damaged/dry. Bleach and heat-styling frequently are notorious damaging culprits and while you can’t really undo what you’re doing to your hair every time you get highlights, you can give it some TLC with a weekly conditioning mask. I use Aveda’s Dry Remedy and Bumble and bumble Hairdresser’s Oil conditioners on my bleached hair. More expensive conditioners are often highly concentrated so you only need to use a little bit.
Things like shampoo and hairspray are OK to spend less on, especially since shampoo goes right down the drain like thirty seconds after you apply it. If your hair is normal or oily, you’re lucky – your products aren’t as spendy.
Splurge on dermatologist visits. If you have problem skin, get to the bottom of it and figure it out with a pro. It’s worth it. (Just don’t let them give you round after round of antibiotics, because those cause yeast infections in certain girls. Like me. No thanks!) Dermatologist visits shouldn’t be too expensive with your insurance plan. Make room in your budget to go once every six months or so.
Splurge on skincare. If you have dermatologist prescriptions or find that a more expensive skincare line works best for your skin, then by all means, buy it. Make room for it in your budget, because beautiful skin is hard to come by. It really increases your confidence once you’ve achieved it.
Splurge on a flatiron. Upping the ante with a flatiron and spending a little more is better for your hair. Costlier brands, like my beloved ghd, heat up faster and more efficiently, thus reducing the need to run the iron over and over the same strands and frying your hair. It’s self-adjusting to the exact temperature your hair needs! Science is crazy.
With the right prep products (I use Aveda Glossing Straightener), you’ll lock in a straight style with minimal damage. It’s truly an investment, but if it’s a tool you’ll use regularly, you want to spend more to ensure your healthiest hair. In my experience, the same goes for blow-dryers. That said, save on curling irons. Hot Tools makes the best ones, and they’re about $40. Every stylist I know uses them.
Splurge on foundation if you have problem skin. I always recommend Clinique for their great formulas – whether you need extra moisture or full coverage or acne-killing power – and huge color range. Everyone’s skin is different, so I also recommend visiting with a makeup artist at a counter you trust (MAC is a good place to start if you’re not into Clinique) and trying a few formulas and shades to decide which one is best for you. You want something that covers the bits you’re uncomfortable with and is the right shade, which isn’t always easy to find on your own.
Splurge on your signature scent. Some of us just can’t find our perfect frag at Marshall’s or Macy’s. If you fall in love with a $150+ bottle and truly can’t live without it, go for it. It will last you forever. Applying a spritz or two a day will not deplete the contents of a 2 oz bottle all that quickly, you know! (Or do the smart thing and ask for it for Christmas.)