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Eight Ways to Save Money on Your Beauty Regimen

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Like many women, I spend a lot of money keeping up appearances.  From regular maintenance to trendy, must-have products, looking pretty can be pretty expensive.  But there are some easy ways to save money on personal care and grooming regimen.

1. No More Face Wipes. Until recently, I was spending $9 for a 25-pack of Simple makeup removing wipes. Then, I switched to Well Beginnings sensitive baby wipes.  A steal at $3 for a 75-pack.

2. Trim Your Ends. You can spread out the time between haircuts by trimming your hair yourself.  Or if you’re faint of heart, just clean up your split ends.  Just remember to use a really sharp scissor.

3. Use Less Foundation. Your foundation is usually the most expensive product in your beauty arsenal.  To make my foundation last longer, I do two things: apply it with a brush and dilute it with primer.  The brush doesn’t absorb foundation like a sponge will, so there’s less waste.  And thinning it with a bit of primer gives me great coverage with less product.

4. Go Homemade. Pinterest is full of tutorials for how to make your own deep conditioner, body scrubs and face masks.  I use this pore minimizing mask with clay, green tea, and charcoal.

5. Do Your Own Nails. I love these tips from The Everygirl for doing a perfect mani-pedi yourself, and I updated this 2013 post on the tools and polishes I use to paint my own nails.  I simply refuse to pay for something I can do at home unless it’s a special occasion.

6. Skip the Beautyblender.  If you like teardrop sponges, skip the pricey ones and buy a four pack of latex-free sponges for $6.

7. Buy Men’s Products. It’s no secret that women’s grooming products cost more than men’s.  I avoid ‘The Pink Tax‘ by purchasing men’s deodorant, razors, and body exfoliating tools.  If there’s a women’s product you need, check to make sure the men’s product isn’t cheaper before you buy.

8. Get the Sample. How many times have you splurged on a must-have skincare product only to get home and find it seriously lacking?  Instead, go to Sephora/Ulta or a department store to get a sample.  Can’t sample first?  Buy from a retailer who lets you return a used product no questions asked.

If you have tips for saving money on your personal care regimen, leave them in the comments.



  1. Petite Curves Ahead says:

    In particular, I’ve started only using sample masks. I get tired of masks after a while and frustrated with how quickly they go dry and/or lose their potency (WHY MUST THEY ALWAYS BE IN TUBS?) By only using sample sizes I basically get all the bang and spend very little buck.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
  2. A says:

    Use a safety razor like this one:


    July 28, 2016/Reply
    • Monica says:

      I use this same razor with Astra Platinum blades and it is the BEST! Saves SO much money, and so much waste caused by cartridge razors. Really, the rest of the world is NOT paying $50 for a pack of razor blades. Also decreases ingrowns because a single blade doesn’t cut the hair off below the surface of the skin. Check it out!


      July 28, 2016/Reply
      • LS says:

        Thank you so much for posting this guide! I’m about to switch to safety razor with the goal of reducing waste, but I was a little intimidated.

        July 28, 2016/Reply
        • Monica says:

          I was too, but after a few times I realized it was almost exactly the same! I know the article says to use shaving foam, but I don’t, I just use a Dove Sensitive cleaning bar. Works for me anyway!

          July 28, 2016/Reply
  3. Amy says:

    Buy travel sized stuff. My favorite mascara comes in sample size version at Sephora. I don’t wear a ton so the smaller tube lasts according to mascara’s “shelf-life.” I save money and don’t waste any product when it goes bad. I wash my hair every other day, unless I workout in the mornings. This extends the amount of time I go between buying shampoo and conditioner. If you are on social media a lot check out sites like Influenster and PinchMe. They often have giveaways on beauty and personal care products (read: shampoo, body wash, deodorant, etc). Sure it’s not always stuff you would buy necessarily, but it’s great for travel kits, keeping at a summer house or to postpone your regular purchases until payday 🙂

    July 28, 2016/Reply
    • s-p-c says:

      Plus sample sizes at Sephora for free / 100 VIB points – between those and Clinique freebies that I pick up when restocking on products, I haven’t needed to buy mascara in about 5 years.

      July 28, 2016/Reply
  4. Monica says:

    “Simplify, simplify.” – Thoreau

    I cleaned up my own beauty regimen by thinking in terms of how many checmicals I was putting on my skin, how many plastic containers I was buying, and how much of it was going to waste. This also led to me saving money.

    I buy in bulk from Mountain Rose Herbs: Witch Hazel, Rose water, French Green Clay, White Clay, Rosehip Seed Oil, Hemp Seed Oil and Aloe Vera.

    I make everything in my skin care regimen from the ingredients above, with a few other items I have in my kitchen thrown in. Oil cleanser, cleansing grains, toner, mask and moisturizing oil.

    The funny thing is, my skin was unhappy with what I was doing before, and while this all sounds very “crunchy” and stuff I keep doing it because my skin loves it and it looks better than it ever has in my life, and since I’m going to be 35 in a few months I really want a regimen that can let me age gracefully.

    I don’t skimp on makeup though, because as crunchy as I may be I have to look presentable for my job. I keep it simple with as few products as possible, and since I’m older now I have a set look and I don’t buy products that don’t fit in with my lifestyle.

    For example I don’t need anything with sparkles in it. And that saves me money.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
    • Meg says:

      This is amazing. Would LOVE to know more. Maybe a guest blog post??

      July 28, 2016/Reply
      • LS says:


        July 28, 2016/Reply
  5. Yael @ Nosherium says:

    Love these pointers! Recently, I’ve started doing research before buying or even trying the newest, trendiest product. The Beautypedia from Paula’s Choice is full of good information about effectiveness and quackery.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
  6. Erin says:

    To make a really great homemade shower/bath scrub: sugar, avocado oil, few drops of essential oil; stir. Store in wide mouth mason jar for an adorable gift (or in gladware in your shower caddy if you’re like me and just making it for yourself.)

    Have also mixed baking soda in with my face wash for a gentle face exfolliant.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
  7. Lauren says:

    Let’s talk about those sponges. Do they really work as well as beauty blenders? Seems too good to be true.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I don’t notice enough of a difference to justify the BB price.

      July 28, 2016/Reply
    • Jenn S. says:

      If you can afford to buy in ‘bulk,’ there are pro sets of 6 and 12 that break town to a far easier-to-digest per-sponge price.

      July 28, 2016/Reply
      • Jenn S. says:

        *Facepalm* I can type. Break down into a better price, I meant – and I meant that for official beautyblender-branded sponges.

        July 28, 2016/Reply
  8. abidina says:

    Yes to all of these, and especially #8! I’d been saving up for the Sunday Riley Good Genes PURELY based on word-of-mouth, but now that I have a sample I’ve been using for a week, I’m unimpressed. So glad I didn’t drop $105+ when I prefer my Kiehl’s after all.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
  9. Rachel says:

    I have to caution against using baby wipes in place of face wipes, based on personal experience. I used baby wipes as my go-to for makeup removal for years, and it wasn’t until after I switched that I realized how much they irritated my skin, especially around my eyes (my acne also disappeared after switching to Simple wipes). Of course it varies depending on what brands you use, but, given how delicate the skin on your face is and how it is often different from the skin on the rest of your body, it’s best to stick to something that’s designed with your face in mind.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
    • Addie says:

      Ditto. I used to use baby wipes but I stopped when I realized how irritated the skin around my eyes got, even with using sensitive wipes. They may be for babies but a baby’s bottom and your eyes still have completely different needs. I now use Burts Bees cleansing oil to remove my makeup and follow up with a gel face wash. I keep Burts Bees face wipes on hand for when I’m just too tired for two step cleansing but I try to make that a rare occurence. My eye lashes have gotten longer and thick since I stopping tugging at my eyes with wipes every day 🙂

      July 28, 2016/Reply
      • Meg says:

        I love how gentle and little tugging is required with Almay’s eye make up remover pads. They glide over my eyes and remove most eye make up in one or two swipes (depending on how much I put on that day!). Since I’ve found these, I don’t use other wipes. I use these on my eyes and then cleansing oil and/or my normal face wash followed by a witch hazel toner. My skin feels cleaner and much less irritated without the harsh tugging and wiping.


        July 28, 2016/Reply
        • Amy says:

          Coconut oil is also a good eye makeup remover, and a little bit goes a long way!

          July 28, 2016/Reply
          • Jenn S. says:

            This is true – coconut oil can be comedogenic in some people though, so try it on a less conspicuous area before committing to using it front-and-center.

            July 28, 2016/Reply
      • Molly says:

        I use baby wipes despite having sensitive skin, but I wash or at least rinse my face after — I think the point is that you’re just using a disposable cloth to get makeup off your face, but the fancier wipes aren’t a good substitute for an actual cleansing regimen. I can see that leaving whatever residue on your face could irritate it.

        Also — only unscented baby wipes for sure!! I find Amazon’s to be very soft.

        July 29, 2016/Reply
  10. Alma says:

    Tips from a former Macy’s employee:

    1. Boxed sets at Mother’s Day and Christmas are usually the best value. Stock up at those times.
    2. Certain counters WILL have XL sizes available occasionally which are always a better per ounce value. Just ask.
    3. Sometimes buying online will net you more/better free gifts.
    4. There are always samples hidden somewhere for good customers. Treat your counter girls well and they will do the same for you.
    5. If your particular store doesn’t have a particular counter (ie doesn’t have a MAC counter) as long as it is available from the closest distribution center you can have any employee order it for you and shipped to you for free.
    6. If you do the Plenti points thing on your Macy’s card, the best use of them is to save them to use on cosmetics since there are zero coupons that are valid on cosmetics and you can redeem your points on cosmetics.
    7. If your counter of choice isn’t in gift at one store, it might be at a different one.
    8. The anti-aging lines of L’Oreal are slightly watered down versions of Lancome products for a lot less money.
    9. February and August is when inventory is done and any retiring products or colors are pulled from the shelves.

    July 28, 2016/Reply
  11. Addie says:

    I used to spend more than $50 on Bumble & Bumble’s curl conscious shampoo and conditioner. I recently started switching over to more natural products and loved Acure Organic’s face products so much that I decided to try their volumizing shampoo and conditioner as well. It’s less than $20 for both the shampoo and conditioner (not to mention a much bigger bottles), my curls love it and even though I’ve recently started coloring my hair, I can still go 8 weeks between colorings without shelling out big bucks for a color preserving shampoo. I buy all the Acure products at Whole Foods

    July 28, 2016/Reply