7 Killer Tips for Looking Great on a Budget
By Claire Franklin
From the Looking Good Blog Series
Knowing that you look your best is half the battle to building confidence. But in a world filled with deadlines, demands, and daily shuffles, making time for a beauty regimen can be tough. While many of us already know the basics of skincare, such as the need to cleanse and exfoliate, there are a few crucial details that require little effort and can easily be worked into your daily skin care regimen. And by spending just a few dollars, you’ll look and feel like a million cool ones.
Tip #1. Get Yourself A Good Moisturizer!
Whether you have dry, normal, or oily skin, experts say your best beauty pick is a good moisturizer. This is true even if you can only afford one skin care product. Why? When skin is dry, every wrinkle is accentuated, making you look older and less polished. Moreover, regular moisturizing can help you prevent from prematurely aging.
A “good” moisturizer is one that performs several tasks. It should gently add moisture to your skin, seal in the moisture you already have, and help your skin produce more moisture. If skin is normal to dry, look for a product containing alpha-hydroxy acids. Very dry skin needs products with water holding ingredients like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and lanolin. If skin is oily, look for a light, gentle moisturizer – but don’t skip this step. Oil is not moisture, according to experts, and your skin still requires proper hydration.
Tip #2. No More Soap on Your Face.
Next on the list is facial cleanser, the second most important part of a beauty regimen. But because of the various gels, scrubs, and self-foaming cleansers now available, many women simply use soap and water. This “one size fits all” cure is less than ideal, so dermatologists recommend we each use the gentlest cleanser we can find, which often is not soap.
If you have dry skin, you’ll want an alcohol-free cleanser. Oily skin requires a product with a low pH level. And sensitive skin means you need to deter from cleansers laden with chemicals or heavy fragrances. It’s also important to know this: if you wear makeup daily, you want to select a facial cleanser that removes makeup. Likewise, if you exercise or work outside, you’ll want something to keep pores nice and clean. For all of these reasons, spending time reading labels and researching product lines will pay dividends in your quest for an effective facial cleanser.
Tip #3. Limit Face-Washing to Morning and Night.
Additionally, it’s important to wash skin no more than twice daily. More than this does not help, and if you’re using a harsh product, you can cause real damage, including harming the natural lipid barrier that keeps skin looking and feeling healthy. Once that protection is lost, skin becomes dry and can crack, peel, itch, burn, sting, or any combination thereof.
Tip #4. Take Care Of Your Nails.
Even with the best skin care regimen, however, a girl always needs extra beauty tips. So for hands and nails, apply a little warm olive oil before you go to bed. This will moisturize dry skin and make nails shine. If your nails are stained from dark polishes, stick them in lemon halves for five minutes to instantly brighten. And always file nails in one direction to keep them smooth and healthy.
Tip #5. Tame Your Mane.
When you’re in a rush and don’t have time to shower, you can disguise oily hair with bronzer or baby powder. Brunettes should use the former, while blondes should use the latter. Another option is to use dry shampoo. To tame flyaway hairs, take a small, dime-sized amount of moisturizer, rub between your hands and run over those hairs. The weight of the moisturizer will hold them down while giving your hands a quick dose of moisturizer.
Tip #6. Consider a Styling Change.
If you’re ready to change your hairstyle but don’t want to cut it, try a side part. This dramatic change requires nothing more than a comb and some hairspray. Also consider trying new accessories, such as clips, bobby pins and headbands, and style your hair in different ways, such as buns and ponytails.
Tip #7. Try These Inexpensive Beauty Tools.
For your face, use Vaseline as an eye makeup remover, to hydrate lips and revive dry skin. If you’ve had a long night working or studying, Visine clears eyes and also reduces redness caused by skin blemishes. Just apply sparingly to the problem area. And update your makeup without spending a dime. Simply use a wet brush instead of a dry one on powdered eye shadow to instantly create a creamier, brighter color for lids.