The best of beauty under €20 to buy now

Affordable beauty is infinitely more affordable today as well as being infinitely better

Andrew Fitzsimons Pink No Marks Hair Clips: at €3 these hair clips are a must-have

Andrew Fitzsimons Pink No Marks Hair Clips: at €3 these hair clips are a must-have

 

 When I think of the change in the beauty landscape from when I was a teenager fawning over makeup to now, one thing jumps out. Affordable beauty is not only infinitely more affordable than it used to be, but infinitely better.

Really, it’s no wonder that teenage girls now look like Instagram models while everyone I knew in my teens looked precisely what we were – a total mess. We couldn’t afford luxury beauty, and the budget options weren’t there. Hair masks that smelled like school bathroom soap and turned your scalp faintly purple. Sharp, crumbly eyeliners capable of grievous retinal injury. Lancôme Juicy Tubes (which I will never fault, but couldn’t afford).

It isn’t just teens who can benefit from the brilliant lower-budget options – we all can. If you have €20 (or less) to spend on beauty, there are so many options, none of which will turn your scalp purple. You’ll recognise Dublin’s own celebrity stylist Andrew Fitzsimons’ work on the heads of some of the world’s most famous women – Kim Kardashian and her sisters Khloe and Kylie among them.

Andrew Fitzsimons Pink No Marks Hair Clips (€3 at Penneys stores nationwide) are brilliant for hair styling. I first saw clips like these – designed to hold hair in place without denting or marking it while styling or doing makeup – backstage at fashion weeks. They’ve long been a styling staple of the professionals, but hard to come by for the rest of us. These do the job perfectly, and they cost €3.

Patchology Serve Chilled Rose Eye Gels
Patchology Serve Chilled Rose Eye Gels

Patchology Serve Chilled Rose Eye Gels (€16 for five pairs at feelunique.com) can be kept in the bedroom or bathroom cabinet, but I find the most face-saving place to store them is the fridge. On those mornings when I wake up looking bloated and inexplicably shiny, as though I’ve been pickled, these are the first thing I apply after washing my face. They cool and calm the eye area, and ensure that the masses of concealer I’ll undoubtedly need looks natural.

Highlighter is a product that instantly renders makeup more polished and expensive looking. Catrice has long been a brand I turn to for powder highlighters in particular, as they tend to feature diffused, almost glossy-looking finishes with brilliant lasting power and buttery texture suggestive of a far more expensive product. More Than Glow Highlighter (€4.50 at Penneys stores nationwide) fits the description on all counts.

More Than Glow Highlighter
More Than Glow Highlighter
Rituals Karma After Sun Soothing Shower Gel
Rituals Karma After Sun Soothing Shower Gel

Finally, with excellent affordable brand Rituals having opened a store in Limerick this week, I’m prompted to encourage Limerickians (and everyone else) to try the new Rituals Karma After Sun Soothing Shower Gel (€8.50 at Rituals stores nationwide). It’s just a lovely summer shower option. Cooling and fragrant, it’s ideal for hot, sticky weather to give that sense of freshness that feels so elusive in humid weather. 

Moroccanoil Dry Shampoo Dark Tones 323ml
Moroccanoil Dry Shampoo Dark Tones 323ml

Product of the week 
The cult dry shampoo is available in a super-size for a limited time. It comes in two shades – for light or dark tones, helping to mask roots as well as instantly making them look and feel cleaner.

Moroccanoil Dry Shampoo Dark Tones 323ml (€20.45 at lookfantastic.com)  

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