Skincare: Where to Splurge, Where to Save

 Posted by on April 12, 2011
Apr 122011

Would that every beauty junkie had a Black AmEx and a bottomless Birkin bag in which to stash their newly-acquired goodies. Alas, most of us have to thoughtfully allot our skincare budget to accommodate must-haves and holy grail potions, lest we run out and have to make do with a drugstore replacement until the Sephora order arrives or we can get back to the counter for a re-up.

Skincare differs from makeup in that it’s a more cumulative effect. You can swipe on a gorgeous Dior lipstick for instant oomph, but an amazing eye cream or soothing cleanser has a much more subtle effect, and may not be instantly noticeable even if it’s really, really good. So which big guns are worth investing in? Here’s a few factors to bear in mind when formulating your regimen of skincare-attack.

Splurge… Moisturizer: Hands down, the moisturizer you select has the biggest overall impact on your skin’s appearance and health. Hydrophilic (that means water-loving) ingredients like hyaluronic acid benefit most if not all skin types, but based on your particular skin concerns, the ideal moisturizer option may vary. Philosophy’s Hope In A Jar Moisturizer is widely praised for all skin types, and contains skin-renewing Vitamins A and E, and water-binding oat ingredients.

Save… Cleanser: There are some great cleansers on the market, such as those that utilize glycolic acids to exfoliate skin. For the most part, however fancy your cleanser is, you’re pretty much washing it down the sink. If you’re really into a certain cleanser or feel it has a big impact on your skin, it’s a nice splurge, but I strongly recommend that you check the latest Bioelements product reviews. In the end though, even unscented baby wash removes makeup and traces of sebum without stripping skin.

Splurge… Sun Protection: This is actually a half save/half splurge option, but it cannot be underscored enough that the sun is the single most age-accelerating factor facing skin. There are some great drugstore options, but Shiseido’s Ultimate Sun Protection Cream For Face SPF 55 PA+++ is pretty comprehensive. Just be careful not to use sunscreen too sparingly- the neck area and tops of hands often show signs of aging before the face because they’re easy to overlook.

Save… Toner: Like cleanser, a couture toner isn’t going to do anything bad to your skin, but it’s not likely to impact its overall appearance or texture very much either. Duchess Marden has a gorgeous rosewater toner if you’d like a luxury option, but the effects overall won’t far outstrip the benefits of regular rosewater toner.

Splurge… Treatment Products: While they don’t sit on your skin all day like a moisturizer, treatment products have a less fleeting effect than cleansers if they’re washed off like masks, and some can stay on skin instead of being washed away. Beta-hydroxy treatments like Dr. Dennis Gross Extra Strength Alpha Beta Peel is a good investment for oily skin, and a richer mask like Eve Lom’s Rescue Mask is a nice treatment option for dry skin.

What skincare products do you splash out on? Do you have any secret treatment bargains you swear by?

  One Response to “Skincare: Where to Splurge, Where to Save”

  1. I splash out on sunscreen because I can’t stand the feel of the cheap stuff.

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