|Anything gifted to me is marked with a *|
Does expensive always mean more effective? Not necessarily, in my opinion. One example that immediately springs to mind is Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream ( I love her makeup, in general, but I could easily give her skincare, apart from her Clay Goddess, a miss, and can think of numerous, more effective moisturisers for half the price. Today, I thought I'd do a post on this exact subject - Budget VS Bougie - which is best? We all know I'm a fan of luxury beauty products but there also quite a few budget gems in my collection so I thought I'd do a showdown today! At the end of the day, buy within your budget, this is just for fun!
Bleach London Reincarnation Mask VS Coco & Eve Super Nourishing Coconut & Fig Hair Masque: I bought the Bleach mask because my usual favourite was out of stock and the description sounded promising (and the price of £7.50 for 200ml was pretty good). My hair isn't bleached but I have been having it coloured for years and I use heat on it so the promise of resurrecting stressed-out strands grabbed my interest immediately. It also promises to boost shine, elasticity and strength. To use, you apply to hair, comb through, then leave it on the hair for 10-20 minutes after shampooing (ideally in a warm towel for the ultimate treat), before rinsing. I have found that when I use this, my hair is easy to comb through and does feel elasticized, as promised but it doesn't really tame my frizz. Bare in mind that my hair is very dry and naturally prone to frizz so it takes a lot for it to look sleek so if you have normal or only slightly damaged hair, this might work better for you. I will continue to use it but will have to use other nourishing products afterwards to achieve sleekness and tame my frizz. The Coco & Eve mask is bougie in comparison as it's £34.90 for 212 ml - big difference! I adore this mask and this is my third repurchase. A little goes a long way with it so if you can afford it and have frizzy, damaged or 'difficult' hair, I'd recommend it to you. It tames the hair, strengthens and repairs it from the inside out, elasticizes and de-frizzes the hair, as well as smelling divine (if you like coconuts!). It comes with a tangle teezer to encourage you to come it through your hair and once rinsed after 10 minutes, hair is left silky soft and frizz-free. In this case, bougie is the clear winner but the budget one is a great option if on a tight budget.
Versed Keep It Supple Body Oil VS Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Miracle Oil*: I've mentioned Versed recently in another post but if you are new to it, it's a new vegan line on Cult Beauty. This is a dry oil that combines sweet almond oil, macadamia oil, ylang ylang, coconut oil and more. Although it's dry (meaning it absorbs quickly), it is actually very nourishing and I love to use it before bed to wake to soft skin. If you read my The Hype Is Real post, then you will know that I LOVE the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Miracle Oil* and a little goes a long way with it. It's a multipurpose oil that I use in my hair (although not sprayed directly on to it), my body and it can be used on the face but I personally don't. I particularly like to use it at night, although it does absorb quickly so it could be used in the morning after a shower. One word on both is to be careful to stand on a towel or mat, otherwise your floor will be pretty slippy! This is a really tough one because I like that both are spray on, both are very nourishing (without feeling greasy) and a little goes a long way with both. Given the price difference, I'm going to have to say that budget wins this category!
The Ordinary Squalane Cleanser VS Jordan Samuel The After Show Treatment Cleanser: This is not a straight battle but they are both cleansers, suitable for sensitive skin that will not only cleanse the skin, but also hydrate it. The 50ml size of The Ordinary cleanser is a bit tight but with a price tag of £5.50, it's hard to argue, plus it would be perfect for travelling (whenever that happens again!). This has a creamy texture but you rub it between your fingers until it becomes an oil and then massage it into dry skin, melting down makeup and leaving skin feeling thoroughly cleansed without feeling stripped. It really is an excellent, nourishing product for the price. The Jordan Samuel cleanser contains a blend of nourishing plant oils, as well as calming and anti-inflammatory ingredients. It is massaged into the skin to break down makeup and is very effective at removing makeup and leaving skin feeling thoroughly cleansed but also nourished. In this case, the winner isn't easily chosen but purely because my skin is easily inflamed and sensitive, I will choose the bougie (Jordan Samuel) but I would be happy to use either.
Catrice Velvet Matt Lip Pencil Colour & Contour* VS Huda Beauty Lip Contour: If these two products were blind tested, product snobs probably couldn't tell the difference as the Catrice liners are soft (but not too smudgy) and comfortable, just like the formula of the Huda liners. Both are pigmented and comfortable to wear so as much as I love the Huda liners, the budget Catrice are the winners here for me, although I love both.
NYX Eyeshadow Base VS Nars Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base: Although I have skin like the Sahara, I somehow have oily lids and I have watery eyes so an eye primer is an absolute must for me. I know that lots of people swear by the Urban Decay eye primer but that just doesn't work for me - my eyeshadow always, always creases and fades when I used it. Once I discovered the Nars Smudgeproof Eyeshadow Base I never looked back! It is the only eyeshadow base that would make my shadow budgeproof and that I know I could rely on. I've repeatedly repurchased for around 5 years now - basically since it was released. It just grips the shadow without leaving it feeling tight, heavy or greasy. The NYX eyeshadow base is in a pot so I've tried applying with both my finger and a brush and the result is pretty much the same - a smooth even base. My eyeshadow (cream, stick and powder) all apply well over it but within a few hours, I can see creasing, which I can run a brush over to tidy up but the colour is distorted then. In this case, there is a clear winner for my oily lids and that's the Nars product but do bare in mind that if your lids are not greasy, the NYX might be a winner for you and is a great price.
Morphe Continuous Setting Mist VS Hourglass Veil Soft Focus Setting Spray: I am a HUGE fan of the Morphe Mist - in fact it was in my 2018 favourite discoveries post here. It has a super fine mist, keeps my makeup in place and adds a slight hint of dewiness. I think I must have had a moment of insanity when I ordered the Hourglass Spray because it's £47!!! We'll blame the mixture of Covid/flu/Lyme/tonsillitis and medication for my moment of weakness (there have been many over the past few months!). Honestly, this spray lives up to the hype and acts like a filter for the face - everything looks softer, smoother and younger. Is it worth paying £47 for? Some days, yes, because I'd pay anything to make me look less tired and more fresh but on days where I have had enough sleep and my makeup has livened my complexion up, I don't feel that I necessarily need a £47 setting spray. Will I repurchase? Only time will tell but I'm honestly very happy with the budget option.
Caudalie Grape Water* VS Omorovicza Queen of Hungary Mist*: Now this is another tricky one for me because anybody who has every read my blog knows how much I adore Omorovicza Queen of Hungary Mist* but Caudalie Grape Water* is a very affordable alternative. I don't know if you could actually find a more bougie product than Omorovicza Queen of Hungary Mist* yet I have repurchased time and time again because my skin loves it - it's calming, soothing, refreshing and hydrating. It has the finest mist of any face spray I have used and I can use it in several ways - before makeup, after makeup, to refresh my skin throughout the day and also as part of my skincare routine.I adore the rose and neroli scent and it never fails to make my smile when I use it. On the other hand, we have Caudalie Grape Water* which costs £11 for 200ml in comparison to £55 for 100ml. Again, this has a fine mist, it feels instantly cooling and refreshing and contains 100% organic ingredients, including the brand's signature grapes. It can be used in all of the same ways as the Q of H Mist. I am going to have to call this one a draw. Of course, the Omorovicza Mist will always be my favourite but if I get to a stage where I cannot afford to replace it, my immediate purchase would be the Caudalie one.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on these products and which products you aren't willing to compromise on and are therefore happy to spend a little extra on?
Thanks for reading!