Sunday, January 26, 2014

Saving Your Pennies: Beauty


I don't know if you've seen my 'Saving Pennies: Style' post, but I thought it was about time I did another post of this nature, but this time make it about beauty. Because carrying signs around that say "Give us money, we are pretty" is not guaranteed to work. I don't begrudge anyone spending their money on expensive cosmetics. Spend your money how you like. I just thought I'd do this post for people with money troubles who don't want to neglect their appearance. I do not claim to be an expert. I am no make-up artist or hairdresser. Just a girl who reads a lot of magazines and owns way too many beauty products.

I thought I'd break this post up into the following sections: hair, make-up, skincare and nails. I want to include a few tips and notes from my experiences with different things and a list of basic products that most people need to create a variety of looks. And, yeah this post is probably going to be pretty extensive. I will try and keep it as short as possible. I just wanted to write something basic that separates what you really need from what all of the magazines will tell you that you need. I would love to actually create a list of items and prices as an example, but I don't want to be seen as advertising or defaming anyone.

Also, I want you all to know that I'm not trying to say that people have to do anything to make themselves more beautiful. It's up to you if you want to wear make-up or not and how much. This is simply a guide for people who want to buy this stuff, but are on a budget. Make-up does not always make a person look better. If you use make-up correctly it can help you to accentuate your best features. Sometimes the best looks are the more natural ones or the ones where you emphasise one feature. 

I wanted to cover the topics of hair-colouring, styling for special occasions, everyday styling, hair-cuts and haircare. Hair can be one of the most expensive aspects of a woman's beauty regime.

Most hairdressers recommend a period of about 4-8 weeks between trims, but this depends on the style of haircut and the type of hair you have. Unless you are a hairdresser or are really handy with a pair of scissors I wouldn't recommend cutting your own hair (though I know of a few vintage enthusiasts who do and they seem to do a fine job). The price of a trim is usually cheaper than a "Style Cut" and the price will vary between places. You will have to check around for prices, but the home-hair dressers are usually cheaper than salons because they don't have to pay salon rent or wages for other hair-dressers. You can also try a barber shop if your hair cut is pretty basic and you just need a trim. I've done it a few times and I didn't have any real issues with my hair cut. 

Getting your hair coloured by a hairdresser is definitely more expensive that getting it coloured at home, but hairdressers can usually apply the colours a little neater and they can do all the tricky stuff like Ombre tips, streaks and foils. If you want to dye your hair a plain colour at home I recommend getting a friend to do it for you. I often dye my mother's hair and she dyes mine. If you don't have any gray hairs you could just choose not to colour your hair. I know some people who actually can't colour their hair. The colour just doesn't "stick" and it rinses out pretty quickly.

There are a lot of books, YouTube videos and blogs designed for the DIY hair stylist. Though, while it is arguable cheaper to style your own hair it's not for everyone. My sister had her hair styled professionally for her graduation and debutante ball, And, I think it was money well spent. It looked pretty flawless and it lasted. Again, shop around for prices from different hairdressers sometimes they will have deals on offer where you can get your make-up applied professionally as well.

If you don't have any problems with hair being too oily or dry you usually don't have to spend too much on a shampoo. I wouldn't go for the cheapest brand, but there's usually something decent available in a supermarket that will do the job.

If you like to curl your hair can pick up a packet of pin curl clips pretty cheap on eBay (correct name double-prong clips), but this method is time consuming. If you are going to by a hot-tool it's important to consider what effect you want to create, because some tools only have one purpose. I have seen a few people use a straightener to create a few different effects, but I have tried it and i don't think it works as well as the individual tools do. It is important to consider the quality of a product versus the price, because if it doesn't work you've just wasted money on it. Some examples of the different tools you can get include: curling irons, curling wands, straighteners, hairdryer (and attachments), wavers, crimpers and hot rollers/sticks.

Basic items that everyone should have:
- A shampoo and conditioner (check the quantities the larger containers are usually cheaper per litre)
-A leave in conditioner or hair oil ( good for winter months or after swimming in chlorine pools and can reduce frizz)
-A hairbrush and comb. (something with longer bristles if you have tangly hair. A tail comb is handy for styling hair)
- some hair spray
-pins/barrettes/alice bands/hair bands (whichever you prefer for keeping your hair tidy/styling)

Extras that are only required for specific needs:
-Dried shampoo
- mousse/gel/wax
-shower cap
-specialty brushes
-shine/gloss spray
-detangling spray
-setting lotions
-hair masks

There was a feature about women's beauty products on TV the other day. Apparently most women have hundreds of dollars worth of make-up products stored in their bathroom drawers and they just keep buying more. My dad looked at me and I said "hey! I'd never store make-up in the bathroom. hello? Mold..." which obviously wasn't the point, but the point is, that unless you are a total make-up fanatic who likes to experiment with a heap of different eye shadows and liners, you probably don't need a lot of make-up. And, if you are, there are ways to hoard every colour of the rainbow without going broke. 

Brands I would Recommend:
E.L.F (Eyes Lips Face) is a brand that sells a big range of make-up at lower than average prices. Not all of the products are winners though, so I would google reviews for the products you want to purchase. 

Sleek Make-up I really like this brand. Not everyone is a fan, but for the price you can't complain. I find it cheapest to buy direct from their website.

NYX  has a big range of colours and specialty make-up products. This brand is available from Crush Cosmetics.

AVON pretty decent prices. Though I usually do wait for catalogue sales. Some of the Colour trend stuff isn't very long lasting though.

Sites I would Recommend:
Crush Cosmetics I have done a few purchases on here. Some brands do get marked up quite a bit, but not all of them. The shop has it's own brand of make-up brushes that are really soft.

Priceline Is an Aussie department store that specialises in Health and Beauty products. 

Fashion Addict Another Aussie Site. The prices are really good on here, but watch out for the cheaper, lower quality products.

- You can use lipstick as a cream blush and cream eye shadow. (not recommended for oily skin)
- You can use blush as an eye shadow
- You can use a light pearly eye shadow as a highlight.
- You can use a concealer as an eye-primer (a pencil concealer can also per used as a nude lip liner)

There are a lot of websites and books out there dedicated to helping you get the perfect winged eyeliner and statement lip, but if you are still unsure about doing your own make-up for special events you can get a make-up artist do it for you or purchase a lesson with one so that you can do your own in the future. 

Basics that can create a variety of looks:
- Eye shadow colours: a matte neutral, a champagne colour (for highlights), a medium brown (for contouring) and a metallic colour (like gold or silver for a night out). You can usually get a neutral palette that has most of these shades included.
- A medium neutral lip colour (such as a mauve, pink or brown)
-A red lipstick for good occasions (you could choose another bright or dark colour instead like plum, fuchsia or tangerine)
-a clear, shimmery lip gloss.
-A blusher and a bronzer (you can sometimes get these in a palette that comes with a highlight shade.
-A waterproof mascara ( I always by waterproof when I can unless the colour is purple or something and it's not available in a waterproof variety)
-chosen base (if you have relatively clear skin a tinted moisturiser is fine)
-primer (your skin will thank you for it)
-an eye liner in black or brown
-a basic set of brushes (one for powder, blush, eye shadow, brows, lips)

Extras that you don't need, but can buy if you want:
- a variety of liners
- a variety of lipsticks, paints or glosses
- a variety of blushes
- a variety of eye-shadows
-an eye shadow base or primer
- a variety of mascaras
- a brow kit
- a variety of lip pencils
- a highlight
- setting sprays
- lip seal

Thanks to Department store brands and a few other affordable brands like 'Simple', most skincare products are available at a fairly cheap price. It doesn't matter if your approach to skincare is chemical or natural, you can usually find a decent product for less than fifteen bucks. If you are really stretched for money try the 'Beauty Essentials' brand from Priceline, which is by far the cheapest I have seen. 

Basics that everyone should have:
- Cleanser for face (In the old days cold cream cleansers were very popular and they are still very available today)
-Eye make-up remover or Makeup wipes. If you are going to wear make-up you will need this.
-Face Moisturiser
-Body Wash and Hand Soap (try something soap free if you have dry or sensitive skin)
-Moisturiser (even if you don't have dry skin, this will come in handy for winter months and sunburn affected skin. If you have sensitive skin choose something that's fragrance free. Redwin's Vitamin E cream is fairly cheap and is a rich moisturiser.
- Deodorant
-Sunscreen (supermarket brands are way cheaper than other brands. I go for water resistant SPF 50+)
-a good lip balm

Extras that not everyone will need:
- Toner (good for people who have problems with larger pores)
- Exfoliating Scrub (good for buffing away dead skin)
-Clay Mask (good for drawing out imperfections)
-Pimple Cream
-Eye Cream

There are some vintage beauty guides out there that offer a DIY approach to skin care. Depending on what methods you use, you might save some money.

Now I don't know about you, but I find it pretty hard to hand over $20 for a bottle of nail polish just because it has a special brand name. Now if you are going to do nail art you are going to need a whole heap of different tools and pens and paints. However, I decided to just do a section for the average nail painter who wants plain nails.

I have bought most of my nail colours from the chemist in town. Ultra3 brand is usually $2 each. There is a MUD brand available at the supermarket for about $3. Sinful Colours from Target is about $5 and there is an Essence brand available on Priceline for $2.75.

If you are not big on nails and don't have a steady hand you may be better off paying for your nails to get done professionally instead of spending money on nail polish .

- a nude or light pink polish and white polish/tip whitener for a french manicure look
- a medium pink
-a red (to go with your red lipstick)
-a manicure set (you can usually pick one up for under $10 from a cheapy store)
-nail polish remover.
-top coat

EXTRAS you might want or need:
- Base Coat (if you have issues with your nails yellowing)
-Nail strengthener (if you have brittle nails)
-Matte top coat (if you want a matte finish or have a pastel polish that goes streaky)
-all the polishes you heart desires.
-Nail art stuff.



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Don't feel like you have to wear makeup if you don't want to or don't have a lot of money to spare. I just wanted to share a few of my favourite shops and brands that are quite affordable who those that want to do the full face make-up and can't afford to buy expensive products or don't know where to start. I hope this was helpful.

Your Favourite Blogger,


Jessica Cangiano said...

Tremendously well thoughtful and thoroughly detailed, helpful post. I fall into the fashion and beauty loving lady on a budget camp big time, so this post certainly spoke to me. Two other brands (though I suspect that the first one might not be available outside of Canada) that I also recommend for wallet-friendly cosmetics are Annabelle and Wet & Wild (their eyeliner pencils and nail polishes in particular).

♥ Jessica

Natalie_vintage_girl said...

Thanks!! :) I have seen the wet and wild brand, but I haven't tried it out. Looks like I will have to add this to my List of stuff to try out next order!