Worldwide, women spend between $45 and $66 billion per year on cosmetics. In America, we're on the hook for about $12,000 each. Every woman deserves to feel beautiful, but some of that money we're shelling out is going toward products we don't even need. Are you overspending on any of these items? If so, your wallet wants you to downgrade to the equally-effective cheaper versions-or just eliminate them entirely.
Toner Toner, swiped on after washing your face and before moisturizing, allegedly helps to cleanse skin and shrink pores, but according to Dr. Jeffrey Dover, associate clinical professor of dermatology at Yale University School of Medicine, you do not need to use toner unless you have abnormally oily skin. Toner just takes more time and eats more money, not to mention the fact that that the very idea of "shrinking" your pores is a mere myth.
Shaving Cream Shaving cream is used to prevent razor burn and provide lubrication when shaving, but there are other methods that get you the same result. To get the perfect shave, use hot water to open your pores and exfoliate your legs with a loofah. Shower gel or hair conditioner is more than adequate to prime the area you're about to shave.
Brand-Name Razors It's okay if you spend big bucks on a brand-name razor-along with those pricy refills-just because your favorite celeb appeared on the commercials. However, a great shave doesn't require a fancy razor. The disposable cheapie ones are just as good; just make sure that the blades are sharp and that you replace them after every few shaves.
Is Department Store Makeup Worth the Price?
Designer Nail Polish Chanel and Yves Saint Laurent each make branded nail polish costing more than $20 a pop. Designer nail polish is definitely something you don't need to splurge on; nobody will ever know if you're wearing YSL or Wet 'n Wild, so opt for the cheaper one-it's all made from the same stuff, anyway.
Foot Masks Foot masks are used to "re-charge" and "rejuvenate" tired, cramped feet. While that thought does sound lovely, they do the same thing that some hot water and a good moisturizer will do. These are definitely an item worth saving on.
Eye Cream Cosmetics companies claim that the skin around your eyes is thinner and more sensitive than the skin on the rest of your face. Consequently, many estheticians recommend a separate (and often expensive) cream just for your eyes. But according to Confessions of a Beauty Editor, by Allure editor Linda Wells, it's not necessary; regular face moisturizers do the trick.
Learn the Truth About Eye Cream
Facial Mists These sprays, designed to soothe and quench your parched skin are basically just water. Yup, plain water, perhaps with the scent of lavender or some other luxurious aroma. Unless you're Mariah Carey, you probably don't need to spend $10 on a five-ounce can of Evian to hydrate your face.
Foundation Primer Like priming a wall before you paint it, primers prime your face. You're supposed to apply them after you moisturize and before you apply foundation to make your makeup stay in one place, but according to Confessions of a Beauty Editor, a good moisturizer gets the job done just as well.
Lip Brushes A separate brush to apply lipstick is an extravagance that you can definitely forego. Your pinky finger or the applicator wand are all you need for a perfect pout. Just make sure to wipe off the tube with some rubbing alcohol every so often.
Hand/Foot/Neck Cream Skin is skin. Truth be told, the skin on your hands isn't radically different from the skin on your feet, back, or neck. One good lotion is all you need to keep all your parts well-moisturized and scale-free.
Eye-Makeup Remover There's virtually no difference between eye-makeup removers across all price points, and anyway, many cleansers nowadays remove mascara and shadow in a snap. In a pinch, you can even use baby oil or cold cream.
More from DivineCaroline:
Spring 2012 Runway Beauty Looks You Can Try Now
How to Fit Your Entire Makeup Routine in Your Purse
Fall Beauty Splurges and Steals
Our Favorite Fall Nail Colors
Could You Live Without Mirrors?
False Indicators of Relationship Compatibility
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