Most women have a love-hate relationship with their beauty products; you know you love them, but you hate what they do to your cash stash (or lack thereof). Plus, dropping serious dough on a beautifier isn't nearly as satisfying as investing in a pricy fashion piece — clothes will last practically forever, but that designer face cream will be gone before New Year's.
While there are some things that can't be replicated — the perfect Chanel red lipstick, or the latest amazing metallic polish from OPI — you can definitely save on some beauty products by trading them in for cheaper alternatives. From old tights to produce from your local supermarket, check out these no-frills beauty alternatives that work just as well as their department store counterparts.
Got another clever beauty cheat? Share it in the comments below!
Swap Makeup Brushes For Paint Brushes
Do you cringe every time you drop 40 bucks on a makeup brush? Well, the next time you're in the market for one, try a high-quality paint brush instead. Watercolor brushes are great for detail work with liner, spot concealer, and eyeshadow, because they mimic the fiber density of conventional makeup brushes. Keep your blush, powder, and foundation brushes, though: no paint brush will be able to replicate their even distribution of powder.
Photos: Via Makeuper Photos; Senez.
Use Old Tights As Hair Ties
If you lose hair ties faster than you can buy new ones, consider this cool trick: Cut up old tights to make hair elastics. Take a pair you're no longer feeling — like those neon pink ones from Halloween — and cut them horizontally across the leg; the elastic makes them perfect to use as hair ties, and the super smooth nylon texture means they won't cause tangles. Make them as thin or as thick as you'd like, depending on your hair's texture.
Photos: Via Wal Mart; The Gloss
Try An Olive Or Coconut Oil Hair Treatment
Hair oils have become quite popular in the mainstream beauty world, but women have been using natural oils to treat their tresses forever. Give your mane the thirst-quenching it craves with extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil. Just rub a dollop between your hands and work it into fried, dried-out ends. Double bonus: They're both delicious cooking aides and cost next to nothing.
Photos: Via Caviar Line; Whole Foods; Fat Loss School
Rub Citrus On Your Skin To Fight Dryness
Citric acid is a natural exfoliant that helps banish dry, flaky skin. Instead of dropping cash for body lotions that contain some citric acid, go straight to the source and try rubbing a citrus fruit (lemon or orange) on the driest areas of your body. This is especially beneficial for areas that get extra rub during the colder seasons — hips, heels, and elbows.
Photos: Via Clubert; New Beauty
Replace Your Toner With Witch Hazel
Skip expensive, irritating toners and try cleaning up with witch hazel. The natural plant extract, which is actually found in most toners and acne treatments, is a superstar when it comes to ridding your skin of dirt and tightening pores. While it's less drying than most alcohol-based toners, new users can experience some dryness, so be sure to moisturize afterward.
Photos: Via Biz Rate; Amazon