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I felt like doing a vaguely-summery-themed round-up of some great affordable hair, skin and body products, so here we are! They aren't necessarily new but they're recommendations I thought I'd give a special shout-out to...
The first products I'm going to talk about might come as a surprise to regular readers because I rarely switch up my shampoo and conditioner, mainly because in terms of the former: my scalp is really sensitive, so if I find something that works for me I do tend to stick to it. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the Aveeno Gentle Moisture+ Rosewater and Chamomile Blend Shampoo* and Conditioner* | £5.99 each. This one is aimed towards dry hair but to be honest, I'm sure any of these blends are going to be gentle and non-stripping because this is Aveeno, but there's an oat version and a clarifying version that both look interesting. This shampoo has a lightweight formula that cleanses really gently without stripping my scalp. I didn't get dryness or itchiness at all when I was using this shampoo, which says a lot because so many formulas aggravate things in that department. The conditioner is a lightweight option but adds enough moisture for my hair when I throw in a mask once a week. It's great to know there's a shampoo and conditioner I like that can pick up at my local Boots for £12.
Speaking of masks... I'm really enjoying the Faith in Nature Shea & Argan Hair Mask* | £6.99. I honestly can't believe this cost what I used to spend most days on lunch from Pret! It's a giant tub and I really love how light the texture is but the fact this still packs a nourishing punch without leaving behind any excess or greasiness. If you hair is dry or damaged: I definitely recommend this as a weekly budget fix, it's absolutely beautiful.
- SKIN -
Cleansers! The first product I'm going to talk about is the Minimum Essential Cleanser* | £12.50. This is a well-priced line of skincare essentials that strips everything back and focuses on the basics and this is their balm cleanser. You might be thinking 'balm cleanser? In the summer?' Yes, a balm cleanser in the summer! Because, at this time of year we're wearing those really heavy-duty waterproof sunscreens - if you don't use some industrial-strength cleanser - you really need to double cleanse to break it down. This is gentle and fragrance-free with shea butter, Vitamin E, jojoba and other plant oils. It has this really buttery texture so doesn't feel heavy and makes quick work of melting down makeup (including waterproof mascara) and sunscreen. It emulsifies off and I remove it with a damp cloth and don't feel any excess is left behind after. For the double cleanse or if you want something light for in the morning, then the water-based Q + A Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Cleanser* | £7.50 | is perfect. This is a jelly, it doesn't foam (which I prefer for my drier skin) and is formulated with hyaluronic acid to draw water into the skin and aloe to calm and soothe. It leaves my skin soft, clean but actually quite hydrated and it's not at all stripping. This light texture is a gorgeous refreshing option for after a day in the heat.
I really like a refreshing face mist, particularly during the warmer months, just as a boost of hydration and so I can apply my serums to damp skin, allowing better penetration. A really good affordable option I don't hear about that much is the Glossybox Hydrating Mist* | £15. This is a lightweight mist, which is my preference and it does have quite a bit of a scent, so if you don't like fragrance: this isn't for you. It's formulated with plant oils, hyaluronic acid and glycerin which bind together to provide lasting hydration. We also have lactic acid (really as a hydrator than an exfoliator) and some Vitamin E and C, which are low on the INCI list so I wouldn't expect big things, but they're not bad to have in there.
Next I have a moisturiser pick. I recently tried and really enjoyed Sukin Illuminating Moisturiser* | £17.99. This is a lovely, lightweight formula that still contains some great moisturising and hydrating ingredients like glycerin, sunflower seed oil, soybean oil and fatty alcohol. This does contain fragrance and plant extracts so, although I'd take the idea of this being a Vitamin C-based product that's going to significantly brighten your skin with a pinch of salt, these ingredients can provide some antioxidant benefits. It's a lovely moisturiser that absorbs easily and provides lasting hydration.
Lastly for skin, I obviously have a sunscreen for this post; I really rate the Escentual SPF 50+ Sunscreen* | £6.95. This is a kid-friendly sunscreen that can be used on all the family from 6 months of age, and with every product purchased one will be donated to a child in need. This is a hydrating but non-greasy formula that won't leave a white cast and has been formulated for minimal irritation (so the formula is very simple and fragrance-free). You're getting the maximum protection (broad spectrum) and 4 hours water resistance, so it's a great summer option.
- BODY -
Let's talk body stuff! I really love the scent of the Farmologie Moro Orange Body Wash* | £5.99. This brand is geared towards dry, eczema-prone skin, so they do offer fragrance-free options, but as someone with very dry but not sensitive skin on my body: I love the summery orange scent of this version. It's a body wash that can cut through sweat but also feels gentle and doesn't strip my skin at all. An option with added exfoliation is the Soap & Glory Scrub for Joy Body Polish* | £8. This isn't anything harsh or aggressive but gently buffs away dead skin cells to reveal softer, smoother skin. What I like is that there's also a foaming quality to the base of this formula so it's an all-in-one body wash and mild scrub. It has a fruity rhubarb and grapefruit scent that lingers nicely on the skin after use.
Lastly, I have a body sunscreen and my top affordable pick is the Bondi Sands Sunscreen Lotion SPF 50+* | £7.99. This is a light but moisturising lotion that offers broad spectrum SPF 50+ with 4 hours water resistance. It doesn't leave a white cast, it isn't sticky and it's fragrance-free. For summer and holidays, I recommend going for a cheap-and-cheerful but effective product like this.
What are your affordable beauty picks of the moment?