The affordable skincare starter kit

Skincare is a big deal now, from 10 step Korean beauty routines to the multitude of ways to remove your foundation, it’s a lot more complicated than the old “cleanse, tone, moisturise”. Like many, i have my fair share of high end skincare; but the bargain hunter inside of me wanted to outline the basics and best brands to reach for when you’re on a budget, but still want results. Although it’s possible to have a really minimal skincare routine for a few pounds, I’m more angling at those who want a complete routine but are still looking to save the pennies.

affordable cheap skincare cleansing routine makeup removal products oily acne dry skin

Makeup removal:

Most of the time when people are looking to scrimp and save when it comes to skincare they immediately result to makeup wipes, in reality these are pricy, ineffective and my #1 enemy. My favourite method for affordable makeup removal is micellar water, i buy the 700ml bottles of Garnier micellar water when it’s on offer and i usually end up paying 80p per 100ml. Although micellar water won’t take off long wear formulas perfectly, it will remove the majority or normal foundations before your second cleanse.

Even though many products claim to also remove eye makeup, i still believe in using a separate eye makeup remover to get the job done, again I’m a big fan of Garnier products and usually buy the eye makeup remover when its half price at around £1.60 ish. I don’t see much point in skipping eye makeup remover and using micellar water, it won’t do as good of a job and you’ll just end up using more product.

Also quick tip, if you’re looking for cheap cotton pads get them at Primark! The standard size are 50p and the larger ones are 90p, i actually prefer these ones to the more expensive brands.

affordable cheap skincare cleansing routine makeup removal products oily acne dry skin

Double cleanse & tone: 

When it comes to high quality cleansers and toners on a budget i always head to the body shop, i find a lot of drugstore cleansers and toners can be very drying or harsh but these are far from it. Each cleanser or toner is around the £6-£7 mark, they have a range devoted to every skin type or condition so there will be something for everyone and they’re alcohol free too.

I’m yet to be disappointed by a body shop skincare product, so they have my vote – especially when most cheaper cleansers and toners can be so drying and have alcohol as a main ingredient. I use the tea tree skin clearing wash and seaweed oil balancing toner but if you do have a different skin type to me they’ll have range perfect for you. 

affordable cheap skincare cleansing routine makeup removal products oily acne dry skin


If you’re on a serious budget then it’s perfectly plausible to skip face oils and eye creams (not moisturiser of course) but if you’re just looking for a complete routine then it’s possible to find these extras while sticking to a budget. I’ve already done a whole post on this Palmer’s facial oil but what i will say is that it’s the most effective affordable facial oil that i’ve tried, it’s £9.99 but in facial oil terms thats nothing and it contains retinol – bargain.

Eye cream has become a necessity for me and this B. nourished one ticks all the boxes; i really like the formula of this, it’s somehow really hydrating without being too thick and it sinks in really quickly. Technically this is marketed towards people in their 50s but hey, i haven’t had dry eyes since!

As for moisturiser there are just so many affordable options for me to mention, i think because moisturiser has been around for a such long time the drugstore has had time to really perfect formulas. If i had to pick one i’d choose the Neutrogena visibly clear oil free moisturiser, i used this for about a year and it still remains one of my favourite affordable options, that didn’t break me out but still kept me hydrated. 

affordable cheap skincare cleansing routine makeup removal products oily acne dry skin

Shop the post:

What is your favourite affordable skincare product? – Maria x


Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links and the Palmer’s Oil was sent to me as a PR sample. 



  1. May 1, 2017 / 11:58 am

    I too love TBS skincare, yet to find something that doesn't work x

  2. May 1, 2017 / 12:17 pm

    Totally agree with everything in this post! You can't go wrong with the Body Shop and I love the neutrogena oil free moisturiser! It's so soft and smoothing and I adore the smell!
    I've gotta try that eye cream, I'm yet to find the perfect one!
    PaleGirlRambling xo

    • May 2, 2017 / 1:19 pm

      aw thank you, yes defiantly try it it's such a lovely formula! x

  3. May 1, 2017 / 11:35 pm

    The Palmer's facial oil is really tempting me, I've just ordered the Hyaluronic Acid by The Ordinary so I may add that to my list to try afterwards.

    Alice | alicemaysnell

    • May 2, 2017 / 1:20 pm

      It's so good, i've heard a lot about the ordinary, i'll be interested to see if you think it's any good! x

  4. May 3, 2017 / 5:02 pm

    I can't imagine myself ever using a makeup wipe again, horrible things – micellar water is my go to as well for taking my makeup off!

    Lucy | Forever September

    • May 9, 2017 / 12:29 pm

      They are my enemy i swear, micellar water is the way forward! x

  5. May 5, 2017 / 9:23 am

    Awesome picks! I really like the Garnier Micellar water that's for waterproof makeup. It really gets everything off, and since I only wear waterproof mascara, it's a total must for me.

    Ashlynn | The Crimson Cardigan

    • May 9, 2017 / 12:29 pm

      Omg i don't think we have that here, i'll have to look into it! x

  6. May 8, 2017 / 4:37 pm

    Great post! I am obsessed with the Soap & Glory Vitamin-C Facial Wash! It's a nice clean, while still leaving my skin feeling soft. 🙂

    • May 9, 2017 / 12:30 pm

      Thank you! Yeah i love soap and glory too, i've had my eye on that facial wash for a while! x

  7. May 19, 2017 / 7:52 pm

    Great post. I have been wanting to try the Palmer's Facial Oil, have heard a lot of good things about it.

    • May 24, 2017 / 4:22 pm

      It's such a great affordable option, even my mum and her friends use it now after they heard me talking about it hahah! x

  8. May 26, 2017 / 6:33 pm

    Totally agree on the micellar water and the eye makeup remover. I can't tell you how much more product and cotton squares I've gone thru trying to get eye makeup off with the micellar water. Have a good eye makeup remover!

    • May 30, 2017 / 1:47 pm

      Definitely! Eye makeup remover does a much better job when it comes to removing stubborn eye makeup! x

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