Affordable Skin Care That Performs Like High End

affordable skin care that performs like high end dupes

Affordable skin care is something I get asked about all the time on Instagram. We work hard for our money and don’t always have the budget to splash on pricey potions. I think we all know by now that skincare is one of my favourite topics. I love my luxury brands but over the past year have discovered some affordable skin care gems that I prefer to use over luxury products. Here I give you my affordable skin care options that not only work but might save you a few pennies.

Affordable Cleansers

I’ll start with the order I use my cleansing products so first up we have the Nivea Double Effect Eye Makeup Remover has been a go to of mine for years. Long before I ever started blogging. I have really sensitive eyes and I find this makes removing eye makeup a breeze. The oil phase effectively removes even waterproof mascara and eye-make-up.

affordable cleanser skin care
Double Cleanse…

Here at Louise O Connell HQ we are big advocates of the double cleanse. You can read more about why on a previous post HERE. I always start with an oil based cleanser to really lift and break down makeup. Trilogy Rosehip Transformation Oil Cleanser has been a recommendation of mine for a long time. It is blended with a powerful pure plant oils and enriched with nourishing Rosehip, Sweet Almond and Papaya this gentle cleanser, cleanses skin without stripping its moisture, leaving skin feeling soft and hydrated.

Second Cleanse….

CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser is such an affordable skin care find and will last you a long time. It is a hydrating cleanser created with three essential ceramides and suitable for even the most sensitive skin. I love this as a second cleanse as it leaves my skin soft and free of any residue.

Affordable Eye Creams

I use a hydrating eye cream for day time so that my make up sits nicely and doesn’t exaggerate my fine lines. If I wake up with puffy eyes, I like to have something that soothes also. The Inkey List Caffeine Eye Cream is not only affordable but actually works. It is an under-eye serum that is loaded with anti-inflammatory, antioxidant benefits derived from coffee, which help to reduce puffiness, dark circles and prevent skin damage from free radicals. If dry under eyes are your problem then you will love the Vichy Mineral 89 Eyes. It contains hyaluronic acid and caffeine to smooth, hydrate and de-puff. I love this as a base under concealer to prevent caking and creasing.

At night I like something a little more active to help with anti ageing. I find products with retinol really suit my under eyes. While I usually use Image Skincare Ageless Total Lift Eye cream or Murad’s Retinol Youth Renewal Eye Serum, I find the La Roche Posay Redermic R Eye Cream a really great buy if looking to smooth fine lines around the eye area. It contains 0.1% Pure Retinol + 0.1% of Retinol booster complex + 0.2% Caffeine.  Make sure you use SPF when using retinol products as your skin will be more sensitive to the sun!!

affordable skin care beauty pie review dupes

Lets talk serums…

Serums for me are the foundation of my skin care routine. It comes as no surprise to my long time followers that Hyaluronic Acid and Vitamin C are my staples. You can read about why I choose Vit C HERE and more about serums in general HERE. Beauty Pie is a brand I want to do a detailed blog post on. It’s a relatively new brand to me and you will have to use something like Parcel Motel to have it delivered from the UK BUT it is so worth it. I have found some amazing products from this brand including their Triple Hyaluronic Acid + Lipopeptide Serum. It has three weights of Hyaluronic Acid for intense hydration and leaves my skin dewy and glowing.

It can be hard to find an effective but affordable Vitamin C serum which is why I’ll refer back to The Inkey List again. Their 15% Vitamin C and EGF Serum which can help skin regenerate and refresh the dermis for visibly plumper and youthful-looking skin alongside 15% vitamin C to help brighten as well as protect skin from damage caused by environmental pollution.

Day and Night Creams..

When it comes to day creams I look for something that hydrates, is not greasy and gives a glow. I always keep a tube of Bioderma’s Hydrabio Perfecteur SPF30 Smoothing Moisturising Care Radiance Booster in my skincare shelf. It provides soft-focus and light reflecting agents to immediately smoothe the skin texture, brighten the complexion and enhance natural radiance. Anti-UVA-UVA filters provide high protection against the harmful effects of UV rays and prevent premature skin ageing. This wonder product has ingredients that help to reactivate the natural moisturising process and boost water circulation within the cells while Niacinamide strengthens skin resistance. Not bad for under 30 euro eh?

For night time I love Avene Hydrance Aqua Gel. This is a multi use product I recommend everyone to keep in their skincare arsenal. Created with a Cohederm Complex and Avène Thermal Spring Water, the gel locks in water for up to 24 hours and soothes irritation for a comfortable finish. It has a beautiful fresh gel texture and immediately feels soothing on the skin. This formula can be used on the face and on the eye contour. It can be used as a day cream but I love to use it as an over night mask for super soft skin in the morning.

Extra Extras

The above will do for a basic skincare routine. If you want to add in exfoliants like glycolic or retinol and masks then I have a few suggestions for you. I love to use a glycolic acid to keep my pores smooth and clear. Pixi Glow Tonic is iconic and also affordable. It’s formula is alcohol-free, that’s ideal for use after cleansing and contains 5% Glycolic Acid to sweep away dead skin cells to help unclog pores and banish dry patches.

If you want to use a retinol product I usually suggest that you get what you pay for. Retinol can be so irritating to the skin and if not used correctly can cause more problems than it fixes. So, while the La Roche-Posay Retinol 0.3% + Vitamin B3 Serum is on the pricier side of affordable (43 euro, you can get good deals or discounts if you use a lookfantastic discount code) I do recommend it. The concentrated serum is infused with vitamin B3 to leave the skin feeling smoother, hydrated and renewed for a dewy and healthy-looking glow. Pure and gradual release Retinol helps to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by stimulating collagen production. By combining these two powerhouse ingredients, the serum leaves the complexion looking brighter and more even.


I know I have to include some face masks but I want to do a completely separate post on masks, when to use and why so keep an eye out for that. Do you have any recommendations for me? Any favourite affordable skincare products?

Louise x


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *