Every once in a while, I’ll dip my toes into the ocean that is Sephora; this giant beauty merchant has just about anything you could wish for, from cosmetics to ski care to hair products. More often than not, I get overwhelmed by everything they offer, and tend to stick to the basics that I’ve been hoarding for years now.
Recently, however, I decided to branch out with some new products. It was time to diversify my portfolio. I wanted to find updated versions of what I need, including a mask for my ever-chapped lips, a serum to help my acne scars, a new moisturizer, and a mascara that doesn’t irritate my eyes. Above anything else, what I ordered had to be affordable (I’m forever balling on a budget).
Here’s what I found and have been using.
Laneige Lip Mask, $22
We’ll start with my very favorite item, the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask (Gummy Bear flavor), which also happens to be the most expensive. (Spoiler: it’s worth it, though.) I got this because I’ve heard nothing but praise from across all corners of the internet. You can say, without a single doubt, that I was influenced into this. And I’m not mad about it—actually, I’m very pleased. As a chronic lip-picker and someone who lives at a high, harsh, and dry altitude, this is a savior for me. This one is it. I don’t see myself going back to random chap sticks and balms ever again.
Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% (The Ordinary), $5.90
I’ve always wanted to try out The Ordinary, which is a brand known for their accessible prices and straight-forward products. I opted for two serums to tackle my skin goals. First, a recommended Niacinamide 10% and Zinc 1% mix which is supposed to be helpful for several things: blemishes, minimizing pore size, reducing oils, and supposedly helping with scarring. After an initial breakout, I’m looking forward to the long-term benefits of this product, which has glowing reviews.
Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 (The Ordinary), $6.80
The second serum is The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid oil drops, which is meant for extreme hydration. As someone with acne issues, I realized a few years ago that even with oily, acne-prone skin, it meant that my face was over-producing oil to compensate for a lack of moisture. It checks out! So far, a few drops of this product go a long way, and I’m looking forward to seeing if there are any long-term results.
Vitamin B, C, and E Moisturizer (The Inkey List), $5
My main priority in finding a moisturizer was cost; I often see bottles of teeny-tiny lotions and creams starting at $50, and that’s not ever something that I’ll be able to justify. So, I went with a $5 option instead, from Sephora’s natural line, The Inkey List. So far, so good. It’s still a small tube, but a little goes a very long way. I like that this lotion is packed full of vitamins, so I’m getting some nourishment as well as moisture. It’s a little hard to rub in, but that seems like a minor detail so far.
Limitless Lash Mascara (ILIA) Sample, Free
I opted to use my Sephora points to get a free little sample of a mascara. I chose ILIA’s Limitless Lash Mascara. So far, so good! I wish there was more, though the full-size option is a little more than I’m willing to spend. Though it does initially rub off on my eyelids a little, this little tube lengthens and is a really beautiful addition. The best part is that it’s easy to take off and doesn’t seem to bother my eyes when it’s on.
Do you have a holy-grail skincare product that you can’t go without? Let me know what I’m missing. 🙂