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    Apr 14, 2020

    24 Cheap Skincare Products That Actually Work

    All these goodies are under $20.

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    1. A La Roche-Posay milky cleanser that's gentle on sensitive skin but tough on makeup. Liquid foundation will *literally* melt away.

    This cleanser is *deep breath* soap-free, sulfate-free, oil-free, fragrance-free, non-comedogenic (meaning it doesn't clog pores), allergy-tested, dermatologist-tested, and paraben-free.

    Promising review: "Great for sensitive skin. Doesn't leave my skin feeling stripped or extremely dry like many other washes. It also doesn't have any fragrance. Definitely one of the best face washes I've come across and it's affordable." —Stina

    Get it from Target for $14.99.

    2. A jar of Neutrogena hyaluronic acid moisturizer for super thirsty skin. It'll sink in right away and leave your face feeling smooth as a baby's bottom.

    Kayla Suazo / BuzzFeed,

    Hyaluronic acid can absorb up to 1,000 times its weight in water, which is why it's such a popular ingredient in moisturizers. This formula is non-comedogenic, oil-free, dye-free, and fragrance-free. Read our review of the Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel moisturizer!

    Promising review: "This stuff is great. I have pretty oily skin so I was looking for a light moisturizer to use at night to combat fine lines and dry spots. It is very light and does not leave my skin greasy. I wake up with a smooth complexion and have even started to notice a difference in texture after one week. Smells nice and inexpensive, especially considering that it contains hyaluronic acid." —jennieftb

    Get it from Target for $16.89.

    3. Pimple stickers to help eliminate giant zits overnight. Just stick them on before bed and they'll suck up all the gunk overnight.

    Sarah Han / BuzzFeed

    Read our full review of Cosrx pimple patches!

    Promising review: "I have acne-prone skin, and these have become a must-have product. They come in a variety of sizes to fit all types of acne, and they stay on remarkably well. Use overnight and make sure to apply before your moisturizer. They significantly decrease the size of acne (whiteheads and they are helpful for those red swollen spots that you've picked at and are irritated). Have sent these to family members and recommended to friends." —Dermstore Shopper

    Get a 24-pack from Dermstore for $6.

    4. An Innisfree water-based sunscreen you won't hate applying because it's super lightweight, absorbs quickly, and won't leave behind a white cast.


    This sunscreen is infused with a blend of green tea, cica, and sunflower seed oil for hydrating, soothing, and protecting your skin.

    Promising review: "I have really sensitive skin and pores that get clogged easily. This is the best sunscreen that I have ever used! It doesn’t clog my pores, absorbs easily, and doesn’t make my face irritated. For the affordable price, I’d definitely recommend it!" —klcklc

    Get it from Sephora for $15.

    5. An ultra-rich cream by Weleda appropriately named Skin Food because it'll nourish your skin with shea and cocoa seed butter. Dry patches, begone!

    This nourishing cream is free from synthetic preservatives/fragrances, parabens, and phthalates.

    Promising review: "I have sensitive skin, but live in Maine and struggle every year with dryness. I am so thankful I am finally using it! After reading reviews, I opted to only use it at night. I woke up with skin that I can only describe as like a baby’s! I’m so thankful and plan to repurchase! A little does to a long way. I use less than a dime-sized amount for my full face and neck. I would say it takes at least a full hour to absorb, but I don’t mind and use it before bed." —Byoung

    Get it from Target for $18.99.

    6. A Glossier Milky Jelly Cleanser that'll effectively remove dirt and makeup but won't leave your skin irritated or feeling tight. It uses the same gentle cleansing agents found in contact lens solution make it safe for eyes.


    Promising review: "I absolutely love this cleanser! It's really creamy and feels amazing on my skin and it doesn't leave my face feeling dry. I have oily, breakout-prone skin and this cleanser does an amazing job at keeping my skin under control while not irritating it." —Megan

    Get it from Glossier for $9+ (available in two sizes).

    7. A Burt's Bees natural conditioning lip scrub with exfoliating honey crystals for buffing away flaky skin and leaving your lips soft and supple.


    Promising review: "I love this stuff! I had been using a different brand of lip scrub for awhile, but this one is so much better. I like that the scrubbing crystals are much finer and makes it less messy to use. I feel like more product stays on my lips. It is definitely worth the extra few bucks when compared to similar products!" —SarahB060912

    Get it from Target for $8.99.

    8. A bottle of The Ordinary hyaluronic acid serum to seriously boost the moisturizing effects of any skincare product.

    This product is vegan, cruelty-free, and formulated without oil, alcohol, silicone, nuts, and gluten.

    Promising review: "This is easily my favorite hyaluronic acid on the market. I have tried too many overpriced and under-performing ones to know. This high quality acid helps plump your skin and hydrates unlike any other. Very happy with this find." —rbb05

    Get it from Sephora for $6.80.

    9. Aztec Secret Indian Bentonite Healing Clay — a cult-favorite mask that'll extract toxins and impurities from your skin like a BOSS. Mix with some apple cider vinegar for optimum results!

    Promising review: "If you're hesitated to buy this, don’t!! It is absolutely worth it and the price is the best! I’ve seen results after just one mask! I have very dry skin, on my cheeks at least. My skin is already feeling softer, and my pores are looking better. I’ve mixed it with apple cider vinegar and sometimes I add a little water. I recommend putting this on before you shower. Makes cleaning it off easier! It comes with a lot for the price and should last a good amount of time! I have been telling everyone about it, I love it so much! I’ll definitely be buying more once I’m out!" —wolf02

    Get it from Target for $7.99.

    10. A refreshing tea tree face scrub by The Body Shop that'll make your skin look and feel squeaky clean.

    The Body Shop

    This product is vegan, gluten-free, paraben-free, and silicone-free. It doesn't contain synthetic exfoliating beads.

    Promising review: "Used this at the end of the day after removing my makeup or in the morning while I shower. Love how fresh and clean my face feels after using this! Great for keeping blemishes away." —Freyja

    Get it from The Body Shop for $11.20.

    11. Essence-packed Mediheal sheet masks for giving your face a burst of hydration when it feels dry and dull.

    Soko Glam

    These masks are formulated with hyaluronic acid, amino acids, and water-binding sugars to transform skin from dry and flaky to soft and supple. The formula is free of artificial colors, parabens, sulfates, alcohol, mineral oil and silicone.

    Promising review: "One of the best sheet masks I’ve ever tried. My face was fully hydrated and glowy (and the effect was still there two days after). I have really sensitive skin and I usually have reactions to sheet masks, but not this time." —Amanda K.

    Get a five-pack from Soko Glam for $9.95.

    12. A La Roche-Posay multi-purpose balm to rescue dry and irritated skin without leaving it sticky or oily. It can be applied to your face, body, hands, and lips!

    It's formulated with panthenol, shea butter, and glycerin — all of which help to moisturize the skin.

    Promising review: "This cream is amazing! I have been using Retin-A for cystic acne in my late 30s and my face has been very dry. Someone recommended this cream to me and it has made a HUGE difference. I use it on my full face and it has helped the dryness tremendously without breakouts. A little goes a long way." —Crystal

    Get it from Target for $14.99.

    13. A Versed Day cleansing balm (formulated with soothing eucalyptus oil and vitamin E) so you can wash off "stay all day" eyeliner with little to no scrubbing. Yup, it's basically black magic.


    Promising review: "This stuff is incredible! My skin is super sensitive and very dry. I was tired of dragging makeup remover whips over my face (they just dry it out completely). I picked this up on a whim and now I'm ordering more from this brand! Can't say enough good things!" —Kyra_Anne

    Get it from Target for $17.99.

    14. An Acure blue tansy night oil that'll help calm and soothe a red and irritated complexion. It works just as well as a $$$ version!

    Promising review: "Great product! I have rosacea and this oil does not irritate my skin. It’s light but hydrating. So reasonably priced!" —Elizabeth C.

    Get it from Credo for $13.

    15. Sephora Glow Peel Pads soaked in glycolic acid, peptides from marine algae, and aloe vera for getting a smoother, brighter complexion in a few swipes.

    Promising review: "I’ve been using this product for about a week now. I noticed a change the first day! My skin felt so smooth and my pores have minimized. I’ve also noticed that my moisturizer now really is able to do its job better and it seems like my forehead wrinkles aren’t as noticeable. I will definitely purchase again." —TeriNicole

    Get it from Sephora for $16.

    16. A fast-working Mario Badescu drying lotion infused with salicylic acid to help tame large, stubborn pimples while you sleep.

    Urban Outfitters

    Promising review: "I have tried so many spot treatments and this is the only one that noticeably reduced the size and redness of my pimples overnight every time!" —Alyssa331

    Get it from Urban Outfitters for $17 or Nordstrom for $14.45.

    17. Bioré pore strips so you can clean out the annoying blackheads on your nose all at once. The results will be disgustingly satisfying.


    Promising review: "Wow, this actually works really well! When I found this, I was really hoping it would be able to get rid of my blackheads and it does! After using it, I found most of the blackheads stuck onto the nose strip. This is a very helpful product to use!" —Target Shopper

    Get a 14-pack from Target for $7.99.

    18. A multi-purpose skin salve that should not be written off as just a lip balm (although it is a *very* good one) because you can definitely apply it to your cuticles or that random dry spot on your arm.


    It's hypoallergenic, dermatologist-tested, cruelty-free, and formulated without parabens.

    Promising review: "I have the balm dotcom in Coconut, and it may be my new favorite thing! I love lip balm so I do apply pretty often during the day and love a thick layer to soak in overnight. Before this, I was mainly just using Vaseline and found my lips were still a little dry in the morning but with this, they are so lush and plump when I wake up! The tube is small but you literally only need a tiny bit as it is nice and thick. I like to apply any extra to my cuticles, too! The coconut one smells divine and makes me crave a hot sunny beach. ☀️ Definitely going to be purchasing more flavors!" —Kay

    Get it from Glossier for $12 (available in eight scents).

    19. An e.l.f. cosmetics illuminating eye cream (formulated with jojoba, vitamin E, and cucumber) for helping you win the daily battle against dark circles.

    elf cosmetics

    This nourishing eye cream is cruelty-, paraben-, pulfate-, and phthalate-free.

    Promising review: "I have dark circles and have been using this eye cream on and off for about two years. During that time I also tried a more expensive eye gel sample for a while, but I still prefer the e.l.f eye cream. I use it in the morning and at night and and use a face roller after dabbing it on. Love the results." —ym217

    Get it from e.l.f. cosmetics for $10.

    20. An Innisfree clay pack containing absorbent volcanic cluster capsules and lactic acid to pull out all the gunk in your pores and make them appear less noticeable.

    Promising review: "This mask is AMAZING. It helps to dry out and clear my acne while also drawing out blackheads — without drying out my skin. Helps with clearing out and minimizing my pores. I use this one to two times a week for only a few minutes because I have very sensitive (combination dry) skin. No irritation, no problems. Highly recommend." —Barb123456

    Get it from Sephora for $15.

    21. A Pacifica coconut water and vitamin E cream so you can rescue your tired skin after it's been through a rough week. Went to bed late for five days in a row? No one will be able to tell!

    This product is vegan and cruelty-free.

    Promising review: "This moisturizer is the best I've ever used! What I love about it is that it's not too thick and it doesn't leave my face feeling dry or caked on like other moisturizers I've used!" —Celeste

    Get it from Forever 21 for $16.

    22. A Skinfood black sugar mask that looks good enough to eat — but don't! Instead, use it to polish away dead skin cells and blackheads.

    Skin Food

    Promising review: "I love this scrub! Always leave my skin so smooth and exfoliated. It smells amazing and it's not too harsh on my sensitive, combo, acne-prone skin. I use it once a week or every two weeks when I feel like I need exfoliating." —wini.t

    Get it from Soko Glam for $10.

    23. An oil-free, fragrance-free, and alcohol-free micellar water by Garnier for gently removing even the most stubborn waterproof makeup.

    This all-in-one product is part cleaner, part toner, and part makeup remover.

    Promising review: "It works amazing for removing makeup and mascara. Easy on eyes and doesn’t leave a sticky feel. I wear contacts and it doesn’t affect it at all." —Gracefull

    Get it from Target for $6.79.

    24. A pack of Patchology rejuvenating five-minute eye gels to provide instant relief for tired and puffy eyes — especially if you put them in the fridge beforehand!


    Promising review: "These really work on my bags! They are super soft and stay in place. I saw immediate results with just one use. I definitely recommend if you looking to relieve tired puffy eyes." —Mscindy314

    Get five-pairs from Nordstrom for $12.75.

    You, after trying these products out:


    Reviews here have been edited for length and/or clarity.

    Need more for your skin? Check out Korean skincare products you need to know, drugstore products that actually fight acne, products to help deal with dry skin, or check out all of our beauty content for even more great stuff for your hair, skin, and more.

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    Allison Krausman / BuzzFeed

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