Good makeup and skincare are expensive enough. So why not get them to do more?

  • Rachel Lopez, Hindustan Times
  • Updated: Sep 22, 2015 17:14 IST

Honestly, you don’t need every new beauty product that comes advertised in the glossy magazines (I do, but that’s another story!) You don’t even need half the products that are already out there because you can often duplicate the effects with stuff you already have.

I’ve managed to find secondary uses for almost everything I own. And like a true Indian, I want even more value. So send in your tips/hacks please.

Gel liner:
Don’t buy a pot if you won’t use it every day. I’ve dipped my eyeliner brush into waterproof mascara (or picked up the gunk at the end of the wand) and worked out brilliant black wing tips.

Cream blush:
Ah, that staple of winter beauty advertising: warm, dewy flushed cheeks. No one ever finishes a pot of cream blush. Moisturise cheeks and apply pink, coral or sheer red lipstick with fingertips. Blur out edges. Set with your compact. Thank me later.

Dumb girls buy separate products to highlight the brow bone, inner eye corner, cheekbone and face. Smart ones just buy a high quality shimmery gold-beige shadow and a good peach-gold eye shadow and get to work. Use a fluffy brush for the face so you don’t look like a Ferrero Rocher.

No one every finishes a pan of blush either. Orange, pink and matte plummy eye shadows are smaller and cheaper than blush, and just need a lighter hand when you’re using them on the cheeks. Just blend them well.

Brow powder:
You’ve got to be kidding me. I’ve used black eye shadow and a stiff brush for years. Get a brow-black eye shadow if you can’t go full black. It’s still better value than a brow product. And if the hair is so unruly it needs a gel to tame it, don’t buy expensive tinted brow gel (yes, they make that!). Grab a clean, old mascara brush, dip into your brother’s hair gel and comb away.

Body shimmer:
Have you seen the price tags on those things? I once mixed half-finished body butter and bronze blush together to see what would happen. The universe didn’t implode. It merely gave me glowing shoulders, legs and arms for free.

Winter lotion:
Your light summer body lotion plus a few drops of olive oil/essential oil/argan oil equals winter lotion. Apply on damp skin before bed. Wake up without scaly legs! Stubborn dry patch or wind burn? Coat it with colourless lip balm. Really.

Body scrub:
I stopped being tempted by pricey scrubby tubs since I switched to exfoliating gloves a decade ago. Put gloves on. Bathe with shower gel. Everywhere your hands go, now a bonus scrubbing does too!

Rachel Lopez knows there are too many food and beauty blogs out there, and yet, here she is with one of her own, 'Palate/Palette.'

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