Bag a beauty bargain: Beauty on a budget

Ellie Irving gives an insight into how to bag those makeup essentials without breaking the bank

Ellie Irving
29th October 2018
Instagram: @photographytracey

As society grows increasingly obsessed with social media and celebrity culture, it is no surprise that the beauty industry is a booming business. We are expected to conform to a specific mould and live up to the unrealistic beauty standards we see every day in the media. So, there is no surprise that I spend hundreds of pounds trying to maintain my meticulous beauty routine, while telling myself I can’t possibly live without my go-to beauty saviours. In fact, we don’t need these products to make ourselves beautiful, but beauty products can be great to help boost confidence and explore creativity, and this is when discount codes become my new best friend.

Some of my favourite websites to grab a bargain include and Both useful sites stock numerous different skincare, haircare and makeup brands – Charlotte Tilbury, NARS, Eve Lom and Hourglass to name a few. Make sure to check the offers tab on both websites, they are frequently updated with various 3 for 2, free gifts and discount promotions. They often have 20% off some of the best-selling brands – plus, if you’re like me and you regularly splurge on all-things-beauty you can create an account with them and receive rewards, including 10% off your favourite brand for life.

[pullquote]just remember you don’t always have to pay premium prices for beauty products that work[/pullquote]

Relevant to this time of year, if you love to test and experiment with different products you could even invest in a beauty advent calendar, released every year in October-November by companies such as Maybelline, M&S, Space NK and The Body Shop. Offering huge savings and with a price to match every budget, these calendars are great gifts for beauty connoisseurs.

So, I know nobody wants to be bombarded with spam emails, but I would recommend signing up for your favourite brand’s mailing list, so you can be the first to know about any offers or promotions they have on. You can also save yourself money by signing up for loyalty cards, with some companies sending you gift vouchers on your birthday and when you spend in store. M&S’s Sparks card is free to sign up for and you’ll receive treats and offers for being a member, they also donate to a charity of your choice every time you shop with them.

However, the best place to spot a bargain in Newcastle has got to be TK Maxx, with high-end beauty products discounted by up to 60% I spent more time there than the library during my undergraduate degree! It sells everything from fashion and beauty to homeware and seasonal decorations, plus they have some of the nicest smelling candles! The Newcastle [TK Maxx] store has a great beauty and skincare section and it’s so fun to shop there because you never know what brands you might spot – you’ll often find brands such as Mac, Elemis, Too Faced and Dior at massively reduced prices. Last Christmas, I bought Rodial’s Dragon’s Blood Sculpting Gel (£85) and the Heroes Collection Discovery Kit (£69) for only £7.99 each!

Even if you’re looking for Halloween inspo, Superdrug currently have 3 for 2 mix and match on cosmetics. From enchanted mermaid and glitter zip to bejewelled dragon and crystal skull, they have a number of different products for the ultimate monster-mash.

So, just remember you don’t always have to pay premium prices for beauty products that work. Most of the time, we pay for branding and packaging – if you look at a lot of high-end ingredient lists you can find very similar products in discounted shops and drugstores. I’m not saying that we never have to pay for luxury and some products do deserve their price label but be vigilant and make sure you are getting value for money. So, I’ll see you in TK Maxx… I’ll be the one with the basket full of beauty bargains!

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