You don't have to compromise your looks to economize – you just have to know a few tricks.
Step 1: Save on mascara Buy expensive mascara just once; after it runs out, wash and save the brush. The main difference between mascaras is the wand, not the makeup. Apply new, cheaper mascara with the brush that comes with it, then use your old one to fluff and separate your lashes.
TIP: A dried-out mascara wand also makes a great eyebrow brush.
Step 2: Make conditioner do double duty Replace your shaving cream with dollar-store hair conditioner; it works every bit as well. Or use a brand made for men; they're usually less expensive. Get an unscented one if you don't want a "manly" fragrance.
Step 3: Buy petroleum jelly Buy a big jar of generic petroleum jelly. It can serve as clear lip gloss, lip balm, makeup remover, under-eye moisturizer, and foot and hand cream.
TIP: If you have just a smidgen of lipstick left in the tube, mix it with petroleum jelly and use as lip gloss.
Step 4: Use olive oil Use olive oil as a multitasker: To condition hair, rub one tablespoon on scalp, wrap in a warm towel, and let it sit for 20 minutes before shampooing out. For silky skin, pour some into your bath water. To turn it into an exfoliant, just add some sugar.
Step 5: Plump your lips for pennies Plump your lips for pennies by mixing a sprinkle of cayenne pepper or cinnamon with a dab of petroleum jelly and applying to lips. It will irritate them just enough to temporarily swell them.
Step 6: Waste not, want not Use up every bit of your cosmetics: Get the last smidgen of lipstick out of the tube with a lip brush. Revitalize a dried-out mascara tube with a few drops of hot water. Use a cotton swab to get into the crevices of little pots of eye cream or lip balm.
Step 7: Splurge! Splurge on one or two extravagances. Woman cannot live on cheap cosmetics alone!
FACT: Women spend an average of $471 per year on personal care, while men spend about $193.