The question of cheap versus expensive is not always a clear cut issue. (And obviously, cheap and expensive are all subjective terms anyway.)
Through a combination of sales and coupons, Kohls can offer amazing deals, such as a friend’s recent purchase of a sixty-five cent purse. Yes, sixty five cents! Personally, it seems like a great deal. But as the savvy shopper was bragging, a coworker told her that she should stop telling everyone about her great deal. Now granted, this particular coworker is very proud of her multiple Tory Burch and Michael Kors bags, at probably $400 to $500 each. So perhaps we are looking at two differently skewed perspectives. However, sixty five cents does not make the first purse trash any more than $500 makes one a family heirloom.
But all of this highlights the issue of cost versus value, especially when it comes to personal care. Personally, there is little proof that a $5 face cleanser is worse than a $50 face cleanser simply because it’s cheaper. Granted, it does depend on the specifics of the products. But that is where the merits should be measured anyway — in the specifics of the product. Are the benefits worth the money paid? Just don’t rule out something because it costs less and don’t consider something to be better based on cost alone.
I did recently hear a statistic that makes a lot of sense when you consider what they are really saying — that cheaper sunscreens end up being more effective because people do not skimp on the amount used. The most frequent recommendation is one teaspoon for the face and each arm, and two teaspoons for the torso and each leg. Nine teaspoons total! That’s one and a half shotglasses. That’s quite a bit when you consider on the average trip to the beach, you should be reapplying every two hours. If you are using a relatively inexpensive sunscreen from your local drugstore, then you won’t be as worried about using it up. However, if you’ve spent $100 on a luxury-branded sunscreen, you will more than likely skimp on the amount to make your investment last longer. Trust me, the investment should be in your skin, not in the products.
A similar theory applies to mascara — since you are supposed to replace the tube every three months, a less expensive brand will better ensure that you are replacing it that frequently for the protection of your eye health.
All of this said, certain things are worth a little more money. If you have difficulty finding a good match for your foundation or concealer, it might be worth a little more money to find a more expensive brand that has a wider variety of shades available. I recently had the chance to blind-test a facial oil. I actually really loved it and completed the test per the specifications. Once the test was completed, I removed the obscuring labels and discovered that I had been testing a facial oil that retails for $95 for the one ounce bottle. It was good (even had gold flakes in it) but I doubt I would spend that kind of money! Don’t get me wrong, I received the bottle at no cost in order to complete the test, so I have every intention of using it up. But I doubt I will replace it out-of-pocket with my own money!
So whether you are spending $0.65 or $500, just make sure that it is worth the time it took you to earn that money! If you do that math, you might reconsider the purchase a little more carefully!