Unglamorous Drugstore Basics
Their packaging doesn’t scream luxury and their intended purpose may be different, but these products are the cheap, effective basics I’ve used for years.
- Aloe Vera Gel
Uses: If you have sensitive skin, this is far more effective than lotion after shaving. It calms razor burn, hives and also makes a nice, lightweight moisturizer for oily skin.
- Johnson’s Baby Wash
Uses: A coworker recently told me that she uses her son’s baby wash instead of eye makeup remover. It was a lightbulb moment for me. Of course! It’s tear free and gentle, non-oily and removes stubborn eye makeup faster than makeup wipes.
- Coconut Oil
Uses: By now, I’m sure you’ve heard that you can pretty much use coconut oil for everything. It’s true-coconut oil is baller. One of my favorite ways to use it is as an all over makeup remover. I massage it onto my dry face, eyes included, and then I take a warm-to-hot washcloth and wipe away all the makeup the oil has loosened. And yes, this is fine for oily skin. Coconut oil is antibacterial, antimicrobial and antifungal.
- Sally Hansen Creme Hair Bleach
Uses: I have hairy arms. Like, baby gorilla hairy. Because my hair is dark, it’s much more noticeable. It bothered me my whole life, until I discovered this. This bleach is gentle, easy-to-use, almond-scented, and pain-free. It will make even the darkest hair so blonde, it’s nearly invisible. You can use it on facial hair as well.
- Witch hazel
Uses: I’ve used witch hazel as a toner my whole life. It’s especially helpful for oily or breakout-prone skin. You can saturate a cotton pad and use it to reduce under eye puffiness too! I have dry skin and I have never experienced irritation from it. It is plant-derived, extracted from the leaves and bark of the witch hazel shrub.
- Baby shampoo
Uses: Baby shampoo is my makeup brush cleanser of choice. It is gentle for babies and your brushes! You can also mix some with olive or argan oil and water to create your own super cheap eye makeup remover.
- Arm & Hammer Whitening Booster
Uses: I am convinced this is why my teeth stay so white. I do not use white strips or trays and drink coffee daily. I should not have these pearly whites but this stuff works. It’s hard to find sometimes and I usually stock up at Walgreens. I like that you don’t have to commit to 30 minutes or an hour of wearing whitening trays but just put some on top of your regular toothpaste when you brush! I use Crest Extra Whitening Toothpaste for extra effect.
- Baby Powder
Uses: I like that they make alternate scents now like lavender and cucumber melon because they make great dry shampoos. I have dark brown hair so I like to sprinkle it at my roots at night and really work it in before I go to bed. I find I wake up with hair that is more second-day chic than grease pit gross.