FROM big spenders to bargain queens, three women reveal their beauty budgets.
Faye Dickinson, 28, works in finance and is a lifestyle influencer, Ashleigh Swan, 32, is head of social media for a website and lives in Newcastle with husband Aaron, 35, and Laura Franklin-Hollier, 28, and husband Chris, 32, run a natural beauty company.
‘I don’t feel guilty – for me, beauty is a form of self-care’
Faye Dickinson — £1,100 per month
FAYE Dickinson, 28, works in finance and is a lifestyle influencer. She lives in London with her fiancé David, 38, who also works in finance.
“After a stressful day at the office, I head to my happy place – not the sofa, but the dressing table in my spare room.
I sit at the mirror and try a new beauty product or technique using one of my 20 eyeshadow palettes and 45 lipsticks.
I spend £13,000 a year on beauty and no matter what I’m going through, making myself look good always makes me feel better.
Even as a teenager I was splashing out on beauty.
At 15 I was given £500 a month pocket money – I’m an only child, so my parents spoiled me, but they also recognised that cosmetics made me happy and confident.
By 17, I was spending £150 a month on brands such as Mac and Nars.
In 2011, aged 18, I started working in finance and looking polished at work felt vital. Within a year I was spending £300 a month on looking good.
I purchased make-up brushes, eye palettes, lipsticks and skincare, and the Louis Vuitton perfume I paid £220 a bottle for would only last me two months.
I began having Botox and fillers when I was 21, at a cost of £600 a year, and my monthly make-up bill was in the hundreds.
I’d also have £75 Shellac gel nails every fortnight and eyebrow shaping at £100 a month.
I worked hard and was earning a good salary, and I’ve always done what makes me happy.
My family and friends thought I should save more, but I put money aside for emergencies.
I met my fiancé David online in 2015 and he was shocked when he saw how much I spend, but he loves how I look and wouldn’t dream of interfering.
Over the years he’s seen my expenditure climb, but it went into overdrive once I started posting on Instagram as @Fayedickinsonx in 2017.
OWN 60 BRUSHES
I now have almost 75,000 followers and I get lots of positive comments about my looks, which makes me feel good. My current make-up collection is so huge it takes up much of my walk-in wardrobe.
I own more than 60 brushes from Celebrity Brushes, and on top of my £500-a-month spend on products, I splash out around £300 a month on my hair, maintaining my extensions and having it blow-dried.
Add the £100 for my eyebrows, £100 for skincare and £100 for manicures, and I spend over a grand a month on my appearance.
My salary is enough to cover it, and of course I have other priorities, too – we’ve just bought a house.
But for me, beauty is a form of self-care, and I don’t feel guilty. Feeling good commands respect and that’s empowering.”
‘I never pay full price for any beauty product’
Ashleigh Swan — £20 per month
Ashleigh Swan, 32, is head of social media for a website and lives in Newcastle with husband Aaron, 35, a driving instructor, and their children Jamie, 14, and Katie, 10.
“Pushing my trolley through the supermarket, I stopped in my tracks. My adrenaline pumping, I leaned closer to make sure – the Maybelline mascara I’d seen all over TikTok was there, and it was half price!
Grabbing my phone, I logged on to Facebook Live and made a video telling the world – but not before I put three of the mascaras safely into my trolley.
I became a bargain hunter in 2013 when I was 24, but originally my discount shopping revolved around clothes.
After spotting two discount codes for clothes at H&M, I got 75% off and bought a haul for just £50. It gave me such a thrill, I was bitten by the bargain-hunting bug.
A few months later, I realised there were great beauty bargains to be had, too.
I’d always loved beauty, and as a teen I’d often spend my pocket money on my fave Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse.
After I left school in 2005 I began to train as a beautician, but I become pregnant the following year and gave up the course to focus on being a mum.
A couple of years later I got a part-time job in a pharmacy, and £200 or more a month of my £850 wages would go on hairdresser trips, waxing and nail appointments and beauty products.
But once I began looking for budget beauty, I realised there were many ways to save. I signed up for reward points everywhere.
It gave me access to shops’ special sales, and I’d get such a rush from something like Superdrug’s Treat Thursday, where I’ve snapped up a £70 make-up bundle for only a tenner.
For something specific I really wanted – like an Estée Lauder foundation – I’d hunt down a discount code online.
If I couldn’t find one, I’d wait. I quickly realised that patience is the ultimate virtue – the code will always come eventually.
Once I had it, I’d bulk-buy. It drove my husband Aaron mad, because if I found offers in shops, I’d ask him to drive across town to pick them up.
Luckily, I then discovered Beautybay.com, which has unlimited next-day delivery for less than £8 a year.
'DON'T HAVE TO SPEND BIG'
In 2016 I started working for Moneysavingcentral.co.uk, sharing all my tips – such as beauty subscription boxes, where you can get £100 of products for £13 a month.
I’d also spread the word about websites like Feelunique.com, which gives you five beauty samples every month for the cost of postage and packaging.
These days I have all my hair and beauty treatments done at my local college. The trainees are supervised and the result is just as good.
My gel nails cost £4 instead of £25 and my hair is trimmed and dyed for £10 instead of £70.
I spend around £20 per month on beauty, compared to at least £200 eight years ago, and all that money I’m saving goes towards family holidays. I’m proof that you really don’t have to spend big to look good.”
‘I gave up make-up and expensive salon visits overnight’
Laura Franklin-Hollier — £0 per month
Laura Franklin-Hollier, 28, and husband Chris, 32, run a natural beauty company. They live in Buckinghamshire with their daughter Penelope, 22 months.
“Looking at my bathroom shelves bursting with products, it suddenly hit me how wasteful it all was, with so much packaging and hundreds of pounds spent on stuff I’d just end up washing off or leave to go past its use-by date in a cupboard.
That day in July 2018 was the moment I became a reformed beauty addict and pledged to strip back my habit for the sake of the planet.
I hadn’t always felt that way. As a teenager I’d spend pocket money on expensive nail polish and adored my Lancôme Juicy Tube in Raspberry Red. I was a bit of a geeky teen, but these products made me feel cool.
My first job after leaving university in 2014 was in beauty PR in London, and it was essential to look the part.
Within weeks, I was spending £300 a month on looking good. As well as the make-up, I’d splurge £35 getting Shellac gel nails every three weeks, and my balayage hair colour cost around £150 every eight weeks.
My husband Chris, who I’d met during my first year at Cardiff University, was surprised at how much I was spending and always assured me how good I looked without my favourite Mac blusher and lipstick.
But I carried on paying out – until the day I realised just how much stuff was crammed into my cupboard.
A couple of months earlier I’d decided to go vegan and reduce my plastic use after becoming increasingly environmentally aware.
I suddenly realised that most of the beauty bottles and tubs would end up in landfill. I thought about how much tin foil and cotton wool were used at my nail salon and how many chemicals went into my balayage.
Overnight I stopped buying make-up, going to the salon and having my nails done. I was freelance by then so didn’t have the pressure to look polished.
Apart from my terrible roots, I also immediately felt happier to be free of the beauty cycle.
I started to use a solid shampoo and conditioner and a bar of soap.
On my face and body I used a multi-purpose oil and a deodorant cream in a tin, which worked far better than I expected.
My hair quickly became much bouncier after I stopped using silicone-based products, and less frizzy without the bleach.
'WORKED FAR BETTER'
That December I was thrilled to learn I was pregnant, and I knew the £300 a month I was now saving would come in handy for buying baby things.
But I did miss my old red Mac lipstick in Lady Danger, which made me feel very glamorous.
It made me realise if I was interested in reducing my beauty footprint but still looking good, surely other women were too.
After lots of research, in May 2019 Chris and I launched our own natural cosmetics business, Persephone Beauty, which offers natural, organic and vegan products.
I now wear a tinted moisturiser with SPF most days, a concealer and a lipstick or tinted lip balm.
I’m not ashamed of the way I used to spend on beauty – it gave me a lot of pleasure – but I’ll never go back. This way I can help the planet and my bank balance!”
- Make-up: Bethan Owens, Styling: Salome Munuo
Source: Read Full Article