With winter in full, snowy flow this week, it’s more important than ever to take care of your skin. I’ve got through so many products recently trying to keep my face, hands and body moisturised and nourished during the cold weather.
Despite not being a beauty blogger or even knowing that much about beauty at all, my beauty-focused posts always seem to be well-received (thanks readers!). So, today, I’m starting a new post-series which will look at some budget beauty brands and will review a selection of products from these companies.
These reviews aren’t sponsored and are my own opinions based on my experiences of using the various products.
In Budget Beauty #1, I’m reviewing products from Hema – a Dutch discount retail chain that I first experienced when one opened in Grand Central, in Birmingham.
Now living in the Netherlands, Hema has become my go-to shop for pretty much everything I need for my house and they have a huge beauty and make-up range too. I’ve written before about their nail polishes as their selection is so big that you can colour match really well.
This is a nice, light day cream that should ‘cherish your fresh look’ and ‘boosts & protects’. It absorbs well and has kept my skin moisturised, soft and bright even during the really cold weather so I think it matches its claims pretty closely. It has spf 10 which I think could be a little higher but I would always wear sun cream anyway in the summer so that isn’t such a relevant feature for me. I don’t love the smell though, which is quite non-descript but just not very pleasant.
Night Cream (£5.50 / €4,50)
A thicker cream that claims to smooth & repair. I quite like the consistency of this for nighttime as it absorbs nicely and doesn’t leave me heading to bed feeling like I’m wearing a face mask. When I wake up, my skin feels nourished still which is nice. Again, though, I don’t like the smell.
Serum (£ unknown / €6,50)
I had no idea what a serum is supposed to do but this one claims to help you ‘hold on to the youthful glow’ and ‘repairs & boosts’. I used this before I used either the day or night cream and I finished the whole bottle over a few weeks so I did really give it a good trial. Still not completely sure what it’s for though and how it adds anything to just using a decent face cream on its own.
Eye Cream (£5.50 / €4,50)
I only used this 2 or 3 times as it really made my eyes and skin sting. I do have pretty sensitive skin anyway but this just did not react well on me. Can’t say much more than that, sorry.
I really like the packaging for these products – the white, black and gold is quite classy for budget products and I think it’s a clever choice by Hema. I wonder how much difference there would be in the results of the 40-up range and the regular range compared to the 30-up items that I tried. Or, whether it’s just a good marketing ploy to make you buy a specific range.
Clay Face Mask (£1.75 / €1,75)
This berry delight mask made me feel like Violet Beauregarde turning into a blueberry at Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory! It was so violet and wasn’t much like other clay masks in that I think it maybe has something silicon-based in it so looked very glossy and gloopy. It claims to hydrate and cleanse though and my skin definitely felt both of these after rinsing it off. For a cheap, single-use mask, I did quite like this so will definitely try others from the range as well.
Care Lip Balm (£1 / €1)
I keep this on my desk and use it throughout the day. It’s silky and doesn’t dry into white residue on my lips (like so many other lip balms do. What is that about?!). For the price, it’s worth buying a few and keeping them to hand throughout the winter. So, it was a mixed bunch from Hema but I enjoyed trying products from a new brand. Budget Beauty #2 will review some of the Cien products, the in-house brand from Lidl. They’re a convenience purchase for me but are they worth it? Come back soon to find out…