I will be the first to admit that I tend to like the finer things in life 😉 BUT, I like to give credit where credit is due (particularly when it involves myself and shopping restraint) and one area where I find ways to spend less than many of my counterparts is on “PRODUCTS”. I am always looking for ways to cut corners and swap out pricey products for a cheaper stand in. So lets get to it – here are three of my latest dupes and my take on each!

TRADER JOES FACE MOISTURIZER (Compare to La Mer Crème de la Mer Moisturizer)

When you think expensive skincare, you think La Mer. Crème de la Mer is one of the luxury skincare line’s fan favorites, but the price tag is Hefty with a capital H! A girlfriend picked up this stand in at our beloved Trader Joes and it has been a WINNER. Lets start by saying 2.5 oz of this TJ’s magical moisturizer will cost you $8.99 vs. 2 oz of the La Mer formula that will set you back $325 (picking my jaw up off the floor from typing that figure). This is the perfect amount of moisture without making my skin feel greasy. The water-based Gel formula is packed with skin-soothing ingredients, like aloe leaf juice and green tea, birch leaf, & milk thistle extracts. It also contains the holy grail of modern moisturizing ingredients: sodium hyaluronate, or the salt form of hyaluronic acid, prized for its ability to both “lock in” skin’s natural moisture and add to it —with no oily residue. If you see it, buy it, because according to the employees’, it flies off the shelf!

BATISTE HYDRATING DRY SHAMPOO (Compare to Oribe Dry Shampoo)

Dry Shampoo is my family. In order to understand the insanity that is my head of hair, please note that my cousin called me Mufasa in high school and my sorority sisters called me Miss Frizzle. SO, when I take the time to blow out my hair and style it, you better believe I am going to make it last. I have tried all of the dry shampoos, and I will say the Oribe is incredible, but what I REALLY love is the way it smells! What I REALLY do NOT love is spending almost $50 on dry shampoo. THANKFULLY, I visited my girlfriend in Charlotte a few weeks ago and she made me try the Batiste HYDRATING Dry Shampoo (note that difference between this one and the regular version is the hydrating aspect). Another WINNER. I love the price ($6.50) formula, it works great AND it smells better than any affordable dry shampoo that I’ve tried (this friend has an unparalleled sense of smell and nailed it when she said it smells like Dolce and Gabbana Light Blue perfume). Available at an Amazon near you ;).

TARTE QUENCH LIP RESQUE BALM – RAINFOREST OF THE SEA COLLECTION (Compare to Armani Ecstasy Tinted Lip Balm)

All of my friends who have borrowed this tinted balm have become as obsessed as I am and ordered it for their own collection. I read about the Giorgio Armani Ecstasy Tinted Lip Balm all over the internet but another blogger I follow posted about this one and I am SO glad I gave it a shot. Its not a super steal ($19), but its almost half the price of the Armani option. I have a few different tints, but BERRY is my favorite. Do not let that dark look to it scare you, its very natural and light and gives you the perfect amount of coverage. Did I mention it has a shiny finish that tastes like mint? I wear it almost everyday, and you should too!

by Kitty Mills

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