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Despite the fact we’re on the tail-end of a recession, prices seem to be going up all over the shop and it’s getting increasingly difficult to find anything (even lunch) for less than a fiver. So what’s a girl to do when she’s got an urge to shop, but very little cash to last until payday? Well, there are a few gems for less than a fiver still to be had. You just need to know where to look…
Collection 2000 has come a long way since the last time I used it – back when I got lippies and mascaras free with copies of Shout magazine when I was 14. Now the budget beauty brand easily rivals more expensive rivals with well-packaged, fun cosmetics that are great for experimenting. This blush / bronzer / highlighter pallette is one of my favourites for a really quick natural flush. It goes a really long way and looks natural and pretty. Just use a decent brush and remember you’ll need a mirror – there isn’t one in the compact, but for £4, I’ll let that one go!
Clearance sales are perfect for stocking up on basics, and you don’t get much better than these £5 tops from ASOS. The sheer jersey is great for this time of year, and the longer length and batwing sleeves give it a slouchy, easy wear shape that’s great for lounging about. I like the hot coral, but it also comes in aqua and grey up to a size 14 (which, looking at the shape, would probably fit most 16s too).
I love cheap jewellery for finishing a look. These earrings come in black or cream for only £5 and they’re perfect for a bit of a dramatic touch with a simple outfit. Rules suggest big earrings look best with an up-do, but I quite like them poking out from big Cheryl Cole waves too.
Neutrogena Deep Clean make-up remover wipes approx £4
(available in Supermarkets, Boots & Superdrug. This is a new formulation & I can’t find it online yet. Picture nabbed from the wonderful A Beauty Junkie in London)
Ok, these are less of a treat and more of a neccessity, but I had to mention these new wipes from Neutrogena. I was recently sent them to try, along with the cleansing lotion from the same range, and I was really, really impressed. I’ve tried various brands and never found a cleansing wipe that actually removes all my mascara without making my eyes go red. But these did! They’re oil-free, so good for younger skins, and though they have quite a strong scent, it’s not as horrible and synthetic as some rivals. I found these not only removed all makeup, but also really refreshed my skin. In fact, the moment I finished the pack I was sent, I went out and bought another one!
This is an essential Summer staple in a well known print in a slightly unusual colourway. Asda stuff is known to wear and wash well considering how cheap it is, and I bet if you buy this you’ll find you wear it far more than you ever thought you would. The longline style is great for layering, and helps avoid that irritating gap with a low-slung pair of jeans. I have a very similar blue leopard print top from a couple of years ago which I’ve worn to death.
I’m so excited by Topshop’s new makeup range! I have very fond memories of ‘Kiss and Makeup’, the range offered by sister shop Miss Selfridge back in the early 90s, and if this is anything like that, it’ll be full of trend-lead colours at good prices, all of a decent quality. Topshop are offering all kinds of products, but the metallic kohl’s look like some of the most dramatic. I love the polka dot packaging – so cute!
It’s meant to be Spring, but since we’re experiencing some of the coldest May days ever, you might want to snap up a long-sleeved top for the next few weeks. This one has the ever popular power shoulder for a bit of detail, and it comes in a variety of colours for £5. Wear it under your Summer dresses until the sun finally decides to make an appearance!
Nothing tops off a retro dress like an elasticated waist belt. I like the prim Emma Pilsbury feel of this mint green bow detail offering (it also comes in coral and cream) and it’s a bargain at a fiver. And if you don’t have that dress already, you know where to look!
I’ve sneaked this one in even though it’s £5.49, because with the special offers and advantage card points at Boots, it’s highly likely when you go in that you’ll get this for a fiver or less. Well, that’s how I’m going to justify it, anyway! I’m a chronic nail biter so I can’t really wear bright shades, but I find this peachy beige looks alright even on stumpy nails, and stops me from biting them quite so much. It’s also a great suits-all colour for toenails on the days when I don’t fancy my usual blood red.