One of the double-edged swords of making skincare into your hobby is that there is a lot of trial and error involved in the process of picking out products that will give you great results. It is absolutely fun to haul a bunch of shiny new things and add them into your routine, but the downside is that you’re almost always guaranteed to get at least one dud skincare product in your haul.
Some people simply toss things that don’t work for them, and others will pass them along to friends or family members who can use them. I’m always happy to share skincare with my friends, but sometimes I have products that aren’t working well for me, yet I know they wouldn’t work well for anyone in my life, either.
I hate feeling like I’m wasting money and products, so I try really hard to make dud skincare products work for me in some capacity. (Sometimes you do just have to cut your losses and trash a product though. I’ve been there.)
Fortunately, over the years I’ve discovered a few ways to turn duds into useful parts of my beauty routine! Naturally, I’m going to share so that you can try these tricks for yourself.
There is a lot of trial and error involved in the process of picking out skincare. I hate feeling like I’m wasting money, so I try really hard to make products work for me.
1. Repurpose Those Cleansers
We all know that you can use up a crappy face wash on your body or your makeup brushes, and thank goodness for that! There are a few other ways that you can use up foaming cleansers and cleansing oils, too.
First, I’ve found that all but the thickest cleansing oils and balms work great for shaving! The fact that they emulsify so perfectly and offer so much cushion always helps me get a close shave without the irritation.
You can also use cleansing oils to fully remove antiperspirant from your armpits (which is important!), and you can even use them to give your scalp an extra-thorough cleansing massage.
If you have foaming cleansers that aren’t working out for you, you can also decant them into pumps and use them as hand soaps! Nothing says fancy like using a face wash to keep your hands clean and soft.
2. Mix Your Products
Obviously, you shouldn’t mix products permanently into a single container, but mixing things in your palm and applying them together is a great way to get a little more control over how your products work for you.
For example, I have a body butter that is unbearably thick and difficult to spread. However, I’ve found that I can mix it with oils I’m having trouble using up, and it makes the lotion the perfect consistency. This trick works with hydrating toners, too. (I’m a sucker for watery toners, so I always have too many).
If you have products that are clogging your pores, you can always try using a lighter touch or doing spot applications. I have certain products that I can only use on my T-zone, and others that only work on the drier areas of my face. It’s not ideal, but it allows me to waste less product!
3. Slap on a Sheet Mask
One of my favorite skincare hacks actually came from my friend Jude, aka Fiddy Snails. It had never occurred to me to layer products underneath my sheet masks, but once I started, I was obsessed. Anything thick, sticky, or difficult to absorb now goes under a sheet mask, and by the time I take the mask off, the product (along with all of the juicy sheet mask essence) is completely absorbed into my skin.
Sheet masks are great for helping products penetrate your skin, so this is a great trick for using up products that feel too greasy or don’t absorb well on their own.
I also like to take my used sheet mask, layer on thick moisturizer and lay it on particularly dry parts of my body (like my chest) to force that extra hydration into my body skin. It looks a little funny, but it does help!
Get Creative With Your Skincare
When a product doesn’t work right away, it can be frustrating. Even though your first impulse might be to toss the offending skincare, that might not always be the right thing to do.
Before you give up on a dud skincare product, try the tips I’ve outlined above to see if a little extra effort can make it into a winner!