You’ve taken the hit, felt the pinch and experienced the squeeze. The recession has meant we’ve all had to rethink our budget. And while we’re firm believers that good beauty treatments are worth every penny, it (literally) pays to play smart with the indispensible products that help you make the professional results last longer. So whip out your diaries and prepare to postpone your next appointment because these are the products that industry insiders swear by to eke out salon-worthy results – and save money in the long run.
|From left: MediK8's Growth Factor Serum, Revlon's ColorStay Longwear Nail Enamel Topcoat, James Read's Liquid Tan Light, L'Occitane's Honey Whipped Body Cream, Tigi Hair Reborn Colour Protecting Conditioning Tonic.|
The facial extender: Ask a cosmetic dermatologist what they use to keep their skin looking youthful and there’s a darn good chance they’ll name drop MediK8’s high tech range of potent anti-aging weapons. The Growth Factor Serum acts upon cells called fibroplasts responsible for producing collagen – but get increasingly slow and lazy as the years pass. By revving production back up again, the serum helps your skin produce bouncy new cells to put the spring back in your complexion. It may look pricey but one bottle is around the same price as your average facial and will last up to two months - not just a few hours. £80 (www.skinbrands.co.uk).
The mani maximiser: When it comes to topcoats we’ve tried, tested and been sorely disappointed by more so-called ‘chip resistant’ products than we care to remember. With our cynical heads screwed on tight, we slicked Revlon’s ColorStay Longwear Nail Enamel Topcoat over our professional mani every afternoon for 10, (yes really) days – and saw only the teeniest chip on two fingers. Impressive. £7.99 (www.boots.com).
The tan stretcher: If we could have the UK’s top tanning man, James Read come to our house every three days to max out our bronze, we would. The next best thing after a professional spray tan is mixing Read’s Liquid Tan Light, (£24.50, www.jamesreadtan.com) into L’Occitane’s uber-delicious new Honey Whipped Body Cream, (£16, www.loccitane.co.uk) and applying it every other day. Subtle colour with skin-drenching moisture means your salon tan lasts longer – with only minimal in-between exfoliation necessary.
The hair colour enhancer: Nothing hits the wallet hard like a two-hour appointment with your colourist. But if you’re lucky to have found someone who gets your colour bang-on every time, make the most of it with the new Tigi Hair Reborn Colour Protecting Conditioning Tonic. Not only does leave locks with a delicious honeysuckle scent, but it contains a deep sea plant extract that helps hydrate hair to defend against colour fading between appointments. £17.95 (www.tigihaircare.com).