We’re presently in somewhat of an 80’s throwback (when it was all about showing how much you’d spent via the luxury logos adorning every area of your body,) thanks to reality stars and influencers visibly flashing their newly earned cash; Gucci belts, Supreme tees and Dolce trainers have never been more mainstream, but with that increase in luxury comes the complete antithesis. It’s never been more acceptable (and even on-trend) to admit you shop in budget supermarkets, get your clothing from Primark and spend as little as possible on your makeup thanks to names including Makeup Revolution. Brands like Aldi, Primark, Lidl and Home Bargains are making a killing as we all hunt for those elusive bargains we can’t wait to share with loved ones, while fast fashion has never been more accessible (even if bad for the environment.) But how far can you take that thifty spending before you really start to compromise on quality? Could you really get away with spending as little as a quid on a face cream or serum?
Recently a parcel of skincare landed on my doorstep with little other information other than a website URL, which when clicked on pretty much just replicated everything that was on the packaging. Simply called #6, it consisted of six products designed to offer targeted anti-ageing results: day cream, night cream, micellar water, eye cream, serum and collagen filler. From the packaging, texture and scent I could tell it was definitely a budget brand – but what I wasn’t expecting (until I did a quick google of the postcode) was that it was made by the folks over at Poundland. Yep, each one of these skincare products is available for one singular British pound… But are they any good?
At first glance you can definitely tell this isn’t a premium brand, but that’s absolutely fine if you don’t want to spend a fortune on your skincare regime or you’re not at all fussed with how it looks on your bathroom shelf. The plastic pots and bottles look and feel mass produced, and the fragrance reminds me somewhat of toilet cleaner or air freshener, but the textures are light and easily absorbed; you gotta take the good with the bad! Having given them all a go, they absolutely do a basic job (they moisturise and leave skin feeling supple) and certainly don’t offend my senses, but they also don’t necessarily deliver on the anti-ageing front if you’re looking for effective solutions that target those fine lines and really make a long-term difference.
Although the range includes ingredients aloe vera, chamomile, ceramides, sweet almond oil, algae extract, collagen, hyaluronic acid, shea butter, algae extract, jojoba oil, vitamins A, C & E, white water lily extract and rice milk (phew!) these are in relatively small quantities. You can always tell the concentration of ingredients by how low they appear on the ingredient list, as it’s a legal requirement to list them from highest to lowest quantity; having had a look over the packaging it’s clear that although these products do contain some great ingredients, their concentration and therefore overall effectiveness is questionable. Sure, you’ll have moisturised skin that looks and feels plump – but only temporarily. I’m not confident these would deliver much more than superficial benefit when used on a daily basis, because they just can’t compete with the concentration of proven ingredients you get elsewhere on the high street; to me they all feel like pleasant, but basic, moisturisers packaged up in different ways.
Regardless of how they perform, how can Poundland make these skincare products so cheaply? In simple terms the cost of goods is always determined by the quantity: the more you buy, the cheaper the unit price is. It can be assumed that Poundland have ordered these in such huge quantities that they benefit from economies of scale, being able to keep the price as low as possible. It’s well documented that a huge proportion of a product’s price is actually packaging, marketing and advertising, so removing these elements will again make an impact on price. It’s relatively easy to keep the unit price of something as basic as a moisturiser as absolute pence, and brands including Lidl have been experiencing huge success from their own brand skincare staples. This is just another example of that.
Although I’m a firm believer in the fact you don’t have to spend a fortune to establish a great skincare regime, sometimes it’s worth investing in targeted solutions that have the clinical and colloquial evidence to back up their claims. If you’re searching for a basic moisturiser, a simple micellar water or a throwaway solution you don’t mind trashing on holiday, these absolutely tick those boxes; but if you really want to help target those signs of ageing and look after your skin in the long-term, I’d definitely recommend investing in more potent and proven products.
(FYI, this range from Boots is just as affordable but so much nicer to use / more effective in my opinion. Just sayin!)
What do you think about anti-ageing skincare that costs as little as a quid? Would you snap it up? Would you trust it? Would you give it a go just to try?
Get the whole range in Poundland stores nationwide; everything is priced at £1.00!
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