Luxe To Less Beauty Products. How To Save On Your Faves

blonde woman in white t-shirt with curly hair

I am a huge fan of dupes – those fab products that are so close to being the same as the original product, but which cost a heck of a lot less.

I love luxury, but for days when I’m travelling, I’ve maxed my credit card, or for my gym bag, some fab products with a much smaller price tag (that work) are what I reach for.

These are four of my current favourite moisturisers, clay masks, primers, and foundations and their dupes.

Oil-free Moisturiser

Luxe: It doesn’t get much better than La Mer, and La Mer The Moisturising Matte Lotion is my favourite luxe oil free day moisturiser to keep my skin glowing, but not oily or greasy under all weather conditions. 

I love having the white luxury tube in my bathroom and revering the history of this iconic Lauder brand every time I look at it. The product is light to the touch, and firms as well as mattifies. Wow. It’s the ultimate, but it’s not cheap: RRP:$375.00

Less: I enjoy using Alpha-H liquid gold, the hyaluronic acid, resurfacing product, but the brand also has a fab moisturiser.

La Mer Oil Free Foundation, Absolute Luxury.
La Mer Oil Free Foundation, Absolute Luxury.

Alpha-H Essential Skin Perfecting Moisturiser has a non-greasy, light texture, and importantly has SPF 15. It’s easy to use, feels smooth on the skin and is a great buy. Also good all yer round. RRP:$59.95

Alpha-H Liquid Gold
Alpha-H Liquid Gold

Clay Masks 

Luxe: Sand & Sky. This cult internet brand changed the way we all feel about pink clay masks, and was a great reminder of how effective clay can be to calm and help so many different skin types and skin issues. For me, this one is great before a night out, as it tightens the pores and refreshes my skin in minutes. RRP$69.90

Sand & Sky Pink Clay Mask
Sand & Sky Pink Clay Mask

Less: This Swisse Cranberry pore defining clay mask with dragonfruit extract and Australian pink kaolin clay is excellent and easy to use. It contains Australian botanicals, to calm and support the skin. RRP: $21.99

Swisse Cranberry Pore Perfecting Clay Mask
Value for Money, Swisse Cranberry Pore Perfecting Clay Mask

Primer Worn Alone or Under Make-Up 

Luxe: This amazing cream has to be seen to be believed, and is the ultimate primer under foundation to give skin a flawless appearance. It helps tone down  redness, dark under eye circles and general skin lumps, bumps and imperfections. It works alone or with foundation, as a base, and the key is not to use much. Also has SPF 30.  Trinny London BFF Cream 30ml RRP: $65.00

Trinny London BB Cream
Magical Trinny London BB Cream

Less: Fenty Beauty is another brilliant new-ish brand changing the way we all think about and use makeup. The pro Filter Instant Retouch Primer has a matte finish which works for my oily t-zone. It also colour corrects, makes pores appear smaller, and generally smooths my skin. Great size for travel or my gym bag. RRP 15ml $23.00

Fenty Beauty Primer
Value for Money Fenty Beauty Primer

Full coverage foundation 

Luxe: Estee Lauder’s Double Wear Foundation is the highest selling foundation in the world, as it works for so many different skin types and needs. I wear it most days as it stays on, and has the perfect not too heavy, not too light coverage and texture, and a huge range of colours. They have released a pump which I don’t use – no need. RRP: $59.00

Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation (Luxe to Less)
Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation (Luxe to Less)

Less: Maybelline Superstay 24 hour full coverage foundation was recommended to me by a gorgeous make-up artist I met in Shoalhaven of all places, as a cheaper alternative to Double Wear, and what a recommendation it was.  

It does provide excellent coverage, it stays on and looks matte. The only challenge is selecting the right colour without samples. I bought this on line on special for $4.95! Regularly it costs a lot more RRP: $24.95

Maybelline Superstay 24 hours full coverage foundation, Luxe to less
Maybelline Superstay 24 hours full coverage foundation, Luxe to less
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Renae Leith-Manos

Editor and Founder of Bondi Beauty

Renae Leith-Manos loves fitness, new beauty products, long chats and long flights. She is at her best when traveling the world writing about luxury hotels and Michelin Star restaurants ( She has had a colourful media career as a journalist inmagazines and newspapers, in Australia and Asia. She spends her time writing, cooking, consulting to new businesses, running and working out.

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