A Guide To Finding Similar Alternatives For Expensive Skincare

There is no better satisfaction than finding a similar alternative for an expensive product, here's how to go about finding them.

One of the undeniable trends in the beauty industry is the desire for consumers to find products that deliver the effect that they are after, while at the same time being quite indifferent to the brand. You might even call this the Amazon effect. You’ve certainly found yourself shopping on Amazon before and discovered products by brands that you had not earlier heard of, only to find that they have hundreds of stellar 5 star reviews on Amazon. You probably took a chance and were pleasantly surprised. The first time this worked out for you was more reason for you to seek out products that work for you rather than caring about the “brands” that they came from. This is why many people are looking for drugstore skincare alternatives.

While the high price = high quality myth exists in all consumer categories, it might be most misplaced in the beauty market. I mean at least in luxury fashion goods, it is often quite obvious that the $1500 designer handbag is of an objectively different level of craftsmanship than the $100 handbag. Not always, but there is usually a discernible difference. In beauty however, I often question whether humans are even able to perceive differences in quality, let alone actual efficacy. It’s probably why consumers are very busy with first gathering evidence to convince themselves that something is “effective” (clinical studies, reviews, opinions) before even trying a product. With all this information already setting the story in their minds, they will much likely be impressed by the product once they use it. This sort of conditioning to like a product is just one of the forces we have to be aware of when we think we are making objective beauty buying decisions.

Now that the myth that prestige skincare products that are expensive work better than products that sit on drugstore shelves has all but crumbled, this has meant that there is huge opportunity on drugstore shelves to find your next holy grail product. If you are open to the idea of comparable beauty – something that SKINSKOOL tirelessly champions – then there are some great ways to find skincare similar alternatives of your favourite prestige products. So what does one do when you’re looking for similar alternatives for expensive skin care products?

Look for private label brands

Did you know that one of the most lucrative spaces to be in in the beauty industry is to actually create brands for retailers to sell as exclusive private label brands only available at that retailer. These brand “incubators” are the big beauty conglomerates of the future and means that the same people who make “Flower Beauty by Drew Barrymore” are the same people who make Kristin Ess haircare and the Believe line at Dollar General. YES, Dollar General. So while it might at first be a strange thought to buy beauty at Dollar General, you’re literally getting the same product expertise from the same people and manufacturers as some of the better “branded” lines.

When you identify some of these private label brands – pop them into the Skincare Compare Similarity Review Tool to find skincare comparables and see what the private label products compare to. It’s just another angle of contextual information that will give you more insight into what you’re buying. Sometimes it’s helpful to see that these private label products fit right into the mix of what is offered in the market.

Find drugstore skincare alternatives

We’re seeing a major upgrade in how drugstore brands who might have previously been boring or behind the trends are now launching much more exciting lines with current appeal. They are on trend! The drugstore brands are really grasping onto the moment that affordable beauty is having – people are buying 100% into the fact that drugstore brands can be amazing and effective. It’s so refreshing! Drugstore brands are affordable but also so accessible – you can pick them up on your weekly shop! So whenever you come across a drugstore product, pop them into Skincare Compare by SKINSKOOL and see what it compares to. You may be surprised, a lot of what is offered on drugstore shelves compares well to higher end beauty.

Find Amazon skincare similar alternatives and brands

So Amazon has changed retail and shopping permanently but one area where they are still playing catch up is beauty. There are of course tons of beauty products available on Amazon but the whole search experience is less than ideal. This is especially the case if you are looking for a no name or unbranded version of some popular product category. It’s hard to search and seems more like a random suggestion of products that come up on a search. What we recommend you do if you are able to identify a product that fits your needs and has good reviews, pop it into the Skincare Compare Similarity Review Tool by SKINSKOOL to check out if it is indeed a similar altternative and find out what that product might credibly be an alternative for. There’s no better way to get context for your next beauty purchase than on SKINSKOOL.

Final tip to find affordable skincare

If you’ve discovered a product that could qualify as one of the best similar alternative skincare products, you should do the last step which is ask what the SKINSKOOL community thinks of it as a dupe. We have a closed Facebook group called Dupe Talk where more than ten thousand users congregate everyday to discuss all things drugstore skincare products. They’ve also discussed in the past Beauty Pie skincare similarity and Trader Joe’s skincare similar alternatives. These users are up on all the latest affordable beauty discoveries and willing to share. So head on over and check all your alternative possibilities there before you buy. You’ll get great feedback you won’t find anywhere else!

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by Stella