Beauty Experts Swear By These Genius, Cheap Things That Aren't Even On Your Radar

These expert-approved finds from Amazon will revolutionize your hair, skin, and makeup routines.

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There’s nothing better than stumbling upon a little-known beauty product that you wind up loving so much, that it lands a permanent spot in your routine — unless, of course, that product also happens to be super cheap. That’s why we tapped some of our favorite hair pros, makeup artists, and dermatologists to find out which lesser-known beauty products they swear are worth the money (even if they don’t cost very much at all).

From cult-favorite skin care saviors to weird-but-genius products that will revolutionize the way you do your makeup, beauty experts swear by these genius, cheap things that aren’t even on your radar. Keep scrolling to discover them all.


These Korean Exfoliating Washcloths That Are Starting To Gain Fame Stateside

Catherine Chang, M.D., a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon and founder of Privé Beverly Hills, swears by these Korean washcloths that “help exfoliate and remove dead skin.” Though they’ve been widely used in Asia for a while, Chang notes that they’ve just started to trend on TikTok over the past couple of weeks. Available in a pack of six, these washcloths have a handy glove-like design that makes it so easy to buff away dead skin while you’re in the shower, leaving you with the smoothest, softest skin when you step out.


A Lash Glue That Comes In The Form Of An Easy-To-Use Felt-Tip Marker

KISS GLUEliner is small, slim, and always good to have on hand for lash touch-ups,” Vittorio Masecchia, celebrity makeup artist and founder of Vittorio Masecchia Beauty, tells The Zoe Report. “If you get a pack of two, one can be an emergency pen that lives in your set bag or handbag. I work with decals a lot and products like this help keep things in place for longer without mess and with good speed.” The felt-tip marker packaging is so much easier to use than fussy liquids, even (or especially) if you’re new to false lashes.


This Clever Dry Shampoo Paste That Volumizes, Texturizes, & Refreshes Hair

“The R+Co Badlands Dry Shampoo Paste is my go to,” shares celebrity hair stylist Glenn Ellis. “It not only aids in refreshing dirty hair but also acts as a volumizer and texturizer at the root, giving lift to the hair.” Ellis also loves that it’s surprisingly lightweight, despite its great hold, so it “doesn’t weigh down the hair like some dry shampoos.” It’s the perfect way to refresh next-day hair — or to cheat a bedhead look on freshly washed hair.


An 8-Pack Of The Alligator Clips That Hair Stylists Always Have On Hand

These flat clips are another of Ellis’ favorite cheap hair tools on Amazon. Beloved by hair stylists for decades, Ellis says these classic alligator clips are great for setting front pieces and bangs, or laying down cowlicks, but they’re also perfect for keeping your hair out of your face while you do your makeup without bending or creasing your hair.


This Drugstore Thickening Spray That Gives Fine Hair Next-Level Volume

Ellis also counts the Bed Head Queen For The Day Thickening Spray as a must-have cheap and genius product, particularly for those with thinner or finer hair. “This is great for finer-haired clients who want thickness in their blow dries. It really adds fullness to the blow dry and style, without being too heavy.” This also leaves hair feeling soft, not sticky like other volumizing sprays can, and it has the most delicious, fresh berry scent.


A Genius Hack For Creating The Perfect Winged Eyeliner Every Single Time

Amazon is rife with genius, expert-approved beauty hacks — like this winged eyeliner stamp, which gets the stamp of approval from celebrity makeup artist Allison Kaye. “The Quick Flick is a double-ended eyeliner pen that will get you the fastest winged eyeliner. No more agonizing that they don’t match…One side has the wing stamp and the other is a skinny felt-tip pen,” she explains, going on to call it “foolproof.” This satin-finish pen comes in three sizes so you can create any winged look you want, from a subtle flick to a dramatic cat eye.


The Quick-Dry Lash Glue That Makeup Artists Source From Amazon

Another reason why experts love Amazon? It’s home to some under-the-radar beauty products that even the pros have trouble finding on store shelves, like this particular kind of DUO eyelash glue. Kaye shares, “This is the one type of eyelash glue I can’t find in stores and buy from Amazon! People don’t even know that something like this exists. It’s a quick-dry glue so you can just paint your false lash, and apply [it] right away to your eye. It’s so nice to not have a wait time while you would normally wait for it to get tacky.”


A French Pharmacy Lotion That Quickly Heals & Soothes Sensitive Skin

Amazon is an equally valuable resource for dermatologists to find the high-performing skin care products they recommend to patients (or use on their own skin). Elyse M. Love, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist, uses Amazon to source products from Avène, the cult French pharmacy brand that formulates products for very sensitive skin. In particular, Dr. Love recommends Avène Cicalfate+ Restorative Protective Cream, which she calls “my go-to for irritated skin, eczema, burns, minor cuts, scrapes, and diaper rashes.” She adds, “Featuring Avène’s soothing thermal water, copper/zinc complex, anti-microbial complex, and C+ Restore Probiotic Complex, [it can] help speed up skin barrier healing by 2.5 [times]!”


This Intensive Lip Balm That’s A Godsend For Those With Severely Dry Lips

Dr. Dan’s Lip Balm is a must for chronically and/or severely dry lips. It’s hypoallergenic and made with 1% hydrocortisone,” Dr. Love explains, making this a much more effective alternative to your basic lip balm. Thanks to the anti-inflammatory hydrocortisone, it can also help quell cold sores, soothe allergic reactions, and calm irritated skin. If you regularly contend with any of the above, this will be under $10 very well spent.


The Cheap Drugstore Product Dermatologists Recommend For Slugging

Vaseline may not be an under-the-radar product per se, but you may not know that it can work to increase the efficacy of your other skin care products when used for slugging. Dr. Love confirms that Vaseline “is noncomedogenic and effective for slugging,” continuing, “A little goes a long way, and it can be used on top of hydrating moisturizers for the face and body to increase hydration.” You’ll use this $5 jar for almost everything else, too, like nourishing chapped knuckles, healing ragged cuticles, or for tattoo after-care.


A Multi-Tasking Shampoo Brush That Promotes Healthier Hair

The definition of genius, this scalp massager is cheap, multi-use, and one of celebrity and editorial hair stylist Jennifer Korab’s “favorite beauty products.” Korab continues, “I love to use this massager in the shower to help cleanse and exfoliate my scalp. This scalp massager also helps remove product buildup and [promotes a] healthy scalp.” It’s a cult-favorite on Amazon, too, where it’s earned over 40,000 five-star ratings to date.


This Cult-Favorite Hair Oil That Can Stimulate Faster, Stronger Hair Growth

This Mielle Organics Rosemary Mint Scalp & Hair Strengthening Oil has recently gained fame on TikTok, and it’s also approved by Korab, who calls it “by far best beauty deal to help strengthen and stimulate hair growth.” The formula includes a blend of 30 hair-healthy plant oils that work to promote a healthier scalp and stronger, faster hair growth. Note that this product (like all Mielle Organics products) was developed specifically for Black hair, but many hair types can benefit from its nourishing and strengthening effects.


A Hot & Cold Gel Mask To Soothe & Depuff Tired Skin

Celebrity makeup artist Judi Gabbay counts this genius, massage bead-filled gel mask as one of her must-have under-the-radar products. She explains, “This reusable gel face mask has so many uses. Hungover? Woke up swollen? This mask gently decreases puffiness and also helps with headaches — tripling to also minimize [the appearance of] pores. Simply stick in the fridge for a few hours and you have a mini, sustainable face spa.” You can also stick it in the microwave for a warm, soothing sensation, if you prefer.


This Clever Hair Mascara That Lays Down Baby Hairs & Flyaways

“Going straight from the office to your date (or girls) night? This easy [hair mascara] will easily gravitate your hair to a ‘clean girl aesthetic’ while taming flyaways,” Gabbay says of this hair finishing stick. It’s a must for creating slick updos, as Gabbay says, and the formula is lighter-weight than traditional wax sticks, so it won’t leave your hair feeling sticky or greasy.


The Best-Selling Wax Stick That Achieves Super-Slick Buns & Ponytails

In addition to the hair mascara above, Gabbay also recommends a wax stick — like this one from TIGI — for laying down baby hairs and flyaways to achieve super-slick buns. Hair stylist Sara Clemente also previously recommended the TIGI wax stick to The Zoe Report, calling it a “hair stylist's best friend.” The wax has next-level hold, and even though it might feel heavier than the hair mascara above, it actually makes your hair feel soft, not crunchy, leaving behind a natural-looking finish. The compact, push-up wax stick is so easy to use, too — just swipe the hairs back from your face and up from the back of your neck, then smooth it down with your fingers or an edge brush.


The Priming Moisturizer Found In Every Pro’s Kit

Take a peek inside any makeup artist’s kit, and you’re likely to find a tube of Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré. Gabbay says that it “doubles as an emollient, quick-absorbing moisturizer as well as a primer all in one.” She adds, “I especially love this for an added boost of hydration during colder months. It’s a staple both in my personal and professional kit.” It’s generally well-tolerated by most skin types, making it a pretty foolproof purchase for either personal or professional uses.


A Multi-Tasking Hair Cream That’s A “Secret Weapon” For Moisturizing & Defining Curls

You may not have heard about All About Curls Bouncy & Taming Cream, but it’s a go-to for celebrity stylist (and curly hair expert) Sophie Rose Gutterman, who calls it her “secret weapon.” She raves, “This product is not only moisturizing, it leaves the hair with so much volume and controls my frizz! The perfect all on one for my wash and go days!” This all-in-one cream is also free of silicones, so you can use it on consecutive days without creating build-up.


A Lightweight Styling Mousse That’s Good For Your Scalp, Too

“Just because it’s expensive doesn’t mean it’s worth it — people are triggered by smell and pretty packaging. But what we really want is quality and affordability,” explains celebrity stylist and salon owner Christopher Naselli. “My favorite product that you can purchase on Amazon for $12 is Biotera Styling Mousse. It’s my go-to for all my styling needs on shoots and red carpet events, it’s the best under the radar product for quality and price. It’s lightweight, alcohol-free and microbiome friendly. It’s a product I swear by.”


This Under-Eye Treatment That Gives You A Mini Massage

“I am always looking for products to help me out with my puffy eyes,” Millie Morales, Garnier’s celebrity beauty expert, tells The Zoe Report. “My morning routines always required a jade roller, or some eye masks. When I discovered the Garnier Clearly Brighter Anti-Puff Eye Roller… [it’s] the best of both worlds inside a product that’s under the radar. The roll-on applicator, which I [love] and the gel formula with antioxidant vitamin C, mint, and caffeine instantly cools and refreshes, and give a more rested look and feel. [...] Since then, I have been using these for more than six years.”


The Hair Product Pros Swear By For Next-Level Volume

“Nothing will give you more volume than SexyHair Root Pump Plus. Full Stop!” says hair stylist Clayton Hawkins. “Unlike other volumizers or mousses, this one doesn’t make the hair feel product-y. It just gives crazy lift. Pro tip: apply it using a color brush directly to the roots, section by section, on damp hair and blow dry.”


These Under-Eye Shields That Catch Eyeshadow Fallout (& Double As An Eyeliner Stencil)

Adeline Duff, a beauty editor at The Zoe Report, uses these under-eye shields when she’s doing her makeup for a big night out or an event. “Pros use these to catch eyeshadow fallout when doing clients’ makeup, which is a genius hack I learned. But I also love using these as a stencil of sorts when I’m doing a cat eye or a dramatic eyeshadow look,” she says. They give a professional finish and prevent eye makeup from messing with your concealer, foundation, and blush. For less than $10, you’ll get a pack of 120.


The Best-Selling Ice Roller That Soothes Puffy Skin

“When I’m hungover, tired, or dealing with allergies and inflamed skin, the first thing I do when I wake up is massage my face with this ice roller,” says Duff. “Not only does it feel amazing, but it instantly makes my skin look less puffy and tired.” Amazon reviewers also use this to help with tension headaches, migraines, sinus pain, and other similar conditions thanks to its super-soothing effects.


A Makeup Sponge Holder That’s So Handy For When You Travel

Ever wondered how to hygienically store your Beautyblender when you travel? Here’s your answer. “I just discovered this on a recent trip, and I don’t know how I ever lived without it. It allows me to keep my makeup sponge protected from the rest of my tools and products in my cosmetics pouch,” says Duff. Thanks to its flexible silicone design, it can hold all manner of makeup sponges, and the vents on each side allow for plenty of airflow, so it won’t harbor mildew or mold.


These Self-Tanning Drops That Are Completely Foolproof

“I used to be a self-tanner skeptic, until these drops,” says Duff. “They make the act of self-tanning completely foolproof. Just add a few drops into your moisturizer of choice, et voila.” Sold in three shades — dark, medium, and light — these Isle of Paradise Self Tanning Drops are made with good-for-skin ingredients like grapefruit, chia seed, and avocado oils, and leave behind a natural-looking (read: never orange) glow.


A Root Cover-Up Powder That Also Allows You To Fake A Fuller Hairline

Hair stylist Sara Clemente previously told The Zoe Report that she “doesn’t go anywhere without this product.” You can use it to conceal unwanted grays or roots, but Clemente also uses it to make her clients hair appear thicker when styling up-dos. Color Wow Hair Root Cover Up is a best-seller among consumers, too, and it comes with a handy mirror and applicator brush, making it great for on-the-go use.

  • Available shades: 8


These No-Heat Rollers That’ll Give You Bouncy, Salon-Worthy Curls

Clemente also swears by heatless Velcro rollers, calling them “fantastic for when your hair is dry and you need a little touch up.” If you often style your hair with hot tools, these offer a great way to give your hair a much-needed break. “[They will] add bounce and volume back within seconds,” Clemente said. This is also a user-friendly way to curl your hair if you struggle with a wand, and you can wear them while you get ready — making for a low-effort styling routine, too.


A Makeup Artist Secret To Soothe & Tighten Tired, Puffy Skin

Beauty writer Marissa DeSantis is one of many experts who point to the surprising uses of Preparation H. “I've seen it backstage during fashion week so often, and I know makeup artists swear by it for under-eye bags,” she says. (Some claim that it can help heal pimples, too.) Just be sure not to get it too close to your eyes, and to not make a habit out of it (pros tend to reserve it for occasional use only).


This Cheap Curling Iron That Beauty Experts Swear By

“I genuinely think this is a great wand and they make so many of them,” says DeSantis, referring to the many barrel sizes Bed Head’s Curlipops wand comes in. “It's also dual voltage so it's a cheaper option to travel with if you're someone who tends to leave stuff behind, or if your everyday wand isn't dual voltage,” she says. Ranging from half-inch to 1.5-inch barrels, the wand also comes in oval, spiral, or tapered shapes.


This Under-$10 Product With A Bunch Of Surprising Uses

DeSantis also touts Phillips' Milk Of Magnesia as a genius, under-the-radar beauty find. “kind of gross, I know, but my mom always used to put this on me as a face mask and it really did seem to help with oily skin,” she says. Amazon reviewers also report that it tightens up pores and makes makeup last longer. Some use it for DIY deodorant, too.


These Bath Bombs That Also Double As A Makeshift Humidifier

“My sister uses this for herself and her kids to help clear congestion while you sleep,” says DeSantis of these Frida Baby Natural Vapor Bath Bombs. “She puts one in a bowl of warm water by the bed... it also just smells really nice because of the essential oils.”


This Cooling & Glow-Boosting Eye Balm That One Editor Can’t Live Without

This TULA rose eye balm is a can’t-live-without product for The Zoe Report beauty editor Caroline Goldstein. She says: “This rose eye balm is infused with a gentle cooling sensation and is infused with subtle light-refracting particles, so a swipe works to awaken and impart a nice, dewy gleam to the under-eye area. Obsessed is an understatement — I use this every single morning, for mid-day wake-up calls, and before makeup prep. You can swipe it along your cheekbones and eyebrows as a highlighter, too.” It’s made with a raft of good-for-skin ingredients, like rosehip oil and probiotics, making this the ideal makeup/skin-care hybrid.


A 12-Pack Of Handy Wipes That Eliminate Razor Burn & Ingrown Hairs

The cult-favorite Fur Ingrown Hair Eliminator Wipes are another of Goldstein’s faves, as much for their efficacy in soothing razor burn and bumps, and eliminating ingrowns after shaving, as for the easy-to-use vehicle — a single glove that fits on your finger for better precision. Celebs like Emma Watson happen to love Fur products, too.


This Clever Cleanser That Includes *Both* Steps Of Your Double-Cleansing Routine

“This Knours cleanser is truly genius,” Goldstein shares. “It starts out as an oil — ideal for removing makeup and sunscreen — and then works up into a gentle foam when you add water. It’s basically your entire double-cleansing routine in one package. Perfect for traveling, or on those nights when you just can’t be bothered to pull out more than one product from your medicine cabinet.” She also loves the gorgeous plant-based formula, which includes things like jojoba oil, chamomile, and olive oil that nourish the skin.


This Dentist-Favorite Pen That Makes It Easy To Brighten Your Smile On The Go

“One of my absolute favorite products is the MOON Teeth Whitening Pen. It’s great to throw in your bag or keep in your desk at work for on the go whitening,” says cosmetic dentist Victoria Veytsman. The brand says you’ll notice an immediate difference — making this great for quick touchups before events — but you can expect more pronounced results in about two weeks.


An Easy Way To Mimic The Results Of A Silk Press At Home

“Smooth Moisture is one of the best products I’ve used to execute a silk press without using harsh chemicals,” says Kiara Brumfield, a chemist and cosmetologist at Universal Beauty Products. “It’s a four-step home straightening system for textured hair that provides smooth silkening salon results (each product within the line starts at $13 and under). It leaves your hair flowing, smooth and with shine. It contains technology that has been tested in a laboratory and salon. Extensive research proved that Smooth Moisture prevents breakage, has great humidity protection to prevent curl reversion, has heat protection in every step, and even makes hair stronger after using the system. These products are ideal for consumers with natural hair who desire a sleek straight look without heat damage. Smooth Moisture is the perfect at-home system that yields the salon look without the salon prices. This system is also great for stylists to elevate their services.” Linked above is the shampoo, which is the first step in the system, but you’ll want to follow it up with the leave-in conditioner, serum, and finishing spray.


This Exfoliating Scrub To Prevent & Treat Ingrowns & Bumps

“This uses natural ingredients to exfoliate the skin and calm inflammation such as tea tree oil and lemon essential oil, while hydrating the skin with jojoba oil and fractionated coconut oil,” explains dermatologist Dr. Tiffany Clay of Bushbalm’s Nude Exfoliating Scrub. “It smells amazing by the way!” she adds.


These Pimple Patches That Work To Heal & Flatten Pimples In A Matter Of Hours

Nurse Tara Adashev, APRN at Neinstein Plastic Surgery and a beauty and skincare expert and master injector, dubs the Mighty Patch pimple patches “a staple in my medicine cabinet.” She goes on to say, “These are often forgotten about, but they are my ultimate blemish go to. I even will walk around outside with them because they blend right in.” These hydrocolloid patches work to absorb the gunk in whiteheads, flattening and healing them in a matter of hours — and though they’re great to use overnight, you can totally wear them during the day, as Nurse Tara does, since the edges are super-thin and nearly undetectable.


This Classic Drugstore Lip Balm That Still Holds Up

“This is my OG beauty brand,” Nurse Tara says of classic ChapStick. “My lips get so chapped in the winter and I simply can’t fathom putting anything else on my lips.” This pack of three will set you back less than $5, so you can stash one in your car, purse, and nightstand. Choose from a variety of scents, from classic mint to yummy cake batter.


The Best-Selling WhiteStrips That Help Give You A Whiter Smile In Under 1 Month

“These are a [oldie], but goody that also have been forgotten about. These you can pop on, run to the gym, hop on the train and pull off in 30 minutes with noticeable whiter teeth. I have been using them for years and really are the best way to whiten teeth,” Nurse Tara raves of these Crest WhiteStrips. This pack of 22 strips promises to remove even the toughest stains, achieving a whiter smile that can last a full year. Why not try them for yourself?


This Nail Strengthener That Rebuilds & Restores Dry, Weak Nails

“This is a great product to add to your nail routine,” says essie manicurist and nail artist Amy Le of the essie Nail Care Vegan Strengthener Treatment. “Apply two coats to your bare nails and allow to dry. The formula helps build stronger natural nails proven to be noticeably healthier and more resistant to breaking, splitting, cracking and peeling.”