We’re Obsessed With These 40 Cheap Beauty Products That Have Become Extremely Popular By Word Of Mouth

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by Sabrina Crews
Originally Published: 

When it comes to the makeup, skin care, and hair products you love, how many did you discover through word of mouth? Probably some, maybe a lot. You’d expect a beauty brand to extol the virtues of its own product, after all, but the truth lies in what other people are saying. That’s why we’re obsessed with these 40 cheap beauty products that are trending right now. The chatter is too good to ignore.

If there’s one place where word of mouth thrives, it’s on Amazon. When deciding whether to add that intriguing new face mask or serum to your cart, it’s often the thousands of five-star reviews that clinch the deal. (Two-day Prime shipping only sweetens the offer.) Still, although plenty of the products below are best-sellers on Amazon, the buzz doesn’t end there. Some of these products have a die-hard cult following you shouldn’t overlook; some are gaining tons of plugs on social media. Others are miracle workers that our editors have thoroughly tested and swear by. Plus, each comes at a price so much lower than the exceptional quality it delivers. How can you resist?

Ready to experience firsthand what everyone else is raving about? Keep scrolling.


This All-Purpose Moisturizer That Celebs & Beauty Editors Swear By

This all-purpose cream attributes decades of success and VIP customers (including celebrities, professional makeup artists, and beauty editors) to word of mouth. That traction is based on the fact that its uses are practically infinite: Use it as a lip balm, makeup remover, face moisturizer, body cream, and so much more. Loaded with superstar ingredients derived from bees — like honey, royal jelly, and propolis — Egyptian Magic skin cream, which is named after the ancient formula Cleopatra reputedly used to keep her complexion luminous, only requires you to use a small amount to effectively hydrate and repair your skin.


A Volumizing Dry Shampoo That’s Made Of All-Natural Ingredients

No water, no worries. This dry shampoo gets right to work absorbing your hair’s natural oils, allowing you to go up to nine days between washes while giving your hair some much-needed lift — all for just $10. Suitable for all hair types and colors, the alcohol-free formula is made with just five naturally derived ingredients and comes in a non-aerosol can. To use, just hold the precision tip to your roots, give the bottle a gentle tap, and rub it in. Then, let it sit for a couple minutes before rubbing it through your scalp, either with your fingers or a brush. Infused with lavender essential oil, it smells amazing, too.


These Eco-Friendly Makeup Remover Pads That You Can Reuse Indefinitely

Great for all skin types, these reusable makeup remover pads are a much more eco-friendly alternative to single-use cotton pads. For a mere $7, you get 18 of them. They’re easy to wash, too. Just soak the eco-friendly pads in water and throw them in the accompanying laundry-safe mesh bag (included with your purchase) the next time you do wash your clothes. “This bamboo fabric is super soft and durable,” one of 7,000-plus fans who gave the pads five stars on Amazon raved. “It feels good on the skin and gently but thoroughly wipes away your makeup and cleansers.”

  • Available colors: 5


A Clever Detangling Brush With Over 30,000 5-Star Ratings

“This is my new favorite brush and I use it all the time,” enthused one fan — there are currently over 50,000 (!!!) on Amazon and counting — of this handy detangling brush. “Glides right through every time.” Ideal for all hair types (especially thick and curly hair that gets tangled easily), this “life-changing” brush can be used both wet and dry. It relies on soft plastic bristles that not only massage your scalp and make brushing painless, but also help increase circulation and shine. Parents with kids who find brushing a stressful, painful experience swear by this brush, too.


An At-Home Dermabrasion Facial Roller Tool That Gives You Spa Results

Getting a quality microdermabrasion treatment in the comfort of your own home has never been easier than with this Sdara derma roller for your face. The tiny needles all over the surface of the roller help bring to life dull skin in need of a pick-me-up. Your face will experience professional exfoliation and rejuvenation with this incredible tool.


The Best-Selling Eyeshadow Stick That’s Worth Stocking Up On

This in-demand eyeshadow stick goes on smooth and creamy, then dries down instantly to a powdery matte finish. Infused with good-for-skin ingredients like vitamins C and E, the waterproof shadow stick comes with a built-in smudger (which, combined with the candelilla wax in the formula, makes blending a cinch), so you don’t even need a brush. Available in over 25 gorgeous shades from jewel tones to neutrals, this stick can also double as highlighter if you buy it in a shade that matches your skin tone.

  • Available colors: 27


A Tub Of 70 Toning Pads Made With Brightening Vitamin C

70 toner pads for less than $25 is enough of a steal, but these toner pads from K-beauty brand Goodal are packed with robust skin care benefits, too. Safe to use daily in the morning and at night, the pads rely on antioxidants derived from green tangerines sourced from South Korea’s Jeju Island to restore and brighten your complexion. Just one swipe and you can exfoliate, moisturize, and clarify your skin all at once. With an esteemed 4.6-star rating on Amazon, the pads are swiftly winning over customers for their effectiveness and affordability. Even our own editors are fans — like Kate Miller, who says, “I love how a toner makes my skin feel, but I just couldn't get into the habit of using one in liquid form. When I found these convenient pads, I was instantly hooked. They're so easy to use and they make my skin glow. Such a quick skin refresh.”


3 Tubes Of Tinted Brow Gel — For Less Than $10

It only takes a few swipes of this eyebrow mascara to achieve a fuller, but natural look that lasts all day long. The tiny fibers that comprise the mascara’s tinted gel formula are designed to fill in gaps to give you thicker, more defined brows, but without any of the hardening effects or sticky residue. At the same time, its precision brush helps tame any unruly, hard-to-reach strays. Available in five easy-to-match colors, this unique mascara is so convenient, and so cheap (three for under $10? Unheard of!), that it’s practically a no-brainer purchase.

  • Available colors: 5


A Super-Hydrating Sunscreen With A Light, Water-Gel Texture

A insider-favorite on social media, this water-based sun gel contains hyaluronic acid to lock in moisture and keep your skin from dehydrating in the sun. It also absorbs quickly without leaving behind the white residue you might get from a mass-market sunscreen, and it even works to boost your skin’s elasticity and radiance. With an enviable 4.7-star rating on Amazon, the SPF 50+ sun gel is beloved among customers for how lightweight and effective it is. Try it out, and you’ll never be able to go back to “normal” sunscreen again.


This Deeply Nourishing Lip Balm From A Spa-Quality Brand

It’s amazing that a lip balm this heavy-duty only rings up at just $12. With a unique cocktail of ingredients — including beeswax, a humectant that promotes hydration and softer skin — this fast-acting balm creates a protective layer over your lips, seals cracks and cuts so they heal in mere days, and serves as the perfect primer for any lip color that follows. We discovered it through one of our own editors, Amy Biggart, who says, “I love this overnight lip balm, which came highly recommended by my aesthetician. I put it on before bed each night and I swear it has healed my dry, chapped lips so they look and feel so much better. I love it!”


An 8-Second Hair Treatment That’s As Light As Water

Now, this hair product is popular. For proof, look no further than its nearly 20,000 perfect Amazon reviews, or the fact that L’Oreal Paris claims one bottle is sold per minute. Why? Relying on amino acids and other lightweight moisturizing agents, this “Wonder Water” takes your hair from damaged and dry to impossibly silky and soft in a mere eight seconds — for a mere $9. The best part is, this light-as-water treatment doesn’t weigh your hair down, so even people with fine hair can use it.


This Facial Cleanser That’s Made From All-Natural & Organic Ingredients

This natural and organic facial gel not only deep cleans your face, but it also helps to actively prevent future breakouts. The combination of apple cider vinegar and vitamin E pack a powerful punch to get dirt out of pores and help renew skin so you look and feel your most radiant and confident self.


This Volumizing Mascara With Over 50,000 5-Star Amazon Ratings

Over 50,000 Amazon shoppers are fans of Maybelline’s Sky High volumizing mascara — and for good reason. The mascara boasts a unique volumizing and lengthening formula that contains bamboo extract and fibers, allowing you to achieve a promised sky-high finish that never feels uncomfortably heavy. Available in both washable and waterproof versions, the mascara comes in a range of black shades and won’t disturb sensitive eyes. Oh, and can you believe it’s less than $10?

  • Available colors: 5


An Organic Castor Oil Serum For Your Brows & Lashes

If your lashes or brows (or both!) need some love, give this buzzy castor oil serum a try. It promises to deliver results in just four to eight weeks. The USDA-organic treatment relies on nutrient-rich castor oil to rejuvenate tired hairs and promote growth; your lashes and brows will feel softer after just one use. For optimal results, apply the oil with the dual-ended brush before bed, then let it sit on your brows overnight. In no time at all, you’ll be wondering how you could’ve possibly achieved such fluffy, healthy-looking brows for a mere $10.


This Cleansing Balm That’s Made With Just 10 Simple Ingredients

No skin care regimen is complete without an effective cleansing balm, and this Clean 10 Cleansing Balm Makeup Remover from the up-and-coming San Francisco startup JUNO & Co. is a bona fide hit. (Our very own editors are fans.) That’s due in part to its brightening benefits, thanks to ingredients like vitamin C and Japanese pearl barley, and like all good cleansing balms, it leaves your skin feeling impossibly nourished and soft. Because it caps its list of ingredients at 10, the balm rinses cleanly and won’t leave any grease or residue behind. Add to that an impressive 4.6-star Amazon rating and reasonable $15 price tag, and you’re left without any good reason to not become absolutely obsessed.


A Powerful Hyaluronic Acid Serum For Less Than $20

Naturium takes a high-tech approach that’s quickly gaining notice among beauty lovers — and it especially delivers with its Quadruple Hyaluronic Acid Serum 5%. The serum uses four different types of moisture-rich hyaluronic acid to plump up your skin, working together with natural blossom honey to give you a more hydrated complexion. Use one to two pea-sized drops on your skin daily, morning and night, and be amazed at how firm, balanced, and plump your skin feels as a result. That’s amazing for any product, but one that costs less than $20? You’ve got to try it.


This Deeply Nourishing Body Lotion That Lets Your Skin Breathe

Most people are aware of NIVEA, but more and more of us are becoming attuned to just how much of a miracle worker its “Breathable” body lotion really is. Packed with shea butter and vitamins C and E, this fast-acting, moisture-rich lotion, which currently boasts a hard-to-beat 4.6-star rating on Amazon, keeps your skin hydrated for up to two days (!) straight, but because it’s so lightweight, it absorbs instantly, allowing you to get dressed immediately after slathering it on. Its invigorating scent — choose between ‘Fresh Fusion’ and ‘Tropical Breeze’ — is just a sweet little bonus.


A Cute Eyeshadow Trio That’s Modeled After A Bento Box

This adorable stacked eyeshadow trio from K-beauty brand KAJA is generating so many squeals and awws across the internet, you’d better get in on this clever little makeup wonder before it blows up. Literally modeled after a traditional bento meal box, this trio of eyeshadow palettes fold neatly in and out of each other, delivering matte and shimmery pigments right at your fingertips. Choose from 13 distinctive palettes like ‘Spiked Ginger’, ‘Poppy Champagne’, or the ‘Glowing Guava’ trio pictured — or don’t. These palettes are way too fun and way too cheap ($21!) to just throw down for one.

  • Available colors: 12


This Rice Water Face Wash That Leaves Your Skin Glowing & Soft

So many skin care products claim to leave your face glowing — but according to TZR beauty editor Adeline Duff, this one really does. “I’m responsible for at least five of my friends’ obsession with this face wash,” she says. “I don’t know what’s in this product — okay, actually I do: rice water — but it truly leaves my skin looking more radiant after each wash. And though I tend to steer clear of scented products, I can’t get enough of the fragrance in this one, which smells delightfully fresh and clean.”


A Pack Of 96 Pimple Patches — For Less Than $20

With over 20,000 perfect Amazon ratings and a devoted following on social media (even among derms), it’s safe to say that people are downright obsessed with Rael’s pimple patches. Available in two sizes, they’re made of medical-grade hydrocolloid that extracts the “gunk” from your blemishes, but they also act as a protective layer against germs, thus speeding up the healing process. Plus, you get 96 of them for just $16. Steal.

TZR editor Caroline Goldstein says, “When I pop on one of these pimple patches, I feel like I’m getting away with something. My spots literally vanish overnight, with no effort on my part. No messy popping, picking, or drying pimple creams, either. Pure magic."


This Vitamin E Serum That Improves The Overall Health Of Your Skin

Once you use this all-natural vitamin E moisturizing cream it will easily become your daily go-to beauty hack you can’t live without. The spray cap makes it easy to pump out this nourishing blend directly to your face. Watch as the tone and texture of your face looks refreshed as your skin is being healed and repaired at the same time.


A Smudge-Proof Gel Eyeliner From A Buzzy J-Beauty Brand

This Japanese gel eyeliner looks incredible, comes adorably packaged, lasts forever, and costs a mere $12. How is that possible? With its fine precision tip, the liner goes on as smoothly and evenly as a gel, then melts into a solid, water-resistant finish that won’t budge once it’s dry. Its potent formula also includes nourishing ingredients like hyaluronic acid, collagen, and chamomile. So, if you’re on the lookout for a clever new beauty item to add to your lineup — and even if you’re not — you really can’t do better than this.

“This is the only pencil-form eyeliner that stays on my waterline!” says TZR editor Jen Fiegel.


This Multi-Purpose Ice Roller That Soothes & Depuffs Tired Skin

When you wake up feeling dry, tired, or puffy, give your face a soothing massage with this ice roller — you’ll be impressed by how much it can help. Its benefits go beyond beauty-related, too: fans on Amazon (and there are over 13,000) also swear by it for soothing the effects of tension headaches, allergies, sinus infections, and more.

One Amazon reviewer commented, “[...] I've used it for sinus pain, migraines, swollen neck glands, under eye circles/bags, inflamed acne, TMJ pain [...] Not to mention, when used on my face, it leaves my skin feeling tight and wakes me up in the mornings. It also stays cold for forever, but it never sweats or leaves water behind. It's like magic.I also bought one for my mom who suffers from nerve damage in her arms and legs. I think it'll really help when she has bad pain days.”


A Gentle, Soap-Free Cleanser That Hydrates Your Skin For Up To 24 Hours

Made with shea butter, glycerin, niacinamide, and thermal water, this soap-free cleanser from La Roche Posay generates a soothing foam in the shower, leaving skin soft, clean, and hydrated (for up to 24 hours, according to the brand). With an extraordinary 4.7-star rating on Amazon, the cleanser keeps winning over customers for its moisturizing capabilities, gentle approach, and value (it’s only $15). It’s a French pharmacy classic, too.


This Japanese Toning Lotion With A Global Following

This moisturizing lotion from the globally popular Japanese brand Hada Labo contains not just one, but three kinds, of moisturizing hyaluronic acid to deliver the intense hydration your dry skin craves. The product delivers the best results when applied as a toner, and prides itself in being universal enough to work for pretty much everyone. It’s also loved by pretty much everyone, including TZR beauty editor Adeline Duff. “I use it instead of moisturizer on summer days when creams feel too suffocating for my skin, or, as an extra layer of moisture underneath a richer cream in the winter, when my skin needs all the help it can get,” she says.


A Matte Liquid Lipstick That Lasts For Up To 16 Hours Without Smudging

This matte liquid lipstick from NYX glides onto your lips like a gloss and then instantly dries into a smooth, matte finish that promises not to crack, fade, or budge for up to 16 hours. Available in over 20 colors, this popular lipstick lives up to the hype: It’s long-lasting, highly pigmented but not heavy, and goes for just $9 a pop. You’ll be so glad you jumped on this bandwagon.

  • Available colors: 21


This Moisturizing Heel Balm That Instantly Softens Dry, Cracked Feet

Hard on your feet? Same. Thankfully, this popular, moisturizing and exfoliating cream from Dermatonics can provide some much-needed relief. Specifically designed for dry, cracked feet, the heel cream features effective moisturizing ingredients like urea and manuka honey to smooth, soften, and even remove calluses. And according to TZR beauty editor Adeline Duff, it really works. “This softened my feet like nothing else I’ve ever tried, and I love the smell. I discovered it at my local Boots (in London), but was pleased to discover that American shoppers can get it on Amazon!”


A Leave-In Conditioner That Deserves Its Hype

This Miracle Moisture spray from Daily Dose was developed for all hair types and can practically do all of the things: repair, enhance, soften, moisturize, strengthen, and detangle. Plus, it’s lightweight, non-greasy, and the results are immediate. You’ll see the results you’re seeking — whether it’s to add moisture and shine or minimize unwanted frizz — after just one use. Perhaps best of all? It’s only $20 for a big bottle. They don’t call it a miracle for nothing.


A Cute, Travel-Friendly Exfoliating Toner For Smoother, Glowier Skin

Glow Recipe’s mini Watermelon Glow facial toner relies on an innovative blend of ingredients — including a PHA and BHA — to gently exfoliate, soothe, and tighten your skin. Cactus water gives this toner its unique, elastic texture and helps lock in moisture once applied. With an impressive 4.6-star rating on Amazon and an ultra-low $15 price tag, it’s no wonder the toner is continuing to amass die-hard devotees (which include several TZR editors).


This Reusable Cloth That Erases Your Most Stubborn Makeup — With Just Water

“Erase all makeup with just water!” The Makeup Eraser’s tagline basically says it all, as it successfully removes your toughest, most water-resistant makeup with every use — really. It boasts an enviable 4.6-star rating on Amazon, lasts up to five years, and comes in over 10 striking colors for the price of $20. “What kind of magic is this thing???? It seriously takes off 98% of my makeup with JUST WATER [...]” one Amazon reviewer raved. “Call [Hermione] Granger, because she wants her magic make up eraser back,” they joked.

  • Available colors: 13


A Gentle, Sooting Moisturizer For Dry & Acne-Prone Skin

This soothing moisturizer from Avène works to rejuvenate sensitive skin that’s become irritated from harsh acne treatments, but it’s also designed to minimize allergy risks, so it’s an all-around great moisturizer for anyone with dry, sensitive skin. For just $22, one bottle should last you 60 days. “A little goes a long way,” one contented Amazon reviewer raved. Another wrote, “It feels great when applied, absorbs quickly into the skin, and is not oily at all!” No wonder the cream boasts a tough-to-beat 4.7-star rating.


This Rejuvenating Massage Oil That Soothes Achey Muscles

With a practically unbeatable 4.8-star rating on Amazon, Weleda’s Muscle Massage Oil is a tried-and-true, not-so-secret weapon of so many beauty enthusiasts who live an active lifestyle. Effectively harnessing the pain-relieving properties of arnica oil, this treatment simultaneously calms your sore muscles and renews your skin’s elasticity. After a challenging, vigorous activity, or before you’re about to engage in more, rub three to five drops of the oil into your hands to warm it, then apply it to the area you’re targeting for a restorative massage. Infused with lavender and rosemary essential oils, the oil definitely provides some aromatherapy, too.


An All-Natural Cleansing Balm Made With Nourishing Manuka Honey

“I’m obsessed with everything about this cleansing balm, from the dense, decadent texture to the natural honey scent,” says TZR editor Caroline Goldstein. “It cuts through sunscreen and makeup like none other (I use it as an eye makeup remover, too, since it’s so gentle), and it leaves my skin feeling so soft and hydrated, not stripped — I’m not desperate to apply moisturizer after I wash it off, as is so often the case with other cleansers! It makes my complexion look more even and glowy, too. Nothing not to love."


These Cool Bath Salts That Bring The Japanese Hot Springs Straight To You

Japanese hot springs deliver some of the most euphoric wellness experiences in the world. If you don’t have a trip to Japan on your schedule at the moment, don’t fret. For a mere $13, Tabino Yado intends to bring the Japanese onsen experience to your tub at home with its milky, hot springs bath salts. And if the unimpeachable 4.8-star Amazon rating is any indication, you should definitely rise to the challenge. Like, now. Each box contains 13 individually wrapped sachets of powder, with four different hot springs experiences, ready to send you into a blissed-out reverie. Packed with minerals designed to keep you hot and boost your circulation, these bath salts deliver such an unforgettable experience, you simply need to see what all of the fuss is about.


A Gentle, Hydrating Cleansing Oil For Your Face & Body

Now who could pass this up: For just $12, Bioderma’s Atoderm cleansing oil promises to provide your dry, sensitive skin with up to 24 hours worth of hydration. Its proprietary formula includes vitamin B3 to help repair weakened skin barriers, with soothing coco and sunflower biolipids that help boost hydration. With over a whopping 10,000 five-star ratings, the cleansing oil is a hit among Amazon customers for its light, refreshing scent and how well it moisturizes sensitive skin. Best of all, you can use this on both your face and body.


This Adorable, Compact Detangling Brush With A Built-In Mirror

This travel-size hairbrush from indie, California-based brand milk + sass dubs itself a candy-inspired creation for your hair. The portable hairbrush comes with a compact mirror and sturdy detangling bristles that make on-the-go brushing an absolute breeze. Secured in an easy-to-tote, pop-open container, this brush is swiftly captivating the attention of Amazon shoppers. Obviously, it makes a great small gift, too.


An Aussie-Favorite Body Lotion That Gives Your Skin A Gradual Glow

If you’re short on vitamin D but still want to look sun-kissed, this tanning milk will be just the thing for you. Packed with aloe vera and nourishing vitamin E, the moisturizer’s benefits are two-fold: It keeps your skin hydrated for up to 24 hours, all the while providing you with an even, gradual tan that develops over time. This lotion comes from beloved Aussie brand Bondi Sands, which recently became available Stateside via Amazon. Plus, it’s amassed over 4,000 perfect ratings on Amazon and smells like cocoa butter. For just $12, you really can’t go wrong here.


4 Nourishing Tinted Lip Balms — For Just $10

Infused with shea butter, jojoba oil, and avocado oil, each of these flavored balms — cherry, strawberry, blackberry and watermelon — staves off dryness, provides immediate moisture, and gives your lips a natural-looking tint. “The shades of these (especially the blackberry) are surprisingly good,” says TZR editor Jen Fiegel. The fact that you can get all four for just $10 makes this almost a necessary purchase.


This Classic Bar Soap That’s Perfect For “Soap Brows”

This classic Pears soap is great for cleansing your skin, sure — but it’s especially ideal for mastering the soap brow trend, a buzzy technique that involves using transparent soap to mold and fluff up your brows. By using soap, your brows will stay in place all day long, even when exposed to moisture.

One Amazon reviewer commented, “I bought this soap because a bunch of youtubers used it for their soap brows. I was a little skeptical since it has an orange color to it but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it is actually 100% clear. not only that but it has the best hold out of all of the soap bars i have tried. the other plus side is that it doesn't flake throughout the day. I have fallen asleep with it on my brows and the next morning they were still perfectly groomed I was shook!! [...]”


A Tea Tree Nail Oil That Repairs Dry, Bruised, Or Otherwise Damaged Nails

TZR beauty editor Adeline Duff loves JASON’s nail saver for both her fingers and toes. “I apply this stuff religiously — it not only keeps my nails and cuticles looking (and feeling) their best, but it’s also reversed bruising and yellowing in the past,” she says. Made of a blend of naturally derived oils, this one small bottle will last you ages, even if you apply it daily.

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