5 Beauty Products That Aren't Worth Anyone's Time and 3 That Truly Are

Hindsight is a wonderful thing. As an impressionable 20-year-old, I would live and breathe the advice of YouTubers I loved and blogs I checked religiously (before the Instagram we know today). I’d take the little money I earned as a bartender to buy what felt like every shiny skincare product under the sun. Today, a decade later, I get new products delivered to me to review for work on a weekly basis, and my skincare collection is slimmer than it’s ever been. Don’t get me wrong—there are times when I expand my routine, and I test a lot of products for work so I can make informed recommendations, but whenever my skin freaks out, the first thing I always do is strip my routine right back, ditch the non-essential beauty products and implement just three steps.


(Image credit: @keeksreid)

I’m talking to you as a person with pretty fuss-free skin. I have eczema with the occasional flare-up on my face, but it’s not severe, and I have combination skin. My skin doesn’t really mind a bit of fragrance, and I get the odd hormonal spot. I’ve never needed prescription skincare, and overall, I’m pretty happy with my skin and how it’s ageing. All of this is to say that you have to do what you feel is right for your skin and its needs. If you have a 12-step routine and it works for you, then perfect. But if you are feeling a bit lost with the number of skincare products out there, I promise you your skin will thrive with just three steps. Everything else can be tagged in and out when you need it according to your skin concerns.

3 Beauty Products to Never Miss

1. Cleanser

2. Moisturiser

3. SPF

3 Products and Steps That Can Amplify Your Routine

1. Hyaluronic Acid Serum

2. Vitamin C

3. AHAs and BHAs

5 Beauty Products That Aren't Essential


I rarely use toner. It’s usually recommended for removing any dirt from the skin, but if you’re cleansing properly, you shouldn’t need to do this. If you do opt to add BHAs or AHAs to your routine though, the toner formulas are often quick and easy to use.


Refreshing? Yes. Necessary? No. I’ll use a mist as an SPF top-up or sometimes if I’ve left it long between cleansing and moisturising to re-dampen my skin, but other than that, they’ll often sit unloved on my shelf.


I see masks as a fun and indulgent way to treat my skin, but they are by no means vital to a good skincare regimen. If I use them, I’ll do a pre-night-out hydration or brightening mask, or, as someone lucky enough to own an LED mask, I will use this to treat the hyperpigmentation after a spot.

Eye Cream

For the most part, I’ll bring my face cream up so my eyelids aren’t neglected, but I rarely remember to use a separate eye cream. As long as you aren’t using a heavy moisturiser, smoothing a little face cream around your eye area will normally suffice.


We have the best tools at our disposal—our hands. I love a tool, don’t get me wrong, but I definitely don’t think they are an essential part of my routine. I often forget to charge my rechargeable ones, and the ones that you don’t have to charge you can mimic with your palms and fingers.

Next up, the nail designs trending on Instagram.