May's beauty must-haves — that are within your budget

Score the season’s best buys without burning a hole in your wallet.

Score the season’s best buys without burning a hole in your wallet

(Credit: Valerie Elash/

Your spring beauty wishlist doesn't need to leave a dent in your credit card. It helps that the season's must-haves are affordable and hold up against the luxe stuff; in today's saturated and super-competitive market, there are plenty of beauty products that deliver without the steep price tag. From a detoxifying clay mask to a liquid highlighter, here are the month's best budget beauty buys that won't break the bank.

In a sea of charcoal products, this charcoal clay mask by Burt's Bees is a standout, treating dull skin and clogged pores. It uses charcoal to draw out impurities and brighten the complexion. Infused with antioxidant-rich acai oil, the formula won't irritate or dry out your skin. Use it as a full face mask or as a spot treatment on problem areas like cheeks or the T-zone.

Burt's Bees Detoxifying Clay Mask, $19.99, Shoppers

Give hair masks a rest and add an apple cider vinegar rinse into your haircare routine. Aveeno's affordable version removes build-up and excess oils from dull strands with its blend of scalp-soothing oats and shine-boosting apple cider. Part of the brand's newly revamped haircare line, the products are free of sulfates, dyes and parabens.

Aveeno Hair Apple Cider Vinegar In-Shower Hair Rinse, $11.29,

Swap out the heavy-duty foundation you used for your winter face for this lightweight formula, which offers sheer, buildable coverage with a satiny finish. It blends seamlessly into the skin and won't cake or crack. Plus it fits nicely in your makeup bag post Marie Kondo-inspired spring cleaning.

NYX Bare With Me Tinted Skin Veil, $16,

It may be the priciest product in the round-up, but this liquid highlighter is significantly cheaper than its prestige counterparts. It's also extremely versatile. You can mix the gel-like highlighter into your foundation for an all-over glow, or dab it onto your cheekbones. The formula blends in like a second skin, thanks to a moisturizing combination of avocado oil and vitamin E, leaving nothing but a dewy, glitter-free sheen.

Nude by Nature Beach Glow Liquid Highlighter, $21, Shoppers

Mascaras are undoubtedly subjective, depending on lashes and personal preference. This mascara's hourglass-shaped wire brush lengthens and separates lashes, making them as dramatic as you desire without the dreaded flaking and clumping. The latest addition, Northern Black is an ultra inky-black shade that's exclusive to Canada.

Covergirl Exhibitionist Mascara in Northern Black, $13.99, Shoppers

Last year, Neutrogena launched its Hydra Boost sunscreen, which quickly became a beauty editor fave, thanks to its light and refreshing texture. Now, the brand's expanded the Hydro Boost line into bodycare, which includes a gel body cream. The formula sticks to the same feel-good texture, offering all the hydration and none of the greasiness or sticky feel.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Body Gel Cream, $12.47, Walmart

This cream eyeshadow — which comes in 12 shades — can be applied any way you want: as a sheer wash of colour or more opaque for a bolder pop. It's also the easiest way to take your look into the P.M. without re-doing your entire look. You can even use the more versatile shades like 'Pop the Champagne' as a highlighter.

Annabelle Bouncy Bouncy Single Eyeshadow, $8.99, Shoppers

Dove's latest line of conditioners focuses on doing away with one-size-fits-all formulas in favour of a crème, milk-gel and mousse, each one customized for different hair types and needs. The mousse works best for fine hair, which is often weighed down by heavier conditioners, the milk-gel formula tackles damaged hair that's prone to breakage, and the crème hydrates thick, dry strands

Dove Ultracare Conditioners, $6.68, Walmart

Mishal Cazmi is a Toronto-based beauty and fashion writer and founder of 100 ML. Follow her at @mishalcazmi.


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