You’ve been purchasing a cult skincare product which has delivered amazing results time and time again, making it into your essentials spending budget. On the other hand, the price tag is exorbitant to the point you are weighing up if you should order another bottle or pay this week’s rent.
You think it’s time you search for an alternative. A cheaper version of the real thing, but not in a dubious way like eyeing off a counterfeit Prada bag at a Balinese market, asking yourself if you could pass it off as the real deal.
What is a “Skincare Dupe”?
In the world of beauty products, this is not seen as shameful or a practice that you hide. Often it is praised and lauded when one discovers an affordable product that looks and most importantly performs equal to or as close to the original.
The word for this is a ‘Dupe‘, short for duplicate. However, for beauty products, it’s not to describe something absolutely identical or a replica. It is used loosely to describe a product that might contain similar ingredients, sometimes even similar packaging and more importantly perform much like the original, providing equivalent or better results.
There will always be hardline consumers that will denounce that a dupe will never compare to its original, as they’re skeptical of the quality, concentration and efficacy of the ingredients. For every one of those devoted high end skincare enthusiasts, there’s a savvier skincare sleuth who will delve into finding a cheaper yet still effective product they are happy to switch over to.
Money is no object. But is it worth the money?
More expensive does not always necessarily mean it’s better. The pricing of a product is determined by the amount of research, technology, quality of its ingredients or difficulty in sourcing those ingredients. But more often than not, it is determined by the marketing and luxury packaging that may or may not represent the contents itself.
The rich and famous still suffer from skin conditions like the rest of us, which is a clear indication that the price of a product will not always guarantee improved skin quality. At the end of the day, it’s your skin compatibility, your experience with skincare and your budget that will help you choose what’s suitable for you.
Top 10 popular high-end skincare dupes
Competitor: Estee lauder advanced night repair 50ml $159
Almost twinning, these two have so much likeness, performance is identical if not better, more often than not the dupe is always just a little behind on the original but Missha is on a winner with this serum at the fraction of the price! For us dupe loving enthusiasts, it’s a win-win situation thus earning it a cult favourite status! Bifida ferment lysate in both formulas are listed as the main ingredient, a probiotic that assists with cell turnover & strengthening the skin barrier, a great anti aging night serum, however when ingredients are weighed up Missha stands out with more beneficial ingredients such as niacinamides and antioxidants.
Competitor: Biologique Recherche P50 Lotion 150ml $91
We all love a BHA liquid exfoliant, especially one that is non-irritating but does a great job of managing oil production, minimizing pores and reviving dull complexion like nothing else. Both the Biologique Recherche P50 lotion and COSRX Blackhead Power Liquid can achieve this, but it all depends on what you’re willing to spend. The COSRX Blackhead Power Liquid also has a super slight fresh scent whereas the Biologique Recherche P50 lotion has a somewhat chemical smell.
Competitor: Glow Recipe Watermelon Glow Sleeping Mask 80ml $64
Watermelon is the star ingredient in both formulas, however Glow recipe’s ingredients has watermelon listed as the 6th ingredient with parfum (but it also contains AHA and Hyaluronic acid for an added exfoliation and hydration). Heimish has it listed as the second ingredient, which is 90% watermelon and no added fragrance, marketed more as a soothing, cooling and hydrating gel moisturiser. Both have similar bouncy gel textures and promote a hydrated glow but for a more non-fragranced bang for your buck, Heimish has our pick.
Competitor: SKII Treatment Essence 79ml $109
One of the cult juggernauts of Asian Skincare – high end Japanese brand SKII and their world renowned SKII Treatment Essence. They discovered, developed and patented Pitera (basically Galactomyces ferment filtrate but their own formula which makes up 90% of the ingredients), which they claim to brighten and even skin tone, diminish spots, fight wrinkles and ageing. Missha has come in and brought their own similar recipe with 80% Saccharomyces ferment filtrate along with niacinamide & hyaluronic acids to which the SKII Treatment Essence does not have. At more than half the price, the Missha Time Revolution First Treatment Essence is absolutely worthy of being a fabulous dupe.
Competitor: SKII R.N.A. Power Eye Cream 15g $162
No, it’s not a typo. Over $150 for 15 grams! Skincare at that price can make any skincare enthusiast baulk! SKII claims ‘bigger, brighter eyes and a youthful look’. The star ingredient is again the powerhouse that is Pitera and it has a cult following. However, I have yet to see ‘before and after’ evidence of a customer with significant improvement to their under eye area to justify the price. Along comes Benton Fermentation Eye Cream. Formulated with galactomyces ferment filtrate and other hydrating, soothing & skin renewing ingredients such as bifida ferment lysate, beta glucan. hyaluronic acid, adenosine, aloe & panthenol. With that arsenal of ingredients there is no competition! I have seen plenty of evidence of its effectiveness, even from our very own Beauty Crush Skin happy customers!
Competitor: La Mer the Eye concentrate 15ml $250
Technically not a direct dupe, but both eye creams utilize nutrients from seaweed extract to deliver reviving, hydrating antioxidants to the delicate, thin under eye skin. La Mer promises its specially selected, prepared & fermented kelp formula, called ‘Miracle Broth’, reduces under eye circles in 21 days, which sounds amazing if you are prepared to pay the price tag. Fortunately, savvy skincare enthusiasts have found a comparable alternative in Heimish. The Marine Care Eye Cream has come along to the rescue with their luxe little pot of rich, antioxidant rich cream. With a cooling metal ball applicator making the process smooth and soothing. The light algae hue also brightens the under eye skin topically, which instantly uplifts the face. This cruelty-free, cheaper option is a no brainer.
Competitor: Fresh Sugar Face Polish 30g $40
You’ll be wanting more bang for buck for a sugar based wash-off scrub that won’t be on your face for very long. Fresh has a popular formula with added strawberry seeds for exfoliation, and it smells delicious with its own cult following. But many have found a cost effective vegan, cruelty free alternative in Klairs Gentle Black Sugar Facial Polish, with an added bonus of unclogging pores! Imagine a better, environmentally conscious facial polish that has almost quadrupled the amount of volume for less.
8. 9Wishes Rice Foaming Cleanser 120ml $27.81
Competitor: Tatcha The Rice Wash Skin Softening Cleanser 120ml $49
When it comes to skincare, there are products to splurge on and products to save on. Cleansers fall in the ‘save on’ category. There shouldn’t be any fancy ingredients in a cleanser, as it will all be washed away. In the case of rice cleansers, 9wishes comes out on top with rice powder being the main ingredient alongside brightening ingredients such as saccharomyces ferment, rice bran water, licorice root extract and nourishing botanical extract. Tatcha has fragrance listed before any rice ingredient and also contains alcohol. 9Wishes is definitely a dupe you should consider in the cleanser category.
Competitor: Dior Hydra Life Jelly Sleeping Mask 50ml $135
Sleeping masks are very much a South Korean phenomenon. Dior have taken notice and ‘drawn inspiration on Korean science’ with their Hydra Life range, but in doing so also kept true to their luxury price tag. No real special ingredients in it to justify the asking price, except the usual bit of Centella Asiatica and Hyaluronic acid. For that same price you are able to purchase over 5 times the volume of Laneige sleeping mask, at the same time reap double the hydration benefits with not only hyaluronic acid but its power house hotter, smarter sister beta glucan! Unless you’re a die hard Dior fan, it’s Laneige by a mile!
Competitor: Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Balm 125ml $56.00
Banila Co has been around longer than Clinique’s Take The Day Off, but for most people not familiar with Korean skincare, Clinique’s version is often the first cleansing balms we are acquainted with. At first glance, both balms look the same and the textures are somewhat similar, but after comparing with Banila Clean It Zero, the Korean formulation melts effortlessly and washes off as easily. It’s the obvious economical choice to leave your skin baby soft.
At Beauty Crush Skin, we stock the majority of these essential dupes. We have already done the hard yards and tested all these for you, so you don’t have to. No more wasting time and money. Get onto these dupes to GET YOUR GLOW ON! Order them now along with our huge range of Korean Skincare.
Written by Cole