The only skincare products you'll ever need, according to your budget.


Melanie Grant knows a lot about your skin. How to look after it, what it should look like and exactly what you should be putting on it.

As a skin expert with clinics in Melbourne and Sydney and the most helpful skincare website you’ll ever visit, Melanie has worked with the likes of Phoebe Tonkin, Nicole Warne, Lara Worthington, Christine Centenera, Nicole Trunfio, Delta Goodrem, Jessica Gomes, Rebecca Gibney, Jessica Mauboy and Zoe Foster Blake.

So, I went to Melanie and asked, What is it we’re doing wrong when it comes to looking after our skin? How much should we be spending on it?

And, well, mostly: Can you just cut the chase and tell me what I actually need, according to my budget?

The kind woman did just that for a lazy soul like me. So I decided to loop you in on all her skincare secrets.

Note: Yes, to ensure your skin is as healthy as possible, you need to steer clear of harsh, cheap products. Spending a little extra on your skin will also prevent big-spend facials or treatments in the future.

What are the biggest mistakes we make?

“I think some of the biggest mistakes include not wearing sunscreen or thinking the SPF in your makeup offer sufficient protection. A huge mistake I see all the time is women not including their neck and décolletage when applying their skin care. Your face ends at your bust.


“Overuse of harsh or active products – more is not more when it comes to active skincare. Also, many have a complicated regime. This can cause product interactions, sensitivity and even breakouts as well as non-compliance (falling off the wagon) because it’s just too hard and/or time consuming.”

Do we need to spend money to make sure we’re looking after our skin?

“Yes, a small amount. However you don’t need to buy 20 of the most expensive products to achieve great skin. A holistic approach with a healthy lifestyle has the greatest effects on our skin. Things like eating well, getting sufficient sleep, avoiding stress and wearing sunscreen is essential. As for products, you can find efficacious products in every price bracket.”


What do you recommend for those who may be working to a student budget?

“When it comes to skin care I live by the adage that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So you’re never too young to have a simple skincare regime. For younger skin a cleanser, sunscreen, simple moisturiser and antioxidant serum is sufficient.”

The skincare arsenal Melanie recommends for students:

Listen: Zoe Foster Blake’s beauty advice for busy women. Post continues after audio…

What do you recommend for those who may be a busy mum, for both budget and efficiency?

“I’d recommend multitasking or dual purpose products. Try an exfoliating cleanser or a moisturising sunscreen for day with a refining moisturiser for night. P50 lotion by Biologique Recherche is great as it deep cleans, exfoliates, refines, balances PH and hydrates in one swipe of a cotton pad. This is your facial in a bottle.

Melanie recommends:

What do you recommend for those who may have more of a disposable income?

“I’d suggest sticking with proven ingredients such as retinol, Vitamin C, ferulic acid, and vitamin B, however now you can probably splurge on a better quality formula or delivery system. This means you can use a vitamin A without the flakiness or irritation caused by an inferior formula. Try including a serum with human growth factors and a great eye treatment with a cream mask for weekly application.”

Melanie recommends:

For more from Melanie Grant, you can find her website here, her Instagram here and her Facebook here.