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Splurge vs. Steal - What's The Big Deal?

Let's face it. Sometimes we want to use products that'll give us great results, but the budget doesn't always agree with us. In the hair and beauty world especially, it's so easy to drop outlandish amounts of money without even realizing it. A few twenty dollar liquid lipsticks and ten dollar nail polishes doesn't seem like much, physically, but before you know it you're a hundred dollars in the can. If you're anything like me (come on people, don't leave me hanging here) you're very picky about what products you use. For YEARS I would only use OPI nail polish- where that extreme bias came from is beyond me, but these nails would not touch an Essie or Color Club if I could help it. However in recent months, my nail polish collection has expanded exponentially, and yes, that includes Essie polish. It took some time, but I found myself asking why was I so against these polishes? They're some of the best in the industry (and they're like, a dollar and fifty cents cheaper than OPI!), You think that dollar and fifty cents isn't much but when you've got 100 polishes, that's an extra hundred and fifty dollars in your pocket. Or again, if you're like me, you can head right over to Taco Bell between 2pm-5pm and take advantage of Happy Hour. Either one works, really.

The moral of that story is even though we're accustomed to a certain product, that doesn't mean every other product similar to it sucks. In reality, there's probably at least a few other products that will give you the same results as the product you're using now- or, they might even be better! The beauty world term for this is dupe. It's just a shorter, kinda cuter version for duplicate however dupe by definition means to deceive or trick. Let's stick with my nail polish tale in regards to this. Say someone put an Essie nail polish in an empty OPI bottle- I would have been none the wiser. Looking at the polishes objectively, the formulas are very similar. They apply, dry and wear close to the same- but for some reason I was hell bent for OPI. This same principle applies for numerous other beauty and hair products (and their difference in price might be more than a Happy Hour drink at Taco Bell). As the saying goes, you'll never know unless you try.

For example, here we have two dry shampoos. The Big Sexy Hair Volumizing Shampoo is talc free and mineral/clay based to help absorb excess oils, product build up and impurities. It also contains UV filters to help protect hair against harmful UV rays- which makes it exceptionally good for use on color treated hair as it will prolong the time between washes and protect it from lightening due to the sun. Batiste Dry Shampoo leaves your hair smelling fresh and clean, while adding some body and texture to help give your hair a quick and easy style. Batiste revitalizes greasy hair by absorbing the excess oils and adding a touch of shine to dull and lifeless hair.

Batiste Dry Shampoo: 9.99

Big Sexy Hair Volumizing Dry Shampoo: 14.40

The price difference is obviously something any shopper would note- you're getting almost double the product with Batiste for nearly five dollars less than Big Sexy Hair. Most people would opt for Batiste based solely on that. Be it cheaper, it may not be better, however. Sure, the Batiste Dry Shampoo does it's job and works perfectly fine- which is more than likely why it's deemed one of the most popular dry shampoos in the world. However, the Big Sexy Hair on the other hand is a little bit more high end which would explain the price tag. That dry shampoo goes above and beyond to protect your hair from the harmfulness of the sun, and presents itself more as an 'every other day' styling product than just a quick "I don't want to wash my hair" product.

When it comes to hair and beauty products, the ideology that you get what you pay for is often seen. And it's true, in more cases than not the higher end product will perform better than it's more affordable counter part. However, that doesn't mean that the more affordable option isn't worth trying; because sometimes the product will do it's job, but usually not for as long, or necessarily as well as the more expensive option.

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