Nothing quite compares to the joy of finding a holy grail drugstore beauty buy. Discovering a new go-to feels like you’re being let into an elite club—one that knows the best skin-care and beauty items don’t necessarily have to come with sky-high price tags.
Because we’re all about finding those stellar bargains, we’ve rounded up the 58 best items you can score at your local (IRL or digital) drugstore. Even better? All of these picks are under $20—so it’s perfectly understandable that you’d want to add more than one to your cart.
Rest assured that these products all live up to their promises, since they’re all winners from the 2022 SELF Healthy Beauty Awards. That means they’ve met guidelines provided by dermatologists, and they’ve all been tested by SELF editors, skin-care pros, or makeup enthusiasts. Keep reading for our top picks, organized below by category, and go here to browse all of our winning items.
Cleansers, Toners, Essences, and Skin-Care Tools
Best Makeup Removing Wipes: CeraVe Hydrating Makeup Removing Plant-Based Wipes
Formulated with ceramides and made especially for sensitive skin (read: fragrance free!) these wipes are perfect for easily swiping away the dirt, oil, grime, and makeup of the day. We especially like on the go for midday touch-ups, too.
Best Micellar Water: Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water (Hyaluronic Acid + Aloe)
One of the best-kept secrets at any drugstore? Garnier micellar water. The go-to brand for this classic cleanser does it again with this new formula, that offers moisturizing hyaluronic acid and soothing aloe—so you won’t dry out your skin or irritate your eyes while removing your makeup and cleansing.
Best Cleanser for Sensitive Skin: Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser Fragrance-Free
Your favorite sensitive skin facial cleanser just got an update: It’s now fragrance free. Made with hydrating glycerin, this is a cleanser that won’t leave you with that too-tight feeling on your skin. It’s gel-to-foam formula makes washing your face feel especially easy, and at this price point, it’s easy to make this purchase.
Best Cleanser for Combination Skin: Thayers pH Balancing Daily Cleanser
Sharing Thayer’s cleansers and toners feels like letting friends in on a well-kept secret. The old-school beauty brand that—as the label indicates—has been around for 175 years offers several fragrance free, oil free, and allergy-tested products, and this cleanser is no exception. Formulated with soothing aloe vera, this face wash is perfect for gently removing makeup and oil at the end of each day.
Best Toner for Sensitive Skin: JOAH Heal Me CICA Toner Pads
Centella asiatica, a.k.a. CICA, is purportedly great for calming inflammation, redness, and soothing acne-prone skin. The science is limited, but some findings have been shown to be “intriguing,” as SELF previously reported. So if removing impurities, while keeping your skin calm and free of redness sounds good, give these a shot.
Best Toner for Dry Skin: Dickinson’s Hydrating Toner with Rosewater
This alcohol-free toner is formulated with vitamin E and hyaluronic acid—making it perfect for those cold, winter months when you need to remove your makeup and don’t want to strip your skin of every last bit of moisture in the process.
Best Face Mist: Pixi Beauty Clarity Mist
Soothe, hydrate and instantly cool your skin with this face mist that sprays on easily and absorbs quickly. Pro tip: Throw this in your carry-on when traveling—face mists are perfect for keeping your skin hydrated during long flights.
Moisturizers, Eye Creams, Serums, Oils, and Masks
Best Soothing Sheet Mask: Holler + Glow Freeze To Feel Good Cryotherapy Sheet Mask
While this mask may not actually be cryotherapy, Holler + Glow does recommend you throw it in the freezer for best results. The icy cold mask, coupled with energizing and cooling ingredients, like menthol, will instantly reduce puffiness on your skin—and probably wake you up a bit as well. Think of it as a perfect summertime treat.
Best Sheet Mask for Dry Skin: INC.Redible Prep to Party Hydrating Face Mask
This gel mask is infused with hyaluronic acid to hydrate and niacinamide to brighten and tone. Simply place it on, let it do its thing for 20 to 30 minutes, remove, and pat in the remaining essence. You’re good to party—or spend a pampered night in.
Best Clay Mask: Boots Niacinamide Clay Mask
Niacinamide, a form of vitamin B3, is one of those ingredients that can do it all: brighten, remove excess oil, and help fight acne. With that in mind, this vegan mask can be used two to three times per week to achieve optimal effects. Bonus: Niacinamide is one of the few pregnancy-safe acne-fighting ingredients you can use, making this mask perfect for expectant folks.
Best Overnight Pimple Patches: HanHoo Extra Strength Blemish Patch
These vegan pimple patches are intended to go directly over your pimple and then stay there for six to eight hours. Formulated with salicylic acid, the patches turn white as they suck up impurities and oil. Use them each night and say goodbye to stubborn zits.
Best Retinol Eye Cream: No7 Pure Retinol Eye Cream
It’s tough to find a drugstore retinol that will really do the trick, but this little tube defies expectation. Designed to minimize dark circles, puffiness, and reduce the appearance of fine lines, this eye cream delivers on all that and more, according to our testers.
Best Dark Spot Corrector: The INKEY List Mandelic Acid Treatment
Mandelic acid, which is derived from almonds, acts as a gentle chemical exfoliant, and can be perfect for sensitive skin, as SELF has previously reported. This little treatment is designed to help reduce hyperpigmentation and dark spots caused by breakouts and it’s perfect for use each evening.
Shower, Bath, Body, and Nails
Best Body Scrub: Hero Cosmetics Brave Body Deep Scrub
Slather on this sugar scrub once per week to smooth out any rough spots from head to toe. Formulated with sugar, charcoal, and pumice, this is perfect for getting a freshly scrubbed glow.
Best Body Bar Cleanser: CeraVe SA Cleanser Bar for Rough and Bumpy Skin
This soap-free bar is made with salicylic acid (for a chemical exfoliation) and jojoba beads (for a physical exfoliation). Combined, you’ve got the perfect shower item designed to slough away dead skin and bumpy spots over time with daily use.
Best Body Wash: Method Hydrating Body Wash
Keep your skin feeling moisturized and soft by drinking plenty of water—and showering with a hydrating body wash. This drugstore steal is packed with glycerin, aloe, and notes of coconut milk. Think of it as a tropical escape in a bottle.
Best Targeted Healing Balm: Aquaphor Healing Balm Stick
For chapped, chafing skin, there’s probably no better or easier solution than Aquaphor. But if tubes or tubs of the goopy stuff isn’t quite your speed, now the classic healing balm comes in a stick. Translation: Zero mess! Glide it over your extra dry spots (elbows, knees, cuticles) and watch your skin transform.
Best Antiperspirant Stick: Degree Advanced Lavender and Waterlily Antiperspirant Deodorant
Take on your day—whatever it may bring—with this antiperspirant designed to last up to 72 hours. Delicate notes of lavender and waterlily will transport you to a warm spring day, no matter what the weather is like outside, while you can rest assured that Degree will keep the sweat at bay.
Best Antiperspirant Spray: Secret Weightless Dry Spray, Wild Rose
Our testers praised this product as “spra
y deodorant done right.” The antiperspirant has a weightless feel, fresh scent, and it did the job: Keeping everyone sweat free all day long.
Best Natural Deodorant: Schmidt’s Vanilla & Oat Milk Sensitive Skin Deodorant Stick
Natural deodorants can get a bad rap: Whether they’re actually irritating to sensitive skin, wear off after just a few hours, or just don’t smell that great, it can be tough to make the switch. But this deodorant from Schmidt’s makes it easy. Their deodorant is scented with vanilla and oat milk, so it’s soothing to lots of skin types, plus the gentle fragrance really lasts for hours.
Best Deodorant: Dove Care by Plants Eucalyptus Deodorant
Aluminum and baking soda free, this derm-approved deodorant also got high marks from our testers who said the pleasant—and not overpowering—scent stayed for hours, keeping them feeling fresh all day long.
Best Hand Cream: Vaseline Hydra Hand Crème
Drugstore darling brand, Vaseline, does it again with this hydrating hand cream that’s easy to throw in your bag and take on the go. If your hands have been taking a beating since the start of the pandemic with lots of extra hand-washing, this lotion, formulated with hydrating hyaluronic acid and shea butter, is just the thing you need to make them feel soft again.
Best Daily Hand Soap: Dr. Teal Prebiotic Lemon Balm & Sage Moisturizing Hand Soap
Made with finely granulated pumice stone and epsom salt, this hand soap promises to gently exfoliate as it moisturizes with shea butter. Testers also described the scent as being fresh, clean, and not overly sweet smelling.
Best Nail Polish: essie Swoon in the Lagoon Collection
Ideal for all of your summertime manicures, this new collection from Essie features nine fresh colors that have a glossy shine and solid coverage even after a single coat is applied. Choose from a pale pink, sky blue, and bright peach, among other shades.
Best Top Coat: OPI Nature Strong Top Coat
We’re all about a strong finish, which is why we love this crystal clear, high-shine top coat from drugstore mainstay brand, OPI. Testers raved that this strong top coat allowed their manicures to last for over two weeks with barely any chips.
Oral Care Products
Best Whitening Toothpaste: Colgate Optic White Pro Series Toothpaste
Formulated with 5% hydrogen peroxide, this whitening toothpaste is perfect for removing surface stains, polishing your enamel, and protecting against cavities. Testers said it left their teeth feeling as clean as when they come from the dentist and that they enjoyed the strong mint flavor.
Best Toothpaste for Sensitive Teeth: Natean Clean + Sensitivity Relief with Fluoride Soothing Mint
If whitening toothpastes irritate your teeth, allow us to introduce you to Natean. This fluoride toothpaste has all the same-cavity fighting power as other whitening versions, but is formulated without some of the ingredients those with teeth sensitivities might find irritating.
Best Foundation for Mature Skin: Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Perfector 4-in-1 Matte Makeup
Plenty of makeup artists agree: Some foundations—that settle into wrinkles or cake along smile creases—will just end up making you look older. But that’s not the case with this matte makeup from Maybelline. The extra light whipped texture allows you to apply a little, for minimal coverage, or layer on more product in areas where more coverage might be needed.
Best Setting Powder: Wet N Wild Bare Focus Clarifying Finishing Powder
It’s tough to beat the price on this lightweight finishing powder that testers loved because it provided a little coverage, without weighing them down or clumping over any other makeup. The small compact was a bonus, too: It easily fits into the smallest clutch.
Best Setting Spray: Hard Candy Stay ‘n Slay Setting Spray
Drugstore mainstay brand Hard Candy is no stranger to creating great products that stand the test of time. So perhaps it shouldn’t come as a surprise that their setting spray—designed to help your makeup last and last—was selected as one of this year’s winners. Infused with hyaluronic acid and agave nectar, the spray is moisturizing, while still providing a matte finish that testers said helped to keep their shimmery shadows perfectly in place.
Best Primer: NYX Plump Right Back Primer + Serum
Moisturize is the name of the game with this primer and serum combo that’s designed to pamper your skin ahead of foundation or other makeup application. Testers loved that it provided a good base—no pilling or clumping even with full-coverage foundation—while our derms loved that it’s formulated with hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, and more.
Best Liquid Blush: FLOWER Beauty Blush Bomb Color Drops
Fans of Drew Barrymore’s beauty line, FLOWER, might already know the brand offers great products at very affordable price points—and this latest offering is no exception. Testers loved the gorgeous range of eight colors and that a little product goes a long way.
Best Brow Gel: e.l.f Cosmetics Brow Lift
As one tester put you, “You say ‘jump,’ this glue says ‘how high.’” This clear brow gel will help your brows stay put all day long—so whether you’re using it alone or on top of another pomade or pencil color, you’ve got a look that’s in for the long haul.
Best Everyday Mascara: CoverGirl Exhibitionist Stretch & Strengthen Mascara
Formulated with peptides and biotin, this mascara promises to give your lashes an extra lengthening effect and according to our testers, it definitely delivers. No flaking, smudging, or smearing as the day goes on, one tester said this would be her new “ride or die” mascara.
Best Classic Lip Balm: eos The Hero Stick Lip Balm
Intended to heal dry, chapped lips, this lip balm earned praise for smelling good, not feeling too waxy upon application, providing substantial moisture for hours, and of course, an unbeatable price point.
Best Lip Crayon: Revlon ColorStay Matte Lite Crayon
This non-sticky, lightweight, intense pigmented lip crayon does exactly what it claims: stays put for hours and hours. With shades like neon pink, bright purple, and deep red, there’s something here to suit every mood and occasion.
Sunscreens and Body Lotions
Best Tanning Lotion: Jergens Natural Glow Instant Sun Sunless Tanning Moisturizer + Bronzer
Consider this your “drama-free” sunless tanner. A non-sticky formula makes application easy, while the gentle glow gives you a tan—with none of the orange hue sunless tanners often get a bad rap for leaving.
Best Body Lotion for Dry Skin: Gold Bond Pure Moisture Daily Body & Face Lotion
Free of parabens, dyes, and fragrances, this body lotion—intended for daily use—earned praise for being quick absorbing and not in the least bit greasy. In addition to earning top scores with our testers, the lotion also received bonus points from our derms for containing hyaluronic acid.
Best Body Lotion for Sensitive Skin: NIVEA Sensitive & Radiant Body Lotion
This hydrating lotion was perfect for repairing dry, parched skin, our testers said. A hypoallergenic formula, tested by dermatologists, means that it’s great for all skin types, and the pump bottle design means that daily application is a total cinch.
Best Treatment for Dry or Cracked Feet: Dr. Scholl’s Ultra Hydrating Foot Mask
Give your feet the extra TLC they deserve—without the pedicure spa pricing. Testers loved this foot mask because it was easy to use and really delivered the results th
ey were looking for: Soft, moisturized, sandal-ready feet.
Best Chemical Sunscreen for Body: Bare Republic Clearscreen SPF 100 Sunscreen Lotion
This water-resistant, reef-friendly formula is easy to rub in and has a truly invisible finish. One of our testers—who noted she has sensitive skin—said that this lotion is truly non-irritating and easy to apply.
Best Sunscreen Powder: Hawaiian Tropic Mineral Translucent Sunscreen Powder Brush SPF 30
Think a sunscreen powder isn’t for you? Think again. This mineral translucent powder is perfect for a matte finish application on top of your makeup or for a quick dusting all over your shoulders and arms. Bonus: Testers loved the subtle, floral fragrance.
Best Sunscreen Spray: Coppertone Complete Sunscreen Spray
Coppertone has been in the sunscreen game since the start—and all that experience has clearly paid off with this latest offering. The SPF 50, water-resistant formula offers plenty of protection and won’t leave a white cast after application.
Shampoos and Conditioners
Best Shampoo for Dry or Damaged Hair: Aveeno Hair Plant Protein Blend Shampoo
Using the colloidal oatmeal that made the brand name a household mainstay, this moisturizing shampoo has a floral scent that our tester loved. That, plus soft, bouncy hair made this product an instant winner in our books.
Best Shampoo for Color-Treated Hair: John Frieda Vibrant Shine Color Shine Shampoo
Our tester said their hair was left shiny and “easy to style” after using this color-protective shampoo that adds moisture and helps to keep dyed hair looking vibrant and fresh—never dull.
Best Dandruff Shampoo for Natural Hair: Cantu Guava & Ginger Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Infused with guava, ginger, apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil, and menthol, this anti-dandruff shampoo checked all the boxes from both our dermatologists and the testers who used it. Bonus: This shampoo is also formulated with salicylic acid.
Best Dandruff Shampoo: Neutrogena Scalp Therapy Anti-Dandruff Itchy Scalp
Our tester noted they felt an “instant cooling” sensation upon application of this shampoo. Those with a dry scalp will also enjoy that this product is packed with moisturizing ingredients that will help solve dandruff problems stat.
Best Daily Conditioner: Pantene Daily Moisture Renewal Conditioner
Lifeless strands get a much-needed wake-up call with this moisturizing conditioner that is designed to bring life back to dull hair. Our testers loved the floral scent and that the product left their hair feeling instantly silky.
Best Conditioner for Oily Hair: Head & Shoulders Supreme Detox & Hydrate Shampoo and Conditioner
This sulfate-free shampoo is formulated with coconut water and designed to leave hair feeling refreshed and moisture-rich.
Best Conditioner for Dry or Sensitive Scalp: Canviiy ScalpBliss Moisture + Repair Organic-Based Daily Conditioner with Aloe Vera & Vitamin E
Though not everyone was a fan of the sweet vanilla scent of this conditioner—not to worry, the scent fades after rinsing and styling—the results of the product speak for themselves. Hair felt softer to the touch and detangling was a breeze.
Best Conditioner for Dry or Damaged Hair: Mielle Organics Oats & Honey Soothing Conditioner
This creamy balm dissolved effortlessly into hair and left a subtle, sweet, honey scent that lasted for hours. The conditioner is gentle on hair and scalp, making it perfect for a variety of needs.
Best Detangling Conditioner: Creme of Nature Butter Blend & Flaxseed Double Duty Detangle & Slip Rinse-Out and Leave-in Conditioner
Adding elasticity, softness, and great slip, this conditioner was made for anyone who struggles to get their hair successfully detangled after every wash. Formulated without sulfates, mineral oil, and petroleum, it’s also perfect for those who are ingredient minimalists.
Best Conditioner for Natural Hair: Dark & Lovely Blowout Moisture Treat Deep Conditioner
If your hair is in need of some moisture repair, this might just become your new go-to. Made for all curl types, this conditioner left our testers’ hair feeling soft and bouncy.
Best Co-Wash: Function of Beauty Coily Hair Co-Wash Base with Shea Butter
Our testers said the shea butter in this co-wash truly made it feel moisturizing and also a great option for those with coily hair. Testers also loved that the mild scent was fresh, without being overpowering.
Hair Styling Products and Tools
Best Paddle Brush: Goody Go Gentle Infusion Paddle Brush
Perfect for anyone who is prone to frizzy hair, our tester also noted this brush was great at providing a little scalp massage while detangling. With a mix of vegan boar and ball-tipped bristles, the brush also offers the best of both worlds, delivering shine and smoothness.
Best Detangler for Natural Hair: NOU No Damage Detangler
This detangler is designed to provide extra slip for those who need it most—without causing any damage to hair. Formulated without parabens, sulfates, or dyes, you can skip the rinse, and simply use a wide-tooth comb to brush and then style.
Best Cream for Twist-Outs, Braids, and Protective Styles: TWIST by Ouidad Stretch Seeker 3-in-1 Curl Stretching Cream
Delivering a light hold, so your coils and curls stay defined without being weighed down, testers said this stretching cream delivered on its promise of zero crunch and no white residue.
Best Mask for Natural or Curly Hair: Carol’s Daughter Goddess Strength Cocoon Hydrating Hair Mask
This hydrating hair mask is designed to repair existing damage, lock in moisture, and help protect your locks from future breakage. If you’re looking for a new addition to your “self-care Sunday” ritual, we highly recommend this one—which you’ll let sit for five minutes after shampooing and conditioning.