Budget Beauty: Cleansing tools under P100 (seriously!)

Cleansing is the most basic and important part of any skincare routine. Even if you’re not into wearing makeup, it’s just the hygienic thing to do, especially if you don’t enjoy having painful breakouts or infections. Now, you can easily find good facial washes under P500 but if it feels like they’re not cleaning your face well enough, it might be time to pick up a tool to step up your facial cleansing routine!

Most of these cleansing aids can be used together with your facial wash of choice, or with just a bit of water if you just want to focus on exfoliation. And don’t you worry: everything is just P100 or less. We have a separate feature on sonic brush cleansing devices if you’re interested in that, but these cheap options are definitely worth your consideration.

Konjac Sponge

Don’t let its unassuming appearance fool you. This humble little sponge has been touted as Japan’s best-kept secret to perfect skin! It is made from fibers of the konjac potato (konnyaku) plant’s root, making it a truly all-natural cleansing tool. At first, I didn’t get why beauty superpowers like YouTube’s Kathleen Lights loved it - it just looked like a hard, odd lump to me. Then I soaked it in water, and the magic happened. It expanded into something that reminded me of a loofah, but is much gentler and has a weird but pleasant jelly-like texture. It exfoliates without irritating my sensitive skin and, when used with a bit of facial wash, creates a nice foamy texture.

I got mine for less than P100 pesos at Landmark Makati, and I think the same brand is available at BeautyMNL at a similar price point. There are also fancier ones available at Sephora.ph, which are infused with various minerals and/or clays. I really like its cleansing power but it has a very short shelf life as manufacturers recommend replacing this monthly.

Silicone Cleansing Pad

I spotted this for P88 at my favorite Daiso branch and thought it looked a wee bit like a Foreo! Of course, I had to do the “rotating and vibrating” myself but it works wonders when paired with a foamy facial wash. I definitely feel like my pores get a deeper clean, compared to using just my fingers.

 It’s effective, easy to use, and lasts a really long time. The konjac sponge is a gentler choice but silicone pads are sturdier and easier to clean and sanitize. I also use this with my fave blackhead balm, and it works great as a brush cleaner for smaller brushes. The one I got even has a suction cup behind it for no-brainer storage!

Pore Cleansing Brush

Of the tools listed here, this probably comes the closest to approximating the Clarisonic experience because it also relies on soft, dense brush bristles to give a deeper clean. Most Korean skin care brands have released their own version of this, in either synthetic or natural bristles. Mine is another cute, cheap find from Daiso (also P88), with synthetic bristles that admittedly could be much denser. If you’re thinking of getting one of these, make sure to check that the bristles are soft and not sharp!

To use, pour out your face wash onto your palm and use the wet brush to work it into a foamy lather. Apply the lather to your face and gently buff it in using circular strokes. Treat this like a toothbrush and replace regularly.

Microfiber Towel

We’ve been fascinated with The Makeup Eraser since including it in our list of makeup remover types but couldn’t bring ourselves to shell out the money. After a bit of research, we learned that it’s essentially a microfiber towel so we hunted for possible dupes! I found some good-sized microfiber towels at the SM Store (Home Department) for sale at three for P100 and quickly snapped them up.

When soaked in warm water, the towel is actually able to remove makeup even without the addition of facial wash (but I double cleanse after to be sure). I use it as a supplement to my cleansing regimen as I find that it does clean and exfoliate well. My only issue is that I have to wash and dry it like any other towel, so I need at least two in circulation.

If you’re looking to step up your cleansing game, one of these tools just might help get you there! Have you tried any of these handy helpers? What tools do you use to help remove gunk from your pores?