From face wash and toners to serums and eye creams, the average American woman uses a minimum of 16 skincare products a day. Using 16 of anything on a daily basis adds up quickly not only in terms of clogged pores but also financially.

Saving Money on Skin Care

A 2017 study by SkinStore revealed that the average woman spends $8 a day on skin care. That’s nearly $3,000 a year. Do a quick Google search for the most expensive skincare product and you’ll find that 111Skin Celestial Black Diamond Cream costs a whopping $1,095. Yikes.

So, why do we spend so much money on skin care?

Some boil it down to sexy packaging. Others say its empty promises. In large part, experts advise consumers to look for evidence before splurging on the latest anti-aging cream. Trustworthy brands will conduct clinical trials and consumers can do their own research by looking up the active ingredients in a product. Before you buy, find out if there’s enough evidence that the active ingredient works the way it’s being marketed.

However, amid the wrinkle creams and face masks, there are some skincare products that you actually need and those come with a price tag, too. Take a look at the retail costs of some commonly prescribed skincare products:

  • Absorica costs $2,745
  • Tazorac costs $332
  • Retin-A costs $97

Fortunately, you can lower your out-of-pocket costs for prescription skincare products in just a few steps. First, you can request a generic. Generic medication is almost always cheaper than brand names with virtually no difference in efficacy. Here are the average retail costs of the generic versions of the products above:

  • Generic Absorica (Isotretinoin) costs $359
  • Generic Tazorac (tazarotene) costs $281
  • Generic Retin-A (tretinoin) costs $57

Always ask a pharmacist to compare the retail cost of a generic drug to your insurance copay. In many instances, the cost with insurance could still be higher than the cost without insurance.

For further savings, you can use a prescription discount card, like a SingleCare savings card. Prescription discount cards are not a replacement for health insurance but rather a free coupon that any and all customers can use to lower the cash price of their medication.

When most people hear “free” in regards to anything related to healthcare, they automatically think “scam.” So, is SingleCare a scam? Fortunately not. SingleCare is legit. It partners with 35,000 pharmacies—including big players like CVS and Walgreens—to help customers save up to 80% on 50,000 prescription drugs. Here’s a SingleCare review from customer Tressie Timerman on Facebook:

“I saved last night when I used the card for the first time at Walmart. Retin-A isn’t covered on my insurance so instead of paying $295 cash price, I paid $155 using your discount card. Thank you!”

You can find more SingleCare reviews around the web, on TrustPilot, and social media.

Here’s a quick recap of our tips for saving money on skin care:

  1. Narrow down your skincare products to the essentials. Find out what actually works and keep only what you really need.
  2. Ask for a generic version of your prescription skincare medicine.
  3. Compare the retail price of your prescription drug to your insurance copay. Choose the cheaper of the two.
    If your insurance copay is still too high, use a prescription discount card for a bigger discount.