Style & Beauty

Beauty Products Doing Double Duty

Discover 14 products that save you time, space, and money

By Lola Augustine Brown


These days, there’s a product for every beauty issue and part of our bodies, and our bulging bathroom cabinets and makeup bags bear testament to this. But what if you could streamline the products you use and spend less cash to get the same results? Multi-function beauty products save us space, money, and time and are by their nature more environmentally friendly to boot. Here are 14 great products with multiple uses.

Smith’s Rosebud Salve. First manufactured in 1892, this delightful rose-scented salve is a cult beauty product that you’ll find sold everywhere from your drugstore to boutiques. Sold in a pretty little tin for around $10, this salve works great as a lip balm and for moisturizing any extra-dry body parts (try it on your elbows), but it also calms irritation and is said to soothe minor burns.

Kiehl’s Body Fuel All-In-One Energizing Wash. Though marketed as a men’s product, this tingly wash (thanks to the menthol, caffeine, and vitamins C and E in its formulation) is an instant wake-up in a bottle for anyone who loves products with a bit of zing. It serves as shampoo, body wash, and facial cleanser, leaving you feeling fresh and clean all over. Though a bit pricey at $27 for 250 mL, a bottle used sparingly could last for as long as six months—because you really don’t need much to get the job done.

Glossier Cloud Paint ($22). Packaged in tubes like oil paints, this gel-cream tint is perfect for adding a little—or a lot, if you prefer—of colour to your lips, cheeks, or eyes. Available in six flattering shades, this product is designed to be applied easily with your fingers.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Skin Protectant. This legendary product was launched in 1930 and remains a favourite of fans the world over. Providing long-lasting moisture and known for being especially good on chapped lips and irritated skin, it can be used to shape brows, smooth cuticles, and add a little sheen to your nails. This cosmetic-bag essential runs at around $29 for a 50 mL tube.

Coconut oil. Available at supermarkets everywhere at very little cost, coconut oil is a beauty miracle product that leaves you smelling like summer. Use it as an intensive body moisturizer, a hair treatment (apply from roots to ends, then wrap your hair in a towel for 15 minutes before shampooing), a body scrub (mix a tablespoon of sugar, salt, or coffee grounds with a tablespoon of coconut oil), an eye-makeup remover, or a shaving balm.

NARS The Multiple ($49). Available in dozens of flattering shades, The Multiple is a stick of colour to swipe on lips, cheeks, and eyes and to highlight the face and body (depending on the shade you choose, of course). The chubby stick aids easy application and is perfect for those who prefer to look like they aren’t wearing much makeup but want to brighten their complexion a little.

Aveda Beautifying Composition Oil. This sweet-smelling mix of olive and safflower oils can be used as a moisturizer, luxurious bath oil, hair and scalp treatment, and massage oil. Non-greasy and light, this product absorbs well, leaving skin feeling soft and luxuriant. Fans of this product also say it’s great for removing waterproof makeup and healing cracked gardening hands—plus it’s helpful in treating psoriasis. Grab a 50 mL bottle for $44.

Clarins 4-Colour All-in-One Pen ($35). You can line both your eyes and your pout with this one handy tool. Resembling one of those multicolour pens we loved to click repeatedly in high school, each has two shades of eyeliner and two shades of lipliner, with three colour combos to choose from.

Vaseline. There are dozens of uses for this classic product, and you’ve likely used it for a few of them over the years. Vaseline moisturizes chapped lips and cracked skin, forms a barrier between your hair dye and your hairline, tames unruly eyebrows, takes off makeup and even eyelash glue, makes a great night cream, conditions cuticles, and more. Tubes and tins of this versatile stuff cost just a few dollars.

The Body Shop Amazonian Saviour Multi-Purpose Balm ($15). This nourishing balm made with organic oils from Brazil (hence the name) helps even out your skin’s appearance and reduce skin imperfections, and it’s also great for helping tattoos and surgery scars heal. Super-moisturizing, it really helps with chapped lips and winter-dry skin.

Philosophy Shampoo, Shower Gel & Bubble Bath ($24). This line comes in an array of relaxing scents, such as Vanilla Cupcake, Coconut Frosting, Cinnamon Bun, and Señorita Margarita, all of which smell amazing.

It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Full Coverage Anti-Aging Waterproof Concealer ($35). Available in more than 40 shades, this product will be your new best friend if you have dark circles under your eyes. Full of moisturizing ingredients (traditional concealers can leave your skin dry, which is the last thing your delicate under-eye skin needs), this highly effective concealer acts as an eye cream and also contains SPF.

Acure Seriously Soothing Solid Serum 3in1 ($22). This rich, organic, vegan concentrated serum can be slathered on as a super-luxurious hydrating night cream and dabbed on dry and chapped bits of your face and body. It’s also a gentle cleansing balm that removes stubborn makeup. For those with sensitive, more mature skin, this product is perfect.

Yves Rocher Sebo Végétal 4-in-1 Moisturizing Blemish Care ($35). Acne and wrinkles are a depressing combination. This multi-function product moisturizes while addressing acne and imperfections, thanks to the inclusion of “Canadian Boreal Tea Powder” and a 100 per cent botanical salicylic acid (a common ingredient in topical acne treatments). It also helps to reduce the appearance of scars.

Photo: iStock/Davizro.