Affordable Skin Care Routine For Your 20s


Kim Chwalek

Food & Home
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I'm a Denver based blogger, author, and content creator with a passion for beauty, faith, food & home, style, travel, and well-being. Start your journey to living a more mindful, faith-filled, and sustainable life here.

Hi, I'm Kim


Now is the time to skimp on serums, moisturizers, or SPF! Skin care is all about prevention, and affordable skin care for your 20s can do wonders in helping you achieve smooth, glowing skin. When protected from pesky blemishes, sun damage, fine lines, and wrinkles, your skin will thank you. Scroll down to explore top-rated and affordable skin care for your 20s products, all under $20! There’s also a bonus feature at the end: five extra steps for those who want to take their skin care routine to the next level!

Affordable Skin Care for Your 20s (1)

Step 1: Cleanse

Remove makeup, dirt, oil, and impurities

Affordable Skin Care for Your 20s (2)

1. Aveeno Positively Radiant Skin Brightening Daily Scrub

$5.89 | Size: 5oz | Rating: 4.6/5 | Benefits: Exfoliating, BrighteningThis daily facial scrub gently exfoliates skin to reveal brighter, more radiant skin.

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2. CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser

$14.99 | Size: 12oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Hydrating, Moisturizing, Fragrance-Free

A replenishing and fortifying cleanser that helps reinforce the skin’s barrier. Ceramides hydrate and repair the skin barrier, while other ingredients moisturize.

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3. La Roche-Posay Hydrating Gentle Cleanser

$14.99 | Size: 6.7oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Hydrating, Purifying

This hydrating cleanser gently removes makeup, dirt, oil, and other impurities for a smooth and refreshed complexion.

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4. Matcha Hemp Hydrating Cleanser

$16 | Size: 4oz | Rating: 4.8/5 | Features: Hydrating, Antioxidant Rich

Formulated with nourishing matcha and hemp seed oil, this hydrating cleanser uses coconut-based surfactants to break down oil- and water-based impurities gently.

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5. Milky Jelly Cleanser

$18 | Size: 6oz | Rating: 4.3/5 | Features: Nourishing, Soothing, Purifying

A creamy gel face wash that’s kind to every skin type. Formulated with five skin conditioners, including Allantoin and Pro-Vitamin B5, to leave your skin baby soft.

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Step 2: Toner

Purify your skin and minimize pores

Affordable Skin Care for Your 20s (3)

1. Public Goods Witch Hazel Toner

$5 | Size: 6.7oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Soothing, Acne Treatment, Safe for Sensitive Skin

Made with organic aloe vera, this witch hazel toner is safe for sensitive skin and perfect for a D.I.Y. face wash, makeup remover, deodorant, and acne cleanser.

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2. The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution

$8.70 | Size: 8oz | Rating: 4.4/5 | Features: Exfoliating

An exfoliating toning solution formulated with seven percent glycolic acid, amino acids, aloe vera, ginseng, and Tasmanian pepperberry.

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3. The INKEY List Glycolic Acid Exfoliating Toner

$10.99 | Size: 3.4oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Features: Exfoliating, Brightening

A 10 percent glycolic acid exfoliating toner helps reduce the appearance of pores and fine lines for smoother, brighter skin.

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4. Glow Recipe Mini Watermelon Glow PHA +BHA Pore-Tight Toner

$15 | Size: 1.35oz | Rating: 4.4/5 | Benefits: Hydrating

A bestselling, gentle, PHA- and BHA-infused watermelon toner that hydrates skin and minimizes the appearance of pores.

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5. Innisfree Balancing Toner with Green Tea

$17 | Size: 6.7oz | Rating: 4.8/5 | Features: Hydrating

A refreshing watery-gel toner that replenishes skin with lightweight hydration from Jeju green tea.

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Step 3: Serum

Hydrate skin, reduce blemishes and prevent aging

Affordable Skin Care for Your 20s (4)

1. The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%

$5.90 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.3/5 | Features: Purifying, Acne Treatment

The perfect addition to our affordable skin care for your 20s list: a high-strength vitamin-and-mineral blemish formula with 10 percent pure niacinamide and one percent zinc PCA.

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2. Superfuel Serum Stick

$12.99 | Size: 0.77oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Features: Soothing, Cooling

Superfuel Serum Stick keeps skin strong, glowy, and ready for anything by boosting your protective microbiome.

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3. Ohii Skin Quench Spray Serum

$14 | Size: 3.4oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Benefits: Soothing, Hydrating, Moisturizing

A few spritzes of Ohii Skin Quench deliver pumped-up hydration in a lightweight formula packed with nourishing ingredients you’ll love.

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4. Naturium Niacinamide Serum 12% Plus Zinc 2%

$16 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.6/5 | Features: Purifying

A concentrated serum formulated with pure 12% niacinamide and 2% zinc PCA to help improve uneven skin tone and minimize the look of pores and fine lines.

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5. Just Breathe Clarifying Serum

$19.99 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Purifying, Acne Treatment

This serum is designed to clear acne and manage excess pore-clogging sebum. The dynamic trio of willow bark extract, niacinamide, and a zinc blend work together to calm inflammation, decongest pores and soothe redness.

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Step 4: Moisturize

For hydrated, healthy, and glowing skin

Affordable Skin Care for Your 20s (5)

1. The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA

$7. 70 | Size: 3.3oz | Rating: 4.1/5 | Features: Hydrating

A hydrating formula with amino acids, dermal lipids, and hyaluronic acid.

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2. Flamingo Deep Nourishing Cream

$10 | Size: 10oz | Rating: 4.6/5 | Features: Hydrating, Exfoliating

Get intense hydration with this rich cream! Squalane and shea butter reinforce the skin’s barrier, vitamin E builds an antioxidant shield, and white willow bark and papaya extract exfoliate the skin’s surface, revealing more radiant skin over time.

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3. Clarifying Prebiotic Moisturizer

$12.99 | Size: 2.3oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Purifying, Smoothing, Softening

The pore-purifying prebiotic-charged moisturizer fuels skin to keep you feeling clear, balanced, and totally in control.Shop Now

4. Skin Soak

$17.99 | Size: 3.4oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Benefits: Soothing, Hydrating, Moisturizing

Enriched with refreshing ingredients like algae extract, vitamin E, and squalane, this rich moisture cream keeps skin nourished and hydrated while reducing signs of aging.

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5. Bloom Cream Daily Probiotic Moisturizer

$18 | Size: 1.69oz | Rating: 4.6/5 | Features: Moisturizing, Probiotic-Rich

Feed your living skin’s microbiome a shot of our unique probiotic complex to restore healthy, youthful radiance and see your skin in full bloom.

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Step 5: Protect

Keep your complexion even and prevent aging

Affordable Skin Care for Your 20s (6)

1. SuperGoop PLAY Everyday Lotion SPF 50

$10 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.6/5 | Features: Suitable for All Skin TypesThis hydrating, fast-absorbing formula provides high-performance protection from UVA, UVB, and IRA rays while also helping prevent photoaging and dehydration.

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2. Innisfree Daily UV Defense Sunscreen SPF 36

$15 | Size: 1.69oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Hydrating, Soothing

A lightweight, water-based SPF 36 sunscreen infused with green tea, cica, and sunflower seed oil to hydrate, soothe and protect your skin.

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3. Hello Sunday Serum Face Drops SPF45

$18.55 | Size: 3.3oz | Rating: 4.0/5 | Features: Calming

Designed to prep and protect skin in one application, this lightweight moisturizing serum provides broad protection against UVA and UVB rays, which can cause sun damage and aging.

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4. MaeLove Sun Protector SPF30

$19.95 | Size: 2oz | Rating: 5/5 | Features: Free-Radical Protection

Fortified with Vitamins C and E, this 100% mineral sunscreen is silky smooth and light as air. It also doubles as a makeup primer, simplifying your morning routine!

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5. Hero Superlight Sunscreen SPF 30

$19.99 | Size: 1.69oz | Rating: 4.8/5 | Benefits: Made for Acne-Prone Skin

Everyday effortless SPF 30. Airy-light, breathable, and made specifically for acne-prone skin. It absorbs quickly with a weightless gel-cream formula that’s hydrating but not greasy.

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Add-On 1: Exfoliate

For a radiant, glowing complexion

Add-On 1

1. Alba Botanica Even & Bright Enzyme Scrub

$6.79 | Size: 4oz | Rating: 4.6/5 | Features: Exfoliating, Brightening, Antioxidant-Rich, Skin Tone Improvement

This gentle scrub fights off dull, dry skin for a smooth, even complexion. It contains seven plant extracts harvested high in the Swiss Alps for brightening benefits.

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2. Exfoliating Jelly Cleanser

$12.99 | Size: 5oz | Rating: 4.8/5 | Features: Exfoliating, Brightening, Acne Treatment

This cleanser unclogs pores, visibly brightens skin, and evens texture–leaving your skin feeling soft!

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3. The Microdelivery Exfoliating Facial Wash

$19 | Size: 4oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Features: Exfoliating, Brightening, Skin Texture Improvement

Award-winning micro delivery “30-second cleansing mini peel” gently buffs away dead skin and impurities to reveal a smoother, brighter, more even complexion.

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Add-On 2: Retinol

Fight acne, reduce dark spots, and brighten skin

Add-On 2

1. The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid

$9.80 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Features: Improves Skin Texture, Reduces Signs of Aging

A next-generation retinoid active that achieves a better reduction in visible signs of aging than retinol—without irritation.

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2. RegenaCalm Serum S1 Pro

$13.99 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Enhances Skin Tone, Hydrating, Brightening

Regenacalm S1 Pro is formulated with 3% encapsulated retinoid to target fine lines, wrinkles, blemishes, acne scars, and hyperpigmentation.

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3. Indeed Labs Retinol Reface Resurfacing Night Cream 

$19.99 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Enhances Skin Tone, Hydrating, Brightening

The Indeed Labs Retinol Reface Serum is a 3-in-1 formula combining retinol, bakuchiol, and a retinol-like peptide for softer, smoother, younger-looking skin.

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Add-On 3: Eye Cream

Nourish your skin to prevent dark circles and aging

Add-On 3

1. Yerba Mate Wake Up Eye Gel

$6 | Size: 0.3oz | Rating: 4.8/5 | Features: Cooling, Hydrating

This soothing eye gel from Good Molecules is rich in yerba mate extract, a natural source of antioxidants and polyphenols that fight oxidative damage for brighter, more radiant skin.

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2. DHC Concentrated Eye Cream Mini

$7 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: For Fine Lines and Crow’s Feet

An emollient eye cream that diminishes dark circles, fine lines and crow’s feet.

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3. Lumene Nordic-C Bright Eyes Eye Treatment

$14.99 | Size: 0.14oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Features: For Aging Skin and Dark Circles

This unique brightening eye treatment is designed to diminish the appearance of dark circles, puffiness and wrinkles.

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Add-On 4: Spot Treatment

Deliver acne-fighting ingredients

Add-On 4

1. Almay Clear Complexion Blemish Armor 

$9.99 | Size: 0.13oz | Rating: 4.3/5 | Features: Enhances Skin Tone, Hydrating, Brightening

Almay Clear Complexion Blemish Armor is a liquid spot treatment that treats existing blemishes and prevents new ones from forming.

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2. Cocokind Turmeric Tonic 

$10.99 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Features: Acne Treatment, Skin Texture Improvement

This invisible leave-on formula uses organic turmeric extract, ginger water, and tea tree oil to help you achieve a clear, smooth, even complexion.

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3. Kinship Pimple Potion Retinal + Salicylic Acne Treatment 

$19 | Size: 0.53oz | Rating: 4.4/5 | Features: Acne Treatment, Skin Texture Improvement

Kinship Pimple Potion Retinal +Salicylic Acne Treatment is a multi-use product that can be used as a spot or an all-over facial treatment to help clear, prevent acne and promote skin renewal.

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Add-On 5: Face Masks

Hydrate your skin, and remove excess oils

Add-On 5

1. Original Skin Retexturizing Mask With Rose Clay

$14 | Size: 1oz | Rating: 4.4/5 | Features: Purifying, Exfoliating

A Rose Clay mask that retexturizes skin and deep cleans to perfect pores for a naturally flawless look.

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2. Green Tea Face Mask MK2 

$16.99 | Size: 2oz | Rating: 4.7/5 | Features: Hydrating, Brightening, Balancing

This ultraventilated facial mask with superfine French clay, premium face oils, chamomile and green tea gently cleanses and balances without drying skin.

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3. Cocokind Sea Kale Clay Face Mask

$18.99 | Size: 2oz | Rating: 4.5/5 | Features: Brightening, Exfoliating

This face mask gently exfoliates to improves texture, leaving skin looking smooth and soft.

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Thanks for stopping by! If you enjoyed this post on affordable skin care for your 20s, check out 12 Best Mascaras for Naturally Long Lashes, 10 Clean + Sustainable Beauty Brands You Should Shop, and What’s in My Makeup Bag. Also, let me know your favorite affordable skin care for your 20s product is in the comments section below!

XO, Kim

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