ALDI has launched a range of candles to challenge posh perfumier Jo Malone.
They have near-identical styling and scents but cost just £3.99 – £40 less than the upmarket line.
No wonder shoppers are rushing to snap them up. Thrifty buyers have even been re-selling their Aldi buys on eBay for huge mark-ups.
Here, JENNY FRANCIS compares the thrifty pretenders with designer favourites.
No 3 Pomegranate Noir candle (£3.99, Aldi)
Pomegranate Noir candle (£44, Jo Malone)
Aldi’s candle looks just as impressive on my bedroom shelf as Jo Malone’s and both have a pomegranate scent.
But I burned both for two hours and the Jo Malone one proved worthy of its price tag. Aldi’s burnt down in the centre but failed to melt all the wax, while the Jo Malone candle melted evenly.
Also, Aldi’s has a nice, fresh aroma but Jo Malone’s burns with a stronger, much more powerful scent.
Ballycastle (£4.29, Aldi)
Baileys (£12, Waitrose)
I’ve had many a Baileys in my life, so I didn’t expect a budget brand to compare. I was wrong – it was almost impossible to differentiate between the two.
In fact, after a good few sips, Ballycastle won my vote, as it is creamier – and cheaper.
Choceur milk chocolate bunny (79p, Aldi)
Lindt Gold milk choc bunny (£2.99, Waitrose)
The Lindt bunny was everything my sweet-loving tastebuds want but I was nicely surprised to find Aldi’s version just as creamy, chocolatey and smooth as its pricey equivalent.
Lacura Cellular Skin Science eye gel (£5.99, Aldi)
Clinique Smart custom-repair eye treatment (£39, Debenhams)
Clinique’s gel is white, Aldi’s clear. I used Clinique’s on one eye and Aldi’s on the other for seven days, twice a day.
Clinique’s settled into my skin more easily than Aldi’s – and after a week, while both eyes were noticeably brighter, the pricier product had firmed up my skin better and got rid of some fine lines.
Cien orange and bergamot hand wash (95p, Lidl)
Molton Brown orange and bergamot hand wash (£18, Molton Brown)
Lidl’s alternative to Molton Brown comes in a similarly designed bottle and smells near-identical.
Both lathered well and the smell stayed on my hands for hours.
Given the huge price gap, Lidl is the clear winner.
Cien cell-regenerating night cream (£3.49, Lidl)
Clarins super-restorative night cream (£76, House of Fraser)
Many women swear by Clarins’ cream, while Lidl’s is so popular it is being sold on eBay for £20 – more than five times its retail price.
The two share many ingredients. Clarins’ rubbed in nicely, had a pleasing scent and my skin looked brighter when I woke up. Lidl’s was thick and feels expensive. After a week, my face felt noticeably softer and hydrated.
Coco Loco coconut oil (£2.49, Aldi)
Vita Coco coconut oil (£4.99, Holland and Barrett)
The ultimate health-food craze, coconut oil is not the cheapest thing to stock your cupboards with.
Aldi’s Coco Loco was indistinguishable from the branded oil. Whether I was rubbing it on my skin as make-up remover, using it as a hand cream or cooking with it, I could not tell one from the other – but for the price.
Set of make-up brushes (£1, Poundland)
No7 Core Collection brush set (£23, Boots)
Neither felt high-end, but both did the job and applied my make-up reasonably evenly without feeling scratchy on my skin or shedding bristles.
With such a difference in price, Poundland has to be our winner.
Deep Cleansing nose strips (£1 for six, Poundland)
Bioré ultra-deep cleansing pore strips (£8.39 for six, Boots)
Bioré pore strips do the job perfectly, but Poundland’s are identical.
Not only do they look the same, they are just as effective.
It’s definitely not worth forking out an extra £7.39 for the pricier version, so Poundland is the winner.
Suddenly Madame Glamour perfume (£3.99, Lidl)
Chanel Coco Mademoiselle perfume (£70, House of Fraser)
The bottle designs are alike – and when you first spray it on, Lidl’s smells surprisingly similar.
But within just 15 minutes, Lidl’s scent is very faint on my wrist while Chanel’s smells just as strong as it did when I first sprayed it – and five hours later.
Lacura Cellular Science day cream (£6.99, Aldi)
No7 Lift & Luminate day cream (£24.95, Boots)
The list of creams on the market is so long, how do you know which to buy? No7’s Lift & Luminate is glorious. It glides on to the skin and, after using it for a week, I noticed a much more even, bright skin tone.
But Aldi’s Lacura cream is nearly four times cheaper than the No7. Thick and soft, it left my face just as even and bright but noticeably softer.
Alcafe Ristretto coffee pods (£1.79, Aldi)
Ristretto coffee pods ( £3.10, Nespresso)
The price tag alone was almost enough to sway me to give Aldi the nod – and after the taste test it was extremely close.
But Nespresso just had the edge, with a smoother and less bitter taste.
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