Photo: CykaHotFire

Initially, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive was merely a hollow project for Valve to amass Counter-Strike 1.6 and Counter-Strike: Source players. The primary objective was to deliberate upon the ever divergent communities and blend them into a common game with a definite intent.

Until a year after its release, CS:GO wasn’t even the most popular version of Counter-Strike franchise, let alone being what it is today – most popular first-person shooter title. Here is how animated skins and lavish knives altered the fortunes of CS:GO while saving it from a colossal debacle.

Aesthetic skins might have initiated the boom for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive in 2013 and succeeding years. But, the insertion of skins led to the creation of an underground cabal for gambling and betting industry that eventually did wonders.

The industry was at its peak in 2016 when the bubble was burst, compelling Valve to take necessary actions. Critics, however, claim that Valve at first turned a blind eye apparently because the growth of gambling and betting industry was, in turn, beneficial for CS:GO.

Today, the game has broken records after records. After the release of Operation Shattered Web, CS:GO broke the all time concurrent player count record of DotA 2 (1.29M). In April 2020, CS:GO concurrent player count peaked at 1.3M users.

Besides the constancy and growth, the esport side of CS:GO is no less. The game has a healthy and highly competitive scene with multiple tournament organizers and a couple of Valve sponsored major events each year. It is also regarded as one of the most, if not the most, spectator friendly esports title.

But, this isn’t why you’re here. Let us quickly begin the guide that includes some of the best CS:GO skins under $10 for the low-budget skin enthusiasts.

Pistols

USP-S

USP-S Cortex Large Rendering | Идеи для рисунков, Искусство, Игры
  • Our Pick: Cortex
  • Other Options to look out for: Cyrex & Stainless

Glock

  • Our Pick: Water Elemental
  • Other Options to look out for: Wasteland Rebel & Nuclear Garden

Dual Berettas

  • Our Pick: Royal Consorts
  • Other Options to look out for: Cobra Strike & Duelist

P250

  • Our Pick: See Ya Later
  • Other Options to look out for: Asiimov & Mehndi

CZ75-Auto

  • Our Pick: Xiangliu
  • Other Options to look out for: Victoria & The Fuschia Is Now

Five-SeveN

  • Our Pick: Angry Mob
  • Other Options to look out for: Money Business & Fowl Play

Tec-9

  • Our Pick: Decimator
  • Other Options to look out for: Remote Control & Avalanche

Desert Eagle

  • Our Pick: Kumicho Dragon
  • Other Options to look out for: Light Rail & Conspiracy

Heavy

Nova

  • Our Pick: Hyper Beast
  • Other Options to look out for: Graphite & Bloomstick

XM1014

  • Our Pick: Tranquility
  • Other Options to look out for: Incinegator & Teclu Burner

MAG-7

  • Our Pick: Justice
  • Other Options to look out for: Bulldozer & SWAG-7

M249

  • Our Pick: Nebula Crusader
  • Other Options to look out for: Spectre & System Lock

Negev

  • Our Pick: Power Loader
  • Other Options to look out for: Loud Mouth & Dazzle

SMGs

MP9

  • Our Pick: Hydra
  • Other Options to look out for: Rose Iron & Hypnotic

MAC-10

  • Our Pick: Neon Rider
  • Other Options to look out for: Disco Tech & Curse

MP7

Steam Workshop :: BLOODSPORT - MP7
  • Our Pick: Bloodsport
  • Other Options to look out for: Nemesis & Cirrus

MP5-SD

  • Our Pick: Phosphor
  • Other Options to look out for: Co-Processor & Agent

UMP-45

  • Our Pick: Primal Saber
  • Other Options to look out for: Momentum & Scaffold

P90

  • Our Pick: Asiimov
  • Other Options to look out for: Trigon & Nostalgia

PP-Bizon

  • Our Pick: Fuel Rod
  • Other Options to look out for: Judgement of Anubis & Embargo

Rifles

FAMAS

  • Our Pick: Eye of Athena
  • Other Options to look out for: Commemoration & Roll Cage

Galil AR

  • Our Pick: Sugar Rush
  • Other Options to look out for: Stone Cold & Cerberus

M4A1-S

  • Our Pick: Nightmare
  • Other Options to look out for: Decimator & Cyrex

M4A4

  • Our Pick: 龍王 (Dragon King)
  • Other Options to look out for: Desolate Space & Griffin

AK-47

  • Our Pick: Redline
  • Other Options to look out for: Orbit & Emerald Pinstripe

SSG 08

  • Our Pick: Bloodshot
  • Other Options to look out for: Big Iron & Death’s Head

AUG

  • Our Pick: Momentum
  • Other Options to look out for: Chameleon & Stymphalian

SG 553

  • Our Pick: Colony IV
  • Other Options to look out for: Tiger Moth & Darkwing

AWP

  • Our Pick: Mortis
  • Other Options to look out for: Atheris & Fever Dream

SCAR-20

  • Our Pick: Cardiac
  • Other Options to look out for: Bloodsport & Emerald

G3SG1

  • Our Pick: Flux
  • Other Options to look out for: The Executioner & Stinge

The author intends to emphasize the preference for Field-Tested (FT) quality of the aforementioned skins. FT variant for the majority of the skins with decent float value (<0.20) is effortlessly obtainable. The opinion of the readers may vary, however, the author has strived to ally with the generality.