Good Girlfriends Share: Beauty Favorites

In the fall I spent a weekend with my college girlfriends and as is often the case, the conversation turned to beauty products.  I love beauty products and makeup and the thrill of trying new things, but even more than that, I love discovering them through recommendations from friends whose style I admire. Products that doesn’t live up to the hype from the salesperson or the magazine are such a downer.

So I’ve learned to listen to my girlfriends, the kind who  will share their beauty triumphs and failures , and won’t steer you wrong.

Below , I share the recommendations of my college friends,  added some hot tips from my local crew,  and added my personal favorites.

Enjoy! And post your favorites in the comment section.

Good girlfriends share.


Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser, Normal to Oily Skin – 8 fl oz – After years of using harsh and expensive cleansers this gentle cleanser is all I use anymore. And a Buf-Puf by 3M Facial Sponge Regular, 5 Pack for exfoliation.

Strivectin NIA114 – My friend Jennifer turned me on to this and after trying a sample size from Ulta, I made the commitment. The smell is nice and it can go on under make up or moisturizer. It makes my skin feel elastic and smooth and not so crepey and oldish.

Revision Nectifirm, 1.7 Ounce– Use this on your neck and around the jaw line morning and night.  Jennifer says “If you have a double chin or seriously sagging skin, the knife is the answer.  But for minor tightening, this jar will do ya.” Anything to hold back the clock.


Bobbi Brown Bobbi Brown Extra Soothing Balm – .5 oz-Jane says this is “great for keeping lips and cuticles soft.  She also mixes it with cream blushes for a more sheer wash of color.  Patting a tiny bit around the outside of your eye give you a nice “dewy” look.”


Image Skincare Vital C Hydrating Repair Creme, 2 Ounce – Jane likes this night time moisturizer that “leaves my skin feeling soft and hydrated.” She also likes the Image skincare Vital C Hydrating Anti Aging Serum, 1.7 Fluid Ounce.

More than one friend admitted to regular use of Jergens Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer, Fair to Medium, 10 Ounce.



Bobbi Brown Skin Foundation SPF 15 4 Natural my friend Miriam says “Love the coverage” (by the way who are these people who want sheer, light coverage? ) Miriam also loves the Bobbi Brown Tinted Eye Brightener Light Bisque 2 0.2 oz.

Bobbi Brown Illuminating Bronzing Powder Antigua Miriam says “For the winter doldrums” but I never met a bronzer I didn’t like, no matter the season.

Maybelline Dream Liquid Mousse Foundation- CLASSIC IVORY (LIGHT 2) – this drugstore brand is hard to beat for price and coverage for every day wear. I get multiple colors to blend to take me through the seasons. And lately I have been using L’Oreal Paris Cosmetics Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation Makeup, Shell Beige, 1 Fluid Ounce.


Bobbi Brown Mini Long Wear Cream Shadow Stick Trio– Jane sticks with the lighter colors.  “They are quick way to open up my eyes and look finished by just putting a thin line above my lash line.”

BOOM! By Cindy Joseph BOOMSTICK COLOR and SHIMMER – Natural, healthy looking color on the run.  Either creamy twist-up stick can be used for eyes and lips, the color for cheeks and shimmer for highlighting on your face or neck and shoulders.

I’m obsessed with  L’Oreal Magic Lumi Primer, Full Size, 0.68 Ounce for a subtle glow under foundation.


Guerlain Noir Maxi Lash Volume Creating Curl Sculpting Mascara 01 Noir – my friend Katherine knows how much I love mascara. She  had read about this one and recommended it to me after  she had given it a go. I don’t usually go for the style of brush that this one uses (the rubbery spikey variety) and I had to get over the rose scent (“can you smell my eyelashes?”) but I love the look.

BOOTS No7 Exceptional Definition Mascara Black– My friend Jennifer says “This is the perfect lengthening mascara.  Well, perfect for those of us who don’t want to look like you have spider legs sticking out of your eyelids.  The definition is precise – clump free.  And, it is waterproof.  I have found it to have greater staying power than almost any other mascara.”  There’s also BOOTS No7 Maximum Volume Mascara Black which is great for a more dramatic look.”

My uber chic friend Jane ‘s pick is blinc Mascara Amplified, Black. She says “Continues to be the one thing that I would take to the desert island – I would sneak in an eyelash curler any way that I could.  It perfectly lengthens and fills out my lashes without every leaving a smudge under my eye.  It comes off with warm water, when I am ready to take it off, AND still not smudging.”

Jane likes Bare Escentuals BareMinerals Brow Color – Dark Blonde/Medium Brown, 0.01 Ounce. She uses it with an angled Sephora brush to “pencil” in brows (where are our eyebrows fading away to anyway?) When I am in a hurry I use Maybelline New York Eyestudio Brow Drama Sculpting Brow Mascara, Soft Brown, 0.23 Fluid Ounce.

NOT SO MUCH –Jane says “I just got the new Bobbi Brown Eye Opening Mascara.  I do not like it at all. The brush is too big, the mascara is too goopy and I look like Tammy Fae. Yuck.  One of the reps told me that everyone hates it.”


Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm, Red Dhalia, 0.15 Ounce, (Pack of 2)– Love, Love, Love this.  It goes on sheer with just the perfect touch of color – great for the “no make-up” style noted above.  And, 100% natural.

Neutrogena Moisturesmooth Color Stick, 110/Almond Nude, 0.011 Ounce – Jane turned me on to these. She says she has “just about every color and I keep them everywhere.  In the car, my purse, my workbag, gym locker.  They are a nice balm with a sheer wash of color that lasts.”  This is one of my favorite colors.



You all know that my number one all time beauty product is ORIBE Hair Care Dry Texturizing Spray, 8.5 fl. oz..  It gives hair texture and volume and smells great. It adds just enough “grit” that hair will actually do what you want.

Jennifer likes John Frieda Luxurious Volume Fine to Full Blow Out Spray, 4 Fluid Ounce –  “For those of us not lucky enough to have a full, luxurious mane of hair, John Frieda comes to the rescue.  Well, sort of.  Let’s be honest girls, there is only so much a product can do.  But, this one does deliver a noticeable improvement.  I also love the shampoo and conditioner in the same line.”


NOT SO MUCH: I fell for the gimmicky powder to liquid formula of  AVEDA PURE ABUNDANCE HAIR POTION .7 OZ. I’m a sucker for anything volumizing but this just doesn’t work for me. Maybe it was user error, it is a unique formula that probably takes some getting used to, but I was not a fan.


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