Top Five

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Top Five

A few readers contacted me regarding what products I use/recommend. It hit me that I never talk about that stuff here, so thought it might be fun to mix it up. I am by no means an expert, but as a copywriter for beauty brands, I've tried many products over the years and gleaned some useful (and usually cheap!) tips from makeup artists. When it comes to beauty products, I'm a monogamist. I don't know if it's because I'm a pathological minimalist by nature, or because I've learned that most beauty products are just "same stuff, different bottle." I've used the same products, or slight variations of those products for years, and I though I sometimes flirt with a perky eyeshadow or bat my lashes at some over-promising treatment, I don't think you'll find me chatting up the spiky-haired makeup artist at MAC any time soon. Here's my top five list: Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer I can't count the times I rolled my eyes when I saw this particular product featured. I pegged it as lazy editing, because it literally popped up in every issue of every magazine. It wasn't until I had a particularly horrid skin day (the kind where you go to the mall, catch a glimpse of yourself in florescent dressing room lighting and run), that a shameful skulk to the Laura Mercier counter proved I was wrong and everyone else was right. I couldn't look the sales woman in the eye for fear she somehow knew about the aforementioned eye rolling. But wham. Bam. Thank you for the fabulous foundation ma'am. I loved it from that day forward, and will never let myself run out. Benetint I'm a bit embarrassed that I like this product, because like Laura Mercier, Benetint had a cult following. But unlike Laura, Benetint hasn't maintained its following, and being obsessed with Benetint is akin to being obsessed with Benetton - a bit dated. But I'll take my chances with giggles and glances, because dammit, I really like it! I am fair-skinned (as in pale, not porcelain) and I need color to look alive. Benetint does the trick. Speaking of tricks, there's one you need to know regarding application: Be quick! Apply and blend, or you'll suffer in the manner of streaks. Long-lasting, scrub-until-you-are-raw streaks. Amala Rejuvenating Treatment Oil The requisite disclaimer here is that I currently write for Amala. That said, you also need to know that I abandoned a few other cushy gigs to work exclusively with Amala. Why? No one can touch their product quality. I wrote for their parent company, Primavera, for years, and became instantly addicted to their organic treatment oils. I can honestly say I have not used any other moisturizer on my face in years. I now use Amala treatment oils, and without them I look ten years older. Effectiveness is always subjective when it comes to hydration, but at least for me, they are way more effective than any other pricey moisturizer or treatment. To boot, they really (honestly! truly!) make your skin "glow." I wrote that word thousands of times and never meant it. I can now sleep at night because there is no spin involved. If Amala is out of your budget, use jojoba or evening primrose oils. You can get them at any health food store. You'll seriously rethink moisturizer. Fresh Sugar Lip Balm I am hopelessly devoted to Sugar. The lemony scent is luscious, and my trick is to keep it in my pocket so it's soft-on-the-verge-of-gooey when I apply. Sweet bliss. Nars Eros Lip Gloss On the rare occasions I wear lip color of any kind, this is it. It's the prettiest, rosiest, most flattering shade ever. It was tied for years with Mark's Glow Baby Glow Lip Gloss in Pink Crush, but I no longer write for mark, and don't have easy access to the product closet. I recommended Eros to my friend Rachel, and it looks fab on her even though we have completely different hair colors and skin types (she actually has perfect skin, so everything looks great on her). Give this one a whirl the next time you're wasting time in Sephora. That's it. The only other thing I use is mascara, and any garden-variety drugstore brand serves its purpose. I've used Maybelline's Full and Soft for ever and like it a lot. What about you? Any makeup favorites? Tips? PS. Forgot to mention. One of the BEST tips I ever received was to toss every single body balm, butter, moisturizer, lotion, etc, and replace it with a single bottle of olive oil. I did, and I never looked back. Straight up olive oil. And you surprisingly don't smell like pasta. Go figure.


Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by Marichelle

I’ve been meaning to try that Fresh lip balm… I think you might’ve finally convinced me to cheat on Molton Brown!

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by nichole

Thanks Suzanne!

It really is make-up on the go. All of my products fit neatly into a tiny pouch. I can grab it whenever I need it.

I have a fantastic friends and family code for Amala if you are interested. :)

just email me!

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by Suzanne : : S.HOPtalk

No tips here whatsoever, and I can’t thank you enough for yours. I’m so in need of a skin, treatment, make-up-on-the-go makeover. This is so helpful.

P.S. Brilliant writing! It’s easy to see why these companies hire you… I was glued to my monitor! :)

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by Jennifer

Great post! I tend to try out new make-up and not be overly loyal to any one brand or product, but the one thing I absolutely cannot live without is Burt’s Bees lip balm. I have to have one for every purse, pocket, and make-up bag so it’s with me at all times.

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by Leigh

Totally with you on the Mercier foundation. Can’t live without it! I’ll have to try your other suggestions…

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by Fog and Thistle

Aw, thanks for the sweet, flattering words, my friend! However, you forgot to mention one of the secrets to great skin, one I am forever grateful to you for (and the one I share over, and over, and over with anyone who will listen): the glycolic peels that you not only demonstrated on me, made me addicted, but showed me where to buy for practically nothing. I think your followers should be privy to this info, and I’ll leave that to you!

By the way, I ditched the lactic acid peels and recently reordered the glyolic and I’m so happy on my spa days!

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by The Hidden Library, aka Faith Lim

Ooh, good call on the Fresh lip balm. I got it as a thank-you present from my boss last Christmas, and ever since I’ve been sucking up so I could get it again! ;)

Only thing is – once it’s summertime, use it all or store safely; otherwise, you’ve got a pocketful of melted balm.

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by liza

Wow – thanks!

Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by designbabylon

I definitely will try the Eros lip gloss — what a pretty color!

I too was a disciple of BeneTint but had too many mishaps w/putting too much on, or not blending fast enough. Now I swear by Tarte cheek stain — so easy to apply.

My latest mascara obsession is L’Oreal Beauty Tubes (the commercial with Linda Evangelista) — the stuff rocks! It doesn’t run or smudge so I don’t wind up looking like a racoon while i’m skiing or working out.


Jul 19, 2014 • Posted by amy turn sharp of doobleh-vay

awesome. I am also a follower of some of these xo yr the best!

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