After work last night, as I laid on the couch with my husband Joe, between viewings of that zombie apocalypse show and Olyphant's brutal take down of pimps and meth dealers, we chatted about the fact that I needed to write about my favorite beauty tools for Blogher's Life Well Lived project this week. I laughed and rolled my eyes as I described the task and how silly I felt for having no idea where to begin on this one. He, in his best pretty lady voice, said "Confidence. I think confidence is your best beauty tool." He batted his eyelashes at me and promptly told me that I had his full permission to include this advice in my blog. And you know what, he's right.
Confidence makes the greasy hair and dirty T-shirt that I'm wearing right now, as I clean the house and finish laundry, not a bad look. Because I feel great. I'm getting stuff done, crossing things off my to-do list, listening to music that revs me up. I know my husband can ignore my morning breath, even at 11am, because he loves me. And that too makes me feel confident and strong and capable. But later this afternoon when I get ready to head out to a party with some friends, after I ditch the T-shirt and house pants, there are a few key beauty tools that I couldn't live with out, especially if I'm leaving the house and other people might actually see me.
There are the thoroughly practical: like my Cetaphil face wash, a face wash so powerful that my skin has never looked better than it does now at 36 even as the little lines and freckles begin to appear; the Bliss Blood Orange and White Pepper Sugar Scrub that smells like summertime and leaves my elbows actually looking moisturized for about 48 hours, and of course a generous dab of Cover Girl tinted moisturizer that helps hide my red, red rosacea, which will be even more fiery tonight after a couple of glasses of wine. (Totally worth it.)
And then the ridiculously fun but totally frivolous tools: glittery nail polish that my friend Bethany sent me simply to cheer me out of my winter blahs, it has the highest glitter to lacquer ratio that I've seen in my life; then the super shiny slightly grape colored L'Oreal lip stain and gloss that helps me recapture those days in middle school 1980-something when I used to color my hair dark purple, do you remember that Pizazz temporary hair dye? This gloss is the same shade, but much better on the mouth than the hair; and finally the thing that is both practical and ridiculously fun, Sephora make up brushes. I feel like an elegant lady dabbing on my shadow and blush with the soft, fluffy little brushes. (Are you supposed to wash these things? Yeah, I probably should wash them. A real elegant lady would know.) Good brushes are magic.
I'm no beauty maven. I'm not particularly adventurous when it comes to trying new beauty tools. I'm cheap. I like CVS. I wear basic natural looking make up most days. Yellow eye shadow makes my palms sweat. I've worn Great Lash mascara in blackest black since I was 15 and applied it so thickly that it looked like I had spider legs growing out of my eye lids. I wish I knew how to apply a sexy smoky eye but instead I look like I've recently gotten into a drunken bar brawl when I try. I like what I like. I like what works. I use spicy ginger lotion in the winter and coconut citrus in the summer. I'm consistent.
I want my beauty tools to do more than make me look good, I want them to make me feel good. I want them to make me look less tired, less red, less blotchy, less sad, less bland, less wall flower and more *#$*!KABAM$@&(@*!. So if a beauty tool does that for me, I'm hooked. I'll buy twenty, just in case it gets discontinued someday. But occasionally even a brown eyeliner girl like me needs a little something new to jazz things up. So come join me over at Blogher's Life Well Lived site for some tips from actual experts and share your best tools and advice in the comments section. And if you're cheap like me, you even have a chance to enter to the Life Well Lived sweepstakes for a Kindle Fire and a $50 Amazon gift card, because you can buy a lot of beauty tools for $50!