Having spent almost 5 decades on the Dark Side, I’ve used and tried thousands of skin, hair, and cosmetic products, both high and low end. What do I consider to be my top 10 of all time? Read on, you may be surprised by the range of items I adore!
TRESOR I’ve been wearing this classic Lancôme fragrance since 1990. It was the second “grown up” perfume that I bought myself (Calvin Klein’s Obsession was the first). It has notes of rose, apricot, and iris and is simply beautiful. I’ve been followed around department stores by women wanting to know what my perfume is because I smell so nice!
CLINIQUE DRAMATICALLY DIFFERENT MOISURIZING LOTION This has been a skincare staple of mine since 1988. It’s remarkably simple, nothing fancy. Everyone recognizes the signature yellow lotion that is lightweight and very effective. It provides me with all-day hydration while strengthening the skin’s natural moisture barrier. I use it twice a day, after cleansing my skin but before any other skincare. For those of you that need a lighter or heavier product, it now comes in an oil-free gel or a rich cream formula.
LANCÔME DEFINICILS MASCARA I’ve tried almost every mascara out on the market, but I always come back to the classic from Lancôme. It gives me loner, fuller, perfectly separated lashes that look like I’m wearing falsies. It doesn’t smudge or irritate my eyes, and has what I think to be the best wand out there. And the Deep Black shade is the perfect inky black, dramatic color.
CARMEX CLASSIC LIP BALM You’re all familiar with the yellow and red tube of lip balm. You can get it for $1 and I have tubes everywhere – in my purse, on my nightstand, in my car. It’s medicated, soothes and protects your lips, and has a SPF of 15. I started out with the jar and moved to the easier to apply tube. Best of all, Carmex does not test on animals!
COVER GIRL CLEAN POWDER FOUNDATION I started using this when it was known as “Simply Powder Foundation”. CG changed the name and packaging, but not the formulation. It covers like a liquid but feels like a powder. I use it on its own or on top of my liquid foundation when I need a heavier coverage. It stays all day, is convenient to toss in my makeup bag, and costs around $7.
ESTEE LAUDER ADVANCED NIGHT REPAIR SYNCHRONIZED RECOVERY COMPLEX II Otherwise known to Estee Lauder fans simply as ANR, it is the #1 repair serum on the market. It helps fight the key signs of aging to help reveal a smoother, more radiant, younger-looking face. I’ve definitely noticed a decrease in dryness, dehydration, wrinkles and dullness. When I try something less expensive, my face pays for it and the signs show! ANR is oil and fragrance free and will not clog pores. While it’s best known as a nightly product, I use it twice daily. All over my face and neck and a trick that an Estee Lauder coworker taught me is to use it on the back of your neck where signs of aging show sooner because of sun damage!
IVORY SOAP I will never have a shower or bath without this 130 year old classic bar of soap! It provides a simple, effective clean, is free of dyes and heavy perfumes, and is 99.44% pure. I adore this product and its mild scent. And it’s still made in the USA!
AUSSIE MOIST 3 MINUTE MIRACLE Every gal has used Aussie products at least once in her lifetime. The familiar purple bottles and that instantly-recognizable fragrance that takes you back to 8th grade – it was awesome until you got caught in the rain and the smell intensified. And if your friends had used it too… Anyways, it hydrates and deep conditions my old, wavy, war-torn hair, making it smooth, soft, shiny, and frizz-free. I use it a couple times a week as a deep conditioner. For $3, it’s a steal!
CETAPHIL DAILY CLEANSER This has been effectively cleansing my face for years. The mild, non-irritating formula gently removes excess oil. However, it does not remove makeup, so if you have a full face on you will have to use a makeup remover first. But sunscreens, dirt, and environmental crud wash away like a dream.
REVLON COLOR SILK PERMANENT HAIR COLOR This may or may not come as a surprise to some, but the Dark Side Diva has been coloring her hair since she turned gray at 16. That’s 30+ years of being just about every color in the rainbow (and then some). This formula completely covers my gray roots, is ammonia-fre, long lasting, and doesn’t fry my hair. It’s very easy to use and costs around $3-5 a box, conditioner included.
So that’s my Dark Side Beauty Hall of Fame. I could have added some red lipstick, cleansing conditioners and facial masks, but that’s for another time. Stay tuned to see what products end up on the Death Star’s Hall of Shame!