Ask Belle: Your Can’t Live Without Products

Oct 25, 2016

Hi Belle,

My friends got talking this weekend about our ride til ya die beauty products.  You know the ones that if someone said, “We’re discontinuing this product…” we’d buy up the whole supply.  It prompted a really great discussion and I bought a few awesome things as a result.  So I thought I’d ask you, what are the products you cannot live without?

Love the blog! Estelle

That does sound like a fun discussion.  I suppose if I really think about it, I have four.

First, the Ole Henriksen Invigorating Night Treatment that saved my cheeks from the scourge of acne.  I buy it in bulk during the Skinstore 20%-off sales.

Second, Armani Eyes to Kill mascara.  I have this product on Amazon Subscribe, that’s how serious I am about it.

Third, Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Mood Light.  It blends in my blush and smooths out imperfections.

And last, but by no means least, my Aveda Wooden Paddle Brush.  Not really a beauty product, but it smooths my hair beautifully, and I once owned the same brush for 15 years.

Alright ladies, if you could only pick one (I know, I’m a hypocrite) product, which one would it be?  Leave the name of the product and why you love it in the comments.  Maybe we’ll all find something we can live without.

Ask The Edit, Makeup

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  1. Sara Brown says:

    Kate Walsh Boyfriend perfume. Not sure when it stopped being produced, and she’s back with her Billionaire Boyfriend perfume, but her signature scent lasts all day and mellows out very nicely into a warm woody vanilla. Divine.

  2. Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti Wrinkle Night Cream is the night cream to end all night creams for me. There was a short (maybe a week) adjustment period and my skin has been flawless ever since.

    Glossier Stretch Concealer is the most natural feeling and looking concealer I’ve ever used, and I now use it daily.

    Clinique Chubby Stick in Bountiful Blush is the perfect “your lips but better” color and feels amazing.

  3. Anon says:

    Belle, saw your earlier post about dark circles…have you tried bare minerals correcting Concealer – the one in the pot? My dark circles are worse than yours (I’m following you on Insta….)
    I’m also a women of a certain age (aka as wrinkles around my eyes)
    But the bare minerals correcting concealer is the first I’ve tried that (a) covers my dark circles without making me look like a panda, and (b) doesn’t sit in my wrinkles. You also don’t need a shovel to put it on, and it goes on silky

  4. Laura says:

    Good ‘ol fashioned Cetaphil cleanser and moisturizer! My skin breaks out with almost anything else. And also, if I could turn back time, Clinique used to make a foundation (like ten years ago) in an extremely light shade with a nice, cool undertone. I’ve checked every couple of years but haven’t found any shades along those lines since, and their lightest shades oxidize orange on me now. I now wear Lancome Teint Idole, and if that foundation (or my shade) ever gets discontinued, I’ll be sunk!

  5. Hillary says:

    Bobbi Brown hydrating eye cream 4 lyfe!

  6. Addie says:

    Only one?! Okay if I have to choose I’ll go with Urban Decay lipstick in sheer shame. A Sephora employee helped me try on about ten different shades/brands of lipstick until I found this made for me berry shade that’s just sheer enough to keep it from being too intense for daily wear

  7. Boom says:

    L’occitane shea butter hand cream

  8. Susan says:

    Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer (with radiance primer underneath). For a pale dry skinned freckled gal, most foundations lay on top of freckles and make the freckles look dried out. This is the right mix of dewy, coverage and sheer!

  9. MK says:

    Clinique All About Lips. Bye-bye split, bleeding, peeling lips in the winter. And it doesn’t irritate the hypersensitive skin around my lips AT ALL.

  10. HH says:

    Lancome Bi-facil eye makeup remover. It’s the only thing that I’ve found to completely remove my waterproof mascara and that doesn’t irritate my skin and eyes. I’ve used it for about eleven years and will cry if they discontinue it.

  11. Meghan says:

    Three things that I wear basically every day: (1) Burberry single eye shadow in pale barley – I’m on my third one; (2) NARS eye shadow primer – I have probably gone through 10 in my lifetime of wearing makeup; and (3) Donna Karan cashmere mist deodorant (so random but I am actually obsessed with it).

    • I literally JUST purchased the Burberry gift set at Sephora right now that includes a full-size Pale Barley. I’m hoping this is the be-all end-all daytime eye shade for me (I’m currently wearing a pale peach that is pretty spot on but washes me out just a touch now that the weather’s getting a bit colder and my skin’s losing its summer glow).

  12. Linda L says:

    John Frieda Precision Foam hair color

  13. Bethany says:

    The Alpha Hydrox AHA enhanced lotion. It makes me skin look glowier and several few years younger!

    • Sara says:

      Yesssssss, this is mine too. It is RIDICULOUS how good this stuff is, I’ve used it for 7+ years! My skin can’t get enough of it. 🙂

  14. Diana says:

    Origins Ginzing Eye Cream. De-puffs my undereyes in the morning like a dream. I’ve been using it for years. My ex-husband even told me he still uses it, and we’ve been divorced for 2 years now, so it’s not like I’m there pushing it on him haha.

  15. Joy says:

    I know this sounds boring, but truly, my favorite “beauty” product in the world is Olay’s Active Hydrating Beauty Fluid. It’s smooth and weightless, and moisturizes just the perfect amount. It’s the first thing I put on my face in the morning, and the last thing I put on at night (plus eye cream, obvi).

  16. Cat says:

    I looove the BHA clarifying serum by Renee Rouleau It is labeled for acne, which it helps with, but I use it because it is AMAZING at brightening dull skin. Can’t live without!

  17. MCW says:

    Benefit’s old eyebrow pencil. Unfortunately they discontinued it. I bought 7 on Amazon when I heard it was discontinued. Should have bought more.

  18. Cait says:

    E.L.F. Liquid eyeliner. I know it’s not fancy, and I think it only costs about $3 but it’s the only liquid liner that I can reliably get right on the first try. I’ve even successfully put it on in a moving car. It doesn’t budge all day (it lasted me through a 13 hour day in Atlanta in July) but comes off easily with a wipe. If they discontinued it, I’d just have to stop wearing eyeliner. I can’t stand pencils and I haven’t found another liquid that I can actually apply.

  19. Susie says:

    Maybelline Eye Makeup Remover, 29 years ago the esthetician at Lake Austin Spa told me a little “secret”. I’ve tried several others throughout the years but always go back to Maybelline. The other product I swear by is
    Shiseido The Makeup Facial Cotton.,en_US,pd.html?cm_mmc=SEM-_-Google-_-PLA-_-PLA&gclid=CMjRtqeb988CFQGLaQodL1UGyQ

  20. Emily says:

    Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey — a total classic! I started wearing it back in middle school and still get compliments.

  21. Abidina says:

    I know this is very much a YMMV product, but Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate is my holy grail serum. It sounds dramatic to attribute so much to one product, but I swear it shrinks my pores, makes my skin glow, and heals my hormonal acne flare-ups. It’s the one product I know I can go to if I’ve been terrible to my skin for a few days – it’ll make everything right again. However, it gave my mom awful cystic acne!

    • B says:

      YASSS – also, the Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Eye Cream. Literally a lifesaver during my first few weeks with a newborn. It got rid of my dark circles even after 2 weeks straight of no sleep.

    • Kirby says:

      OMG yes. This stuff made such a visible difference in my skin my coworkers even noticed and commented. It’s my go-to for healthier, glowing, rested looking skin. I have also suffered with acne my whole life and it doesn’t seem to cause flare-ups for me.

  22. Alanna Trebond says:

    Origin’s Clear Improvement active charcoal mask to clear pores– My skin loves this stuff. I always see a difference immediately after using it. Even at *that time* of the month when I tend to break out.

  23. Susannah says:

    Laura Mercier Secret Brightening powder for undereyes. I’ve never found anything better. Doesn’t cause concealer to cake, stays put, and doesn’t flash back in photographs.

  24. Alex says:

    Burt’s Bees chapstick!! I’m addicted and use it at least 10 times a day. I live in a really dry place, and other chapsticks and lip balms do not cut it.

    • Kristi says:

      Me too! I have at least half a dozen going at a time, because I have one in every purse, in my desk, and around my apartment. I hate the Honey one though–the smell is weird and I don’t find it works well like the others.

      • MCF says:

        ME TOO. 1) Burt’s Bees being the best (I have been using it since I was like 12 and have 5 or 6 going at a time) and 2) the honey one is definitely inferior and too fragrant. I sleep with my mouth open (and snore like a trucker) and no other chapstick can prevent my lips from splitting. It is a crucial part of my nightly routine. It lasts forever and the consistency never changes with time, even if it melts in your car and then re-solidifies. If it was discontinued, I would buy CASES of it. I’m going to go put some on right now.

  25. Lisa says:

    Hourglass Mineral Veil Primer – it has SPF, it helps with some oil control (I have combination skin with dry dry cheeks and slightly oily forehead, nose, and eyelids), smooths on easily, and never breaks me out. I wear it daily, even if I don’t wear makeup. I’ve been using it for 3 or 4 years. The product does tend to separate in the bottle, so I give it a good shake to mix it up before applying it.

    Bonus products – Fresh’s Sugar lip balm in Rose (for slightly more color I use Passion and Poppy as well), Tony Moly’s avocado sheet mask (I buy in bulk on amazon), Herbivore’s Coconut Milk Bath Soak (I love a steamy hot bath and this stuff single handedly has saved my skin from myself – it is so hydrating!), Caudalie’s Beauty Elixir (it is one of those products that when you use it you wonder if it is actually doing anything, but if you go a week or two without you notice a significant decrease in luminosity!).

    Thanks for this post! I loved reading the comments from other women about their go to beauty products.

    • Valerie says:

      +1 for the Fresh Sugar lip balm. Tulip is my everyday color (it looks Barbie pink in the tube but goes on sheer), and Berry for more dramatic color. I’ll have to try the Poppy shade!

    • Elle says:

      I wanted to love Fresh’s Sugar Lip Balm, but I found that over time it actually dried my lips out. I loved how it went on and how it looked, but I gave it up.

  26. Amy says:

    CeraVe Moisturizing Cream – Actually, I love the whole CeraVe line, but especially this cream. It’s the best body cream ever. My skin used to get itchy, dry patches and I haven’t had any since I switched to this about a year and a half ago.

  27. Katie says:

    Not a beauty product but I can’t live without Bumble & Bumble Straight Blow Dry cream. I’ve got naturally wavy/curly hair that I straighten most days and this is by far the the best product that I’ve ever used. With the exception of a heat protective spray, this is the only product that I use and somehow it adds silkiness and shine without weighing my hair down so my hair looks straight, shiny and bouncy all at the same time. Also, a little goes a long way so a tube lasts forever.

    Honorable mentions include Kiehl’s amino acid shampoo and conditioner, Clinique high impact mascara (fantastic for sensitive eyes), and Clinque almost lipstick in Black Honey. Finally, although it’s been discontinued, L’Oreal Healthy Look creme gloss hair color in Cool Chestnut Brown/Iced Chocolate is the most amazing dark brown hair color that I’ve ever used and I will be sad when the remaining supply is depleted and I can no longer find it on Amazon for twice the original price.

    • Valerie says:

      Bumble & Bumble is great for wavy/curly hair. Mine is fine and can’t handle a lot of product without looking greasy, so I use the “Don’t Blow It” cream for blowdrying/heat stylling and air-drying.

    • Jenn S. says:

      Hair products count as beauty products! They just aren’t cosmetics/makeup.

  28. LL2727 says:

    I’ve been using Stila’s Perfecting counselor for years and it’s the only one I’ve ever found that 1) matches my yellowish skin tone without being too light or too dark and 2) has a great consistency, I literally have 4 tubes on my makeup tray right now.

    I need help from all you ladies though – I’m on the search for a new mascara. I’ve been using Clinique Lash Power mascara for years because most other mascara’s caused me to develop a lovely black ring under my eyes by the end of the day. But I don’t think the Lash Power is cutting it anymore. Does anyone have a good mascara that DOESN’T smudge like crazy?

    • Valerie says:

      I love the Trish McEvoy high volume mascara for everyday wear. It’s one of those “tube” mascaras that coats lashes with water-resistant color, so I find it doesn’t smudge as easily. Removing it will seem strange at first because you have to gently pull it off your lashes, but it’s worth not walking around all day with mascara-induced raccoon eyes.

      • Goldie says:

        YESSSS I was going to write in this mascara! I also love the lengthening option as well. I get asked at least once a week if I’m wearing false eyelashes. It also comes off with warm water yet doesn’t budge at all during the day.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Anybody have any great recs for a lightweight sunscreen to wear underneath makeup that’s kind to sensitive skin? I’m in DC and really only spend about an hour a day outside, but I’d like to start wearing some sunscreen as a preventative measure against unwanted wrinkles.

    Thank you in advance.

  30. InHouseJen says:

    Really any of the products by Omorovicza, but their Blue Diamond Resurfacing Peel was a game-changer for me. Honorable mentions go to Tom Ford Liquid Liner Pen and Tom Ford Ombre Leather perfume.

  31. Erin says:

    Neutrogena hand creme:
    For as long as I can remember, I’ve had bad eczema, especially on my hands, that flares at random times, and this is the ONLY thing that cures it. I have tried any and everything on the market, and I swear this is the only thing that works. My hands can be cracked and bleeding and two nights of putting this on before bed and they’re healed. I don’t know what I would do if they ever stopped making it.

  32. SarahT says:

    Anastasia Brow Wiz – Use this baby every dang day and I’ve gone through at least a dozen over the years. And I get super paranoid about running out so I always buy a new one before taking a long trip!

  33. Alexis says:

    Smashbox Photo Finish primer – it’s 100% legit. I have tried anything and everything (including the good ol’ Monistat trick), but nothing else compares.

    Also, I snatch up Sephora’s Lashstash every year in a constant quest for a perfect mascara: However, the closest to a “perfect” mascara that I have found is Prescriptives False Eyelashes or Blinc mascara, and both of those arrived for me via Birchbox.

  34. Amanda says:

    Kirkland Brand moisturizing shampoo from Costco. It’s the best and the only thing that doesn’t seem to weigh down my hair or dry it out. Also, Sephora liquid eyeliner with the precision brush (+ Nars eye primer).

  35. Kara says:

    Living Proof Full Root Lift Spray–the one product I can’t live without for giving my thin hair the boost it needs, and I’ve tried EVERYTHING! Spray on the roots after you get out of the shower–it’s all I need aside from hairspray.

  36. Kristin says:

    Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage! Perfect for hiding blemishes.

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