What's Your Favorite Product and Why?
Real Simple readers share the products they simply can't live without.
Plainview, New York
Kiehl's Epidermal Re-Texturing Micro-Dermabrasion. I use it twice a week, and it leaves my skin smooth and dramatically improves the texture. I'm hooked.
My main product addiction is Elderflower Eye Gel from the Body Shop. I've been using it ever since I discovered it in college, at least 15 years ago. It depuffs my morning eyes and feels fabulous. And I'm thinking it may have something to do with the fact that, at the age of 36, I have no lines around my eyes and still occasionally get carded. I pray this product never gets discontinued.
Woodland Hills, California
Good old Vaseline works with an eyelash curler to make wow lashes, is an instant lip glosser, and provides rough-callous relief when applied to the soles of the feet. It even adds a quick shine to dressy shoes.
North Babylon, New York
Due to my frugal nature, I waited years before purchasing an electric toothbrush―it just seemed too expensive. What a mistake! My Sonicare is the best product I have ever purchased.
Aquaphor. I use it on my lips, cuticles, elbows, heels, and minor cuts. It leaves everything soft and moisturized without an overwhelming scent. I could not go a day without it.
Smith's Rosebud Salve Original Formula has been my best defense against chapped lips in the beating 40-mile-per-hour winds of a Chicago winter and the equally harsh Daytona Beach sunshine. It also works against diaper rash and is a blemish fighter. And when empty, the container can hold little things you would lose otherwise.
At first I thought a razor with an attached shaving bar was lame and gimmicky, but with the Schick Intuition Razor, I don't have to hang my lathered leg out of my tiny shower to keep the shaving cream on. And I shave more often, which my boyfriend doesn't mind a bit.
My favorite product is Giovanni Tea Tree Triple Treat Shampoo & Conditioner. It wakes me up in the morning with a gentle tingle, and it has no sulfates, so you are reducing your daily toxins.
The balls and the heels of my feet used to be so cracked and dry―especially in the summer, when I wore sandals and flip-flops. Then I purchased Podiatrist's Secret Total Foot Recovery Cream at Sally's Beauty Supply. With the occasional help of a foot file after a shower and an application of this cream before bed (you don't have to wear socks), my feet have never looked better. The cream is also inexpensive, and it goes a long way.
San Antonio, Texas
I love my Conair hot rollers. When I use them, my hair looks fabulous and I feel sexy. And from the look on my boyfriend's face when he sees me, he thinks so, too.
My favorite product is Neutrogena Ultrasheer Sunscreen SPF 30. My husband and I work as captain and first mate on a catamaran for a charter business on St. Croix, in the U.S. Virgin Islands. I used to struggle with putting on sunscreen faithfully, and my skin would break out from oily waterproof lotions. This sunscreen protects from UVA and UVB rays and is hypoallergenic, waterproof, and not greasy. Now I get all the sun protection I need with no breakouts.
Christiansted, Virgin Islands
My favorite beauty product is Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion. I have used it since my freshman year of college (I'm now 47). It makes my skin feel wonderfully smooth and hydrated, and people tell me I have very young-looking skin. My favorite cleaning product is the Swiffer duster. It makes short work of dusting and can be used on so many surfaces.
By far, baby lotion! My mom and I love it. It's absolutely all-purpose and makes life so much simpler. I use it to moisturize my legs after a shave, my hands during the daytime, and all my parts before bed. When traveling, I even use it as a facial moisturizer, to make packing simpler. It's clean, pure, and efficient―my favorite.
I love the Bare Essentials mineral makeup line. It works to give me that natural look, and it never irritates my sensitive skin. I haven't gone back to traditional makeup products since.
Burt’s Bees Decollete Cream is intended to keep your décolletage soft and smooth, but it works wonders for the bikini line after a shave, keeping razor bumps away.
Aussie Sprunch Spray for curly hair. I had it on my wedding registry. I was given 16 bottles.
Wilmington, North Carolina
About eight years ago, I discovered this product in the baking-goods aisle, and it has been a favorite of mine ever since. Buttermilk Blend, powdered cultured buttermilk, from Saco Foods helps me make sure that I don't have to waste tons of buttermilk when I need only half a cup for a recipe. Simply add the powdered buttermilk to the dry ingredients, then add the water when you blend the wet and dry ingredients together. Recipes come out perfectly every time, with that great taste of buttermilk.
Saratoga Springs, New York
After my baby was diagnosed with a milk allergy, I learned how to cook everything with olive oil instead of butter. I also use olive oil as a moisturizer―it makes my hands as soft as my baby's.
St. Petersburg, Florida
White vinegar comes in biodegradable glass containers, and along with a drop of lavender oil and newspaper, it works wonders cleaning my windows. A splash of vinegar freshens a load of towels in the laundry and deodorizes just about anything. Once in a while, I use it as a rinse in the shower to give my hair extra shine and bounce. At the same time, I feel good about the products I'm not using, which could potentially harm the environment.
My go-to product is Pam cooking spray. It makes kitchen cleanup a breeze, and it will also set a manicure or silence squeaky doors and windows without the nasty smell of WD-40.
Bite-size Shredded Wheat cereal is the best. It provides a quick, healthy breakfast or snack, and its mellow flavor blends nicely with other breakfast cereals, so I can boost my fiber while indulging in a sweeter treat occasionally. On cold days, adding warm milk to a bowl of shredded wheat warms me up and keeps my motor running for hours.
North Bend, Washington
I love Lipton's Quietly Chamomile herbal tea, because no matter what kind of day I have had, it always makes me feel better and sleep well.
Drink To ThatMy husband and I have always enjoyed coffee, but he used to make too much and it would wind up going to waste. I was glad when I found the Kuerig one-cup coffeemaker. The coffee is premeasured in small plastic cups, so there are never any grounds to clean up. Plus, it takes only about 30 seconds to make a single cup, so now we have fresh, hot coffee several times a day, whenever we want.
Owings Mills, Maryland
Kraft Foods Fruit2O flavored water is the best product to come along in a while. It's a healthy and tasty alternative to soft drinks and caffeinated beverages, and the fruit flavoring keeps me from getting bored with drinking water. I'm finally consuming the amount of water health-care professionals recommend for a healthy body. No sugar, no calories, no fat, no carbs! My skin is glowing, and I feel great.
Bright IdeasAfter hearing about the impact that using just one eco-bulb can have on the environment, I replaced all the incandescent bulbs in my house with CFL bulbs. That one change motivated me to find other ways to go green. Along with recycling, I no longer use paper napkins or towels, I have replaced chemical cleaning products with vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice, and I have reduced our water usage. I continue to look for more ecologically responsible tips and credit this newfound commitment to the eco-bulb.
Charlotte, North Carolina
I love my little red Toyota Prius. I am so proud to drive a hybrid and to do my part to help the environment. My friends love it, too, because I'm always offering to drive. I know my gas mileage is better than their SUVs', and with a license plate like kik gas, I know everybody else knows it.