When I find a beauty product I love, I stick with it. Often it takes many years to find the ideal beauty product for you and sometimes you never find it. In fact I’ve been looking for the perfect mascara and hair spray since the late 1980s. Still searching!

It’s a good thing I also love to try new beauty products. I always enjoy getting my hands on samples of beauty products I’ve not tried before or, even better, getting a recommendation from a friend.

Today I’m the recommending friend, telling you about my very favorite beauty products that I use on a regular basis.

These are my 11 Favorite Beauty Products:



Dry Shampoo: I prefer to keep my hair quite long and pay special attention to products that help me abuse my hair less.  As I am sure you already know, blow-drying and styling your hair with heat tools can dry out and damage it. I try to wash and style my hair as little as possible and will even avoid blow drying in favor of a natural dry when I have the time.

Dry shampoo has kept me from many extra washings and stylings over the years. One advantage of being in my late 40s is my hair doesn’t need to be washed daily anymore as my sebaceous glands don’t produce as much oil. These days, I can go up to three days without washing my hair but I still need help from dry shampoo to keep it fresh looking.

This Bumble and Bumble Prêt-à-powder Shampoo is my very favorite. I use it every day. It’s not a spray but rather a fine powder you shake onto your scalp. I started using it right after I dry and styled my hair instead of waiting until the second or third day.

Here is a dry shampoo tip from my hairdresser, Kimberly of Dolce Vita Salon: shake (or spray) dry shampoo onto your roots then wait about a minute. Let the powder settle into your roots before brushing or fluffing your hair. Try using a blow dryer on a low setting to spread the powder around rather than a brush. 


Scalp Exfoliant: I read an article about scalp exfoliation and thought I might be someone who would benefit from a good scalp scrub. With all the stuff I put on my head – dry shampoos, hairspray, mousse, gel, plus the residual shampoo that doesn’t always get rinsed off thoroughly – it made sense that an exfoliation now and then would be a good idea.

I decided to try Caviar Clinical Exfoliating Scalp Facial by Alterna. Not only did it feel great to scrub my scalp, but I love the results. It made my hair shinier and softer and it was so clean and fresh.

I use it about once every three weeks. I apply it while in the tub so I can be precise. I section my hair off with clips and rub the exfoliant into my scalp one area at a time, using its brush tip in circular motions. When I am done I rinse it out, then shampoo and condition like normal.


Texturizing Spray: My hairdresser introduced me to Rene Furtherer Style Vegetal Texture Spray during my last visit and I am hooked! It gives me the added lift, volume and texture I want – the way dry shampoo does – but it’s an invisible spray so no powdery residue to brush out. It goes on quickly without any fuss and it smells nice too!



Face oil: I try a lot of skin care samples and rarely come across one that motivates me to track it down in a full-size and buy it. That is just what happened when I received a sample of Bobbie Brown EXTRA Face Oil which showed up with a Macys order several weeks ago.

I was wary at first to try the oil. Wouldn’t oil make my face greasy and cause me to breakout even more than I already was? I was curious enough to give it a try and after using it for four days, I was sold.

Several weeks in and I have had no breakouts whatsoever and my skin feels smooth, soft and hydrated. I apply it an hour or so before bed so it will soak in before I put my face on my pillow. During the day, I wear Bobbi Brown EXTRA Repair Moisturizing Balm Broad Spectrum SPF 25.

I can’t say enough good stuff about the face oil. I haven’t come across a product my skin has been happy with in a very long time. And a little goes a long way so it’s not a huge expense.


Toner: I love these simple Witch Hazel Pads by Thayers and swipe them across my face before I apply face oil or moisturizer. Gentle and refreshing, they also remove traces of makeup and dirt leftover after I wash my face. These pads contain aloe vera as well, which makes my skin feel soft and supple.

I will be using these often during hot summer months when I want to feel refreshed. I may even store them in the fridge!


Makeup Remover: I bought this bottle of Simple cleanser at Target in Seattle last fall after my luggage disappeared and I lost most of my toiletries. It’s a great makeup remover. I mostly use it to take off my eye makeup before, and sometimes after, I wash my face.

It’s also handy to have around when I occasionally just can’t get it together to wash my face at night. It does the job without leaving a greasy film and it doesn’t cause me to breakout.



Eyebrow FillerBobbi Brown Brow Kit helps my thinning brows look soft and natural while still filling in where needed. It comes with a small angled brush for application and mini-tweezers, making it ideal for travel or carrying in your handbag. It’s really easy to use too and there is much more room for error than using a gooey brow gel, which is what I used to use.


Lipstick and Lip Gloss: I discovered Pretty Girl Makeup, created by Northern California makeup artist to the stars, Christina Flach, at La Brocante in Sonoma.


I was drawn to the Rich Husband lipstick, first for its name and then for the color. It’s just about perfect for my coloring. I’ve never been one to wear red lipstick so when I want to wear a darker, more dramatic color, this is the one I reach for. In fact it’s what I wore for my B.R. Cohn Winery photoshoot.


Soul Mates is their sheer light pink lip gloss and my everyday, throw-on-and-go gloss. I also use it over dark lipsticks to soften the color and shine up my lips.

Baby Love, in the photo below, is a hot pink gloss and my new spring favorite. There is something about adding the right pink hue to your lips that makes you look more vibrant and youthful. It brightens up my entire face.


Blush: I used to wear cream blush all the time in my 20’s and forgot all about it until about a year ago when I came across Chanel Les Beiges Healthy Glow Sheer Colour Stick Blush in No. 21.

This cream blush stays on so much longer than my powdered blushes and it deposits more color on my cheeks. It’s also convenient for carrying in my bag for touchups should I need one.



Nail Vitamins: I have learned the hard way not to mess with my thin and flimsy nails too much.  My nails were destroyed a couple of years ago because I was too impatient to have my gel polish taken off by a professional. I peeled the polish off myself, more than once, causing damage that took at least a year to fully recover from. No more gel manicures for me!

I was introduced to Rainbow Light’s Nail, Hair & Skin at the Whole Foods event last summer. A bottle was in the swag bag and I decided to give it a try.

With my soft and wimpy nails, I am happy just to have healthy looking nails let alone long ones. So when, after a few months of taking these vitamins, I started to see some length I was thrilled!


Nail Polish: As far as polish goes I am favoring the natural look these days, even on my toes, and will either wear nothing on my nails or a coat or two of this clear Perfect Formula polish. I love this brand because their line has none of the toxic TPHP found in many polishes and it’s a woman-owned small business.



What favorite beauty products do you recommend to friends?

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Make it a rich day!




It’s hard to believe that spring, in all its fresh and colorful beauty, arrives next month. Weren’t we just celebrating the New Year?

For some of us, it already feels and looks like spring. Where I live in Sonoma Valley, the temperatures are climbing into the 70s and daffodils and fields of mustard flowers are adding vibrant colors to the landscape everywhere you turn.

It’s got me thinking about spring cleaning and sprucing up! I’m going to clean out my closet, detail my car, rearrange my home office and deep clean the fridge.

I would also like to have a little spruce up and decided to give myself a spring makeover!

Over the next several weeks, I will be making some personal improvements that involve my appearance, as well as my personal and professional life. I’m calling it The Rich Life’s Spring Makeover!


I’ve already begun my spring makeover with a visit to SkinSpirit in Mill ValleyWhen they approached me about working together, I was intrigued. I had heard of SkinSpirit and have a couple of friends who have had treatments at other SkinSpirit locations. I decided to make an appointment for an evaluation.


After being warmly greeted by the front desk staff and offered a glass of cucumber spa water – my favorite –  I was taken into an examination room to meet with Andrea Frederick, R.N., M.S.N., N.P., Aesthetic Nurse Specialist.

Andrea took a careful look at my skin – particularly my brown spots – and suggested that I have a full-face IPL (Intense Pulsed Light, also known as Photofacial) with both a pre and post treatment.

You may remember that I have mentioned numerous times that I’d love to rid myself of the brown spots on my face. This has been an on-going battle of mine for years. I tried having them burned off by a dermatologist in my late 30s, I used an at-home laser (made for tightening skin and promoting collagen, not brown spots) with the hopes that it would somehow erase my spots and I tried chemical peels. While I did have slight fading with each treatment, in the end, my spots remained and have even darkened over time.


Andrea told me my spots look more stubborn than normal and suggested I treat my skin for a several days before and after having my IPL procedure. She gave me Obagi Blender – a bleaching cream – and Obagi Tretinoin. I mix a small amount of each in the palm of my hand and apply to my face each night before bed. I have been using the combination for about 10 days and have seen quite a bit of peeling and some redness but nothing too dramatic that it keeps me home. During this process, I make sure to apply extra sunscreen throughout the day.

On Saturday, I go in for my IPL and will be sure to take photos to post later in the series. I am very excited to see how this treatment works for me. I will be doing lots of happy dances if my brown spots go away!


Next, I am going to spruce up my teeth! The nice people at Smile Brilliant thought I might appreciate having a brighter smile as part of my spring makeover. While my teeth aren’t too terribly yellow and dingy, they are stained from years and years of drinking coffee, tea and red wine.

I talked to the folks at Smile Brilliant on the phone and was assured that their product is safe and effective. I was told their products remove stains for a brighter, natural looking smile but it does not create optic white teeth, thankfully. I am not looking for Chiclets!


I love this simple concept. Smile Brilliant sends you everything you need to make your own molds in just a few easy steps. Once you have created your molds – mine took about 10 minutes from start to finish – you let them set, then pop them into the pre-paid envelope. Drop in them in the mail and off they go to St. Louis!

On Monday, I received a friendly email confirmation telling me my trays are being made and will be shipped to me soon. I expect to receive them next week, then begin my treatments!


My spring makeover is not limited to outside appearances. I am giving my personal life and career a little sprucing up, as well, and attending the G3 Women’s Conference next month in Sonoma.

G3 Women's Conference Sonoma

You may recall that I attended the inaugural G3 Conference last fall and left incredibly inspired. Since then, many exciting things have happened to me – both personally and professionally – and I owe it, in part, to what I learned at G3. I have also met some pretty amazing women, many of whom I have kept in touch with.

I am looking forward to learning from the speakers slated to talk, meeting new people and setting personal and professional goals. I am thrilled to get to Gather, Grow and Go again!


 These are just a few of the things I am doing for my spring makeover. There is more to come!

Follow along on Instagram, if you like, where I’ll be using the hashtag #richlifespringmakeover

 Make it rich day!



Disclosure: My treatments from SkinSpirit and Smile Brilliant are complimentary in exchange for promotion. As always, the opinions expressed here are my own.