What You Should Actually Buy From Your Annoying Facebook Friends

You know the Facebook product pusher by the private flash sale groups she invites you to, the wine & cheese parties she hosts in the neighborhood, and the rave updates she gives on the only thing that ever helped her acne/dry hands/thinning hair/crow's feet. Her persistence, and those damn targeted ads, make her hard to ignore, and maybe... you shouldn't. Because one does not get handed the keys to a pink Cadillac unless folks are eating up the wares, after all.

So, I decided to test the hero products from Facebook's top direct-sale beauty brands. (Think Mary Kay, Rodan+Fields, Avon, and more.) And now here I am, eating all the jokes I made comparing today's social media saleswomen to the ones in Edward Scissorhands, because this shit is seriously good.

If you will, invite me into your virtual living room, pour some iced tea, and let me walk you through my unfiltered (and unpaid) opinion on the five best finds from the lines.
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I'm a sucker for peel pads — I've never met a tub I didn't bring home — and I've found that the sweet spot for results without side effects is 10% glycolic acid. Any less is for wimps; any more can lead to dryness and flaking with regular use.

Usually, I go through pads at lightening speed, using five or so at a time on my face and anywhere I shave — which is everywhere — to avoid bumps. But these ones were so brightening and exfoliating that I took my time and only used one every other day on my face. For two months, I was breakout-free — even right before my period. Now that I've run out, that's unfortunately no longer the case.

Avon Anew Clinical Retexturizing Peel, $22, available at Avon.
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If you have a Facebook account, you probably know more about Rodan + Fields than you ever wanted to. (It was started by the same derms behind Proactiv, has four lines for adult skin concerns, transformed your sorority recruitment chair's forehead, etc.) I decided to try the Redefine line — for tighter, smoother skin— for three weeks, and almost immediately fell in love.

After a few days of use, the gentle mask had deep-cleaned my pores just as effectively as the most popular clay masks on the market, but it did so without the tight, pulling effect.

I skipped the toner (I'm not big on them in general) and headed straight to the creams, which I soon realized were the real winners. They're both heavy, so I wouldn't recommend them for oily types, but they hydrate better than just about anything currently in my medicine cabinet. The night cream is so luxuriously rich and balmy that it functions more like a sleeping mask, leaving me with plump and dewy skin by morning.

Rodan+Fields Redefine Regimen, $199, available at Rodan + Fields.
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A touch sheerer than medium-coverage bases, but more substantial than a watery tinted moisturizer, this creamy foundation comes in eight shades that range from porcelain to mocha and blends in as seamlessly as a serum. It's pricey, yes, and the tube doesn't exactly look huge, but mine lasted a solid three and a half months — and I used up every last drop.

Beautycounter Tint Skin Foundation, $41, available at Beautycounter.
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We've said before that lip scrubs, while nice, are pretty unnecessary purchases considering you can just walk into your kitchen and mix up a little bowl of sugar and honey. But when the price is right, the formula is effective, and the handy tube allows you to exfoliate at your desk or on the street, it's a worthy indulgence.

This scrub is just the right amount of sandy and softening: Squeeze it out like a balm, rub your lips together to exfoliate, then tissue it off. Finish off with the shea butter balm, which, if you've ever tried Mary Kay's Satin Hand Cream, you know is not fooling around. It's like Aquaphor on steroids and you'll find yourself only needing to reach for it twice a day (as opposed to, oh, 16 times with your regular balm).

Mary Kay Satin Lips Set, $22, available at Mary Kay.
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This little stick is not, as it claims, going to give you professional microdermabrasion results at home — you're going to need a machine for that. But it is way more effective (and fun) than a traditional face scrub at removing flakiness, especially around the nose. Wash your face, pat it dry, then run the base of it under water. Run it across your face (and neck, too) in circular, upward motions, rinse off, and finish with your serum and moisturizer.

Tyra Beauty The Secret Weapon Microdermabrasion Wand, $49, available at Tyra Beauty.
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