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Just an overcommitted girl trying to keep up with it all. Mom of three, co-owner of Lemonade PR, sports lover and F1 enthusiast always counting down to the Kentucky Derby. 

Beauty: Five I’ve Tried – Drugstore Favorites from Meijer

Apr 11, 2016

Just so we’re all clear from the start, I’m definitely not a “beauty blogger.” Lord knows I’m not even on the Triple A team when it comes to make-up application – I love a good YouTube tutorial as much as the next gal. While I won’t be offering the latest tips on contouring anytime soon, I do LOVE (times three) beauty products. Love love love ’em and love trying out the newest, next best thing. I think I’m convinced that if I stumble upon the perfect product, I’ll be magically transformed into a make-up and/or skin care expert. This hasn’t happened yet but it hasn’t stopped me from trying.

That love – plus being super gullible when it comes to beauty marketing – leads me to try out a lot of products; some I get sent to try out and some I just can’t help but give a go of (this Glossier Boy Brow, for example). So I thought I’d start a new semi-regular series where I’ll review five products I’ve recently tried. And not just stuff I’ve tried for a day or two, stuff that I’ve given a serious go of – at least a couple weeks if not more. Clearly, I’ve got too many products when I’ve already lined up the 10 products for my next two posts.

For my first round-up, here’s a mix of skin care and make-up I recently tried out thanks to Meijer. And yes, I realize there are seven items here – the Neutrogena ones are REALLY similar so I counted them as one and I was just too excited to leave one of the others out. Yes, I am bad at math.

Every couple months or so, Meijer graciously sends me a box of products to check out. Some of the stuff I’ve sampled thanks to them have become regulars in my routine – this micellar water for one – and their selection of products is on point. Since they’ve got more shelf space than most drugstores, you can bet they have a ton of good stuff including things you’re hard pressed to find at other stores (the Garnier micellar water below is almost ALWAYS sold out when I go to the drugstore by my house).

Five I've Tried: Drugstore Beauty Product Review * Meijer 1a + 1b | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

1a & 1b: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Gel Moisturizer & Hydro Boost Gel Moisturizer with SPF 15 – I combined these into one because they are essentially the same product, one just has SPF 15 making it great for daytime.

I first tried this product last summer and would regularly use it after getting home from the pool. The gel moisturizer is really cooling and feels great on dry skin. Lately I’ve been using it at night before my normal night cream. Whether or not it is actually as moisture rich as it feels, I don’t really care because my face always feels so clean and fresh after applying this. I’ve never used it exclusively but this is a great base layer.

Lately I’ve tried out the version with SPF and used it first thing in the morning. Being pregnant, my face has felt really puffy and swollen in the mornings and this is perfect to help de-puff and moisturize. Again, I don’t use this by itself but love it in addition to my regular moisturizers.

It’s really light, cooling and helps with puffiness. It’s also nice for the approaching warmer months when you don’t want to apply a heavy moisturizer or you just need a little pick me up mid-day.

Grade: A 
Will I buy it/try it again? Yes. 

2. Aveeno Absolutely Ageless Restorative Night Cream – Night Creams promise a lot of things. This one promises you’ll “wake up to softer, smoother, younger-looking skin in just 1 week.” I’ve been using this for a couple weeks and can’t say whether or not my skin looks younger. That being said, my skin is a little out of whack right now so who really knows.

One thing I do know, this stuff smells delicious. Otherwise the jury is still out on this one. To be honest, I think it will be one of those products I use when I run out of my favorite night cream and am in between products for a couple weeks. So not on the A team but a solid bench player.

Grade: B
Will I buy it/try it again? To be determined. 

3. L’Oreal True Match Lumi Cushion Foundation – I am sucker for any product that has the word “luminous” on the packaging. I’m willing to try anything to get that perfect Blake Lively/Gwyneth Paltrow/Karlie Kloss glow.

This foundation isn’t your typical stick or liquid. It is packaged like a compact but instead of powder, it’s a sponge with the foundation. You use the enclosed puff to apply the foundation which is intended to be layered as needed.

I’ve been using this for about a month (I’m thinking it’s time I buy a new one – seems to be running a little low) and I really like it BUT I don’t use this exclusively. If you’re looking for a light coverage, this stuff is great. You can easily build on the coverage but it still isn’t like a more traditional liquid foundation. I imagine this will be nice for the summer when you’ve got a nice tan and just need to even out your complexion.

I’ve been using this as an last layer (after a light powder application) on my temples, under my eyes and on my brow bone. As promised, it gives a luminous glow although I do think that glow wears off by about noon. The packaging makes it easy to carry with you in your bag though, so you can easily reapply lightly as needed.

Grade: A-
Will I buy it/try it again? Yes, although I may try another shade this time around. 

4. Physician’s Formula for Beauty Butter Bronzer It should be noted that I probably would never pick this bronzer up off the shelf. The packaging is a little too-cheesy Hawaiian Tropic to catch my eye but clearly I shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover because this stuff is good.

I really hate it when bronzer’s have too much sparkly shine to them but I also think matte bronzers can make you look like an extra in the original West Side Story (if you don’t get what I’m talking about, see here). This one is the perfect mix and the shade is just right. I have a Bobbi Brown bronzer I love half of the year but the other half it’s way too dark. This one is a shade you can use year-round.

I will say that is smells a little like coconut tanning oil but don’t let that deter you. It gives you that pretty tan, I just enjoyed a fruity cocktail on the beach glow without all the drag-queen dramatics. My tip: use a fluffy powder brush instead of an angled brush for a more natural look (I wouldn’t recommend this for contouring).

Grade: A+ 
Will I buy it/try it again? Yes, definitely. You should for sure try it. 

5. Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water (Removes Waterproof Makeup) – I’m a big fan of micellar water and when I saw this Garnier version, I was interested in giving it a try. I use it as a more complete way to take off make-up before my normal face oil + wash routine. Makes me think the cleansing is more effective that way (I made that up though so who knows?).

And it’s also a game changer for when you’re feeling too lazy/tired/over-served to wash your face. It feels more effective than just a make-up wipe.

That being said, this Garnier version isn’t my favorite. It definitely does the job and one major pro is that the bottle is big. I’ve probably used half the bottle at this point and while I think it works really well, there’s something about the feeling after using it that doesn’t give me that clean feeling. It could be that I’m using the version that removes waterproof make-up which, I think, means it has a little oiler consistency.  So if I was using this by itself, I think I’d switch it up but since I use this with my face wash, it works well.

Grade: B- 
Would I buy it/try it again? Maybe. I think I’d try the version that isn’t for waterproof make-up. 

6. Maybelline the Blushed Nudes Eye Shadow Palette Had to throw this palette in because it was another product I thought I’d be ‘meh’ about and have ended up loving.

The colors on this nude palette are really versatile but feel like a step-up from your normal nude palette. The color pay-out on these is also much better than expected for a drugstore brand. Even the light colors give a nice, full coverage on the first swipe.

My current condition means I haven’t been going out very much but I’m looking forward to trying the more dramatic colors once I make a return to going out past 7 pm.

I like this palette so much that I’ve abandoned using my Urban Decay NAKED eye shadows for it. That’s saying something since I’ve been pretty sold on that set and it comes in at a much higher price point.

Grade: A
Will I buy it/try it again? Yes, definitely.


So there you have it, my first “Five I’ve Tried.” Trying to come out strong (although not with my counting skills clearly) for the first attempt. I can’t promise there’ll be make-up tutorials but as I keep this going, I’m hoping to do some more ‘before and after’ shots so you can really see how things look on.

If you’re looking to freshen up your beauty and make-up routine for spring, divert from your normally scheduled grocery shopping at Meijer and get lost in their beauty aisles. Now through May 7th you can use the Meijer Beauty Perks to save more than $100 on some of the latest products plus long-time favorites. All you have to do is sign up with your phone number at or through the mobile app. Then you can “clip” coupons on a variety of products – from skincare, personal care, hair care and cosmetics. Makes for the perfect time to toss some of those old products (see this post for details on when you should throw things away) and stock up on some new goodies for spring.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Meijer. As always, all opinions, ramblings and random thoughts are my own.

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  1. I’m just the opposite on the two of those that I have in my beauty cabinet. LOVE the Garnier Micellar Water. I was so excited about the Nudes palette, but find the coverage chalky. I went ahead and bought the Naked3 because I wanted those rosy colors in my life, and really only wear the Maybelline Nudes for random days when I do stuff like go to Target.

  2. Eve says:

    I’m curious, what’s your favorite, usual night cream?

    • Danielle says:

      Hi Eve –
      That’s a good question! It kind of depends on the time of year. In the winter, I like something a little heavier and have been using Erno Lazlo Night Cream (this one: ). Lately though, I’ve been using the Bare Minerals True Oasis Gel Cream and I really like it (
      I also love the Beautycounter Nourishing Cleansing Balm. Sometimes I leave it on as a night cream but it’s great for a moisturizing boost at night.

      Hope that helps!

  3. […] a quick break from all the Derby posts for another Five I’ve Tried beauty/wellness round-up. This one is a good one and is focused on something VERY important to me […]

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