Thursday, April 26, 2012

Good Friends Vs Best Friends

As women we are all guilty, at least at some point, of referring to someone as a best friend that truly doesn't deserve that title. Perhaps it is the length of time that we are with that friend that causes us to consider that friend a best friend when they should be classified as a close friend. Maybe it's because we have told this friend so much of our personal business, we assume that makes them our best friend. But sooner or later we find ourselves discussing that best friend's shortcomings with the person we consider just a good friend. Here are some tips to help sort out which is your best friend and which is your good friend.

A Good Friend Loans You Money. A Best Friend Gives You Money.

We all know the old warning about lending money to a friend. The quickest way to lose a friend is to loan them money. The reason is that if the money isn't returned, there will be irreparable damage to your friendship. Also, some people make terrible bill collectors. Then there are those that like to remind you that they loaned you money, long after you paid them back. Even still, a good friend wouldn't allow you to go without, even if the money they give you is just a loan.

A best friend will simply give you the money. It doesn't matter to them that they are out the money they hand you. The reason is not that they are rich and can afford to throw money away. The reason is actually that you have such a reciprocated friendship that when that same friend is in need you take care of her the same way she takes care of you. It's the "if I got it, it's yours" principle.

A Good Friend Listens To Your Problems. A Best Friend Helps You Solve Them. 

When you're angry or hurting and need someone to turn to, that person is often your good friend. A good friend will listen to you. She will let you say all that is on your mind so that you can get it out of your head. She will comfort you and help you feel her presence and support in your time of need. We all need this type of friend.

A best friend will not only listen as you cathartically expel all of your grievances. She will also help you solve the problem that has you so upset in the first place. Talking things out is nice. But a friend that walks with you to the end of the road is better. What good is sitting in a corner crying into a glass of wine? You need a friend who will help you figure out what to do next, even if the decision you make isn't the one she helps you come up with.

A Good Friend Considers Your Feelings. A Best Friend Considers Your Health.

Many women have ended friendships over comments about their weight or romantic relationships by their friend. We all seek out that friend that makes us feel good about ourselves. If we feel fat, our good friend helps us love ourselves. If we are in love with someone who consistently breaks our heart, she helps us mend it and remains understanding when you choose to go back to him.

A good friend doesn't care about what we want to feel like when it comes to what's best for us. A best friend is like family. She will tell you the truth no matter how much you don't want to hear it. Denial has never helped anyone. She will tell you that you need to lose weight because she doesn't want you to have heart disease or diabetes. She will tell you that the man you're with is a loser that will have you suicidal in a matter of months. She cares about your well being when you can't see the forest for the trees.

A Good Friend Remembers Your Birthday. A Best Friend Remembers Your Family's Birth dates.

A good friend will always remember your birthday because it is the polite thing to do. She will send you a text message or an email or a Facebook status shout out to wish you a happy birthday. She may even buy you a gift. That's what good friends do.

A best friend will pick up a phone and call you on your birthday. She doesn't have your birthday saved in a phone or on a calendar because they have it memorized. She knows your husband's birthday and all of your children's birthdays. She never misses a step. She knows what your children want for their birthdays and is there to babysit for your husband's birthday.

No one likes the feeling of realizing your best friend is really just a close friend. The worst is when an acquaintance is a better friend than that best friend. But it does happen. The best defense is to choose better friends in the first place. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

5 Products Women Don't Need

It almost seems unfair, men make fun of women for shopping, all the while commercials are geared directly toward you. Perhaps even more unfair is the fact that many of the products "made for a woman" aren't even necessary or useful for a woman. Here are five "must haves" you can cross off of your list. 

1. Activia
The most recent commercial I've seen suggests that if you eat three Activia yogurts a day, your digestive system will begin to run normally again. What that means is, you won't be constipated or irregular if you eat three cups of this special yogurt a day. It has clearly been geared toward women as there are only women chatting with Jamie Lee Curtis in the commercials, smiling and shoving spoons into their mouths. There's just one problem. You don't need it. The USDA food chart shows that if you take in three servings of dairy a day, you will have met your daily requirement. You can drink three servings of milk or eat three cups of any other brand of yogurt and have the same results. 

2. Lysol Automatic Soap Dispenser
Have you ever seen mold growing on a bar of soap? How about on a liquid soap dispenser? That's because soap by definition is antibacterial. Sure, when you touch the soap, however it's dispensed, you put all of your germs on the soap. But then, you wash the germs away before drying them. Unless you need more soap than anticipated, you don't go back to the soap. The automatic soap dispenser is marketed by showing a woman panicked over the animated germs that are crawling all over her sink area. It's pretty. It's convenient. But you don't need it. 

3. Microdermabrasion
Once celebrities like Halle Berry, Jada Pinkett Smith and Jenifer Lopez claimed to use microdermabrasion to keep their skin smooth and glowing, every housewife in the country sought out less expensive ways to have the same treatments. Every company from Olay to Garnier offered some version of microdermabrasion. In recent months we have even see the return of the electric face scrubber. I still have my old one from 1993. It cost me $5. Now the same one costs $35. The fact is that using something as simple as baking soda with your usual face wash can generate the same effect without the need for a large floppy hat to protect your skin from the sun. If the electric face brushes are too pricey, try using a simple exfoliating sponge. 

4. Tide Stain Release
We've all been in the position at least once when we held our breath while removing a previously stained garment from the wash. We cross our fingers and hope that the tough stains came out...this time. Enter Tide Stain Release. It claims to boost the cleaning power of its regular detergent. The product does work. But you don't need it. The problem can be resolved much more cheaply by adding baking soda or Borax to your wash. You could resolve the problem for free by changing the settings on your washer. Believe it or not, it's the ratio of water and agitation to the size of the load of laundry that helps your clothes get cleaner. Ever overload a washer to same time or quarters? Notice that the laundry isn't as clean. If you set your washer load size to the next size up, your stains will come out easier. Pretreating and prompt washing will also help boost the stain removing power of your detergent. You can also switch detergents. 

5. Olay Age Defying Body Wash
Don't get me wrong. I LOVE this stuff. If it weren't for the overpowering perfume, I'd buy it again. The fact is that you can get the same effects with exfoliating gloves and body oil. It doesn't matter if it's baby oil or Avon Skin So Soft oil. Applying mineral oil while still in the shower allows the minerals and moisture to be locked in. It's moisture that keeps skin looking young.