Commentary #3: “10 Things Every Woman Should Know By 25”

I have a love-hate relationship with these types of lists. On one hand, I love them and think they’re great. On the other hand, I have great disdain whenever I see a new one (cue the eye rolling) and think about how the female population is being put into a box, so to speak. More on that later.

Considering I just crossed the threshold into my late-20s, I thought I’d look at this list and see where I am in terms of what the writers at this flagship/legendary magazine believe I should be.


I’m going to post the short list here — “10 Things Every Woman Should Know By 25,” according to Cosmopolitan:

1. Get a Clarisonic.

2. Cut the social fat.

3. Stop judging your friend’s dickhead fiancée.

4. Buy a full bed!

5. Stop not knowing when your period is coming.

6. Not everybody has to wear foundation.

7. Make the transition from talking shit to doing shit.

8. Invest in a black blazer.

9. Date a type of dude you would have never dated before.

10. I’ve said it before, and I will say it again. Stop worrying.

Here’s my take on these 10 things:

1. I’ve seen Clarisonic in the department stores. I’ve received the sales pitch and how beneficial it would be to my face, especially at my age. So, unless you want to shell out well over $100 for this “toothbrush for your face,” fine by me. Personally, some good face wash and a washcloth (heck, I normally use my hands in the shower in the a.m. and over the sink in the p.m.) have worked me for YEARS. I was blessed to not have terrible acne, and I’ve learned through lots of trial and error what products are best for my face. I currently use a combination of Clearasil and Clean & Clear.

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For the record, I recently purchased a Clarisonic-like device from for a lot less than the name brand. However, it’s been sitting in my linen closet, unopened, for over a month and a half because I haven’t finished using my current product line-up. I’m certain I’ll get around to using it, but I believe in finishing what you started in terms of products. Also, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

2. This one was interesting. I’ve done this a couple of times with Facebook, mainly because my friends list was well over 1,000 people, and that was slightly insane to me. My advice: Go through your friends list at least once (it doesn’t matter what age you are though) and determine who you talk to/interact with and who you don’t. You’ll likely be surprised about how many people are in the latter category. Plus, if you un-friend them and they decide that they want to better their friendship with you because of it, that’s great.

3. Ah, engagements and weddings. Wonderful, crazy times. The point of this one is simple: Treat your friends with respect, and that ALWAYS includes their S.O./fiance/spouse/partner. Fake it if you absolutely have to in their presence.

Please also apply this rule to your friends who are single – Please stop judging them about whether or not they’re dating, or even looking for someone. I’ve been on both sides of this coin, and it SUCKS. For the love of humanity, be kind and don’t be a nosy neighbor, so to speak.

4. This list was originally published in September 2013, and I remember first reading this around that time. For this one, at that time, I shook my head and scoffed a little. I was in my apartment then, and sleeping just fine on the twin bed that carried me through nearly 15 years of my life.

Fast forward to moving back home in May 2014, and I asked my parents if the queen-size guest bed could be in my bedroom. They agreed, and everything changed. I started sleeping better! I have more room! I don’t feel like I’m still in college. You are not limited to a twin mattress!!

5. I laughed at this one. For me, I have always known when my period is coming, thanks to being on some form of birth control since before I was a teenager.

Clarification: My periods were absolutely terrible in the beginning – I put my poor mother through hell. We quickly knew something was wrong, so we went to the doctor and they advised that The Pill would help regulate everything. I think I started around age 11 or 12, so it’s second nature now. I was mortally embarrassed in the 7th grade – One of the blonde cheerleaders had somehow found out that I was on The Pill and then asked/yelled (in front of the entire grade), “Laura Beth, are you pregnant?” I realized later that it didn’t make any sense, but at the time, I wanted to melt into the floor.

6. When it comes to make-up, I’m like my mom; I’m very minimal. I only use foundation or concealer if I have a bad breakout, which is usually during my period. I realize that many of my friends aren’t as fortunate, and I feel sorry for you!

My make-up routine is very simple:

Daily moisturizer with SPF: Clean & Clear Morning Glow

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Mascara: Cover Girl Natureluxe

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Eyeliner – I like Bonne Bell and Mary Kay, but the Dollar Tree has some great options, too!

My advice: Take care of your face (see #1) and add some mascara every day – It makes your eyes look more open. And, whatever you do, absolutely wash and moisturize your face before you go to sleep each and every night – I’ve heard of ladies getting terrible eye infections from not washing off their make-up, plus your skin will be softer!

Anything beyond that, go for it!

7. Guilty as charged. We all do it. I love this one because of this: “We talk shit because it’s easy, comfortable, and cathartic – but nobody will know, and nothing will change, until you speak up.” PREACH!

But seriously, go live your dreams. Save some money. Travel the world. Go back to school and get that degree you’ve always wanted/needed.

8. This is one of the easiest ones! I have one from Kohl’s (Apt. 9). I have a matching black skirt too, and when I wear it at work, I get tons of compliments. Don’t go to Starbucks for a couple of days/weeks, take $50 or so and go get one. It’s professional and stylish!

9.  I speak from experience here. The three guys I dated B.A. (Before Al) were all from my church. I expanded my social horizons first by taking the plunge into IB in high school, and then again when I went away to Longwood. Despite all of that over so many years, I never realized that such an amazing man would literally be in my own backyard. Before Al, I had never been on a true “first date” – I fell into dating the other guys because we were in church and youth group together.

Al wasn’t raised in the church, and that was so refreshing for me. Sometimes you just need the slightest change in perspective (and possibly a persuasive younger brother – Here’s looking at you, Nick!). Take a risk. Go out of your comfort zone – You never know what you’ll find.

And here we are, celebrating 4 YEARS next week!!  I can’t believe it.

10. Again, guilty as charged. It’s so hard not to worry – There is so much that stresses us out. But I’ve seen the ill effects of worrying – How it makes people physically sick and debilitated. As the list says, “Everything will work itself out.”

Your world won’t end if you get drunk one night and your friends have all the ridiculous stories to share – It was just one night. Life marches on. You’ll laugh at yourself down the road.

Your world won’t end if you can’t find your dream job right now – Be brave and take the part-time job at McDonald’s or Michaels or the local day care or Bath & Body Works for their seasonal staff. Who knows what might happen? Working somewhere is so much better than sitting at home, no money and bored stiff – Trust me!

Well, there you have it. Is there anything that Cosmo missed? Let me know!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

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