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Getting the Pretty Back: Friendship, Family, and Finding the Perfect Lipstick

2.94  ·  Rating Details ·  1,131 Ratings  ·  278 Reviews

As the endearing and witty star of the beloved John Hughes “brat pack” classics Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, and Pretty in Pink, Molly Ringwald defined teenage angst, love, and heartbreak. Now a wife and mother of three, and a star on the current hit television drama The Secret Life of the American Teenager, Molly is facing a new angst-inducing time in her life—her

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Kindle Edition, 240 pages
Published (first published April 8th 2010)
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Melea Rose-Waters
Jul 24, 2010 Melea Rose-Waters rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
Ok, in my review of this one, I will include a conversation between me and the husband while I was reading it.

DH (dear husband): Whatcha reading?

Me: Getting the Pretty Back by Molly Ringwald.

DH: What? What's it about?

Me: Molly Ringwald is telling me about how to get the pretty back.

DH: Why would *she* be writing a book on THAT?!

Me: I don't know... and I don't feel prettier having read this.. I just feel... poor.

So if you want to feel poor and unworldly and unworthy, go right out and pick this o
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Emily
May 04, 2010 Emily rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was anticipating a little bit of intelligence, a little bit of a smart girl's guide to feeling pretty on the inside. I was not anticipating an ILLUSTRATED book with thick pages as if it were made for a child and advice on how to look pretty ranging from how to arrange a cheese plate to how the Birkin bag has too much heft to carry around for long. Oh yes, Molly. I'll run out and pick up a Prada bag like you suggest, and, while I'm at it, I'll stop into a vintage store and look for that 1970's ...more
Anne
Aug 23, 2010 Anne rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Oh, Molly.

Very trite. Why was I expecting good writing? I am not a Cosmo reader but this seems to fit the bill.

Superficial fluff for the most part (a black blazer dresses up any outfit? Are we stuck in 1991?). When was Molly a style icon anyway? She seemed to be stretching the advice at the end, as though she had to include it. The food and France parts were the most interesting.

Am I the only one who wonders how her friends feel, about having their private exploits dished in public? Doesn't so
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Amber
Jul 02, 2010 Amber rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Oh, Molly. I SO should not have read this book because now I'm not sure I still adore you. When I can afford Burberry trench coats and Hermes scarves (two examples from your wardrobe "staples") I will give you a second chance. Until then I will freeze you in time so that you are always my 80s darling.
Kimberly
Nov 25, 2010 Kimberly rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'll be honest, I skimmed through this book only because I don't care about fashion and I skipped the family and kids part because I don't have that yet (wish I did though, never thought I'd be single still at 34). I did however read the part about relationships/breaking up. Having just being broken up with, it made me feel it was okay to feel what I feel. She mentions that while it's okay to take friends' advice and move on after being broken up with, it's also okay to ignore that advice and ju ...more
Kristin
Jul 26, 2010 Kristin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chick-book, adult
This book is like having your girlfriend write all the articles in a Glamour magazine. They are fluffy, quick, and blunt. However, I could see myself having a glass of wine and having a lot in common with Molly (minus the career and famous part). We are the same age. We both had prior miscarriages, we both ended our first marriages at 33, etc. Very bizarre. Anyway, so far, I have cleaned out half my wardrobe and driven it to goodwill. There isn't much left, but at least I'm realistic about it no ...more
Amelia the Strange
I adore just about any 80's movie with Molly Ringwald (Pretty in Pink, The Breakfast Club, For Keeps, 16 Candles...) When I picked this book up, I was thinking it would be more of a memoir but it really should be classified as the dread self-help.

Molly gives some good advice, i.e. make time to be with your friends, make time to take care of yourself, figure out what it is you want to be. But I found a lot of her advice to be unattainable to myself. For example, I cannot afford to spend more tha
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Lori
May 18, 2010 Lori rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed Molly Ringwald's autobiography. She focuses on the reader more than herself. I liked that aspect about it. I also enjoy the chick lit feel with fun illustrations and helpful hints. The book is obviously geared for women of my generation (Gen X) and I felt like she was speaking to me. (Sounds cheesy, I know.) But she wrote a good book. Because of her tips on cheese, dinner parties, and wine, I will most likely purchase a copy of this book. The only reason I gave this book four instead o ...more
Clacie
A solid 3. I liked Molly's personal stories more than her wardrobe advice, but she did have some good points/ideas. She seems like she'd be a nice person in real life too. I was hoping for a juicier memoir, more talk of her time making movies & tv but there wasn't much of it. Molly narrates the audio & it was great. And did you know she can sing? Well she can.
Janeece
Sep 02, 2014 Janeece rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this audiobook while at work. I'm a big fan of Molly's 80's movies, as well as her "Secret Life of the American Teenager" role, so I figured I'd like this. Oh man, how I was wrong. Molly has lived a life that has left her so beyond reality that it's hard to listen to a word she says. This book is full of advice that is laughable to the average person. In this book she talks about things like cheese and the correct way to eat cheese as if the majority of Americans are eating cheeses ...more
Dawn
Dec 29, 2011 Dawn rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Lame, Lame, Lame.

OK, I was as much of a Molly Ringwald fangirl as a young teen as any girl my age, but this is just... such a disappointment. I was rather hoping for a real memoir about her life as an actress, and the fallout of being enshrined forever as the teen redhead in pink.

It's less a memoir and more a series of pretty much random collection of... magazine articles is really the closest thing I can think of. Teen Beat articles on fashion and lipstick colors, only (supposedly) for adult
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Aviva
May 06, 2011 Aviva rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Part memoir, part Cosmo self help article, I ended up enjoying this book much more than I thought I would early on. My favorite bits tended to be the parts about her life, where I learned fascinating nuggets I never knew about an actress I've long admired. I think she's someone I would enjoy in real life, assuming her book is as honest as it seems. There's no dirt here, just someone who has been successful at living well, especially when it meant taking the path less travelled.

There isn't a lot
...more
Bethany Clark
Dec 30, 2013 Bethany Clark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biographies
If you love Molly Ringwald then this is a funny read that you will enjoy!
I know that I loved her in The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles and Pretty in Pink, and now I love hearing about her life experiences through the age of 40!
She discusses style, relationships, family, friends, food and so many more topics!

This is a fun read, and I recommend to anyone who loves Molly and is in the same stages in life!
Jennifer
I wanted something a lighter after Lawrence in Arabia, but I didn't even make it one disk in. I'm not opposed to wanting to feel pretty, but I'm opposed to feeling pressured to feel pretty (I read somewhere "Pretty isn't the price you pay for being a woman"). And that seemed like where this book was going--feeling pressured to feel pretty and figuring out how to meet that pressure.

Maybe that's not fair to the book, I don't know
Melissa
May 01, 2010 Melissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I hate to admit it, but I really liked this one. The only thing that bothered me is that she doesn't seem to realize that we are not all famous actresses who can afford anything we want. It really makes no difference to me whether Burberry or Prada makes a better trench coat. Mine will be coming from Nordstrom. That said, she makes some great points about remembering who you are when life keeps getting in the way.
Sara
Jul 16, 2012 Sara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir-biography
What did I glean from this book? Some good recipes and the fact that I should clean out all t-shirts with words on them from my closet. (Guess what? I'm keeping them... lol)

I only paid $2 for this (Kindle) and therefore I wasn't irritated that I wasn't that into it. It's got cute illustrations, and she has a good writing style/voice... I just wish the content was a little deeper...
Felicia
"Keep in mind that different occasions merit different outfits and looks."
Alright, I admit that I was lured in by the really cool watercolor illustrations in this book - and the layout of the book. Overall, however, BLECH!! Her useful tips are all pretty high end.
Alona Perlin
Feb 13, 2017 Alona Perlin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Just like in her movies, Molly Ringwald is incredibly relatable in this book. She is not condenscending and tells it like it is. This book was honest, contemporary and sincere. Molly is sensitive to non-celebrities and does not offer opinions that are unrealistic. I thouroughly enjoyed this book. It was fun and light-hearted and I looked forward to picking it up again to finish reading it. The only thing that I did not like was that it seemed to ended suddenly and a few pages appeared to be miss ...more
Necole Moreau
Nov 03, 2016 Necole Moreau rated it it was amazing
What a great book about life!!! Here I am almost at 40 years old and she is completely telling the truth. Great advice and also great to know she isn't perfect either!!! Love Molly Ringwald, one of my favorite actresses!!!
Issa
Feb 15, 2017 Issa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Some interesting points, but way too much time giving ridiculous fashion tips and cooking tips.
Bookish
I was hoping this book would be more about Molly and less a self-help(ish) book, but ultimately that was not the case. She has lots of advice - some of it good, most of it ok, none of it great - and she sprinkled in some interesting anecdotes about her life, but overall this was less about her than about what she has learned now that she's a 40-something. Interestingly, not much different from what most other 40-somethings who are reasonably accomplished have learned, albeit in a more glamorous ...more
nicole
May 30, 2011 nicole rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
Ruminations on life, love and make-up from everyone's favorite 80s everygirl. 

So.

I have a confession to make. 

I frequently read books without really having any idea what they're actually about beforehand. 

In early January, I went on an e-book buying blitz. I bought easily a dozen titles and sat on my Nook unread, because holiday cash provides you that sort of decadent luxury. I handpicked these titles based on what my current library of choice wasn't carrying. I was so sad they had refused to pu
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Andrea
Dec 16, 2016 Andrea rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-books
Before I started this book, I hopped onto Goodreads and started skimming the reviews. No way that all of the one star reviews were correct. Molly Ringwald, star of one of my all time favorite movies (Sixteen Candles) couldn't possibly write a one-star book, could she? Turns out, she could and she did. And yes, I realize I gave it two stars, but one was for the illustrations. The thing that really drew me to this book, other than the fact that it was written by Molly, was the fact that it's beaut ...more
Ashley
Aug 25, 2014 Ashley rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book when I was shelving the biography section. "O hey- I love Molly. This should be good!" I mean, Pretty In Pink and Sixteen Candles are 2 of my most favorite movies. But then I read some of the reviews and I didn't know if I wanted to read it. A lot of the reviews were unforgiving, and I didn't want to ruin whatever idea I had of who Molly Ringwald is.

First off, it's not really a biography. Which is really disappointing, I would have loved to have read her autobiography and hear
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Susan
Ok, I have to admit it...the pretty in pink girl can write and she has a lot of really good things to say! In a previous post I wrote, You Just Never Know..., I talked about where we find our inspiration. I found a whole bunch of inspiration throughout this entire book. It's literally falling off the pages, so to speak.

What is surprising to me that someone like Ms. Ringwald would have anything of value to inspire me. I mean seriously here, she's an actress and a mother. Two things that I am not.
...more
Rebecca Dobrinski
Sep 30, 2012 Rebecca Dobrinski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Molly Ringwald is a writer?!?!? Am I the last person on the planet to discover this? While looking for something else on Amazon (isn’t that when you find the best stuff anyway?), I stumbled across her book, Getting the Pretty Back.

Being a child of the 1980s, I HAD to read this book. Yes, I watched Pretty in Pink, The Breakfast Club, and – of course – Sixteen Candles over and over again. I attempted to emulate the styles of the characters she played. Although, I will admit, by the time Breakfast
...more
Melissa
Jan 06, 2011 Melissa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
So unfortunate . . . I really, really wanted to like this book. Like many women in their 30s, I was enamored with Molly Ringwald (in a girl-crush, that's who I want to be sort of way) throughout high school. So when I happened upon this book in my local library, I immediately grabbed it. Though I was hoping for an autobiography, I must say that when I read the flap I was intrigued. Molly Ringwald was going to give me advice. How cool is that? And she's going to help me get my "pretty back" (ok, ...more
Laurel-Rain
Molly Ringwald was one of those iconic eighties stars who was seen in many of the John Hughes films and was dubbed, along with a few of her costars in these productions as well as some others, as part of the "brat pack." She had a signature style that was "copied" in some of her movies, like Pretty in Pink. She shopped vintage and layered a lot. Sort of an "Annie Hall for the Younger Set."

Then we didn't see her for a few years, except in less well-known movies. She moved to France for awhile. Th
...more
Alison Davis
I so wanted to love this book since I'm a huge 80s brat-pack fan. Ringwald includes some interesting tidbits of advice. Ultimately, though, I don't share experiences that are remotely similar to hers, so I had a difficult time connecting with the book.
Tanya
Aug 21, 2012 Tanya rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Women age 40+, particularly moms
Recommended to Tanya by: GoodReads recommendation
Shelves: 2012-books
A fast and fun read. Like talking to a girlfriend who will give you her perspective on what works for her and is just sensible for a 40+ year old mom. Don't expect the flow of conversation to flow linearly, but with some variety of topics and some will be ones you wish there was more time to talk about and others less (for me, hair was covered way too much). In the end, however, you may find this was an enjoyable diversion and a fun afternoon (please don't be offended that I am overusing the wor ...more
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Molly Kathleen Ringwald is an American actress, singer, dancer and author. Having appeared in the John Hughes films Sixteen Candles (1984), The Breakfast Club (1985), and Pretty in Pink (1986), Ringwald is part of the "Brat Pack" and has been called the greatest teen star of all time. She has also played Anne Juergens in the ABC Family show The Secret Life of the American Teenager.
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