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

2.95  ·  Rating details ·  1,238 Ratings  ·  289 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 ...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published April 27th 2010 by It Books (first published April 8th 2010)
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Melea Rose-Waters
Jul 24, 2010 rated it it was ok
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
May 04, 2010 rated it did not like it
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
Jan 06, 2011 rated it did not like it
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
Jul 26, 2010 rated it liked it
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
Aug 23, 2010 rated it did not like it
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
Jul 02, 2010 rated it did not like it
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.
Nov 25, 2010 rated it it was ok
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
Amelia the Strange
Aug 06, 2010 rated it liked it
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
May 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
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
Aug 22, 2012 rated it liked it
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.
Sep 02, 2014 rated it did not like it
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
Dec 29, 2011 rated it did not like it
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
May 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
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
Bethany Clark
Dec 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
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!
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
May 01, 2010 rated it really liked it
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.
Jul 16, 2012 rated it it was ok
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...
Jun 13, 2010 rated it did not like it
"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.
Aug 01, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: audio, did-not-finish
I read (and absolutely LOVED) Molly Ringwald's book "When It Happens to You" so I had anticipated "Getting The Pretty Back" would also be fantastic.

Not so much.

This is one of those instances when you're listening to an audiobook and you know pretty (heh ... pun intended, I guess) early on that it's not for you but you feel bad for bailing so early so you check Goodreads to see if others were as lackluster about this as you, and oh, thank GOD, it isn't just me, other people were similarly as pu
Aug 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Hmm. I listened to the audiobook borrowed from my library so I missed out on the illustrated portions. Maybe those help? I really wanted to like this more than I did. I grew up watching Molly Ringwald in the great teen movies being only a handful of years younger than she. After listening to this, I can't say my fondness for her has grown. Yes, we all grow up and most of what I've seen of her work was from her teenage years, but mostly, her life just isn't that relatable. Let's just say, we work ...more
Jun 27, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018-books, reviewed
Maybe it's because I'm 19 and very unaware to how fashion works, to how love works, to how anything works that this book is completely irrelevant to me and my life. I'm a cis female but do I know anything about really ANYTHING AT ALL that she wrote about in this? Nope, I really don't.

Maybe some of this information will be relevant to me when I get older, but right now reading this was like reading one of those luxury fashion magazines I buy sometimes when Selena Gomez or Nicki Minja are on the
Ashley Deonanan
Nov 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Growing up watching all of her movies, reading her book was even better. I loved that while reading this book i could hear her voice narrating the whole story to me. It was funny, helpful and useful. Thank you for bringing the pretty back.
Necole Moreau
Nov 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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!!!
Mindy Keys
Jan 06, 2018 rated it did not like it
Rubbish. Miss Ringwald comes across as an entitled, spoiled brat. Nothing fun in this book. No anecdotes about the 80s movies - just her whinging about everything. P'tooey.
Brenda Anweiler
Mar 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, non-fiction
Loved the book. Hope she writes one about turning 50 and teenagers .
Wendy Kennar
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was ok
I don't know how helpful this review will be, but I can't quite figure out what this book was about and how I felt about it. I must say, really disappointing.
Feb 15, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
Some interesting points, but way too much time giving ridiculous fashion tips and cooking tips.
Jun 14, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Finally finished. Boring advice book with a few interesting tidbits.
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
May 30, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2011
Ruminations on life, love and make-up from everyone's favorite 80s everygirl. 


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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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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“Anyone gots some mangoes up in here?” 4 likes
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