Beauty Favorites for Summer!

It may not be officially summer, but here in California it is in full swing! We’ve already had two 100 degree days and there’s probably more to come, so no matter where you live, if you are looking to stay looking great without much effort, I got you.

Though I am a makeup junkie, the hot weather makes me want to pare back on the amount of products I use for a fresher looking face. So far, these products have made it into my “Go To” drawer for summer! It’s a mix of budget friendly and higher end goodies.

  1. FAVE FOUNDATION: Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer. 

neutrogena foundation

Though technically this is a tinted moisturizer, it does build to a medium coverage if you want that extra cover. It’s lightweight, not greasy, and the color stays true throughout the day. I especially like that it includes a SPF 20 to help with sun protection and Retinol for anti aging (great for my late 40s skin!). I have sensitive skin and have to be picky about my foundations, but this does the trick for a lightweight, dewy (but not oily) finish without breakouts! Budget friendly, ranging from $8-12, depending on the vendor. The only downside? It comes in 6 shades, and I feel there could be more deeper shades offered.

Here is a pic with me wearing it! My skin still shows through, but I’m still evened out. Note: I do use primer with this, so there’s less likelihood of it melting away.

ALSO – Neutrogena’s Clear Face Liquid Sunscreen in SPF 55 is a MUST for my Irish fair skin!

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2. MOISTURIZER – GLAM GLOW  Glowstarter Mega Illuminating Moisturizer

Glam Glow Glowstarter

Nude Glow

I discovered this moisturizer from a sample in my Sephora PLAY subscription, and I LOVE it. Available in three shades (Nude Glow- above, Pearl Glow, and Sun Glow), this moisturizer not only hydrates my skin, but also adds a healthy warmth to my color without me looking “self tanned.” I use Nude Glow for that effect, plus I like it to give myself that Victoria’s Secret model “is she wearing makeup” look (and yeah, they do!).

A jar IS pricey – anywhere from $39-$49. You can also get the mini from Sephora for $15, or just ask for a sample to try!

I wore this with just a little concealer, mascara, and nude lip color when we were on a date!

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3. MASCARA – Marc Jacobs Velvet Noir and Loreal Voluminous Lash Paradise (tie)

Who doesn’t love a great mascara? Even if you are not a big makeup person, mascara opens the eyes and makes you look more awake. Depending on what you want from a mascara, there’s a ton of options (thicken, darken, lengthen..), but these two are the ones I’ve been using the most lately. Both are long wearing but easy to remove with a makeup wipe or cleanser, non irritating, and don’t dry out your lashes. Both have great wands to build your look and easily coat those hard-to-get-right lower lashes!

The big difference between the two is the price – Marc Jacobs retails from $20-$26, Loreal ranges from $9-$12. What makes Marc Jacobs worth the purchase is it gives you the “are those real?” lashes while still looking natural. Either way, you can’t go wrong with these.

marc jacobs

Lash Paradise

4. Finishing Spray – Urban Decay All Nighter and E.L.F. Makeup & Set Finishing Spray

A finishing spray is a MUST if you are planning to be out for several hours without access to a makeup touch up, or if you are in a warmer climate. Both of these sprays have worked very well for me; but if I had to pick just one it would be Urban Decay’s All Nighter. This sealed in my makeup without any weird fragrance or making my skin feel tight. No creasing of my foundation or eye shadow for HOURS.

Urban Decay

Downside? It is expensive for a full size bottle ($33), but it will last a long time. I usually stick with the small size ($15) because it’s easy for travel.

Don’t have the budget for that? No worries! I bought E.L.F.’s Makeup Mist & Set spray and it worked almost as well as Urban Decay’s spray. The main difference would be it does have an alcohol smell and you have to spray it lightly, or it could feel a bit sticky to the skin. Best part? It’s only $4-$6:)

ELF spray

And there you have it! These are the types of items I’m reaching for over and over again during this warmer weather. What are some Must Haves for your summer beauty regimen? 

NOTE: This is not a sponsored post. Everything is my own opinion from my experiences!

Until next time –

Love, laughter, and lipstick,

Melanie.

Avoiding Makeup Meltdown

Ah, summer! The time for picnics, the beach, road trips, and parties!

Also the time when it’s tricky to wear makeup when the temperatures soar. The truth is, when the seasons change, so must the type of makeup you wear. What looks flawless in the cooler months may end up running down your face later on!

No one wants that! However, I have hit upon a couple techniques and products to keep you looking like you are cool, collected, and flawless!

Start with proper care for your canvas!

  1. EXFOLIATE A FEW TIMES A WEEK

Regardless if your skin is oily, dry, or combination – since your skin is “sweating” more, the skin cells are shedding faster and can create blackheads and/or blemishes more often. Apply a mask a few times a week to keep the cell turnover from clogging the pores.

2. USE THE RIGHT MOISTURIZER

That’s right. Even if you are fighting oily skin, you still need a moisturizer so the skin isn’t OVERPRODUCING oil to compensate for any acne medication or drying agents to prevent pimples. The skin will revolt if it’s not receiving healthy hydration – so check with your derm what may work right for you.

What I use: Skin Therapist by Limelight by Alcone. I am SUPER sensitive to many products and this is the first one that hydrates and makes my skin look dewy and younger without clogging my pores. It’s chemical and cruelty free:)

3. CLEAN YOUR FACE EVERY NIGHT!

I know, I know – sometimes you are just dead tired and another 10 minutes just is too much to deal with. I get it. That’s why makeup wipes are handy. For those occasions, I suggest Pond’s Wet Towelettes. These are gentle and get all the makeup off with one towelette! HOWEVER – don’t only use makeup removers! They don’t substitute for a deep cleansing.

Drugstore Face Cleansers With Good Reps: Neutrogena Facial Cleansing Bar, Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser, St. Ives Apricot Scrub, and Basis Cleaner Clean Face Wash.

What I use: I have used Neutrogena and it worked well for me, though after moving to Guam the hard water in the building really dried out my skin. I had to make a change to products with no chemicals and more natural ingredients. I use Quench Cleanse (Limelight by Alcone). It’s great for my dry, 40 something skin!

PREP YOUR SKIN FOR MAKEUP!

This is something a lot of people forget to do and that is a big reason why your foundation quits on you during the summer. Start with a primer – it should be lightweight and oil free. You won’t need much, but a primer allows your foundation to adhere to the face, verses melting into the pores.

Next – after applying foundation, use a setting powder for the forehead, chin, nose, and under the eyes (to avoid creasing). Setting powders should be translucent and applied with a brush with a light hand. You don’t want to end up with cake face!

Lastly – I ALWAYS set my makeup with a Setting/Finishing Spray. This acts as a “seal” to your makeup but should not make you look like “varnish face.” There are many setting sprays to choose from and you’ll find plenty of recommendations. My Go To: 10 Years Younger Finishing Spray (click on link to shop). This oil free, lightweight spray keeps my face on for HOURS and after running around in the sauna that is Guam! Nothing else has ever done this – and YES I know this seems like a big commercial for Limelight, but DAMN these products kick ass!

Seriously – THIS STUFF WILL HOLD YOUR FACE TOGETHER!!

 

The Takeaway – Exfoliate, Cleanse, and Prep Your Makeup. 

Doing those things will make a drastic difference on your makeup’s staying power. Use a light hand when applying product, and since it’s summer – why not go with a look that says fresh? These are my fav looks to rock right now:

A berry lip with lush lashes!

Sun Kissed for night!

Rose lip and peach shadow.

The rousing 4th of July is approaching (HOW is June almost over?!!) and I’m ready to review some summer fashion! Check out my next post for my Fashion Ups and Downs!

Until next time –

Love, laughter, and shoes-

Xo, Melanie.