1. Face SPF: COOLA Unscented Mineral Sunscreen SPF 30 – It’s been incredibly sunny here in San Francisco, and it needs to be said that wearing SPF is THE key preventative measure for anti-aging. I first heard about COOLA on Youtube, and it was exactly the sunscreen I had been looking. It’s made with physical sunscreens (titanium dioxide and zinc oxide) with organic ingredients, unscented, slightly tinted, and provides at least SPF 30. I use it over my day moisturizer (which in itself has SPF 15), and it does not feel heavy at all for my oily skin. It also doubles as a makeup primer since it leaves a great matte, slightly tinted finish (VERY similar to Benefit The POREefessional).
2. Body SPF: COOLA Sunscreen Spray SPF 35 – Who would have thought I would get sunburned just walking around San Francisco?? I’m not one to burn easily, but since that happened I’ve been trying to be judicious about applying sunscreen to my shoulders and arms. I originally bought this to use for outdoor activities, but since I don’t have an SPF lotion at the moment, I’ve really been enjoying this. I got the pina colada scent, and it smells like I’m on vacation. Non-sticky.
3. Tinted Moisturizer OR Powder Foundation: Jouer Matte Moisture Tint SPF 15 or Laura Mercier Mineral Powder SPF 15 – I am trying out the Jouer Matte Moisture Tint in Nude (for color reference, I am MAC NC25, Chanel B30, NARS Sheer Glow in Pubjab), and I think it’s ok. It’s definitely not shiny upon application, but it does need to be set with a setting powder since it can slide around on my oily skin. Surprisingly, I’ve been reaching more for the Laura Mercier Mineral Powder in Natural Beige – the coverage is buildable and does not look cakey. I like applying it with the Bobbi Brown Bronzer brush, which at $52 IS an expensive brush, but it is my FAVORITE face powder AND bronzer brush of all time. And I have a lot of brushes.
4. Powder Touchup with SPF: Shiseido Sun Protection Compact SPF 34 PA+++ – SPF is one of those things that should be reapplied, and since face makeup wears off when you are outside sweating, why not do both at the same time? I bought the shade SP70 (the darkest shade available) a few years ago when I was SUPER tan, so I’m using it now as a bronzer on the perimeters of my face, on my cheeks, and a bit on my nose – just where the sun normally hits. I need to pick up SP30 to use for the center of my face since it’ll be a better match for my norma skin tone. I like the use the Eco Tools Retractable Kabuki Brush with this on the go.
5. Bronzer: NARS Bronzing Powder in Laguna – Despite having ~20 bronzers, I still reach for this the most for a subtle bronzed, sun-kissed glow. No better time than the summer to apply liberally.
6. Bright blush: Dior Rosy Glow in 001 Petal, MAC Blush in Style (or any peach shimmering blush) – Any bright pink or peach blush will do, actually. It really livens the complexion and complements a bronzed skin nicely. I’ve been reaching for these two recently as you can see from my blush collection, I should really rotate this more often.
7. Setting Spray: Skindinavia Makeup Finishing Spray – A makeup setting spray is A MUST to help your makeup last longer and also to give you that dewy glow. I spritz this liberally as the last step before I step out the door. The Urban Decay ones are great as well (and also made by Skindinavia).
8. Smudgeproof or Waterproof Mascara: Majolica Majorca Lash Expander Frame Plus – In the summer, I’m all about simple, fresh makeup. As you can see from the items above, I think the core to this is a glowy, healthy base. Mascara will be generally the only eye makeup I wear, if I’m wearing eye makeup at all. I’ve gone back to the Majolica Majorca Lash Expander Frame Plus after finishing some other mascaras.
9. Bright nail polishes – I’m really drawn to bright, warm colors for the summer. Nothing beats a vibrant, warn-toned polish with tanned skin. My current favorites are (from L to R): Butter London Trout Pout, Chanel 617 Holiday, Dior Riviera, and Le Metier de Beaute Red Hot Tango. Wet n Wild Megalast Nail Color in Heatwave looks like it would be a great cheaper alternative since it falls in this color category, and it has good reviews on wear.
10. Tinted Lip Balm with SPF: Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15 – Again, with the SPF – it’s important to protect your lips! A light tint of color is nice too, and I really like these Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatments in Rose, and Honey. It’s easy to throw these on without a mirror, and they are decently moisturizing. I want to try the Coral and Petal colors next.
What are your summer beauty essentials?
Mascara is one of those items some women can’t leave the house without, but it’s one of those items I tend to skip if I am feeling lazy. It smudges on me so easily (both above and below my eyes), my lashes HAVE to be curled ahead of time, and a specific eye makeup remover MUST be used afterwards – it just becomes a process I can’t be bothered with.
In any case, I had a bunch of mascaras sitting in my mascara cup waiting to be used, and I FINALLY made myself use them up. For quick reference, I have short, Asian lashes and must use waterproof or smudge-proof mascara.
Here are some quick thoughts on them:
- Decently waterproof (not very much smudging)
- VERY little length, mostly volumizing, but it doesn’t claim to be a lengthening mascara anyways
- Will not repurchase as ideally I like mascaras that do both lengthening and volumizing
- Gets clumpy very easily, so it’s “no clumping” claims are unfounded
- Might pick up Lancome Hypnose Drama Waterproof one of these days as it’s one of our favorite beauty blogger RaeView’s fave
Fairy Drops Mascara (pink packaging with blue drawing)
- Very good at lengthening and volumizing
- Decently smudge-proof although definitely still smudges a little
- Will repurchase if it was more readily available in the US. Those living in Asia with easy access to Fairy Drops, I envy you.
- Not specifically a waterproof mascara, but still pretty good at not smudging
- Gave good length and volume
- Supposedly good for bottom lashes but as my bottom lashes are nonexistent, I’m not really sure
- Might repurchase if it was more readily available in the US
Bottom Line: I still like Majolica Majorca Lash Expander Frame Plus the best and I’ve gone back to using that. I have a lot of mascaras that I stocked up on when I went to Asia, but I’m eager to try out some Maybelline fan favorites, namely The Falsies WP and The Colossal Cat Eyes WP.
What are your favorite mascaras?