Well sun of a beach! It’s the long weekend—and time to back away from the computer. Hopefully your plans include at least a few hours of beach, pool or backyard lounging. Now wait for it—here comes the beauty angle. Isn’t beachy beauty just the best kind there is?
Probably I was born in the wrong country because I adore all of the following more than any other beauty look:
- texturey, salt-sprayed and slightly sun-bleached (but not really) hair;
- healthy-looking faux-bronzed skin and how nicely pink cheeks and bright lips pop against them;
- the delicious scents of suntan lotion, coconuts, tropical flowers or some combination of all three; and
- bold, bright, not-of-this-world nail polish colours for fingers and toes.
YES? Yes. So here’s what I pop in my summer getaway bag:
1. Sunscreen. Obviously.
Well DUH. For some ideas, check out my galleries of the best sunscreen options for face and body. (I don’t like to use the same one all over as body ones tend to have more moisturizing ingredients that = clogged pores.) ALSO: in case you missed them, there are a few epic threads about stopping sunscreen from balling up and pilling and how to get with the sunscreen program if you sort of hate sunscreen. Make sure to read the comments!
2. A cellulite-camouflaging and remarkably great-smelling self-tanner.
I’ve listed some of the newest options in this gallery, but honestly? I never stray from my Lavera. It’s as natural as self-tanners are going to get, plus they have miraculously figured out how to make the smell as non-offensive as possible. Really—it smells like caramel. It comes in a lotion, which can be a bit messy, or this handy spray that I purchased at Pure + Simple this year.
3. A (preferably bright-ish) moisturizing lip product with SPF.
Ever had a lip burn? Yeah, not so fun. If you’re a plain Jane lip balm kind of girl, lots of colourless choices abound—but I think it’s prettier to work a bright lip with your swim togs if you can. No, not full-on lipstick—what I’m thinking is tinted lip balm. M.A.C makes one of the best (their Tinted Lip Conditioner) and it has built-in SPF 15.
4. A fun colour to paint your nails.
I spotted this Essie colour the other day and immediately became obsessed. (The wearer actually bought it after seeing it on Lainey of Lainey Gossip—so it appears we have a chain reaction of nail colour obsession here.) Not sure of the exact shade name but it is the most neon pink you could imagine and makes your skin look 300 percent more tanned and lovely. Other bright colours that are fab: Chanel’s baby blue Nouvelle Vague, YSL’s Ultra Orange and my all-time favourite, Zoya’s Elodie (the perfect coral). Aldo’s new line is also great for brights—they’re cheap, cheerful and surprisingly high-quality.
5. Waterproof mascara.
I wear waterproof mascara pretty much every day in the summer, and ESPECIALLY if I’m going to be poolside. L’Oréal Paris Voluminous is one of the best.
6. A gel or cream bronzer.
I advocate a cream or gel instead of a powder, because who really wants to apply powders in the summer? Not me. Something more creamy, like Stila’s One Step PrimeColor in Bronze Babe would be amazing—and it also won’t streak or run because it has a built-in primer. Mary Kay also makes a great bronzer in a convenient stick format that has a neat cooling effect, and I can’t get enough of the delightfully scented Dr. Hauschka version.
7. Cream blush (which will really pop against that bronzer).
Oh cream blush, how I love thee. Even if you think your face has enough colour that you don’t need it, trust me—you do. It makes your tan look just THAT MUCH BETTER. I adore Elizabeth Arden’s and also YSL’s.
8. A leave-in protective treatment for your hair.
Does your hair need SPF? Unfortunately yes, if you’re going to be spending any significant time in the sun sans hat. (The sun will fade your colour like you would not believe.) Check out my round-up of sun-protective hair products for some options. And of course, it should go without saying that you need to protect your colour from chlorine, yes? If you plan to swim in a pool, I suggest just playing it safe and wearing a swim cap. I’ve had my hair turn green before and it is NOT pretty.
9. Some sort of texturizing product to make your hair look all beachy and fabulous.
Probably the best part of working a summery beauty look is that instead of MESSY hair, you can work all kinds of texturing goop into it and call it BEACHY. Smart, right? This Kevin Murphy lotion is fab, or you could try Bumble and Bumble’s or David Babaii for WildAid. Scrunch it in as your hair dries and then to be totally on trend, plait it into an Alexander Wang-esque side braid (instructions by Charles Baker Strahan here).
10. A beachy, summery scent or body oil
Finally, the finishing touch! You need to SMELL as good as you look. Here are 10 of this year’s best summer fragrances. Or opt for a body oil and apply it all over—my current fave is this Monoï one from Fruits & Passion.
Yikes! That was a long list. So tell me, guys, did I miss any beach bag essentials that you like to take? Do you love to work a beachy look or are you dying for fall to come?