Summer is my absolute favourite time of the year. I’m a real water baby, love the feeling of heat on my skin, exploring the vast coastlines of Australia and sipping wine by the garden. Every year I come across a few gems that make me love Summer just that little bit more, so in this post I’ll be sharing the products that have become staples for me in the warm months.
La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL Ultra Light SPF 50+ / $28.95*
Maintaining good skin starts with good sun protection! SPF is more important for me on my face than my body, but I’ve always struggled to find sunscreen that sits well on my oily skin type. I find most are too heavy, greasy, white and don’t absorb well at all. I knew from the first use that this would be the one and only sunscreen I’d use on my face. La Roche-Posay designed with combination and oily skin types in mind, so if you’re someone like me who struggles with sunscreens that are too rich for oily skin, you’ll love this.
The Mexoplex filter protects from UVA and UVB rays, and with factor 50 protection, this is one dependable product. The thing I love most about this is the consistency and finish on my skin. It honestly feels like you’re using a standard facial serum. It’s incredibly light on the skin and absorbs instantly. There is no white cast whatsoever no matter how much you apply, so you can really slap this on! You really can’t even tell it’s on your skin, so it’s by far the most comfortable sunscreen I’ve ever used. An absolute must-have and will be my holy grail sunscreen for years to come.
Kiehls Powerful-Strength Line-Reducing Formula / $98*
The original version of this product contained 10.5% L-ascorbic acid which is a great ingredient for targeting texture and dull skin. Now over 10 years old, Kiehls wanted to take this formula one step further, adding in an extra 2% ascorbyl glucoside (great for fine lines) and incorporating hylauronic acid (HA) into the mix to create formula that I consider to have the biggest powerhouse duo in basic skincare.
Although classed as a serum, for me it feels like the consistency and texture of a silicone primer. It has a slight warming sensation upon application, and isn’t sticky, heavy or greasy on the skin. While we’re at it, it doesn’t feel like a hydrating serum (HA won’t have an immediate hydrating feel on the top layer of the skin). While any Vitamin C based product works wonders for my skin, I particularly love this formula for it’s simplicity – you don’t have to combine two different skincare products to get the dual benefits of Vit C and HA. It doesn’t have any residue on my skin which makes layering products a dream, especially in Summer. Literally every morning after use I do notice my skin becoming brighter and brighter – but I get this with any Vitamin C product really.
Clinique Moisture Surge Intense / $60*
While hyaluronic acid is a fantastic skin hydrator, your skin requires some sort of occlusive to really lock in moisture so that it doesn’t escape your skin overnight through water loss. This is especially important in Summer when you’re sleeping in hot temperatures – skin evaporation is at it’s highest! I love the OG Clinique Moisture Surge which has reached cult status, but this formula is designed for super parched skin. I actually don’t fall into this category, but I love the way it sits on my skin. You can feel it’s rich when you apply it, but sinks in shortly afterwards so that it doesn’t feel heavy (although not as quickly as the original).
It’s rich in skin hydrators and occlusives, with two types of silicones (cyclopentasiloxane and dimethicone), glycerin, and squalene. It’s said that those with normal/combo skin don’t need to use such a rich formula, but I just love the way it works with my skin to keep it moisturised. Plus, using the Kiehls Vit C + HA serum above doesn’t provide as much hydration so using a moisturiser that’s really rich in hydrators and occlusives is super important after using it.
Clarins Bronzing + Blush Compact / $55*
One of my favourite makeup collections from this Summer season was the Clarins 2017 Summer Makeup Collection, and my top pick was the Bronzing and Blush Compact. Firstly, as if the presentation of this product wouldn’t instantly make it a Summer fave. It’s super beautiful and has a big tropical vibe to it. The way it works is by having three seperate matte bronzer shades and a coral blush shade on the bottom. You can select which shade to use for your purpose eg deep shade for contouring, coral shade for blush, or you can swirl them all together in the pan to create a balanced but warm glow to your skin all over. This feature also makes it versatile for different skin tones as well. I also love to use the colours for creating eye looks, so while the pan is quite large it’s actually convenient for me to travel with if I just want want to create a simple, contoured eye look as well.
Illamasqua OMG Powder / $57*
Since Illamasqua was fazed out of Myer stores across Australia, it’s been harder to grab a hold of their products. But you can now access them more easily on the Recreate Yourself website. Just putting it out there if you’re an Illamasqua fan! Highlighter is an essential for makeup all year round, but I’ve been using the Illasmasqua Beyond Powder in OMG heavily since I first got it. There is something so luxurious about it, and when I first opened it, no joke, I just kept saying “Oh my god, oh my god”, so when I turned it over to see the shade name I felt like I couldn’t have come up with a better name for it. It’s not a powder that is glittery so doesn’t accentuate skin texture or look heavy on the skin. The shimmer particles are so finely milled that it creates the most beautiful natural glow. I love the champagne undertone for this as well, but I think it’d only be suitable for light – medium skin tones as it is a pale shade. They have other extremely gorgeous looking shades in the range that I’m dying to get a hold of.
First, We Make the Beast Beautiful – Sarah Wilson
At some point, I think everyone experiences bouts of anxiety during their lifetime. Some people can handle it well, others not so much. I wouldn’t exactly say that I have anxiety, but that there are moments when I do feel so caught up in little things like deadlines, keeping up appearances, study workload, sending emails, being a good partner and daughter, and even blogging – and it affects me in different ways with different intensities but can incapacitate me at times. The month leading up to Christmas was an extremely difficult time for me, and I decided to do something I’ve never really done before: read self-help and motivational books.
I found I had a real connection to the voice in this book, which is why it became my favourite read over the Summer. The main message Sarah wanted to send in her book was that we can use our anxiety in a useful way by turning it into something positive, to ‘make the beast beautiful’. It’s sort of like using your anxiety journey to learn more about life and yourself. By exploring new activities, connecting with ourselves like we haven’t before, researching into a new topic. Her biggest lesson is to explore and accept your condition, and discover ways that it can teach you about yourself and how anxiety can make us appreciate the gift of life we have everyday. After reading her story and her views about anxiety, I definitely felt like I was able to understand the way I react to certain triggers and why. It wasn’t really a book to say “this is what you should do if you have anxiety”, rather it taught me much more about anxiety than I previously knew. It was a very relatable and engaging read, and even though it’s something completely different to my usual tastes, I was really happy I read it.
Just Jeans Swimwear / $74.98 for the set
I can’t talk about my Summer favourites without sharing my favourite swimwear piece! The Yasmine bikini top and Selma bottoms are from Jeans West and were my favourite set this Summer for the flattering cut of the bottoms. I find Jeans West to be really underrated for their swimwear, they are always really nice quality and the sizes are accurate. I naturally have quite wide hips and thighs for my small upper torso, and usually I am quite conscious of wearing swimmer bottoms. The high cut of the swimmer briefs were a style that seemed to minimise the shape of my hips and thighs, and make them seem more in proportion with the top half of me. Plus, the patterns and colours of this set are so beautiful and Summery. Overall, just a really beautiful and comfortable swimwear set to wear.
KEEPING COOL AND HYDRATED
Cheeki Insulated Bottle / $38.95*
If you’re not using a double-walled water bottle in Summer, you’re not doing Summer right. Something I’ve been trying to do more and more recently is to cut down on my waste contribution. So that means no takeaway coffee cups or plastic containers for salads when I go to cafes or buy lunch. I found I was getting more and more turned off plastic water bottles because of how short they lasted, causing me to repurchase them within a few months and throw the old ones out. I wanted to cut back on this real bad. I decided to try out a stainless steal bottle that I knew would be better to clean and would last longer. The Cheeki bottles have been an absolute hero product for me during Summer, because their vacuum double-walled bottles kept my water cool no matter how long I left it out or how hot it was outside. Plus, the designs are super pretty and you can get them in different sizes and colour combos. Another thing I bloody love about these which I think is genius is that the lid is also insulated, but if you think it’s getting to look a little manky, you can buy replacement lids for $9.95 so you don’t have to keep repurchasing a whole bottle. Pictured here is the Pistachio and White 600ml insulated bottle, but they come in a range of different colours and in either 400ml, 600ml or 1 L (you can also go for their single wall bottles too). I’m a happy camper now, I have a dedicated keep cup for my coffees, a T2 flask for my teas, and now a pretty water bottle that keeps my liquids cool throughout a hot day.
Cocolume Soul Body Spray in Happiness / $18*
I always wear a perfume on my pulse points, but during Summer I also like to spritz body mist on throughout the day to freshen up my scent and keep those body odours neutralised, wherever they may be coming from. My favourite body mist recently is from Cocolume, one of my favourite up and coming body care brands in Australia. The Soul Spray comes in four different varieties, but my fave is the ‘Happiness’ scent because it features one of my favourite fragrance notes: bergamot! It literally smells of ‘happiness’ to me for that reason. These sprays are based on aromatherapy, containing essential oils to help relax, soothe and calm, and feature crystals in each bottle. How cute!
Spot any faves that you haven’t been able to put down in Summer either? Or what is your number one Summer essential? Let me know in the comments!
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*Denotes products that have been provided for editorial consideration. All opinions expressed are genuine and my own. The Beauty & the Geek AU is no expert so please do not substitute my opinions for professional advice.