Although September does not currently mean "back to school," I always love when it rolls around. For some reason, I also believe that it will go from 95 degrees to 59 degrees overnight. I still remember the first day last year where I was able to leave my apartment in NYC with a lightweight sweater on to get coffee (if only that could happen NOW). I feel like I have put my skin through the ringer this summer, which has me thinking about how much fun it will be to pull out some of my "cooler weather" products from retirement. I don't remember last summer being like this, but the past few months, all I've wanted to do is cleanse, tone, and moisturize with as little product as possible. I've wanted to feel like nothing was sitting on my face. Of course, I don't ever want to walk around feeling like I have layers upon layers on my skin, but when it's cold, I love playing with oils and creams, spending Sundays drenched in a hydrating mask that I've mixed oil into. Skincare becomes the ultimate treat. September! To "celebrate" it being September and still dying of heat stroke, here are some products that will be pulled out of retirement and/or used more frequently. (Plus, I included an outfit and my makeup essentials that I will be wearing pretty much every time I venture into the outside world.)
Although I never accounted for everything I packed for Vienna, I will say that I did not pack enough… if that’s even possible. The biggest problem was moisture—the only “daytime” moisturizer I brought was Moisture Surge, as I always use Vintner’s Daughter at night, post-P50. Two weeks in, my skin was dehydrated. Whether it was my schedule, more time in the sun (probably a mix of both), who knows. However, I knew that while in Paris, I needed to make a purchase. I ended up grabbing Alpha-H’s Essential Hydration Cream from "Oh my Cream!" and was not disappointed. It worked perfectly (a pea sized amount is all it takes) on top of the Youth Dew, restoring the suppleness, hydration, and nutrition that my skin had been lacking during the day. I never would have envisioned myself using a cream during the summer, but it’s actually a piece of my skincare wardrobe that seems to be seasonless. I can see myself using this year-round when necessary. At that point (mid July), I was just thankful to have found something that didn’t clog pores, cause excess spots, etc.
So what did I use in Vienna?
It's a thousand degrees, humid, and the only thing I can think about putting on my face are high quality acids and a lightweight moisturizer. While I'm still using May Lindstrom's The Honey Mud, Biologique Recherche P50 1970 and Vintner's Daughter nearly every night, the mornings are when I tend to play. I teamed up with Dr. Dennis Gross to giveaway some of my favorite products for summer skin:
Included in this International giveaway:
1. Alpha Beta Universal Daily Peel Pads
2. Alpha Beta Extra Strength Daily Peel Pads
3. Ferulic + Retinol Wrinkle Recovery Peel
4. Hyaluronic Moisture Cushion
I've used the peel pads (both original and extra strength) since last summer and introduced the ferulic + retinol pads a couple of months ago. They don't "feel" strong whatsoever, but you can easily see them working. The hyaluronic moisture cushion could be sisters with Clinique's Moisture Surge, but I'd say it is a bit creamier (and also contains hyaluronic acid to keep you hydrated, but not feeling like a grease bomb).
I'm quite particular when it comes to oils. As I write that, I realize that I'm particular about basically everything that goes on this face of mine...However, oils are a huge hit or miss, and I can usually tell quickly if I will love it or if it will gradually make its way to the back of my stash. Not all oils are made and sourced equally, which I think is what makes so many afraid of experimenting. They are irrefutably the best way to balance and nourish your skin without adding an extra coating of moisturizer that sits on top of your skin. Both oils and creams moisturize, but in completely different ways.
That being said, this oil has moved into the "love" category. I have used it in the mornings for nearly three weeks, straight under SPF.
When a couple of beauties from the Neal's Yard Remedies London team were in town a few weeks ago, we met over coffee to chat about the Wild Rose collection that is relaunching in June 2016. While the collection has been popular for quite some time, its packaging has recently been revamped by British artist Alice Shields. Each product bares the same lush scent, and each product utilizes the collection's namesake--wild rosehip seed oil--which contains essential skin food: antioxidants, vitamins, essential fatty acids.
What it is: a lightweight, hydrating, nourishing, antioxidant radiance serum
I fell in love with the wild rose beauty balm (cleanser/mask/lip balm/eye balm/moisturizer/aromatherapy for pulse points) first, and the beauty elixir was quick to follow. It boosts radiance, brightens, protects and provides essential nutrition + lightweight hydration. This is one of the best products of its kind I have come across in a while, simply because it "handles" so much and is easy to use. I love its lightweight, watery texture that immediately sinks in, and I also love the way it makes my skin look and feel. I have used it as both a serum in addition to a lightweight moisturizer, as well as on its own. During the summer, it will be just the right about hydration alongside the craved antioxidant protection.
Hi all! This is a short update to let you all know that my Tula promo code, skinobsessor25 (25% off + free shipping), is expiring TOMORROW NIGHT, APRIL 30th. The brand is changing how/when they do promotions, so if you've had your eyes on anything, now is the time.
My top two: Exfoliating Treatment Mask + Revitalizing Eye Cream (seen above). The Hydrating Day/Night Cream is also a good pick--not too dense but still hydrating and lightweight.
Most emails in the past 2 weeks: "This warmer weather is making my skin go crazy." It's that time of year when your t-zone decides to capitalize on its most flourishing season and your "oily/combo" skin type really likes to remind you that... you are, indeed, oily/combo. So in this post, I am translating all of my emails into a single guide. These are my cleansing, toning, moisturizing, and masking picks for a sudden change in weather / AKA when everyone's faces decide to go nuts. Again, for reference, I am: oily/combo, easily congested/dehydrated, and slightly sensitive. It's quite the balance when each of these variables is being tested.
Cleansers, *Not (Nearly) All Inclusive*:
The clays/gels: Tata Harper Purifying, Pixi Beauty Glow Mud, Ren Skincare Clarifying Clay, May Lindstrom Honey Mud
The sulfate-free "foam"/thick mousse: Amore Pacific Treatment Cleansing Foam
The lightweight oil: Tatcha Pure Camellia Cleansing Oil
The balms to remove makeup: Clinique Take the Day Off Balm, Pixi Nourishing Cleansing Balm, Emma Hardie (1st or 2nd cleanse)
The most potent breakout clearing cleanser I own: DermaDoctor Ain't Misbehavin'
The exfoliating clay powder: May Lindstrom Clean Dirt
Just step away from the "oil free scrub foam grapefruit sulfate acne clearing skin-transforming face wash"...
PSA: This email came from a very witty friend of mine, who is a native of Turkey. I used the words "cleanser" and "exfoliate" in my prior email, which I then had to translate into "wash your face" and "get rid of dead skin / resurface / glow baby glow."
When I asked what you all wanted to see online, many of you opted for the "how to 'do' skincare" idea. I have also written down everything else that was suggested in that Instagram post. That being said, I'm going to do my best to start a series and include as much information as I can. Irrefutably, the skincare world is a jungle that is completely inundated with marketing ploys, ingredient fillers, false claims, and impossible promises. Thus, when you don't know what you should be on the lookout for, things can get crazy and overwhelming pretty quickly. On the contrary, when you find the brands who have awe-worthy ethos and care about what they are putting on into the market, everything changes. When you become an informed consumer, skincare quickly becomes a way for you to take care of yourself. A form of self-care. If you have a question/topic/concern that I don't address, leave a comment here or on IG. If you think you're question is too "basic" to leave publicly as a comment, 1. It's probably not, and 2. Send me an email. Here we go.
Less than a month ago, I finally received my first baby pot of Emma Hardie's lush Moringa Cleansing Balm after purchasing an introductory kit. It smells of Jo Malone's Orange Blossom, feels like butter, and is botanical heaven. As far as balms go, it's irrefutably one of the best. When Emma Hardie reached out to me on Friday asking if I would like to host this (insane) giveaway in accordance with their US appearances on Evine Live, I said yes.
Here's what they are sending to one very lucky US resident: Moringa Cleansing Balm, Protect & Prime SPF 30, Midas Touch Face Serum, Moringa Foaming Cleansing Wash, Instant Radiance Mask, Age Support Eye Cream, Age Support Treatment Cream, Professional Cleansing Cloths (3 pack), and Brilliance Facial Oil.