Monday, June 22, 2015

My summer beauty essentials: must-haves for skin and body



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My Summer Beauty Essentials for Skin and Body: cosmetics, fragrance, hair

Summer is officially here! In San Diego, the cloudy May Gray and June Gloom are finally over, the burning sun is shining all day, and beach season has started. Time for me to do a little roundup of the products I can't live without during the long SoCal summer. 



My Summer Beauty Essentials for Skin and Body: cosmetics, fragrance, hair

1- A good body scrub. This is a must-have if you want your tan to be even (note that I'm not TRYING to tan, but it happens very fast here just by being outside). There are tons of scrubs out there, but my favorite are the creamy ones. I don't like the oil and sugar based scrubs, they turn my shower into a slippery mess! 
When choosing a body scrub, make sure you pick one that doesn't contain plastic microbeads, which go down your drain and right into our rivers, lakes and eventually oceans where they enter the food chain through marine creatures. Look at the ingredients list and double-check that your scrub is free of the following ingredients: polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP), polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) and nylon. 
My all-time favorite scrubs are by Rituals, a dutch brand that stopped using plastic microbeads in 2012. They're creamy, effective, leave my skin soft and moisturized, and the scents are wonderful! I particularly love the Fortune scrub (citrusy scent with mandarin and yuzu), and the Wai Wang one (contains white lotus, but to me it has a light bitter almond scent).

2- A bug spray. Mosquitos love me, and I'm allergic to the most effective insect repellents that contain DEET. Luckily, there are many alternatives! I bought the one pictured here by Spa Ceylon in Sri Lanka. It's citronella-based and works pretty well. In the US, my favorite anti-bug products are Badger's. They make sprays, balms, sticks, and even sunscreen/anti-bug combos!

3- A lightweight hydrating body cream. I've recently reviewed my HG summer body lotion, Le Couvent des Minimes Hydrating Body Sorbet. This one is really great for hot days because it has a very pleasant cooling effect. The Body Shop has similar Body Sorbet lotions in a variety of scents. Another option is L'Occitane Sorbet Body Cream in Citrus Verbena, a limited edition scent for this summer.

4- A micellar water. When it's really hot, my face can get sweaty and icky. I like to cleanse it a few times throughout the day using a gentle micellar lotion before reapplying a light moisturizer with sunscreen. There is now a good variety of micellar waters available in the US, and I've reviewed a few. Bioderma is the most hyped, Simple the most affordable, and even Sephora makes one nowadays, but my favorite is Lierac's. I'm currently using Vichy's, also an excellent product.

5- An anti-frizz serum for hair. With the heat and humidity, my fine, wavy hair just goes crazy and the frizz is intense, let me tell you! I can't say that I've found a favorite in this category, but John Frieda's Frizz Ease and Bumble & Bumble Hairdresser's Invisible Oil gave me fairly good results.

6- A body oil. Nothing says summer goddess more than glowing, sun-kissed skin! Body oil is a great way to nourish skin (and hair) and get that beautiful, healthy, subtle shine. My absolute favorite is still Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse (you can get the Or version with shimmering golden particles), but I'd also like to try Caudalie Divine Oil.

7- A lip balm with sunscreen. My lips will burn and peel if I spend time outside without protecting them. I'm currently using a cheap drugstore option by Banana Boat, but it has a bitter taste. L'Occitane Peony lip balms with SPF25 are a much nicer way to wear sunscreen on the lips, and you can choose between the clear or tinted version in 3 different shades.

8- Aloe gel. I apply it all over my body after a day at the beach to refresh and moisturize. Its soothing and calming effect make it the perfect after-sun gel, and it really helps with minor sunburns. I always try to buy natural aloe gels with the highest percentage of aloe, like Lily of the Desert's 99% aloe gelly.

9- Cologne. With the heat, I prefer to use light and fresh citrusy colognes than my usual fragrances. My go-to summer scent is Eau des Minimes by Le Couvent des Minimes , a perfect blend of juicy citruses, not too sweet and well-balanced. I also love Dior's Escale à Portofino for a little more depth and L'Occitane's Verbena Eau de Toilette.

10- A cooling gel for legs. My legs can get swollen and sore in extreme heat, it's very annoying. Getting my legs up whenever I can and showering with cold water both help, but sometimes I need the immediate relief provided by a cooling gel. I currently use the lavender Anti-Fatigue Iced Gel by Yves Rocher. Other options include The Body Shop Peppermint Reviving Leg Gel, Phytomer Cryotonic Soothing Leg Gel, Guinot Soothing Gel for Legs, or Mama Mio Lucky Legs Cooling Energising Leg Gel. If there's a cheap drugstore leg gel that I've missed, please let me know!

11- Sunscreen of course! I'm not going to give you the patronizing sunscreen speech, just remember that sun exposure is not only the #1 cause of skin cancer, it's also the main cause of skin aging. I have multiple sunscreens in different forms, but I like sprays like the Banana Boat pictured here for the beach. They're easy to apply even if you have a bit of sand or salt on your skin. Most brands now have spray sunscreens so you can easily find one you like. For outdoor sport activities, I found out that I prefer sticks, they make it easy to apply a thick layer on the shoulders, back of the neck, and ridge of the nose (typical spots where I'll get sunburnt if I'm not careful enough). 

What are your summer beauty essentials? Does your list include other cosmetics products?

Where to buy? Click on the links to find online retailers.

The products featured in this review were all purchased by Lulle. I received no compensation to write this post, which only reflects my personal opinion. This post contains affiliate links.

20 comments:

  1. As soon as I'm done with my bottle of Avene body oil, I totally want to order some of the Nuxe one! Especially if I love it anywhere as much as I love their reve de miel stuff I use for my lips!

    ♡Em | www.haulanddupes.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It smells SO good! I've never tried the Avène one, do you like it?

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  2. Sunscreen is my number one essential for summer, along with my sunglasses.

    LindaLibraLoca: Beauty, Baby and Backpacking

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I also use both every single day! Do you have a favorite sunscreen?

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  3. You just reminded me that I need a new bug spray!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If mosquitos find you juicy and tasty like me, that's really a must-have...

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  4. I love Nuxe - that is my ultimate summer must-have x
    Becca | theBeautyInbox

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The scent of Huile Prodigieuse is the smell of summer for me!

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  5. Such a good list of essentials! It's so cool that you've lived in different places around the world, which one is your favorite?

    Angelina Is

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It would be hard to choose one. There were fantastic things about each place I lived in (and some annoying ones too). France still feels like "home", Istanbul was an amazing oriental experience, Southern California's relaxed atmosphere and perfect climate make it the place where I want to be right now.

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  6. I've never tried a body oil before! I'm all up for looking like a summer goddess so I might just give it a go~
    xxx
    She Will Be

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha! If you like tropical flower scents, like tiare or jasmine, you'll love it. Goddess effect guaranteed!

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  7. Aww so many awesome products! I'm in love with Nuxe oil!
    xx
    cvetybaby.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Snap, on all these!

    My pick is the Garnier Dry Mist SPF 50 - you can't even feel or see it once it's on, so I use it all over and on top of my makeup. Genius invention!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That Mist sounds awesome! I don't think we have it in the US unfortunately.

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  9. I use the same Banana Boat sunscreen! But in lotion form :-) I really like kids' sunscreen.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too, they're usually alcohol-free which is what I'm looking for.

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  10. Oooo some really great picks here! I absolutely love Vichy so this micellar water sounds fab! I adore Rituals as well, but I haven't actually tried any of their scrubs... yet! Great post x

    emily x ❤ | emilyloula

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rituals scrubs are fantastic! Very creamy and moisturizing, and they have the same great fragrances as the rest of their line.

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