I have returned from Europe, having lugged a nearly-50 pound suitcase around Paris, Belgium, and London -- long story short, I found I only really wore one pair of shoes (lesson learned: break in all shoes before traveling!) and all of the make-up I toted around went unworn except for the following essentials. What's more, they're all great for summer. (Did spring just not happen this year?)
1. Jonathan Product's Redo Freshen-Up Mist for Hair & Skin
I must admit, I do not much like showering in places that are not my own shower or sitting in bathtubs that are not my own. Having short hair, I can get away with not washing it every day (sounds gross, but it's actually better for you -- overwashing strips your hair of natural oils and kicks it into over-producing oil. Vicious cycle!). But sometimes you need to freshen up your hair without jumping in the shower, like when you're heading out the door. While I also bought some delicious-smelling hair powder to blot my hair, I found that I've really been relying on Jonathan Product's Redo spray at home and on the road. Sometimes I wake up with my hair going every which way and there's just enough time to spritz my roots and smoothe down my hair.
2. Fresh Soy Face Cleanser Makeup Remover
When I'm home, I tend to have a set routine for my face if it's a good night and I've got time to scrub, tone, mask, and moisturize. But sometimes, when you're coming home too late and you've got make-up on and all you want to do is wash your face and go to sleep, you've got to have a back-up plan. This was the only cleanser I used, morning and night, in Europe, and it's increasingly become my reliable buddy on my make-up-wearing nights. Just put it on your dry face (hooray! one more step you don't have to do!) and rinse it off. Sometimes I've found that I need an additional eye make-up remover for mascara and eyeliner (I use Almay pads), but it takes care of everything else. Easy and quick!
3. Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer with SPF 15
Let me tell you about my friend, Sam. Sam is the most well-put together girl I know and has been for as long as I can remember. I was walking up the street in Paris, on my way to her apartment, when I saw a girl from behind with such jaunty hair and such a swing in her step that I thought, "That girl reminds me of Sam." Sure enough, when she turned around, it was indeed Sam. When Sam asked for a care package from home, this was in it. This has been my daily moisturizer (except for days when I need more coverage, then I go for DuWop's Revolotion Face) for almost a year now. It's noncomedogenic (hooray!) and has a slight bit of shimmer to give you a bit of a glow. I put this on, let it set in while I brush my teeth, and then put on my cheek stain for the day.
4. Tarte Cheek Stain for Cheeks, Flush
Speaking of cheek stain, this is my travel buddy cheek stain. When I'm at home, I use Benefit's Benetint, but when I'm jaunting off, I don't like carrying around a little glass bottle (my first Benetint was knocked off the counter and smashed) with an easily breakable lid (if you try to twist it too tightly to prevent spilling, it can snap) and what is basically liquid dye. Probably not the best thing to put in your suitcase, right? But Tarte's cheek stain is a fairly-solid gel, so no spilling, no worries about security, and the color is great. It's easy to apply and blend (though you may get some under your nails!) and, of course, easy to pack. It also comes in lots of colors, versus the one pink of Benetint, but I find Flush to be the one I like best.
5. Mascara, eyeliner, and tinted lip balm
I brought so much eyeshadow and lip gloss that I wound up not needing, it's a shame. While I wanted to look good in Paris, I also discovered that I didn't need to overload on the product, and that a simple, fresh look with only mascara, eyeliner, and tinted lip balm (plus said sunscreen and cheek tint!) worked best. While you may find you need more product, summer's coming and nothing's worse than a melting face, especially if you're taking lots of pictures. I use Fresh's SuperNova mascara, but an equally good (and much cheaper!) mascara is CoverGirl Lash Exact. Yes, the one that Joanie, Danielle, and Jade had to do their commercials for. ANTM made me buy it. Besides, would Queen Latifah lie to me?
I've already talked about my Benefit sable eyepencil before, so there's nothing new there. And I've already told you that the one problem I have with Burt's Bees Lip Shimmers is the lack of SPF. Luckily, TerraTints from Alba Botanica are practically the same thing -- right down to the peppermint -- but with added SPF. Hallelujah! I've been using Bloom, but there are six shades in all.
Keep it easy and light this summer, both in your bag and on your face! All of these products can be found at Drugstore.com/Beauty.com.
images from beauty.com/drugstore.com and albabotanica.com
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