Summer Beauty Essentials

Tuesday 14 July 2015

1. MAC "Twig" lipstick
2. Laneige BB Cushion Pore Control SPF 50+/PA or here (color #21 Natural Beige)
3. Korres Wild Rose Brightening Moisturizer (cheapest deal: buy 1 get 1 free)
4. Colorescience Pro Sunforgettable (a cheaper option but equally good here)
5. Essie nail polish

1. MAC "Twig" lipstick

I've been using MAC lipsticks for a decade now. Actually, let me rephrase that. I've been buying MAC lippy in Twig for longer than I can remember. In fact, I've only ever owned one lipstick at a time until a few years ago when I branched out a little (by which I mean, I bought another one which is still buried somewhere in a pile of unused junk in the bathroom ). Interestingly enough, it's the one beauty product I get asked a lot by friends and strangers even to this day. The Twig color has a matte soft brownish pink hue which looks natural on most lips. The lipstick's lightly vanilla scented and doesn't really taste of anything (I can't abide strong lipstick smell or taste).

For a longer staying power and light coverage, I brush a thin layer of mineral powder over my lips and then lightly dab the lipstick across the upper and lower lip. I then use my finger and gently press/dab my lips so that the lipstick sort of blends into my lips to create a more natural look. If I need to head out in the evening to an event or for drinks with friends, I'd lightly color my lips with a lip pencil (MAC "Spice"), apply the lipstick, blot with tissue and reapply. You'll end up with a matte dusky pink color that'll pop.

2. Laneige BB Cushion Pore Control SPF 50+/PA

My quest for a good foundation is a never ending process. I have a few bottles of pricey foundation from high end brands that I've only ever used once or twice (ouch!). The truth is I don't fancy apply globs of foundation especially after watching what seems like a million YouTube tutorials. I just don't have the willpower to apply primer, concealer, eye concealer, foundation, pressed powder, bronzer for contouring, luminizer......before I even paint the rest of my face. I might as well get a job as a Beijing opera actor.

The Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer is perfect during the winter months but it's too heavy in summer particularly for someone with an oily T zone like me. A friend recommended me the Korean cushion BB cream and boy, am I glad I listened to her advice. I went ahead and bought Laneige BB Cushion Pore Control SPF 50+/PA. I now understand why Korean beauty products are gaining popularity worldwide. The cushion compact makes it so easy to apply foundation (dab, not rub). The sheer texture has fantastic coverage which you can easily build on. I've now ditched my primer and only use a teensy bit of concealer. The BB cream evens out my skin tone and does an ok job disguising my crater sized pores with one light application. I rarely need to touch up and my face doesn't ooze with oil after a few hours either. It gives a nice dewy finish which even my nosy husband and daughter commented on several occasions.

I'm thrilled to find a light BB cream/foundation with SPF 50 that's sheer enough not to make me feel like I'm wearing a mask but gives ample coverage. Prolonged sun exposure causes irreversible damage to the skin so my personal opinion is, prevention's better than cure. The natural beige shade is closest to my skin tone. I've learned that Koreans prefer to buy a shade lighter than their skin tone whereas those of us who live in the west like to match our exact skin tone.

3. Korres Wild Rose 24 hour Brightening Moisturizer

I can wax lyrical about this moisturizer all day. It actually does what it says - hydrates the skin all day and night (there's one with sunscreen and another without) and brightens the complexion. I've found out that if I apply the moisturizer at night, my skin literally glows the next morning. That's saying a lot when you're in your 40s and your skin ain't what it used to be (sigh...gravity). Lately, my skin has gotten a lot more sensitive than when I was in my 30s. The Korres wild rose moisturizer doesn't make my skin break out. What I love is my skin stays moisturized but not oily. I've used moisturizers from various brands. Some are not hydrating enough which caused my skin to peel and others are too oily.

4. Colorescience Pro Sunforgettable

I've used Colorescience Pro Sunforgettable for a couple of years now. It makes reapplying sunscreen a breeze. We're told to reapply every two hours particularly if we're outside with the harsh sun beaming down on us. When I'm out and about, I find it easier to carry a small tube with a retractable brush than dealing with spills and sticky mess. I prefer to use natural products over one that's laden with chemicals unless I have no choice in the matter. The mineral sunscreen powder isn't cheap, particularly for those of us who reside outside of the U.S but there's an alternative that's just as good and far cheaper - BareMinerals Natural Sunscreen. If you're the sort that do tan, be sure to buy one shade darker or else you'll end up with streaks of light powder on your face.

5. Essie nail polish

I'm probably one of the last person standing to convert to Essie. I was hooked on Chanel but Essie nail polishes are far more affordable, chip resistant and come in a larger range of colors. I got bored of dark colors so I went a little crazy at the drug store. As you can tell, I'm allergic to colors.......which means my entire wardrobe's made up of black, black, black....military green.....grey and black. What I lack in my attire, I make it up with my nail polish.


  1. I love Twig. It is pretty much my only lipstick also. I'll have to give the BB cushion a try.


    1. I'll be heartbroken if they ever discontinue that color. Do give the BB cushion a go, Lilah. I was blown away by how good it is.

  2. I do a lot of lip smudging too ... I prefer everything au naturel looking and it never looks as obvious after a meal when most of it's gone.

  3. Looooove Essie! I love Chanel too, but let's be honest, you can get a lot more bang for your buck the Essie route. Unlike OPI, it's one of the brands that cost the same here in Germany as it does in the States. Win-win!

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