There’s nothing worse than buying a new product with the hope that it will somehow level up your beauty routine, only for it to turn out to be a dud. (We’ve all been there.)
To avoid disappointment, we turned to the beauty experts for their very effective, can’t-live-without picks for summer – which, as we all know, brings with it challenges such as blocked pores, wilted makeup and the potential for sunburn.
Here are the holy-grail essentials you need to add to your cart ASAP, according to three Canadian beauty insiders.
Dominique Baker, skin care expert
Elta MD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 Facial Sunscreen
“You can’t beat this facial sunscreen,” says Baker.
“It’s my absolute favourite.”
This physical sunscreen – which means it contains zinc oxide to reflect the sun’s rays, unlike chemical sunscreen, which absorbs rays and converts them into heat – is broad-spectrum and protects against both UVA and UVB rays, which are the main boxes you want to tick when it comes to sun protection.
“It also contains niacinamide, so it not only does a great job of protecting your skin from the sun, but does a fantastic job of clearing up acne and reducing hyperpigmentation too,” says Baker.
“I used to have really bad acne and this was very effective – my skin totally cleared up.”
She says it also goes on clear and doesn’t leave a white cast.
Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Bergamote Calabria Eau de Toilette
“This is a fairly new release and I’m obsessed,” says Baker.
The unisex fragrance is light enough for the warmer months and has citrusy, spicy and woody notes that conspire to create the perfect signature summer scent. “It smells like summer in a bottle – it smells like a lemon grove in Italy,” she adds.
Janine Falcon, beauty expert and founder of Beautygeeks
Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Face Mist Sunscreen SPF 50
“The question everybody seems to be asking this year is how to do something about burnt skin in the part of their hair,” says Falcon.
“If you can’t wear a hat all the time, liquid sunscreen is where it’s at.”
The beauty guru recommends dipping a Q-tip into the sunscreen and dabbing the product along your part. “Because it’s a liquid, you should be able to get it where it needs to go without too much hassle. You might end up with some trickling, but that’s not so bad because you want sunscreen wherever you can get it – not just in that one little streak, because your hair moves,” she explains. “Also, it’s a fine mist, so it’s really good for a sunscreen touch-up over makeup.”
Estée Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Makeup
What do you wear when a full-on foundation feels oppressive but you’d still like a little coverage? Falcon loves this classic for its staying power, broad range of shades and lighter feel.
“It wears really well, it comes in 56 shades and it’s transfer-resistant and waterproof, so it’s going to stay on your face,” she says. “And it’s buildable coverage, so it doesn’t have to look or feel like a heavy foundation if that’s not what you want.”
Christine Cho, makeup artist, beauty expert and on-air personality
Indeed Labs Nanobronze Bronzing Drops
There’s nothing quite like a quick hit of colour to give you that coveted healthy glow. This tinted serum, which can be used on its own or mixed in with your face cream, creates an instant sheer light tan that washes off at the end of the day.
It also hydrates skin and combats dullness over time, thanks to active ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, cacao and pea extract.
“For me, it’s ideal summer skin: hydrated, glowy and a little bit of a tint if you’re light- to medium-skin-toned,” says Cho.
“The great thing is that if you’re darker-skin-toned, this product does still add that luminosity, that dewiness, so regardless of your skin tone it’s a great skin care product.”
Milk Makeup Hydro Grip Setting + Refreshing Spray
Warm temps and high humidity have a tendency to cause havoc with our makeup, but there’s a simple way to help prevent that: applying a setting spray right after your makeup application.
This one from Milk Makeup will keep your makeup looking fresh for up to 12 hours.
“It provides a dewy, natural finish,” says Cho. “That’s a trend that’s not going anywhere – the natural-sweaty-glow look is here to stay. You’re going to get a little shiny in the summer months, and that’s okay because it also makes you look healthier and more active, so it’s just something we have to embrace and work with.”
Cho’s pro tip: Spray a little onto a ring finger and dab gently under the eyes, on the lids or on the lips – anywhere you might want extra staying power.