Summer Essentials + Reviews

by - Friday, August 08, 2014

We are officially in the last month of the summer and usually the hottest one of them all (at least it is the hottest one in Greece where I grew up!). We are also well into the period a lot of people are going away on their holidays to warmer climates, where the sun is shining a lot more than they're used to (yeah, that was an attempt on a smug comment for all those beet red, sun baked northerner tourists I've seen through the years). For all those of you lucky enough to go away on a summer break somewhere nice, here are the products I packed in my suitcase and highly recommend, along with a few reviews and suggestions on what to pack in yours.

First and most important thing to pack is of course protection from the sun. I have quite fair complexion (the irony, right? Especially when having a sister who needs only a couple of hours in the sun to get two to three skin tones darker!) and freckles on my cheekbones and nose, so my choice of SPF is always high. 

This year I wanted to try something different for my facial sun care needs. The Soap & Glory Make Yourself Youthful Sunshield Superfluid SPF50+ exceeded my expectations. Not only it's not as thick as most sun lotions, it absorbs fast, a little goes a long way with it and it has Instamatte Oil Control, which helped keep my naturally oily skin under control. The only thing that put me off a little bit after the first use was the smell, it's not overpowering but is quite distinct and not in a pleasant way (after a couple days of use I got used to it though).
A part of our face we tend to forget protecting and it's one we shouldn't if you hate the idea of premature wrinkles is our lips. My choice was Piz Buin's In Sun Lipstick SPF30 High, as it was the highest SPF I found and it smells of coconut!
For my body I chose Garnier's Ambre Solaire Protection Lotion High SPF50, first off because it's the perfect travel size (50ml, had no problem packing it in my hand luggage) and second because it's suitable for both face and body (handy to have with you at the beach if you don't want to pack two different products with you).

Now that I'm sure we're fully protected from the sun, let's see what we can do to look good on those nights out!

If it's not your first time away on a hotter climate, then you know all too well that excessive use of make up is a big no no. It takes only a few minutes for your skin to get sweaty, so you really want to keep it light, simple and glowy (after all you would want to showcase your new tan, am I right or am I right? Or am I right?). 

What do you get when a moisturizer and a highlighter have a baby? Simple Kind To Skin + Illuminating Radiance CreamThis day cream was the perfect choice for my summer quick get-ready before we hit the road. Great for all skin types, it gave me the natural glow I was expecting to have while on holidays!
My beloved Sleek MakeUp Face Contour Kit doubled as a bronzer and eyeshadow, as I used its highlighter in combination with Rimmel's Scandal Eyes Shadow Paint in Rich Russet for that bronzy smokey eye I adore so much. I opted for a tiny feline flick on the eyes using one of my favourite eyeliners, L'Oreal Superliner Perfect Slim Black Intense and I finished up my summer look with Revlon's Lash Potion Mascara by Grow Luscious (not the waterproof one, mind you) in Blackest Black.
There are products missing from the photo: my concealer (it was used only for dire situations) and a blush (which I bought from Greece and will be showing to you in another post).

Before I end this post, I have to mention two more things that I now consider essentials but had completely forgotten to pack with me. Mosquito repellent and a cream to stop the itching! What was I thinking not packing those two with me? 

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