Summer Essentials.

summer moisturizers

Summer Essentials:
Cashmere Clean, Rosehip Oil, Tocca Hair Fragrance in Cleopatra, Maa Disha Facial Oil, Radda Argan Oil, Nuxe Prodigieuse.

Recently, I have been receiving emails and in person inquiries about what I have been using on my skin during the warmer weather.  In the past, I have stated facial oils are my preferred choice for moisturizing.  This assertion has not changed, rather certain oils have been benched in lieu of new discoveries that have become fast favorites.  So for this post, I present my current skin care top picks, with a couple of special accompaniments related to fragrance and hair.  I hope you enjoy.

Rosehip Seed Oil.

Summer Essentials:
Organic Unrefined Rosehip Seed Oil.

  • Organic Unrefined Rosehip Seed oil has been a recent discovery.  This lightweight oil has since replace coconut oil in my daily routine.  The delicate nature of this oil penetrates quickly and hydrates the skin literally on contact.  According to Livestrong.com,

The anti-aging benefit from using rose hip oil on your face comes about due to the antioxidants and the oil’s ability to penetrate into deeper layers of skin. The vitamin C antioxidants stimulate collagen production, according to the Cleveland Clinic. It also helps reduce fine lines and wrinkles. The oil can penetrate due to the vitamin A, which has small enough molecules to go deeper into the skin. Vitamin A improves the skin’s moisture levels and reduces wrinkles and fine lines.

Rosehip Seed Oil.

Summer Essentials:
Benefits of organic unrefined Rosehip Seed Oil.

Rosehip Seed Oil.

Summer Essentials:
Organic Unrefined Rosehip Seed Oil.

  • Rosehip oil is also known for being an excellent treatment for scaring, photo-aging, and rosacea.
  • Personally, I use Rosehip Oil in the mornings, after my shower as my sole facial moisturizer.  The oil instantly hydrates and plumps the skin, prepping my canvas for makeup application.  The slight buttery residue left on the skin blends in beautifully with my foundation for a seamless appearance (very similar in idea to the *adding a drop of oil in foundation method* that is so popular on Youtube these days).
  • As an extra incentive, unlike lotions or creams that sit on the skin, Rosehip Oil absorbs quickly, is mildly scented and will not sweat off on hot, humid days.  Needless to say, buy only organic unrefined varieties from a trusted source.  I purchased US Organic Rosehip Oil ($19.99 USD/ 2fl. oz.) on Amazon.com (here).
  • As a word of precaution, if you have any form of plant allergy, err on the side of caution and consult your doctor before using any oils.
Summer Essentials: Radha Organic Argan oil.

Summer Essentials:
Radha Organic Argan oil.

Organic Argan oil.

Summer Essentials:
Radha Organic Argan oil.

  • Argan oil needs no introduction other than it is fabulous and has been used in my daily routine for the past six years.  In my experience, Argan oil is very similar to Rosehip oil in that it moisturizes the skin rather quickly.  I like to utilize this oil as my night-time moisturizer.  On my extremely dry skin, Rosehip oil seeps into the skin faster, but Argan oil feels a bit thicker in consistency, which makes it perfect for evenings.
  • As always, after my weekly derma roller session, I follow-up with Argan oil to repair the skin.  The high amounts of Vitamin E is exactly what is required to soothe and repair skin after treatment.
  • In the winter time, I would even go as far as adding a few drops to Josie Maran Argan Body Butter.  This little trick has help me combat dry tightening skin on overly cold days.
  • Argan Oil has a naturally earthy odor that some may find too crude for their liking.  I really do not mind the scent and find it dissipates after seconds.  If your oil does not possess this quality, you are either getting a stale version or your oil in not authentic.
  • In the past, I would gravitate towards Josie Maran Argan Oil, but I have not done so in some time. The cost of her oil in comparison to other organic varieties flooding the market is quite inflated. Recently, I have discovered Radha Organic Oil ($12.99 USD/ 4 fl.oz.) on Amazon.com (here).  The sturdy dark blue glass bottle, long dropper, unrefined quality and reasonable price simply cannot be beat.
Maa Disha

Summer Essential:
Maa Disha Radiance Facial oil.

 Maa Disha

Summer Essential:
Maa Disha Radiance Facial oil.

Maa Disha Radiance Facial oil.

Summer Essential:
Maa Disha Radiance Facial Oil opening.

  • Maa Disha Radiance Oil ($90 USD/ 1 fl. oz.) is a cornucopia of organic oils mixed together.  The company claims with continued use “this alluring blend of oils nourishes the skin for a healthy natural glow to your skin.”  I’m not sure about the glow part or the price, but I can attest this formula definitely hydrates the skin and leaves it feeling extremely supple.  My Castor Oil has been shamefully ignored since discovering this brand.
  • The first ingredient is Turmeric Oil which has anti-inflammatory properties that calms the skin and combats damage.  I am quite familiar with this herb/oil as my husband uses the powder version in his health shake everyday.  Turmeric has a distinct odor and yellow coloring that seems to dominate this concoction.
  • I am unclear as to the percentages of each of the other oils in the formula, but again based on smell alone, I cannot help but detect high levels of Turmeric.  Other oils present are Neroli Oil (very expensive), Sweet Almond Oil, Saffron Oil, Pomegranate Oil (expensive), Sesame oil, Neem oil, Orange Peel Oil, Avocado Oil, and Olive Oil.
  • After using this oil five nights a week, for the past two months, I can verify it absorbs quickly (3-4 drops only) and my skin feels very soft.  The immediate hydration is lovely, but for the price, the packaging can use a bit of a makeover.  I really wish a dropper dispenser would be offered instead of a stopper.  The purpose of having a stopper does refrain the user from using too much product, but I cannot help feel a tad inconvenienced by this delivery system.  Read more about this company and its products (here) and make your own judgements.
Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse

Summer Essentials:
Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Multi Purpose Dry Oil.

Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse

Summer Essentials:
Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse Multi Purpose Dry Oil.

  • Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse ($45 -$30 USD/ 3.3 fl. oz.) is my go-to summer time body moisturizer.  Strictly reserved for the warmer season, it provides just the right amount of hydration I need to combat superficial dryness on my legs, elbows and décolletage.  The formula boasts 97.8% of its ingredients to be of natural origin and is preservative-free.  I love the unique floral/herbal fragrance and find the hydrating effects last well throughout the day.
  • Originally, I did purchase this for my husband, but he insists the fragrance is too feminine for his taste.  Regardless, his loss has become my gain–this is the third year in a row I have used Nuxe in this manner and cannot foresee changing my ways anytime soon.
  • I like to purchase my supply on SkinCareRx.com.  If you sign up for email alerts, they run weekly specials ranging anywhere from 28%-33% off.
Tocca Cleopatra

Summer Essentials:
Tocca Cleopatra Hair Fragrance.

 Hair Fragrance.

Summer Essentials:
Tocca Cleopatra Hair Fragrance.

  • Tocca Cleopatra Hair Fragrance ($36 USD/ 95 mL.) to start with is exquisitely packaged.  The beautifully designed weighty bottle and metal top are elegant and enchanting.  More often than not, this bottle is always out on display.
  • As for the hair mist, I can tell you without any doubt this product seems to embed itself in the hair and does not dissipate easily.  You are certainly getting your money’s worth.  For some reason, Cleopatra hair mist, as opposed to the actual fragrance, is much more potent.  For my personal use I spray Cleo in the air and hover below the falling mist.  This method seems to soften the fragrance to my liking.  Afterward, I simply shake my hair to distribute the mist evenly throughout my scalp.  The delicate hint of coconut oil is a nice addition and does give the subtlest shine.
  • My reason for using this product is very straight forward; on days I do not wash my hair this hair mist instantly makes those off days more bearable.  The light scent of grapefruit cucumber lingers well into the next day.  For bedtime, I have a habit of gathering my hair in a bun on the top of my head, and when I let the bun down the following morning, Cleopatra is still going strong.  These results will vary depending on how well your hair holds on to certain odors.  My thin, yet abundant mane holds on to every odor–which is why I never get next to the smoke emitted from street food vender carts in the city.  🙂
  • Tocca Hair Fragrance is sold exclusively at Anthropologie.com.
Clean Cashmere Fragrance.

Summer Essential:
Clean Cashmere Fragrance.

Clean Cashmere Fragrance.

Summer Essential:
Clean Cashmere Fragrance.

  • Clean Cashmere Eau de Parfum ($72-$35 USD/ 2.14 fl.oz.) is my favorite fragrance to date.  I absolutely love the soft musky notes that seem to meld perfectly with my skin chemistry.  This fragrance line is exactly as the name would imply, all of their scents are not overpowering, yet leave you smelling–well, CLEAN.
  • The notes in this particular scent are: Cedar Leaf, Bergamot, Lime, Lavandin, Mimosa, Jasmine, Guaiacwood, Heliotrope, Tonka Bean, Musk, Sandalwood.  My natural attraction to musk dates back to high school.  Although Cashmere is much more sophisticated than what I could afford back then, the dry down scent takes me right back to the 80’s, when carefree moments and Cameros dominated.
  • On my skin, the fragrance lingers for a good four-five hours.  This could be drastically misinterpreted seeing as how when you wear a particular scent for a while, you become immune to its potency.  All I know is the husband and kids also like the scent, so I will continue to buy it.
  • I purchase my daily supply from ThePerfumeSpot.com for significantly less than the suggested retail price.  The site is reputable, selling authentic fragrances.  I have already made four purchases from them and the packing and delivery of the fragrances is always top-notch.

THE VERDICT:  If Makeup Could Talk what would it say?

Makeup would tell you this is a very long post, but this is what happens when too much information is stored in the brain and I do not have a chance to write.  Regardless, I hope you found this post helpful and will look into some of these options.  Until next time, be well, stay safe and be happy.

-Maria

*IfMakeupCouldTalk.com is not affiliated with any brands mentioned, most of the products were purchased by me, with the exception of Maa Disha Facial Oil and Tocca Hair Fragrance, which were provided by PR.  *Compensation is not given for any reviews. *All opinions are my own and based on my experiences. *All photos are property of IfMakeupCouldtTalk.com unless otherwise noted. *IfMakeupCouldTalk.com photos and/or written content cannot be copied and/or used for any other social media and/or publications.*

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin.

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin.

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin.

Recently, a comment left on my Instagram photo referring to how great my foundation looked, left me wondering about my skin.  After revealing (after all, sharing is caring) the products I used to create the “flawless” look, I realized there is more to my skin than just makeup.  Beautiful healthy skin takes work and effort to maintain.  Our life-styles and choices can be our greatest assets or our worst enemies.

In Europe, people work hard to live a pleasurable, fruitful life.  That is not to say, they are lazy or unproductive, on the contrary, they have mastered the skill of self-love.  Their mental, physical, spiritual and psychological well-being come before everything else (this includes careers, large homes, and expensive cars).  I am not suggesting we all hop on the “Dolce per fare niente” (sweet to do nothing) bandwagon, but there is something to be said about having less stress in our lives, which in turn, yields a more youthful complexion.  Here are my 5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin.  I hope you find this helpful.

Step 1 to Beautiful Looking Skin:

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin: Dr. Mercola's Food Pyramid.

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin:
Dr. Mercola’s Food Pyramid (click to enlarge photo courtesy of mercola.com).

  • Healthy Diet:  Yup, you cannot escape the obvious.  You eat “crap,” you will look like “crap.”  Sorry for my candor, but in this day and age, with all the information out there about the harmful effects of fast foods, processed foods and GMOs, making healthy eating choices are more important than ever. Eating foods high in sugar and wheat are major culprits of acne.  No topical medication or pill will resolve the long-term harmful effects of a poor diet.  Do I indulge in desserts?  Of course I do, but I will have one cookie instead of five.  If this is too challenging for you to take on, find a nutritionist to help with the process (here).

Step 2 to Beautiful Looking Skin:

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin: Reduce Alcohol Consumption (photo courtesy of doctor.ndtv.com)

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin:
Reduce Alcohol Consumption (photo courtesy of doctor.ndtv.com)

  • Reduce Alcohol Consumption and Drink More Water:  I know many people will look at this and scoff at my holier-than-thou outlook, but don’t be so quick to overlook this step.  Alcohol, at one point in time (Civil War Era), was used for medicinal purposes, to sterilize wounds and as a cleaner, to kill deadly germs.  What is to say the same is not being done to our livers and skin?  I’m not saying you should renounce all your worldly possessions, retire to some remote Tibetan location and become a monk, all I’m saying is reduce your alcohol intake.  Many studies have shown a glass of red wine a night is quite beneficial to our health–just don’t drink the whole bottle 🙂  Drinking plenty of filtered, non-carbonated water throughout the day also helps your body flush out toxins, resulting in a more radiant complexion.

Step 3 to Beautiful Looking Skin:

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin: Exercise (photo courtesy of fitlaunch.com).

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin:
Exercise (photo courtesy of fitlaunch.com).

  • Exercise:  Moving your body and circulating your blood is one of the best things you can do for your skin.  Increased blood flow helps carry waste, such as free radicals, away from healthy working cells. Exercise also reduced stress, which if you haven’t heard, can be harmful to the body and take a toll on your face. For added benefit, take your workout outdoors, 20 minutes of sun exposure increases your Vitamin D intake, which skin desperately needs to remain healthy and radiant.  This is not about being a size 2, it’s about being the healthiest version of yourself–for your skin’s sake.  My daily workout inspiration is Mike Chang from sixpackshortcuts.com (here).

Step 4 to Beautiful Looking Skin:

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin: Clean, Exfoliate and Moisturize your face (photo courtesy of ghcgfest.org).

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin:
Clean, Exfoliate and Moisturize your skin (photo courtesy of ghcgfest.org).

  • Clean, Exfoliate and Moisturize Your Skin:  When you have mastered the secrets to internal maintenance grasshopper, it is time to tend to external issues.  When people ask me how I have such “nice” skin, I do confess to using some fantastic cosmetic products, but more importantly I wash my face every night.  You would be surprised how many people find this night-time ritual “unnecessary.” By not properly cleaning and exfoliating your face before bed, you are creating a petri dish of bacteria that will eventually lead to black heads, white heads, cystic acne and uneven skin tone.  The attitude of, “I don’t wear makeup, so I don’t need to do this,” is just plain silly.  Unless your skin is impervious to dirt, oil and the plethora of chemical toxins in our environment, then you need to wash and exfoliate your face at night.  Follow-up with natural oils and/or moisturizer of your choice.  

Step 5 to Beautiful Looking Skin:

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin: Truck driver left side damaged by constant exposure to the sun.  Right side shaded from the sun.  Should you wear sunscreen and limited sun exposure? You decide.

5 Steps to Beautiful Looking Skin:
Truck driver’s left side damaged by constant sun exposure. Right side shaded from the sun. Should you wear sunscreen and limited sun exposure? You decide (photo courtesy of nydailynew.com).

  • Choose quality sunscreens and cosmetics:  The key to this category is education.  Far be it from me to tell anyone what products they should or should not buy or use, however, there is no denying certain chemicals are harmful to our skin and bodies.  Parabens (here), mineral oil (here), dihydroxyacetone (here) and phthalates (here) are just a few chemicals that have been recently exposed for their hazardous side-effects.  This blog is all about beauty products, but I make a conscious effort to always include ingredient lists so that my readers can make more informed decisions.  Sunscreen (my choice here) is a must to avoid premature wrinkles and sun spots and quality cosmetics can aid in this category.  Heck, even Egyptian women knew they needed to protect their skin, that is why they used makeup as a sunscreen (read more here).

THE VERDICT:  If makeup could talk what would it say?

Makeup would tell you there isn’t a cosmetic in the world that will work on an unhealthy canvas.  In a nutshell, unhealthy habits (hello smoking..looking at you) will affect your skin’s texture and appearance..it’s that simple.  These steps have worked for me, what are some of your skin care “secrets?”  As always be well, stay safe and be happy 🙂

-Maria

*Ifmakeupcouldtalk.com is not affiliated with any brands mentioned, all products were purchased by me.   *Compensation is not given for any reviews.  *Click on each photo to enlarge. *Click on the rose highlighted words to take you to a direct link to each product.  *All opinions are my own and based on my experiences. *All photos are property of Ifmakeupcouldtalk.com unless otherwise noted.