The sun is shining, and summer holiday wishlists are calling for seasonal beauty buys. Whether you're heading to tropical climes and sandy beaches, or are soaking up the sun from the city or the privacy of your own garden, summer pleasures demand a suitably tailored beauty kit - seasonal essentials to ease the transition from city sight-seeing through to poolside relaxation, festival frenzy, and breezy beach strolls.
This is luxury summer beauty, with buy-now apply-now appeal.
Juniper, black pepper, and bergamot will instantly transport you into holiday mode; for who can resist the nostalgic romance of the Italian coast? This dynamic scent emanates a sense of pervading heat, which for me recalls memories of exploring the shores of Lake Como. I've long since sported the eau de parfum as my signature summer scent, but this vibrantly scented scrub is strong and enduring enough to forgo dedicated perfume - apply, inhale, and expect to take an olfactory journey to the breezy blue shores of Sardignia. In body scrub form, this more than lives up to its luxury price tag - rendering limbs smooth, supple, and glowing whilst enveloping the skin in a velvet sheen of hydration.
If you use and love Bumble's regular [and bestselling] Surf Spray, then you'll adore Surf Infusion Oil. A combination of sea salt, softening oils [mango, coconut, and passion fruit], and the brand's UV protective Beach Blend creates tousled and textured waves, with sheen. The oil applies in mist form; decidedly non-greasy, it's perfect for using from roots to ends, and works best when spritzed through damp/nearly dry hair. Pair with the original for bona fide surf queen vibes.
THE DAY-TO-NIGHT EYESHADOW : CHANEL Stylo Eyeshadow in Laurier Rose
Take a fresh approach to SS15's boldest look; the wash of shimmer reigns supreme, but opt for a cool coloured metallic as the perfect accompaniment to a bronzed goddess tan. This delicate copper-pink applies opaque in one creamy slick, and lasts impressively; without a doubt one of the best eyeshadow sticks I have ever used. When night falls, don’t distract: pull hair back into a bun and let your lids do the talking.
THE HEAVEN-SCENT HAIR PRODUCT: BYREDO Bal d'Afrique Hair Perfume
Sweltering summer days call for a liberal application of scent, and hair provides the perfect receptacle - permeable and responsive, scent will last from one sunrise to another, providing the ultimate compliment magnet. Bal d'Afrique is inspired by the 1920's Parisian infatuation with African culture - rich, vibrant, and fresh. Summer, perfect.
THE GLOW-GETTER : NARS Body Glow
The perfect accompaniment to the above, for not only do this season’s prevailing sartorial trends command skin to be sun-kissed, but also to sport a luminous sheen. Thanks to Nars' tinted shimmer oil, you can expect to sport a truly radiant glow and sweep into cocktail hour with bronzed pins and a hint of sun-kissed clavicle on show. The formula is lightly tinted, heavy on the shimmer, and enriched with hydrating ingredients [such as Monoï de Tahiti oil - a coconut extract that also leaves limbs delicately fragranced]. Glow, on.
THE SCENE-STEALING CONTOUR : NARS Matte Multiple in Vientiane*
Stay bronzed and glowing; the focus here is on the finish [fresh and sheer] - with a hint of warmth. High-impact pigment [when used dry] or a smooth second-skin effect [when applied damp] allows for contouring/bronzing options tailored to meet your personal requirements and desires. Vientiane is a perfectly matte cool copper-bronze; ideal for lighter skintones, it applies easily and blends exquisitely.
They're as feared as they are overused, but let 2015 be the year you finally take the plunge and explore the wonderful world of self-tanning products. If you're yet to be convinced then I've done the hard part for you - meet the only product you need to get perfectly bronzed limbs, minus the hassle/trauma/embarrassment that usually accompanies one's first foray into faking it. He-Shi's best-selling tanning mousse applies with unprecedented ease, gliding onto the skin to establish an instant [and incredibly natural] glow set to last for the next 7-10 days. Previous summer's rendered me a fake tan sceptic [I'm naturally as white as a sheet], but thanks to He-Shi I've finally had the courage to bare my pins before going off on my travels. Every single person to notice my "tan" has been shocked to learn that it wasn't natural and has remarked upon its prowess. 'Streaky', 'blotchy', and 'orange' are now void from your vocabulary.
THE OFF-DUTY BASE : RMK Casual Solid Foundation SPF 38*
This season, SPF branches out, popping up in primers, concealers, foundations, and powders - you name it, they've made it; the makeup world has [quite rightly] gone SPF crazy. Sweltering days [and nights] call for a relaxed approach to foundation, so keep it casual with a lightweight, medium-coverage base. RMK's solid foundation creates an even base that blends imperceptibly with your natural skintone - allowing you to apply it only where necessary, and without resulting in a blotchy and uneven complexion. What's more the palette contains a second shade, which can be used to subtly highlight.
Designed to revive both body and mind; this summer, cool off with a facial spray with a twist. Ideal for long-journeys and hot days in the office, this light and cooling spray is infused with an aromatic blend of rose, bergamot, and chamomile for sensory stimulation guaranteed to hit refresh, both inside and out. Use to hydrate dry skin before applying moisturiser, or as setting spray after applying makeup for an extra boost of hydration.
THE NEW-GEN SUNSCREEN : EVE LOM Daily Protection SPF50*
Nothing demonstrates holiday finesse quite like using luxury sun protection. For wearability that goes way beyond the beach opt for Eve Lom's broad spectrum formula; it contains six high performance suncreens, which together protect against UVA and UVB rays, pollutants, free radicals, and environmental damage. The formula also serves to plump and brighten the complexion, delivering Vitamin C and lactic acid in hefty doses [it can be used both alongside or in place of a dedicated day cream]. Fast-absorbing, and leaving neither oily nor chalky residue, this is a luxury facial SPF, well worth the investment.
Stay tuned for round two, 10 high-street summer beauty buys, landing next week.
In the meantime, what are your luxury summer beauty essentials?