I’ve always found it kind of hilarious that summer has a reputation for being this super-sexy, sultry season. Yes, we’re all dressed skimpier, but sometimes those bikinis can reveal even more than we want them to: I’m talking razor burn, dry skin, not-so-pleasant odors, sunburns and everything else that comes along with long hot days. (Read: Eew.) I still believe that beach days are the best days, so I’ve decided to go on the offensive when it comes to my skin this summer. I’ve rounded up my Summer Beauty MVPs to help me protect, moisturize, remove any excess fuzz, and stay somewhat sweet-smelling from now through Labor Day. Click through to scope my picks, and let me know: which products do you rely on to feel beautiful at the beach?
One of the most essential beauty products for steamy days is also one of the least sexy: deodorant. I’ve been on a mission to find the best natural deodorant for about a year now, and believe me when I tell you that there are some DUDS out there. That’s why I was so pleasantly surprised by how much I love this super-clean deodorant from Dr. Hauschka. The scent is so lovely (almost like a mint-chamomile tea), and it really does de-stinkify. It’s aluminum-free, so sadly it won’t prevent perspiration, but let’s be honest — I spend the summer drenched in sweat no matter what is on my armpits. Might as well go the healthy route!
Vitamin C Daily Moisturizer
We’ve all been the there: you didn’t plan on being in the sun, but there you are, having brunch with a friend and slowly frying in direct sunlight. Avoid any of these, er, crispy situations this summer by replacing your standard body lotion with one with SPF already built in. Lighter and easier to blend than traditional sunscreen, this SPF 30 includes antioxidant vitamin C for even more protective power.
Vichy Capitol Soleil SPF 50
For the days that you are really are planning on catching some serious rays, a Holy Grail sunscreen is key. I’m absolutely in love with this foaming SPF 50; it’s fun and easy to apply, and is super effective. Give it a try, and I promise that you’ll be addicted, too!
Express Glow Face Mask from James Read
The downside of all of that responsible sun protection? Staying pasty while those around you descend into a deeply bronzed state. Thankfully, self-tanners have become so easy and even luxurious to use that I promise you won’t miss burning to a crisp. This brand especially has become a major editor favorite for being utterly natural-looking and streak-free.
Golden Glow Booster for Body
A spinoff of the Clarins’ ever-popular Radiance-Plus Golden Glow Booster for the face, this ingenious concentrated self-tanning serum is meant to be mixed in with your regular lotion or oil to gradually build a tan over time. You end up with a tan that develops gradually and naturally, rather than going to zero to Kardashian overnight. Sounds nice, no?
Schick Hydro Silk Razor
This time of year, I’m always pretty daunted by the task of keeping up the appearance of smooth, body-hair-free skin. Not that I let things completely run ragged the rest of the year, but let’s just say that I’m not exactly instantly bikini-ready come Memorial Day. For a lazy/avoidant waxer like myself, this razor/trimmer combo has been life-changing; I can’t wait to upgrade to this new moisturizing version this year.
Earth tu Face Salt Scrub
With all of the SPF-applying, self-tanning, and hair-removing going on during these months, a good body scrub is one of the best investments that you can make. A gentle but still gritty scrub will remove dead skin and keep your bod primed and ready for any shaving/tanning situations that need to go down — and, if it smells as good as this pick, it means that your summer beauty ritual will be downright luxurious.
Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse
Once the sun has set and the sunscreen’s been washed off, I love using a fragrant and sexy body oil to add a bit of sheen to my skin for a night out, and this sweetly floral scented dry oil is perfection. Just a bit on arms, legs, and even in my hair makes me feel like a total summery goddess — even if, let’s face it, I’ll be drenched in sweat in fifteen minutes anyway.