With spring rounding the corner into summer everyone at the studio is talking about how to freshen up their look and achieve that sought after summer glow. I’ve been traveling a lot recently and couldn’t agree more with wanting to freshen up my skin. I sat down with the W&D team last week and gathered up our top 5 favorite beauty brands for you. I’m excited to share what products we are collectively loving – from skincare cleansers to makeup – these are the products we swear by and can assure will leave you feeling clean, fresh, moisturized, and with a beachy summer glow. We love these brands so much that we even keep extras hanging around the studio for mid-day touchups. Let us know what you think in the comments below. And please fill us in on what brands you are loving, so we can try those out too!
I’ve never been a believer in creamy face washes because I’m always chasing that extra clean feel after washing, but MUN has officially converted me! I’ve been kind of obsessing over the Akwi Purifying Cleanser. After only one week of use, I’m feeling more glowy, soft and natural. This face wash spreads on creamy because it’s an oil-based cleanser, but leaves your skin feeling soft and dewy without peeling away your first layer of skin. It has detoxifying and nutrient dense ingredients that are ripe with antioxidants like castor and argan oil. It didn’t leave me with the squeaky clean feel, but more so, a soft and glowy feel which I’ve instantly grown to love. I feel so nourished! I would definitely recommend this product to any and everyone. I also tried the Anarose Hydrating Rose Toner which was a nice hydrating splash to my face after showering. The purpose of this toner is to refresh the PH of your skin after it has been cleansed. It’s very soothing and also firming. Next, I added Aknari Brightening Youth Serum the prickly pear seed oil gives this a strong essential oil like scent, and at first, this feels thick, but actually, left my skin feeling nourished and smooth. I honestly felt like I just gave myself a little spa treatment and couldn’t wait to repeat this beauty regimen before bed. Lastly, I used Ayour Body Toning Serum and rubbed it all over my body as I would lotion. This oil smells amazing! It’s like every good essential oil you’ve ever smelled wrapped up in one bottle. It’s an earthy and memorable fragrance you will want to adopt as your own personal scent. I also like that it drys quickly and that it didn’t make my body feel overly greasy or oily.
Glossier’s tagline really comes to mind when I was trying out their products. “Skin first. Makeup second.” When I was putting on the lip balm, red lipstick, boy brow brush and even the cheek highlighter, my face felt so clean and natural. It gave a whole new meaning to the saying – all natural makeup. It emphasizes the features you already have and reminds you that less is more when it comes to makeup. Let me walk you through all our favorite Glossier products!
The entire W&D team tried out all the Balm Dotcom lip balms that Glossier has to offer and I must say, hands down, we loved them all. I especially loved the rose and cherry balms. The cherry balm left me with cherry red lips and had me nostalgically reflecting on my elementary and junior high days when wearing red lip gloss around your friends left you feeling pretty cool and sophisticated. All the flavors on these balms are great too, the rose, mint and coconut smell exactly how you might imagine. Each balm is packed with antioxidants and natural emollients to nourish and repair dry skin. I also thought it was interesting that it states you can put the balm anywhere that you feel dry, even on your elbow? Kind of weird, kind of cool. Next, we tried the Boy brow brush, which is really great if you have thick and unruly eyebrows like I do. This brush is inspired by traditional hair pomade for a soft, flexible hold, it spreads on through the brush in a creamy wax formula that doesn’t feel cakey. We also tried the Haloscope dewy skin highlighter. This stick is infused with genuine crystal extracts which leaves your face in a shimmery glow, it is comprised of a solid oil core of vitamin-rich moisturizers which hydrates your skin and creates a dewy finish. We discovered this might be the best way to achieve that literal summer glow. Finally, we tried the Generation G in Zip (aka poppy red) lipstick. This lipstick comes in a matte finish which leaves your lips looking fresh, clean, and modern, while still natural, even though it’s bright red. The Generation G will still adapt in shade to whoever is wearing it as their true lip color will shine through the matte finish. It gives your face the perfect pop of color when paired with other natural Glossier products.
First of all, I love the way the S.W. Basics products make you feel and the ingredients that are in them. I started off with the Cleanser which is pretty simple and comprised of organic rosewater with a wee bit of tea tree oil (which in my experience, can zap any zit this side of the Pecos). If you are looking for that bubbly and sudsy clean feeling, this face cleanser my not be for you, but it does leave you feeling cabin fresh and smelling great, the all natural way. After the face wash, I tested the Toner, which leaves your face feeling very clean. I attributed this feeling to the raw apple cider vinegar, which I believe can cure any issue or alleviate any blemish. I also tried the Rosewater Toning Mist which left me feeling, oh so clean and refreshed. This can be used as a moisturizer or face wash, but really, I just give my face a quick spray when I feel I need a second of spa-like rejuvenation (even if I have makeup on). I’ll spray it on while at work and feel instantly better.
The W&D team favorite S.W. Basics product by far is the S.W. Basics Cream. At first, I kind of felt like I was rubbing Crisco all over my face (I later discovered this is because the main ingredient is shea butter, while most other lotions main ingredient is water) but as I let it settle in, this lotion, comprised of all natural ingredients, started out shiny, but left me feeling dewy, fresh and fully moisturized. That’s probably because the other ingredients in this cream are extra virgin coconut and olive oil. Did we mention the shea butter is Fair Trade from a women’s cooperative in Ghana? Ok, we are sold, based on that information and the ingredients alone. After applying the cream, the shininess seemed to dissolve and left my skin feeling springy and hydrated. We think the S.W. basics lotion is the perfect cream if you are feeling overly dry in any way. We also tried their Oil Serum which is nice after you wash your face as an additional form of moisture. The oil is made up of organic avocado, geranium, turmeric and coffee oil, which in all actuality, smells like all of those ingredients combined. It truly feels delicious and sinks into your skin in a non-greasy way. Also, if these products interest you, don’t forget to check out Adina Gregore’s new book titled, Just the Essentials, a great book for people that would like to learn more about how essential oils can heal your skin, improve your health, and detox your life.
When I was compiling a beauty round-up piece for the blog, I knew I had to include Fresh. I especially love their lip balms and lipsticks. I swear by the Sugar Nourishing Lip Balm. It soothes, softens, moisturizes and leaves your lips feeling silky. I find myself applying this several times a day. Their special formula includes a refreshing sugar mint flavor and wild mango butter which protect and soften dry lips. I also like Sugar Rose and Sugar Poppy tinted lipsticks, they moisturize and hydrate your lips, all the while, still providing a rich red or rosy tint. It’s fun wearing a lipstick that essentially feels like a chapstick. Fresh makes me feel like lipsticks can also be used more for everyday wear. I often use Sugar Rose or Sugar Poppy to dress up my more casual outfits when I have meetings in the office.
The entire W&D team is loving the BECCA’s Sunchaser Palette which includes a bronze, blush, and highlighter. This trio of matte and radiant finishes is the quintessential dream team for achieving that year-round summer glow. The team also tried the Ombre Rouge Eye Pallette and found it gave us that day at the beach, sun-kissed look that everyone is reaching for, but it also creates a great smokey eye for that night out on the town as well. BECCA’s palettes helped us achieve that dewy glowy look without feeling overly glittery, both the Sunchaser Palette and the Ombre Rouge had just the right amount of sparkle.
Illustration by Kate Worum.
BY Stefani Hodzic - May 4, 2017
Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.