Summer Skin Essentials

I figured today would be the perfect day to write about my summer skin essentials - when this post goes up, I will be on my way to Maine to relax at the beach for the week! Now that I'm not in school anymore, our vacation to Maine truly signifies the beginning of the summer for me. When the weather warms up, I start straying from my favorite thick, heavy creams and rely on more brightening, lightweight formulas. I've been having a bit of hormonal breakouts lately, but I already know that once they clear up this routine will be a hit.

I like really gentle cleansers morning and night, but a nice extra kick for summertime has come in the form of the Farmacy New Day Gentle Exfoliating Grains (mine is a mini from the Perennial Picks Skincare Discovery Set*). It's a powder you mix with water to create a foamy cleanser. I'm always wary of things that foam, but this doesn't strip my skin at all. I like that the powder doesn't completely break down, so you get a bit of a gentle scrubbing action in there too. I've packed this with me to get my skin looking bright and clean each morning and make sure the remnants of the previous day's sunscreen is all gone.

As you may have seen in my June Favorites on Thursday, I've been really loving the Drunk Elephant C-Firma Day Serum. This is a perfect addition to my routine for summer. Vitamin C is known to boost the effects of your SPF, so I'm definitely bringing this along to make sure my skin is extra protected while I'm at the beach (wearing a hat under an umbrella, of course). This is hydrating but not heavy or greasy at all, and I've already been noticing that it's lightening up my acne marks. It does have a bit of an odd smell, but I'm told that's the good sign of a seriously good and effective Vitamin C serum. The smell fades quickly so I don't mind.

I love reaching for lightweight gel-creams instead of my usual thick night creams so my skin doesn't feel like it's suffocating in the humidity. For a nice, simple pick I go for the Belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb - it really feels like you're giving your skin a drink of water. Despite having dehydrated skin, this is enough moisture for me, and I love layering it over/under facial oils, too. For a bit more brightening oomph I reach for the Sunday Riley Tidal Brightening Enzyme Water Cream* (review). This really plumps up my skin, and when used consistently it does brighten up my skin and leaves it radiant and dewy throughout the day.

In the past couple years I've had a couple family members have some skin cancer issues, so it's really made me ultra-vigilant about my SPF. I start that routine by using a facial SPF daily, and I like using a moisturizer with SPF to get the two steps in one. When I know I'll be out in the sun I've been using the Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer SPF 47. It comes out as a thin consistency, but it does feel a bit thick while rubbing it into the skin. I'm assuming it's because it's a physical sunscreen. This doesn't leave a white cast on my skin (although I am pretty pale, so I don't know how it would fare on darker complexions), and it keeps my skin moisturized all day without being too greasy. A lighter option I love is the Purlisse Blue Lotus Essential Daily Moisturizer SPF 30.* This one is more lightweight and feels really soothing on the skin. This is a chemical sunscreen, but it hasn't broken me out or irritated my skin at all. I like wearing this one under makeup because once it sinks in you can't feel it on your skin at all, while you can feel the Josie Maran one. While I'm on vacation I'm expecting to use the Josie Maran one in the morning before I go to the beach and then the Purlisse one in the afternoons after coming back from the beach and showering.

One last way I like to make sure my SPF is topped up is by using the Supergoop Defense Refresh Setting Mist. This is genius in my opinion - a face mist with SPF 50? I was sold just by reading the label. I love carrying this in my beach bag because it's so easy to reapply, and I don't feel like I'm just clogging up my pores by reapplying a thick sun cream. This is a bit mattifying too, so perfect for calming down sweaty skin.

What are your skin picks for summer?

*Some products mentioned have been sent to me for consideration, but all opinions are my own. Please see my disclaimer for more information.