Summer Beauty Series Pt. 2 - Your Face!
Written By: Alycia - Editor

It is really important to keep yourself protected from the sun. Skin cancer (or Melanoma, as your doctor would call it) is actually the most common cancer among young people. This comes from not properly protecting yourself from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Among other things, sun damage also causes wrinkles, and age spots. You know the ones… your grandmother refers to them as her “laugh lines” and “age spots”.  In order to stop, or at least slow these things down, you have to protect your face. This doesn’t just go for during the summer, it’s actually a good thing to remember for the winter time, too. But, we are talking about the summer, so let’s focus on that.

Summer time, as we all learned in elementary school science, is when our little part of the Earth is tipped toward the sun. The skin on your face is the most delicate on your body, so when the sun’s rays are the most direct and therefore the harshest, we really need to think about protecting that very delicate skin.  

Remember that greasy white sunblock your mom always gives you? While it does provide ample sun protection, on girls with already oily skin, it can cause breakouts, which nobody wants. I would recommend NOT using the same sun screen that you use on your arms and legs on your body. It’s made for areas of skin that can stand up to the oily texture. There are several different options for facial sunscreens… among them are:


1)      Wipes (Supergoop! SPF 30 sunscreen wipes with zinc for sensitive skin - $34/40 wipes)
Stick (Supergoop! SPF 30 Quickstick with Vitamin C for face & hands $9)
Makeup Primer (NARS Makeup Primer SPF 20 $33)
Tinted Moisturizer (Stila Sheer color tinted moisturizer SPF 15 $34)
Oil-Free sunblock (Clinique Super City Block Oil Free daily face protector SPF 40 $17.50)

Each of these products is good in its own individual way, and can be used in combination with each other. (For example, you can layer the makeup primer with the tinted moisturizer) The wipes and stick are really handy, especially if you’re traveling or taking a trip to the beach with friends or family. Personally, I think I’d use the wipes for my whole face, and reserve the stick (as it’s sort of small) for use on my nose. Remember the sun touches your nose, forehead, cheekbones and ears before it touches anywhere else. Therefore, you’re going to burn much faster there than you would on your chin. Anywhere you would put bronzer; you really need to put sun block. Each product is formulated to be applied specifically to your face, which means you’ll wipe out the possibility of any unwanted breakouts along with preventing nasty sunburns.

However, there are two oft-forgot areas of the face that really need mentioning. They are: your lips, and your ears. Yes, it is possible for your lips to get sunburned, and believe me, it isn’t a good situation. It hurts really badly! So, for that reason, I am recommending a lip gloss, lip balm, or even lipstick with an SPF rating.


For example:

1)      Tarte 24.7 Natural Lip Sheer SPF 15 ($16)
2)      Lorac Breakthrough Performance Lipstick SPF 15 ($22)
3)      Smashbox Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15 ($18)
4)      Sugar Rosé Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15 ($22.50)
5)      Philosophy Kiss Me SPF 20 ($12)
6)      Too Faced Love Lisa Luxury Lip Balm SPF 15 ($16)
7)      Clinique Long Last Glosswear SPF 15 ($14)
8)      Sephora Collection Nectar Shine Hydrating Care Lipgloss SPF 8 ($12)

                Obviously the higher the SPF (Sun Protection Factor) number, the better your protection is going to be. This does not, however, mean that you can put your sun block on once, and forget it. You need to re-apply every couple of hours, or after swimming or sweating. That includes your tinted moisturizer, AND lip protection.

So, to recap:

1)      You need to use a special face-formula sun block on your face.
2)      You can pick your formula, and can layer those products as you see fit.
3)      Places to really remember: forehead, nose, cheekbones, ears, and lips.
4)      You can get lip products that contain an SPF.

Next time – the rest of you!

All products in this article are available at Sephora or at

Summer Beauty Series Pt. 1 - Your Hair!
Written by: Alycia - Editor

Most girls associate the phrase “Sun protection” with that bottle of greasy white suntan lotion your mother has been slathering you with since you were in diapers. Truth be told, that is definitely a part of it (though there are now MUCH better options than the greasy white stuff), but there are more parts of you that can be damaged by the sun than just your skin. So, in this summer series, I’m going to cover the basics of how to truly protect yourself from sun, sand and surf damages. I’m going to start at the top and work my way down. So, in this first part of the series, I’m going to cover your hair!

Personally, I really like my hair. I’m sure most of you feel the same. But, as I have learned through talking with certain girlfriends of mine, there are a LOT of things people don’t actually know about their own hair!! For starters, your hair requires moisture. I can hear you saying “DUH! That’s why you use CONDITIONER!!” right now, but hear me out on this one. The moisture that your hair needs to retain a healthy look and shine is more than a conditioner in the shower can provide. Personally, along with my in-shower conditioner, I also use a leave-in treatment, AND once a week or so, I use a hair mask. I definitely recommend that process, because it leaves my hair really soft, and I always get compliments from hair dressers on how healthy it looks, even the ends.

I have tried probably a hundred different brands and varieties of hair products, from Salon brands, to Wal-Mart finds, right back to children’s shampoo. However, the brand (if you want to call it that) that I keep going back to is Lush. My shampoo, conditioner and hair treatment are all from this organic store. It drives many people I know insane because the smell is SO strong, but if your nose can stand it, your hair will be eternally grateful. All Lush products are handmade and vegan friendly, they also contain no preservatives and harmful chemicals which can make your hair feel gunky or waxy. They also cater to many different types of hair, from oily to dry, healthy to damaged.

  My weapons of choice:

“Big” shampoo (in the Jar) - $22.95

“Seanik” shampoo bar - $9.95

“American Cream” conditioner - $8.95-$27.95

“H’Sua Wen Hua” Hair treatment - $17. 95

The reason why I have 2 different shampoos in my little hair army is because to stop any possible buildup of soap residue on your hair, it’s good to wash with a different shampoo at least once a week. Some women believe in alternating, but I find once a week or so is good enough. I also find the shampoo bar works really well for me because I do a lot of traveling in the summer, visiting my boyfriend and some other family members and friends from time to time. The little shampoo puck also lasts for upwards of 3 months, depending on how frequently you wash your hair, so for $9.95, it becomes a really good deal.

I am preaching all of this moisture to you for a very good, summer-related reason. Moisture combats frizz, which is caused by exposure to the sun, wind and humidity. This is especially good for those of you with wavy or curly hair, because it stops you from experiencing the dreaded frizz-‘fro, which has on several occasions forced my mother to cut her hair OFF. We can’t have that, and thankfully I have her converted to my system (but her own, curly-specific variation), so as to prevent further chopping. So, lesson number one is, moisturize your hair. It’ll be soft and shiny, and really healthy.

Lesson number two, is that your hair’s natural texture is actually a summer trend! Got straight hair, like me? Leave the curling iron in the drawer. A curly or wavy-haired girl, if you normally straighten, now is the time to embrace what Mother Nature gave you. This is also a good idea for the summer, since using heated tools on your hair in the hot hot weather inspires breakage and more frizz. Use the outside heat to your advantage; allow your hair to air-dry in the way its natural texture wants to go. Curl or wave-enhancing products are always allowed, because it helps to keep your mane under control, but too many products and too much styling in the summer aren’t exactly heat-friendly. Just like how you don’t want to eat a lot of hot meals in summer, your hair doesn’t want a whole lot of hot tools in it either.

The other thing to remember (my boyfriend is about to go “HAH! I TOLD YOU!”) is that if you’re about to expose your head to direct sunlight for an extended period of time, grab a big floppy hat. You’ll be old-Hollywood glam while protecting your hair and face from the harmful sun.

So, in sum, here’s your checklist to keep your hair in tip-top shape for the summer:

1)      Moisture, moisture, moisture!!

2)       Let your hair’s natural texture shine through.

3)      Have a hat!

Up next: The face.