Tag Archives: low to luxe

The Best Sunscreen of 2016

Best Sunscreen 2016

Sunscreen has gotten so good, guys. If you’re still struggling with chalky and hard to blend, then you’re in luck. We’ve got mucho options. I read an article at the start of “sunscreen season” awhile back and it basically said that human error is one of the main reasons it doesn’t work (assuming you have a formula that isn’t old or expired). Basically, we miss a lot of spots. The aerosols are especially guilty of a shotty application. I am not a big fan of the sprays anyway because I don’t like to breathe in the particles. In a pinch, I’ll coat my feet but generally steer clear.

Let’s break down the best, low-to-luxe.

Under $15

I got in the habit of buying Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby when I was visiting Miami (both times last year) and I had to pick up SPF at the Publix on the way to the beach. This admittedly can leave a white-ish cast if you don’t blend well. It is really effective, though, so it’s a go to for all over body on beach days. If applying at home, I’ll mix in with a little coconut oil or body lotion to help it spread easier. As a rule, that is the best way to ensure your sunscreen feels and looks the most natural on your limbs. // Sun Bum Clear Zinc Oxide caught my eye at Ulta and it is legit. This tub is a whopping SPF 50 and has aloe and vitamin E so is very easy to blend in. Love that it’s under $10. // One of my go-to facial SPF moisturizers is Aveeno Positively Radiant SPF 30. I like that it doubles as a moisturizer and has some built-in radiance.

Splurge-ish $$

I discovered Clarins UV Plus Tinted in the heart of winter and fully appreciate its magical powers now that its melt your face off weather. It’s one of those formulas you need to shake to activate since it’s so lightweight. The tint has incredible coverage so it can double as makeup. Perfect for bare face days. // You can’t help but be drawn to the Tarteguard 30 bottle and it just gets better once you use. The formula has Tarte’s signature maracuja (passion fruit) oil and blends smoothly on your face and feels good under makeup. // If we’re so bad at applying sunscreen, surely Beautycounter Protect Stick is a saving grace. It’s ultra tote-able in your bag and perfect for swiping on the areas you never do: ears, toes, lips and an extra layer on your forehead when you’re standing square in the sun.

I’m so fancy $$$

Sun ages skin, yes, but pollution is the real enemy and it’s invisble! Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart has a high SPF 50 and also a special DNA Enzyme Complex to strengthen skin. Pollution is everywhere but city slickers, you need a little more help. I love how sheer this but it does have a slight tint that doesn’t show up on skin but helps it blend more into all skin tones. After I finish this tube, I will be restocking. // I got the Kari Gran Three Sixty Five in my July BeautyHeroes box—the best “beauty in a box” subscription service I’ve ever tried. This isn’t like any other sunscreen I’ve used. It’s filled with oils so it blends into skin and leaves behind a little slick. I love it blended with makeup for a dewy finish. It makes skin look really healthy and also helps strengthen skin while you wear. // If I’m splurging on SPF – which the last of this luxe trip definitely is – it needs to do more than just block sun.  Tatcha Pore Perfecting Sunscreen helps tighten pores and improve uneven skin tone. The formula is like liquid silk – no, really, has silk extract in there – and is meant to be worn as a makeup primer. Any makeup you put on top of this looks better than if you skipped the step.

What are you using these days? Tell me everything.

Low to Luxe: Bronzer

Low to Luxe Bronzer

Well, I agree! It’s been entirely too long since we traveled the low to luxe beauty spectrum together. If my bathroom counter is any indication, it’s not for lack of experimenting. Since it is now officially summer, we should discuss bronzer. Last week, one of my darling coworkers asked me for a recommendation. It was early in the morning and we were both filling up our coffee mugs, so I made a note to follow up with her since I was in a.m. Laurie zombie-mode. Rather than keep all that good convo to our Outlook, I thought I’d open it up for discussion. I really do have deep thoughts on the topic but would love to hear your POV on the matter. Bronzer is personal! I’ll go first.

I am quite particular when it comes to the ‘low’ end. There are some solid contenders but I find that a lot of mass brands can be powdery and low on pigment. If I have to smash my brush aggressively in the pan to get color, I’m working too hard. Two excellent options that go to bat with the Guerlains of the world are NYX Matte Bronzer and the Mineral Wear Airbrush from Physician’s Formula.  Both come in a few different color options, too, so you can customize it for your skin tone. NYX is under $10 — you better believe it’s worth a try.

In that mid-range are so many bronzers it can be overwhelming. It was hard for me to narrow down to the best. I’m as excited by RMS Buriti Bronzer as I was when I first mentioned it. Because it’s sheer, the metallic hue translates to naturally and un-orange on skin. And, it’s packed with vitamins and oils so it’s basically skin care. My newest discovery is this countering duo from BECCA. At $40, it’s straddling the luxe line but there are two shades so there are more options. Swirl, use one or both – the bronzer is your oyster.

Now, for the luxe side of this party. NARS Laguna is legendary. In part, because the shade is almost flattering on all skin tones. They released a special Laguna compact this summer that comes with a mini Ita Brush (one of the brand’s signature artisan kabukis!) Totally worth the indulgence if this bronzer is your jam. And, if you are partial to the Guerlains of the world, then Guerlain is pleasing you this season. Their bronzers are so finely milled and natural, I can’t not talk about them in the context of best bronzers. I love these colored discs that align with hair color. They updated the formula with more oils this season but it’s still the Guerlain we know and love.

Your turn!