Saturday, June 14, 2014

The Beauty Spotlight Team's Favorites Series: Lola's Secret Beauty Blog & Summer-Ready Minimalist Makeup & a Glowing Complexion

When I started thinking about what to feature for this new Beauty Spotlight Team Series, it hit me one day during my office hours on campus. As finals were rapidly approaching my office hours became increasingly more and more packed, and as I sat for hours answering questions and helping students out with their research papers-- I had the opportunity to continually observe that the vast majority of the students that I see on campus tend to wear very little makeup, if any at all, and generally have beautiful and vibrant glowing complexions. Perhaps this is in part a function of attending a university in Southern California since fashions tend to be quite relaxed and casual (read: beach attire), and the weather tends to be warm. Of course most of the undergraduate and graduate students tend to be young, and therefore their skin is naturally fresh and glowing. Whatever the reason, the female undergraduate and graduate students wear little makeup, and when they do it is barely-there, but just enough to accentuate their lovely features. The tendency is to wear lip gloss, maybe a touch of eyeliner, and perhaps a little mascara, and that's about it. So when I thought about how one might replicate their "looks" it occurred to me that it would involve no eye shadow, but would include minimal eyeliner in more natural shades, some mascara, a neutral lip color (nude to pink), some lip gloss, a blush, a bronzer, an illuminator, and a light foundation or tinted moisturizer. While this is surely far more than most coeds seem to wear at my particular campus at least-- in order to achieve a version of their looks meant selecting products that emphasized luminous skin coupled with barely-there minimal makeup.

This "Favorites" post is inspired by, and in honor of, my students. 
Sather Gate at UC Berkeley (source and information). 
Products featured are a combination of Press Samples and purchases made by me. There are links to my in-depth product reviews as well as a few affiliate links. Products were chosen based upon my love of them. Press Samples are denotes by the presence of an asterisk*

While I wanted to keep the focus on makeup, I did select three skincare items for their ability to impart brightened, luminous and even skin. I chose these three products because they brighten, add luminosity, even skin tone and while nourishing the skin.

Admittedly my selections featured below are luxurious rather than college budget friendly, but my intention is simply to select from my current favorites that achieve the glowing skin and barely-there makeup that I see on campus on a daily basis. Therefore, the products that I selected reflect my interpretation of the natural makeup look.
Since I adhere to the belief that beautiful makeup application begins with a beautiful canvas, I subscribe to the idea that the most important way to prep the skin is through a great skincare routine. I didn't want to focus on my entire skincare routine, but instead selected a few products that do wonders for clarity and dazzlingly bright skin. Initially I was only going to feature Vitamin C based products that do wonders for skin clarity, brightening, and evening skin tone, but I am currently testing out the Algenist Advanced Anti-Aging Reparing Oil, and it works so beautifully that I decided to include it as well. I should also preface this by stating that I never step foot outside of my house without wearing a sunscreen with at least a sun protection factor of 30 or higher, and certainly part of maintaining glowing healthy skin is by keeping it protected.

Painted Earth Optimum 20% Vitamin C Serum with Ferulic Acid* ($95.00 review forthcoming; available from Painted Earth): "A multitasking brightening day serum to target the face, eyes and lips to deliver an instant boost of radiance and a glowing complexion. Suspended in a concentrated base of pure vegan hyaluronic acid to plump skin cells and protect and restore. A revolutionary topical antioxidant with a concentrated delivery system for the highest form of active, bio-available Vitamin C, Ferulic Acid and Vitamin E that provides unprecedented 50 times the free radical neutralizing power of prior generations and up to eight-fold antioxidant protection, ninety-six percent reduction of sunburn cells, and prevention of the formation of free radicals in sun exposed skin." While I am still testing out this product, I must confess that I am astonished by its efficacy! The high concentration of Vitamin C coupled with the Ferulic Acid works wonders on the skin. It hydrates and nourishes while protecting against free-radicals. It also fades sun-spots, evens skin tone, and generally gives skin a pronounced clarity. Of the Vitamin C based products that I have tried, this one definitely appears to be the most potent and effective.

Algenist Advanced Anti-Aging Repairing Oil with Microalgae Oil ($79.00 reviewed here; available from Sephora, Nordstrom & SpaceNK UK): "An advanced oil that delivers the performance of a powerful antiaging serum with the unique experience of an oil. Fast absorbing and non-greasy, it instantly replenishes the skin with essential moisture while working to repair the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Formulated with microalgae oil combined with ceramides and a brown algae extract, it visibly restores elasticity and leaves skin looking firmer, more supple, and absolutely radiant." I realize that the last thing that I needed to buy was yet another luxury face oil, but after playing with this one numerous times when I went to Sephora, I decided that it was time to just buy a bottle. I'm really quite glad that I did! This is a remarkably light oil that is fast absorbing and very pleasant to use. It plumps fine lines, leaves skin hydrated, replenished, soft, supple, and unbelievably radiant. I definitely need to use it longer to be able to write an in-depth review, but so far I am thrilled by the results and am so happy that I purchased it.

FutureDerm Vitamin CE Eye Cream* ($59.00 reviewed here): One of the very first things that I noted after I used FutureDerm Vitamin C Eye Cream for a few days was an unmistakable brightening and tightening of my under eye area. My skin quickly became brighter and more luminous with a pronounced clarity. My delicate eye area is left very soft, smooth, and taut each time that I use it-- and this combination of textural differences is very obvious both at a distance and close-up. The cream is light and smooth, and sinks in and gets right to work immediately. The silicones lend the cream a lovely velvety texture and the perfect amount of slip while the Vitamin E, Avocado and Grape Seed Oils deeply moisturize the delicate eye are. This antioxidant rich formula assures the user that the anti-aging benefits are real and tangible, and with prolonged use one will definitely see a reduction of fine lines and wrinkles. Furthermore, the brightening effects of Vitamin CE Eye Cream has radically lightened my dark circles.
Left to Right: Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Moisture Foundation, NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30, Tom Ford Traceless Liquid Foundation, Le Métier de Beauté Peau Vierge Anti-Aging Complexe Tinted Treatment & Hourglass Veil Fluid Fluid Makeup Oil Free SPF 15.

Koh Gen Do Maifanshi Moisture Foundation in No. 013 ($62.00 review forthcoming; available from Barneys New York,, Sephora and Dermstore): "A high-definition mineral makeup cream foundation that applies like a liquid. Maifanshi Moisture Foundation provides the superior buildable coverage of a cream with the natural-looking, sheer finish of a liquid foundation." I love the natural finish and buildable coverage that Maifanshi Moisture Foundation offers. Skin looks like skin, yet perfected.

NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30 in Alaska ($42.00 reviewed here): NARS Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer SPF 30+ is a lovely light weight oil-free formula that is very hydrating for my combination skin. The finish is smooth and natural, and it imparts just enough coverage to maintain a healthy natural glow. While it does contain and SPF 30, I do still use a separate sunscreen.

Tom Ford Traceless Liquid Foundation in Pale Dune ($78.00 review forthcoming; available from Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom): According to Tom Ford this is a "unique, three-in-one foundation" that "delivers a balanced complexion that glows with vitality and radiance." The formula is very lightweight and luminous, almost akin to a tinted moisturizer, and it includes the "skin-nourishing Tom Ford Infusing Complex to help protect skin and promote its vibrancy from within." I love that my skin looks and feels luminous and natural-- it is definitely one of my very favorite foundations.

Le Métier de Beauté Peau Vierge Anti-Aging Complexe Tinted Treatment in Shade 1 ($125.00 review forthcoming; available from Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman and Dermstore): According to LMdB, "This luxurious, tinted treatment is truly transforming—it provides sheer, natural-looking coverage for instant smoothing and perfecting as it works below the surface to enhance and improve the skin long term. The weightless fluid has a gossamer-like texture that applies like second skin and features a potent blend of restorative ingredients to help smooth, tighten and soften the skin's overall appearance. SPF 18 protects the skin from damaging UVA/UVB rays." Most often I wear Peau Vierge as a tinted moisturizer, and in that capacity it leaves my skin luminous, even-toned, and gorgeous! Furthermore,  Peau Vierge (which translates to "Virgin Skin") "contains the breakthrough, proprietary delivery system Syntoc Actif. This exclusive and patented technology aids in the improved delivery of key ingredients." Among the key ingredients is retinol, a power-broker in anti-aging skincare products chosen for its ability to "smooth lines, refine texture and even tone." It also contains an SPF 20 to protect the skin as well as "light-diffusing pigments help to instantly blur and diffuse imperfections for a smooth, radiant, natural-looking finish." I don't consider an SPF 20 to be enough protection-- therefore I apply a separate sunscreen when I wear Peau Vierge.

Hourglass Veil Fluid Fluid Makeup Oil Free SPF 15* ($60.00 reviewed here): This is a lovely and luxurious medium coverage foundation filled with skincare quality anti-aging ingredients. The finish is natural, and the benefits are many. It is formulated with the peptide Matrixyl® Synthe’6™which helps "support the body’s natural ability to produce collagen, and helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles." I find that my complexion looks gorgeous, even and natural when I use this lovely foundation, and it has remained one of my very favorites as a result.
Left to Right: Burberry Light Glow Natural Blush in Peony,  Burberry Light Glow Natural Blush in Misty, Edward Bess Blush Extraordinaire in Filled with Desire,  Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Ethereal Glow,  Surratt Artistique Blush in Guimauve and Tom Ford Cheek Color in Frantic Pink.

Burberry Light Glow Natural Blush in Peony ($42.00 reviewed here): Burberry blushes are a revelation. They are soft, smooth, beautifully pigmented, and offer a natural lit-from-within glow. Peony is a gorgeous mid-tone blue-based pink that is utterly drool-worthy. The only downside is that it is quite fragrant, and despite the fact that it smells of roses it may prove to be too floral a bouquet for those who prefer fragrance free products on their faces.

Burberry Light Glow Natural Blush in Misty ($42.00 reviewed here): Misty is Peony's paler and more muted sister. Also a blue-based pink, Misty is easy to wear and oh-so pretty. Despite the fact that it is a pale shade, the pigmentation is stupendous as is the über silky texture. This is an extraordinarily beautiful blush, no doubt about it!

Edward Bess Blush Extraordinaire in Filled with Desire ($43.00 reviewed here): Filled with Desire is a definite stunner. This blue-based pink beauty is finely milled, is gorgeously pigmented, and is sure to delight even the most hard-to-please pink blush fiend. According to Edward Bess, this blush is "a lightweight, velvety smooth powder that imparts a luminous natural-looking blushed effect." Filled with Desire is a gorgeous pale pink with a lovely subtle sheen. The shimmer itself is pink-- lending itself to a tone on tone effect that is very refined, and the result is an elegant sheen that translates to an ethereal glow on the skin. It applies with great ease and does not emphasize or settle into pores or fine lines.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Ethereal Glow* ($35.00 reviewed here): Ethereal Glow is a gorgeous  pale cool blue-based pink blush "fused with Ethereal Light for a moonlit luminosity." Ethereal Glow is an exceptionally finely milled high quality blush with an über silky smooth texture. It has beautiful pigmentation, and while it is light it is not inherently sheer. On me, once applied it faithfully remains in place all day. This is definitely one of my most reached for blushes.

Surratt Artistique Blush in Guimauve ($32.00 reviewed here): Speaking of most reached for blushes...Surratt Artistique Blush in Guimauve is the thing that pink blush dreams are made of. Surratt describes Guimauve as a "marshmallow pink," but it definitely resides on the demure end of the Surratt color spectrum. Guimauve is a stunning light blue-based pink that can be easily be worn on a daily basis. It is soft, smooth, creamy and glides across the skin effortlessly and evenly, and blends out seamlessly. While it is a powder it feels more like a cream to the touch as a result of the Japanese slurry technology employed in its making. It is this very textural difference that makes the formula unique and indescribably luxurious to the touch. The finish is best described as one that imparts a natural and luminous glow from within. That it approximates the appearance of naturally flushed cheeks is among its many strengths. This is a truly stunning blush.

Tom Ford Cheek Color in Frantic Pink ($56.00 reviewed and discussed here, here & here): This lovely peachy pink blush is finely milled, imparts a gorgeous natural glow, and is stunningly gorgeous and infinitely wearable. While Frantic Pink contains multi-colored pearl, on the skin it is luminous and natural looking. It is also an amazing transformer blush because of its inherent ability to warm up and tone down assertively pigmented blushes that are harder to wear. That said, my favored method of application is Frantic Pink all alone!
Left to Right: Chanel Le Blush Crème de Chanel in Inspiration, Susan Thompson Cosmetics Liquid Blush in Mim's the Word, Le Métier de Beauté Crème Fresh Tint for Lip & Cheek in Poppy and Le Métier de Beauté Crème Fresh Tint for Lip & Cheek in Mystique.

Chanel Le Blush Crème de Chanel in Inspiration ($38.00 reviewed and discussed here and here): Inspiration is a lovely cool toned light pink cream blush. The texture is creamy, but more stiff than I had expected, but that accounts for its great wear-time. The pigmentation is very rich and a little goes a long way. 

Susan Thompson Cosmetics Liquid Blush in Mim's the Word* ($20.00 reviewed here): Mim's the Word is a gorgeous blue-based ballerina pink blush that is about as pretty as a pink blush can get. The formula is smooth and richly pigmented, and it effortlessly glides across the skin with precision. It's not only a gorgeous blush, but can be used on the lips as well. It remains my very favorite liquid blush, and has secured pride of place as one of my all-time favorite blushes.

Le Métier de Beauté Crème Fresh Tint for Lip & Cheek in Poppy ($28.00 reviewed here): If you love versatile lip and cheek products, then LMdB is well worth your consideration. The Crème Fresh Tint for Lip & Cheek is a hydrating formula that is available in gorgeous shades, and all of them are natural looking on the lips and cheeks. Poppy is a lovely medium neutral-leaning bright pink with a refined pearl luminescence at its base, and I love love love it!

Le Métier de Beauté Crème Fresh Tint for Lip & Cheek in Mystique ($28.00 reviewed here): Sharing all of the formula attributes of Poppy, Mystique is instead a decidedly blue-based pink with a lavender lilac base, and the unexpected juxtaposition of glimmering golden pearl luminescence. It's a definite stunner that is sure to thrill those among you who love blue-based pinks with a flair.
Left to Right: Burberry Light Glow Natural Blush in Earthy and Guerlain Emilio Pucci Terra Azzura Bronzing Powder.

Burberry Light Glow Natural Blush in Earthy ($42.00 review forthcoming; available from Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue): While Earthy is technically a blush, I find that it is a perfect cool-leaning to neutral contour or bronzer instead. It has the same creamy dreamy smooth texture for which Burberry Blushes are known, and for which Burberry fans remain loyal.

Guerlain Emilio Pucci Terra Azzura Bronzing Powder* ($76.50 reviewed here): While this beauty is a bronzer, highlighter and blush in one stunning palette, I opted to only use the bronzer portion for this post. The bronzer portion of this compact is a gorgeous warm-leaning copper bronze shade that doesn't oxidize into an unnatural shade of orange on my cool-toned skin. It offers a beautiful warm glow that looks like sun-kissed skin with a luminous glow. It's a truly glorious bronzer. (While it is a long-gone LE bronzer it is still available from Izzy's Perfume & Beauty Shoppe.)
Left to Right: Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette (Dim Light, Incandescent Light and Radiant Light), Burberry Fresh Glow, Guerlain Météorite Cruel Gardenia and Painted Earth Mineral Silk Radiance Powder in Seychelles.

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette* ($58.00 reviewed here): I haven't been able to stop using this gorgeous palette since receiving it because I am so very in love with it! Dim Light is a stunning "neutral peach beige powder that blurs imperfections and highlights a radiant complexion with the perfect balance of warm and cool tones." Incandescent Light (exclusive to the Radiant Lighting Palette, and worth the price of admission!) is a miraculous "opalescent pearl powder that brightens the complexion with a celestial glow." Radiant Light is a beautiful "sun-kissed golden beige that enhances the overall complexion with believable, subtle warmth, and also extends a summer glow." This palette can be used to highlight, to contour and to bronze-- and it does each one beautifully and effortlessly.

Burberry Fresh Glow ($48.00 reviewed here): This lightweight luminous base imparts a gorgeous subtle glow that looks natural and feels wonderfully hydrating on the skin. My favorite way to use it is to add a pump or two to my foundation or tinted moisturizer, and the result is added hydration and pronounced luminosity.

Guerlain Météorite Cruel Gardenia* ($112.10 reviewed here): This highly coveted beauty has got to be one of my most treasured beauty products of all time. Not only is the sculptural gardenia a work of art, but the ultra luxe pale pink highlighter is what dreams are made of. It effortlessly glides across the skin, imparts an ethereal glow, and makes me so happy every time that I gaze at it. (While it is a long-gone LE highlighter it is still available from Izzy's Perfume & Beauty Shoppe.)

Painted Earth Mineral Silk Radiance Powder in Seychelles* ($34.50 reviewed here): Seychelles is such a gorgeous compact that features a lovely floral motif, but it is also equally magnificent on the skin. The multi-mineral formula is not only healthy for the skin, but it also imparts a glorious glow to the skin that rivals the best luxury highlighters on the market. When swirled together all of the shades become a delectable light neutral peachy pink. Everything about this radiance powder is subtle, elegant and utterly stunning. 
Left to Right: By Terry Darling Baume, Chantecaille Brilliant Gloss in Charm, Chantecaille Brilliant Gloss in Love, Painted Earth Luxury Gloss in Skinny Dip and Tom Ford Ultra Shine Lip Gloss in Naked.

By Terry Baume de Rose ($53.00 in gloss tube and $60.00 in jar. Jar version reviewed here): This version in the lip gloss tube is the Darling Baume from the 10 Year Anniversary Set. It is filled with the most magnificent multi-colored pearl shimmer that is suspended in a sheer pale pink balm. It imparts the perfect twinkle whether worn on the lips alone or over your favorite lipstick. It is smooth, moisturizing and utterly luxurious. If you love Baume de Rose, then this is a sure winner!

Chantecaille Brilliant Gloss in Charm ($33.00 reviewed here): If you love sheer lip glosses that twinkle and moisturize, but abhor sticky formulas that are uncomfortable to wear-- then you really must try the Chantecaille Brilliant Glosses. This formula is extremely comfortable on the lips, is moisturizing, and has a slightly plumping effect (without any discomfort). Charm is a very sheer peachy nude, and while the color itself isn't particularly unique-- the formula is. 

Chantecaille Brilliant Gloss in Love ($33.00 reviewed here): Love shares all of the same attributes as Charm, but instead of a warm peachy nude, Love is a fetching sheer pale cool-toned pink with gorgeous multidimensional shimmer. I think that it is aptly named-- because that is precisely what it evokes!

Painted Earth Luxury Gloss in Skinny Dip* ($22.50 reviewed here): According to Painted Earth, Luxury Gloss combines sheer color with high shine, while treating lips with age-defying benefits. Innovative polymer technology provides lasting comfort, protection and hydration. A soothing blend of oils, including Castor Seed, Soybean and Moroccan Argan, condition and hydrate, smoothing the appearance of vertical lines and wrinkles so lips look softer and younger." This antioxidant rich formula not only protection with Vitamins E and C, but it also soothes and heals chapped lips. If that weren't enough, it is a stunning and twinkling peach shade loaded with twinkling luminescent pearl. I want every single shade, not just because the colors are beautiful, but also because the formula is magnificent!

Tom Ford Ultra Shine Lip Gloss in Naked ($45.00 reviewed and discussed here and here): Naked is a gorgeous nude beige peachy pink with refined golden shimmer. It is quite thick and long-lasting, but not terribly sticky. It boasts nearly opaque coverage, but can easily be sheered out. It's lovely alone or on top of lipstick, and while I wasn't sure how much I would like the formula when I first purchased it-- it turned out that I ended up loving it!
Left to Right: By Terry Hyaluronic Sheer Rouge in Nudissimo, Givenchy Rouge Interdit Satin Lipstick in Rose Caprice, Tom Ford Lip Color Sheer in In the Buff, Tom Ford Lip Color Shine in Bare, Tom Ford Lip Color Sheer in Summer Fling, Guerlain Rouge G Lipstick in Gabrielle, Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème Lipstick in Edition, Surratt Lipslique in Fee Soie and Surratt Lipslique in Chuchoter.

By Terry Hyaluronic Sheer Rouge in Nudissimo ($35.00 discussed here): Nudissimo is a lovely peachy pink nude that is remarkably flattering on the lips. Moreover, the formula is wonderfully hydrating and plumping with the perfect amount of sheen. 

Givenchy Rouge Interdit Satin Lipstick in Rose Caprice ($32.00 reviewed here): While described as a pale pink, I would classify Rose Caprice as more of a sheer-leaning pinky nude. The formula is comfortable on the lips and quite hydrating. It feels a bit more like a lip balm than a lipstick, and isn't the longest lasting formula-- but it so lovely that I don't mind reapplication. It imparts a lovely sheen that twinkles in the light, and I find myself reaching for it frequently.

Tom Ford Lip Color Sheer in In the Buff ($49.00 reviewed here): First I just have to say that I love this formula so much and really believe that it should be made part of the permanent range of products. The formula resides somewhere between the TF Lip Color Lipsticks and the TF Lip Color Shines and is remarkably comfortable on the lips. It is moisturizing with the perfect amount of pigment and sheen, and is one of my go-to lipsticks. In the Buff is a gorgeous peachy beige that is easy to wear and it is incredibly flattering. In the Buff might just be my favorite shade from the Color Sheers.

Tom Ford Lip Color Shine in Bare ($48.00 reviewed and discussed here): I had hoped not to fall in love with the TF Lip Color Shines because they are quite expensive for hybrid lip products that straddle the line between a balm and a lipstick, but no such chance. This is by far my favorite formula in the balm/lipstick hybrid category because it is thicker, longer lasting, and more lusciously luminous than any of the others that I have tried. Bare is a nude peachy beige with gorgeous peachy golden shimmer that twinkles in the light. So far this is the only one that I have splurged on, but I have been circling the counter like a vulture swatching Smitten (a gorgeous sheer pink with gold shimmer)-- so it's only a matter of time before I buy that one as well!

Tom Ford Lip Color Sheer in Summer Fling ($49.00 reviewed here): Summer Fling is definitely more pigmented than In the Buff, and it is likewise a moisturizing and comfortable to wear shade. Summer Fling is best described as a light warm pink with golden shimmer, and trust me when I say that it is truly gorgeous.

Guerlain Rouge G Lipstick in Gabrielle ($49.50 reviewed here): There is a good reason why the Guerlain Rouge G formula is so coveted-- because it really is an amazingly high quality lipstick. The formula is superbly refined, unbelievably luxurious, and very pleasurable to use. It leaves lips hydrated, slightly plumped, and it is very comfortable to wear. Gabrielle is gorgeous pale pearly pink that makes my heart go pitter patter each time that I pull it out of the sculptural museum quality bullet!

Hourglass Femme Rouge Velvet Crème Lipstick in Edition ($30.00 reviewed and discussed here and here):  Hourglass really knows how to make amazing lipsticks, and the Femme Rouge Velvet Crème formula is truly remarkable. It boasts a feather light consistency that is hydrating, antioxidant packed, comfortable and the lips, and beautifully pigmented. Edition is a soft neutral pink with the most gorgeous pink shimmer. It's an easy to wear swipe and go type of color that is staggeringly beautiful, and it's not filled with piles of multisyllabic chemicals! 

Surratt Lipslique in Fee Soie ($34.00 reviewed here): Surratt Lipsliques boast a unique formula that has a fantastic hydrating effect, the perfect amount of cushion, and they feel fantastic on the lips. One might expect that the more moisturizing formula would lend itself to reduced wear-time, but these buildable coverage beauties are longer-wearing than one might expect (particularly true of the darker shades that have all of the coverage of a stain without the tendency to dry out the lips). Fee Soie, which is described as a "glistening sugar pink," is a stunning pale pink with gorgeous shimmering and glimmering pearl that might be described as a modern fashion forward frost. It has buildable coverage, and is one of those "it shades" that will make pink-lovers squeal with joy because it is truly pink perfection.

Surratt Lipslique in Chuchoter ($34.00 reviewed here): Chucoter is the ultimate pinky nude. This is the color that Troy picked for me, and  as soon as he put it on my lips he exclaimed that it was just perfect for me-- so I naturally bought it! Unlike Fee Soie, Chuchoter does not possess shimmering and glimmering pearl. Instead, this is the nude pink shade that I have sought for years. It resides somewhere in the lipstick lip balm hybrid realm, and while the coverage is buildable it always allows your lips to shine through. It is that perfect my lips but better shade that you can put on without a mirror, and look perfect every time.
Left to RightHourglass Femme Nude Stylo No. 6 in Mauve Beige, Giorgio Armani Rouge D'Armani Beige No. 103,  By Terry Rouge Terribly Age-Defense Lipstick #100 Terribly Nude,  Le Métier de Beauté Color Core Moisture Stain Lipstick in Palm Springs,  Giorgio Armani Rouge D'Armani Pink No. 501 and Tom Ford Lip Color in Nude Vanilla.

Hourglass Femme Nude Stylo No. 6 in Mauve Beige ($30.00 reviewed here): According to Hourglass, their Femme Nude Lip Stylo is, "A seductive collection of nude lip crayons delivering a full-coverage formula and satin finish. Enclosed in a luxurious retractable stylo, Femme Nude enhances the natural sensuality of your lips by adding fullness, dimension and balance. With six shades to choose from there’s a nude for every mood." Nude Stylo No.06 in Mauve Beige is the perfect mauvey nude shade that is the perfect "My lips, but better" shade for my light mauve colored lips. 

Giorgio Armani Rouge D'Armani Beige No. 103 ($34.00 reviewed and discussed here and here): This beautifully hydrating formula is long-wearing, comfortable on the lips, and has the perfect amount of cushion. Beige No. 103 is one of the most perfect pinky beige nudes that I have encountered, and it remains one of my favorite lipsticks.

By Terry Rouge Terribly Age-Defense Lipstick #100 Terribly Nude ($49.50 reviewed here): This is literally the cool-toned pinky nude opaque lipstick that I have sought for years. It really doesn't get better than this. I had a coveted lipstick nearly identical in hue when I was in high school, and I have  been searching for a dupe ever since! My search finally ended when I found this baby! The formula is hydrating, comfortable on the lips, volumizing, and filled with anti-aging ingredients. Simply gorgeous.

Le Métier de Beauté Color Core Moisture Stain Lipstick in Palm Springs ($32.00 reviewed here): This is one of those magical pinks because while it is a cool light blue-based pinks with the faintest tinge of a mauve purple hue-- its coolness is offset by a magical golden shimmer that gives it a stunning complexity. The coverage is opaque, but can easily be sheered out, and just as the name suggests it is indeed moisturizing.

Giorgio Armani Rouge D'Armani Pink No. 501 ($34.00 reviewed here): Like Rouge D'Armani Beige No. 103, Rouge D'Armani Pink No. 501 is an extraordinary find. It boasts the same amazing formula, but is instead the perfect mid-tone pinky mauve lipstick. This is just too pretty not to have if you favor pinky mauve shades!

Tom Ford Lip Color in Nude Vanilla ($49.00 reviewed and discussed herehere and here): This is unquestionably one of my all-time favorite lipsticks, period. I initially had no interest in this shade because it appeared too pale, too warm and too peachy for my cool-toned skin. However, it was my friend and Tom Ford Makeup Artist extraordinaire, Michelle Weinstein, who assured me that once it warmed up on my lips that it would morph into the most amazing color on me. Guess what? She was absolutely right, and believe it or not it is my very favorite Tom Ford Lip Color! 
Top to Bottom: Cattiva Waterproof Automatic Eye Pencil, Prestige Total Intensity Eyeliner in Bold Brown and Giorgio Armani Waterproof Smooth Silk Eye Pencil.

Painted Earth LashLuxe Mascara* ($19.50 swatch not show; available from Painted Earth): According to Painted Earth, "LashLuxe mascara has a new rubber brush for the longest lashes possible. Our mascara gives you thick, long, and sky high lashes to highlight intensity of the eyes. The rubber brush applicator sculpts with precision and separation, coating lashes in weightless volume and sheen that accentuates and defines the lashes with a remarkably hydrating, color-rich formula." I couldn't have explained it better myself. I'm generally not one prone to waxing poetic about mascaras, but I really do love this one!

Cattiva Waterproof Automatic Eye Pencil* ($20.00 featured here): This is a very creamy formula that easy is to apply, but once it sets it stays put.  It is a paraben-free and "fortified with hyaluronic acid and vitamins to fight the effects of aging and last all day." The retractable dispenser is very easy to use, and  there's no wasted product because of sharpening!

Prestige Total Intensity Eyeliner in Bold Brown* ($5.95 reviewed here): I am continually amazed by the quality and affordability of the entire Prestige Cosmetics line. Among my favorite products are their extraordinary eyeliners, and their Total Intensity range is nothing short of phenomenal. The Total Intensity range features "Smoky black shades with an iridescent twist" that are soft and easy to work with, but once they set they do not budge. Bold Brown is an infinitely wearable rich deep dark brown that is nearly matte in finish, but that is oh so gorgeous on the eyes! 

Giorgio Armani Waterproof Smooth Silk Eye Pencil No. 01 (Black) ($28.00 featured here): This is definitely one of the richest and deepest black eye pencils in my collection. While it is a waterproof formula I find it quite gentle on my sensitive eyes, and it tends to stay put once it sets. On very hot days, however, I have noted a small amount of transfer, but it generally isn't an issue. 

What are your favorite products for summer-ready minimalist makeup & a glowing complexion? Do tell!

*Denotes Press Samples. All views expressed are categorically my own whether the products were purchased by me, or received as Press Samples. (Affiliate Links)
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  1. I like the way you think! Healthy happy skin is essential to looking great and when your skin looks good half the work is already done! I really love your skin care picks. But your make-up faves are pretty fab as well :-)

    1. Hi Melissa! I'm so glad that you liked my idea for this post. I completely agree-- it all begins with great looking skin. I'm happy to hear that you like my skincare and makeup picks for this post. I really had to give some thought to what I wanted to feature, and I have to admit that I had lots of trouble narrowing down my selection of lip products since I am completely obsessed with nude and pink lip glosses and lipsticks! Have a lovely weekend! <3

  2. Must purchase the Futurederm CE eye cream! Sounds exactly what may help my serious dark circles! Thanks for the post, excellent roundup! Texas heat does lend itself to less makeup however, need some coverage. Have a great weekend :)

    1. Hi Sherry,

      I'm really happy with the FutureDerm CE Eye Cream. It has really lightened my dark circles, and it has generally brightened the skin. You are so welcome! I'm thrilled that you liked this post-- it was fun to do! Texas heat-- not to mention that intense humidity that you guys get definitely lends itself to using less makeup! You have a lovely weekend as well! :-)

  3. Delicious, I've really enjoyed this post and wil be coming back to it for inspiration and eye candy!! When I go minimal I tend to go cream, eyeshadow sticks, cream blushes and lip gloss. Of course tinted moisturiser (Nars and Laura Mercier are my faves, though I have Tom Ford Traceless too) and I'm currently loving the Kevyn Aucoin Creamy Glow duo in Sculpt and Glow.

    1. HI Bella! I'm so happy that you are really enjoying this post and plan to come back to it for inspiration! You just put the biggest smile on my face! I agree that eyeshadow sticks, cream blush, lip gloss and tinted moisturizers are the perfect choices for barely-there makeup! I love your choices! Enjoy the rest of your weekend! :-)

  4. Such beautiful picks, Helen! I do something like this on a daily basis, pretty much just some BB cream, blush (usually cream so that I don't have to use a brush), brow pencil, and lip color! I looove eye makeup, but that's always the first to go when I'm running out of time!

    1. Thank you, Sunny! I'm so glad that you like my choices! I love your daily routine when you are short on time-- it's still polished, but understated and natural! I love makeup too, but agree that it is the first to go when I am short on time as well! Enjoy the rest of your weekend! <3

  5. Found your blog through Phyrra. Love your comprehensive overview - I bought my mum the Algenist Repairing Oil a few months ago and have to admit I steal it from her every now and then, its great stuff. Good for mixing in with your other skincare as well. I'll have to check some of these products - intrigued by the Koh Gen Do Foundation. :-)

    1. Hi Kimmy, I'm so glad that you found my blog through the ever-wonderful Phyrra! I'm so glad that you love my overview. Ahhh, isn't that Algenist Repairing Oil just delightful?! I don't blame you one bit for dipping into the bottle that you gave your mom! I'm getting close to posting my in-depth review of this beautiful oil! I stalked it every time that I went to Sephora, and finally got tired of obsessing and coming home empty-handed-- so I finally treated myself to a bottle, and am thrilled that I did! I agree, it is wonderful for mixing into your skincare, and foundations and tinted moisturizers. It's such a beautiful and fast absorbing oil! The Koh Gen Do Foundation is quite lovely! BTW, your blog is lovely! I look forward to getting to know you better! Enjoy the rest of your weekend! :-)

  6. great post helen! so glad to hear you're loving the algenist oil! favorite products for summer (not necessarily for a minimalist look): some form of bb or cc cream (currently 3lab bb or it cosmetics cc), Makeup Forever aqua creams, Anastasia Lash Genius Top Coat!

    1. Thanks, Chia-Yi! I'm so glad that you enjoyed the post! Yes, the Algenist Oil is really wonderful! I love your favorite products for summer-- excellent choices! :-)

  7. Oh Helen, I LOVED this post! Of course as a So-Cal resident myself, I totally am guilty of rocking the very natural no makeup-makeup look all the time. Sheer blushers and lipstick/lip balms hybrids are my THING, so naturally this post was like heaven to me! I am in love with the swatches of the Surratt lip products and must definitely get my hands on that pinky-nude. Nothing more gorgeous than a sheer, balmy pinky-nude lip, in my opinion :)

    1. Hi Becca! I'm thrilled that you loved this post! It was really run to do! These are definitely your type of products! I agree with you completely about sheer blushes and hybrid lipstick/lip balms. Yes, the Surratt lipsliques are well worth having!! :-)

  8. I love your choices. I love your writing. I love that you did this in honor of your students! You are awesome! :D

    1. Thank you, Ariel. Your very kind words just made my day! <3


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