Summer has hit us as if somebody dialed up the baking oven a notch for an extra crisp crust. With a reference like this, you must think I am big on baking. No, I am not. Can't bake for the life of me. I come in the eater category of baked goods :-P Coming back on, April has really made quite an impression on us in the southern part of Pakistan. For someone like me who cannot help but sweat profusely in the humid heat of Summers, all my focus has been diverted to wearing minimal makeup. Since your pores are worked up, they're prone to clogging and producing extra sebum, it is best to take better care of your skin and wear bare minimum amount of makeup if you're to get any outdoor exposure. Sunscreen has been my best friend in this weather, as I mentioned in my 8 Summer Essentials post few days ago :) Don't neglect it, you! On this note, let me share an unusual selection of April Favorites:
BUTTERFLY COSMETICS PERFECT MAKEUP BASE is from a brand unbeknownst to me. I happened to grab some cheap triangular makeup sponges from the back aisle of Al-Fatah, Liberty (Lahore) because I had been putting my Beauty Blender under a lot of pressure and it snapped - literally. While I did not toss that away, I thought of buying some substitute - which did not work out, by the way. Back in the corner, there were some new products popped up on a counter with few girls trying a lipstick and a base. An SA approached me and my first response was a quiet nod. I thought she'd instantly jump to show me 'whitening' foundation which ticks me off as I find it demeaning to play up (most) women's weakness(es) and not guiding them for the RIGHT product. Thankfully, she only asked me to 'try' this primer/base which would soften my pores. A fresh tester was opened and I applied it on the right cheek around the nose. After getting my bills done, I gave a close look to my pores in a mirror, there was an airbrushed feeling WITHOUT silicone-y slip. It was about PKR 450-650, so I thought, what the - let's buy! It was not a sudden fallen-in-love euphoria, instead getting-to-know-it-as-bestfriend kinda feeling. I used it under different foundations and sometimes with a moisturizer/sunblock only. It kept my skin appear *hydrated-matte* If something of that sort were to exist. It is a thin white liquid primer/base which does not rub off the skin or ball up when I use sponge to buff the foundation in my skin. My skin would feel soft and smooth without any breakouts or irritation. To be on the safe side, I would apply moisturizer as it need to be in direct contact with your skin for hydration. Then apply primer and top it up by sunblock (and then foundation). I put few minutes' interval in between these steps for the skin to absorb and normalize. Working great so far!
SIVANNA COLORS SHIMMER BRICKS was another impulse purchase done last year from Color Collection, DHA (Lahore). It's a Thai drugstore brand with dupes of high-end cosmetics. Since there were no testers in the shop, I was simply attracted to these for their striking resemblance to Bobbi Brown's cult classic shimmer bricks and the price on which the Sivanna ones were available - PKR 500. I grabbed two shades 03 and 04. They're soft, pigmented and long-lasting. I use them alone as a blush and lightly tap on the high points of my cheeks for an ethereal glow that does not enhance my pores or blemishes. With a 2-in-1 product in a pan for a small price tag, I got lucky with this one. I find them more appropriate during the Summers and been using them since last one. Rediscovered their awsomeness this month - lovin' it so much!
VIVA GLAM MILEY LIPSTICK was first noticed by me in a TrendMood promo on Instagram. Frankly, I am not a big fan of the colors that have been released in Viva Glam series so far, even though they're for a noble cause [MAC donates 100% of revenue generated from the VIVA GLAM lipsticks and lipglass to AIDS Fund for past 20 years]. Not that I am a Miley Cyrus fan, but the bright pink color piqued my interest. A good Temptalia review always nudges me into ordering stuff that I don't essentially need. Somehow, it skipped my mind for a while until I saw this at AlFatah, Liberty (Lahore) for only PKR 2,000. My Mom had to get me a gift and I insited on the lipstick instead. Came home in a rush, just to stand in front of the mirror and apply it. Boy, I was so damn in love with the bright-as-a-bulb pink. It's lightly hydrating - despite being an Amplified formula. Due to its emollient nature, I expected it to slip during greasy food session I indulged in. Surprisingly, it did transfer but when I went to the ladies room to clean the corners - all of it 'looked' intact! The shine was gone, but the tint stayed till I removed it myself. My lips did not feel dry or patchy either. Tried a few times after that too, does not fail to surprise me in every usage <3
CATRICE GLAMAZONA DEFINING BLUSH in 01 I'm A Survivor is a gorgeous bright orange-coral color that I personally found to be too bold for my cheeks. Cherry on the top, this one was very pigmented, so even when I loved the color, this was simply in the back of my stash. Then, I decided to give it a whirl and it was just a single swipe of brush across it and the color would translate into the most flattering orange-coral for fair-medium skin tones. It gave the look of healthy cheeks with/without foundation. Something that looked very natural - despite my earlier concerns. Then, this became my go-to blush for both day & night. It stays put in this weather for over 4 hours in a light single swipe, you can build up more color by spraying a makeup fixer after it. For bolder color payoff (which is better with lighter blushes), I spray MAC Fix+ and apply blush lightly AFTER it, while my skin is still damp. Be careful because this method would not allow you to blend the blush properly, so it's best if you use a stipling brush or choose this with lighter shades only :)
ESSENCE SOO GLOW! HIGHLIGHTER landed here in my lap from Germany :) My lovely stunner of a cousin sent it to me along with few other products that I have loved and adored <3 I love my highlighters and this one happens to be the easiest to use when I am on-the-go. I don't think it is available at the local Essence counters yet, but I have not checked them recently, so can't be too sure. So, this Soo Glow! is a pale gold highlighter can be easily applied using your fingers or a stipling brush. It is pigmented and blends like a dream :-)You won't have a white-ish residue with it, so that means all skin colors can apply this with confidence. The best thing is that it can be used on skin without foundation and it will not make your pores prominent. Also, staying power is decent - not too long for outdoors in this heat, but stays put alright otherwise without too much blotting/wiping your face. I love how this becomes like a natural dewy glow (without chunky glitter) on your skin after a while. It's compact and easier to travel with, so this remains my office and trip-buddy for past couple of months <3
That's all from me, folks! How have you been holding up in this heat & humidity?
Any skin care or makeup product I should try? Let me know in the comments below <3