Summer Beauty Picks

With Summer on the horizon, I wanted to do a Summer beauty edition featuring a guest blogger to showcase some of her picks. Introducing Liz from the fabulous blog Emeralds and Stripes, a blogger with a great Summer routine.

As a former Florida girl, I have an intimate understanding of hot weather. Not saying I like it — if you want to see me on the verge of biting the heads off bunny rabbits, take me on a sweltering summer drive when I haven't had my coffee. But I do know how to go with the summery vibe and revamp my beauty routine to look and feel like a frizz free, glowing beach babe.

The most important beauty product is sunscreen. I would never wear sunscreen unless I was doing something outdoors (and I rarely do) but some microscopic photos of sun-damaged skin have made me reconsider my wicked ways. I didn't have to search too hard for a sunscreen that doesn't reek: Hawaiin Tropic Silk Infusion goes on like a luxurious body lotion and smells like a fruity cocktail.
To remedy a pore situation, I like the Biore pore strips. They are like papier-mâché vacuum cleaners that suck up all your blackheads. Of course there's no such thing as a papier-mâché vacuum cleaner, because that would be a fire hazard.
I've already talked about Benefit Hello Flawless! powder foundation, and I think that a powder foundation if fabulous for summer because it won't melt in the heat and slide down your face like a pat of butter sliding down a pancake. The Physicians Formula Organic Wear Natural Origins Bronzer is matte, but not flat — it achieves a luminous finish without even a hint of shimmer.
The Living Proof Restyling Spray is a gem you might have a hard time finding, but I definitely recommend a dry shampoo or some kind of freshening mist. While that's a product I've only used a few times and enjoyed, I have a lot of experience with the Peter Thomas Roth Mattifying Gel. The first time I used it was during a particularly blistering summer in Fort Lauderdale when I was still in college and just discovering Sephora — that location got a big chunk of my intern pay.
Everyone knows I'm a blush whore, and while I have some that bust the bank, I don't always have a lot of cash to splash, and I love Milani Baked Blush in Luminoso as much if not more than some of my luxe rouges. It's more of a highlighting blush than a pigment-adding one.
Speaking of highlighters, epic poems could be written about Benefit Watt's Up! I love it. I love it I love it I LURVE it. I went into Ulta one day thinking I'd get the brand's Sun Beam highlighter, but when I swatched it, I found it to be underwhelming and meh ("I know you can be overwhelmed, and you can be underwhelmed, but can you ever just be whelmed?"). Then I tried Watt's Up, and glory be, I thought angels were gliding down on a rainbow singing selections from Chicago. This baby is a beaut.
Although I cry often enough that I could consider a side career as a paid mourner, I don't usually get waterproof mascara, so I searched for one through the aisles at Ulta that I could share with you. I was intrigued by Maybelline Define-A-Lash, and it is tough. You could point a fire hose at your face and this would still be intact.
For lips during the day, I chose something a step up from balm but just as natural-looking: Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in Honey, my MLBB favorite. And when you're going out (or if you're just a nutter like me who wears bright lips to go to the grocery store) I recommend NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Luxembourg, a glorious pinkish red that has a fantastic finish and doubles as a stain.
And finally, nails. The OPI Liquid Sand polishes have a textured matte finish and an abundance of glitter — we're talking Ke$ha levels, you'se guys — but if that's not your scene, slap some Essie Good To Go over your usual varnish to make it dry freakishly fast so you can get on with your life.

Phew! That's it! I think I need a cold lemonade after all that, maybe with a touch of vodka. What are your favorite summer beauty products? Any superb ones I overlooked?