Summer skincare and beauty favourites: 2018 edition

summer skincare 2018 Rosemary Mac Cabe

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I feel as though I am forever wittering on about beauty products – but when I asked on Instagram what blog posts people would like to see, one of the most straightforward was about my summer skincare routine. (By “straightforward”, I mean: one I could write, right now, and publish on this gloriously sunny Bank Holiday Monday, which I can’t enjoy because I am hungover beyond all belief.)

As a slight aside, yes, I used to be tee total. I have started to drink alcohol again in maybe the last six months – the odd glass of wine here, the odd G&T there, but last night I had both of the aforementioned, in vast quantities and I am now suffering. You can watch more about my drinking (or lack thereof) below.

But back to my summer skincare

I recently went to a press event for Eau Thermale Avène that they’d dubbed “skin speed dating”, and honestly this hour spent with experts talking all things skin has a lot to do with my current summer skincare routine. We got to chat to Laura, a pharmacist; the Skin Nerd Jennifer Rock; nutritionist Orla Walsh; and Avène expert, Denise Cantwell. It was kind of a whistle-stop tour of skin: what am I doing right, and what am I doing wrong?

The long and short of it was that my skincare regimen was pretty fragmented. I was using oils here and oil-free moisturisers there, with very little rhyme or reason to either. That’s not to say that I’ve entirely given up using those things, but we’ll get to that.

After the event, the lovely folks at Avène sent out a goodie bag, with all of the products they’d prescribed.

summer skincare 2018 Rosemary Mac Cabe

So now my summer skincare routine looks a little bit like…

AM: First thing in the morning, I cleanse using the Avène Cleansing Foam*. Everyone was trying to nudge me towards a cream cleanser, but I need a foaming product that I can wash off in order to feel like my skin is really clean. Next up, I spray with the Spring Water spray* – which I used to think was a totally ridiculous product, but I’m now a convert. It’s meant to tighten the pores (act like a toner, essentially) and, while I have no idea whether or not it does that, it feels so so nice. And that’s enough for me.

Serum and moisturiser are the Hydrance Intense Rehydrating Serum* and the Hydrance Optimale Light Hydrating Cream SPF20* (there were a lot of lectures about my laissez-faire attitude to SPF, let me tell you).

PM: Cleanse and water spritz are the same – but before bedtime I use the A-Oxitive Serum* and Cream*.

I have never, before this, religiously used one brand of skincare at morning and night – not for any reason other than I always seem to have moisturiser X and serum Y to hand – and I honestly think my skin is looking the best that it has looked in years right now. The tone is really even, it feels very supple and looks really glowy, even when I’m wearing zero makeup (as in the top pic).

It’s not all Avène (I promise)

Lest you think this is an ad (it’s not; I received the products free of charge, but there was no obligation to write about them or even use them), there are a few non-Avène products that still make it into my summer skincare stable (all of which I bought myself).

When I’m wearing makeup (more on which anon), I remove it using the Pixi x Caroline Hirons Double Cleanse* oil and cream, which I adore for getting off every single scrap of makeup, including the liquid eyeliner that seems to somehow dry inside one’s tear duct.

At night-time, I’m still really into my Sunday Riley Artemis oil (now discontinued), and once a week I use the U.F.O oil* to ward against blackheads (although honestly? The only thing that makes a difference to my skin where breakouts are concerned is what I’m eating).

I was also using The Ordinary’s Retinol 1%* at night-time, mostly because I’ve heard retinols are great (even though I don’t quite understand why), but as I’m having Phi Brows done on Friday, I’ve had to pack in my retinol / glycolic habits for the time being.

And as for makeup…

I am not a huge purchaser of makeup – not that I get a lot for free any more (I don’t), but more to say that I use the same products, often for far longer than I should. I recently binned a lot of makeup that was, at a conservative guess, eight years old at a minimum. Ick.

summer skincare 2018 Rosemary Mac Cabe

I have, however, been enjoying wearing some of the makeup I have – when I was working as a PT, I rarely wore any makeup and got horribly out of the habit, so it’s only in the past few weeks that I have rediscovered my soft spot for slap.

The above look is pretty much what I’ve been going for on the odd occasion that I go out (during the day, I’m still a very straightforward tinted moisturiser [this one by NARS* is honestly incredible] + bronzer* + mascara* gal). The key points to note?

Blusher is Benefit’s Galifornia* – a gorgeous peachy pink blush with just the right amount of sheen for that glowing, summer vibe.

Highlighter? That would be the incredibly overpriced Victoria Beckham x Estee Lauder Modern Mercury* highlighter compact, which seems to have been discontinued or is, at least, out of stock. On my skin, which is a little textured, this highlighter is too shiny for daytime – it just shows up a lot of little bumps on my cheeks – but for nights out, it’s perfect.

Eyeshadow is from the Anastasia Beverly Hills Modern Renaissance* palette, with application tips gleaned from Keilidh MUA’s YouTube channel. (Pat the shadow on, don’t brush it. It’s transformative.)

Lastly, liner? That’s Soap & Glory’s Supercat eyeliner, which is one of the most foolproof liners I’ve ever tried. Plus, if you strike while the iron’s hot, you could get it in a 3 for 2 offer in Boots, which is always worth the spend (says she who clearly just loves spending money).

So there you have it: my summer skincare routine, with a little colour cosmetics thrown in for good measure. Anything jump out at you? Is it a cop-out to have featured so much of one brand? DO I CARE?!

*This is an affiliate link. If you click through and purchase, I’ll make a small commission. It will make no difference to your purchasing experience, but helps fund my extravagant lifestyle. So thanks! Read more about affiliate links and how they work here.

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