New York’s bi-polar weather (arctic temperatures in the winter and sweltering heat in the summer), along with everyday city pollution, can be damaging to the skin. Personally, my skin has always been “my thing,” and I do whatever I can to avoid breakouts, prevent signs of aging, and hide any evidence that I’m regularly pulling all-nighters for work. These are the beauty products I swear by – for cold months, hot months, and everything in-between.
1. Clinique Repairwear Laser Focus Wrinkle Correcting Eye Cream
I’ve been using anti-wrinkle cream since I was about 19 (I was taught that “If you prevent now, you won’t have to treat later”). In the winter months, the skin-drying effects of indoor heating require a richer formula, so this under-eye cream is perfect to use before bed and during the day.
This drugstore staple is fantastic for preventing lips from getting chapped. Several women over 50 have also told me that using Carmex throughout the years has helped them fight fine lines that eventually develop around the lips. Good enough for me.
3. Neutrogena Body Oil, Light Sesame Formula
I’m not a fan of heavily-scented lotions, so I prefer to use oils as an all-over moisturizer. This body oil from Neutrogena has a light fragrance that isn’t too heady, and I like to apply it throughout the day during the winter whenever my skin is feeling dry. Unlike some formulas, it absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave you feeling greasy.
4. Moroccan Oil
For naturally curly-haired girls especially, cold weather can leave hair feeling extra dry and more prone to breakage. Moroccan Oil (argan oil) has worked wonders for keeping my hair shiny and strong. I like to massage it in after I’m finished straightening my hair, focusing on the ends.
5. Estee Lauder Resilience Lift Firming/Sculpting Face and Neck Creme
I thought this moisturizer would be too heavy for summer, but it absorbs like a gel formula and feels very lightweight. Along with its anti-aging benefits, this creme also has SPF 15 (always have SPF something on your face when you’re out and about!).
6. Clinique Acne Solutions Clarifying Lotion
I normally use Clinique’s #2 toner, but I switch over to this stronger formula when New York’s warmer weather sets in. Everyday dirt, pollution, and sweat intensifies (not to mention the suffocating humidity), and nothing feels better than washing my face and swiping this stuff all over my skin to remove excess dirt. Mind you – tiny debris particles that get trapped in the pores will only enlarge them. And enlarged pores equals looking older. Toning lotion keeps the skin taught, pores invisible, and for an extra treat when it’s hot out, store the bottle in the fridge so it’s nice and cold.
7. Benefit Cosmetics Hoola Powder
I don’t like slathering my face with thick foundations in the summer, so this bronzing powder is pretty much the only thing I use. Since I don’t always have time to go tanning in Central Park (plus, I like to limit my sun exposure to avoid looking like a Hermes crocodile Birkin by the age of 40), this powder is my go-to for getting a sun-kissed glow.
I didn’t really want to share this one because it’s my “signature” fragrance and not everyone knows it exists. Perfumes can change scent in the summer, with the additional heat, humidity, and the way our individual body chemistry reacts. But Kai, which smells just like Hawaii and everything I grew up around, smells even better during this time of year.
9. Smith’s Rosebud Salve
I have a tin of this balm in each of my handbags and use it for everything. Lips, cuticles, dry elbows, etc.
10. HydroPeptide Perfecting Gloss
My esthetician friend, Erin, got me hooked on this lip gloss. It smells great, has amazing hydrating properties, and also has a plumping effect.
11. Neutrogena Microdermabrasion System
If I could afford to get regular microdermabrasion treatments at a spa, I would. But this one is a good alternative. Everyone should exfoliate twice weekly, and I love how polished my skin looks and feels afterward. It’s also one of my secrets to maintaining a healthy-looking complexion, despite my constant lack of sleep.
12. Coconut Oil
This is probably the most important “beauty product” on this list. I use it everywhere – body, face, hair, and I even eat a tablespoon of it every morning. With a unique chain of fatty acids, moisturizing benefits, and anti-fungal properties, it gets rid of everything from dry skin to blemishes.