My 7 Ride-Or-Die Products For The Perfect Summer Glow

My tricks for sunkissed, dewy summer skin…

Tom Ford Highlighter Duo

You can find accessories details in today’s 30 Dresses post here!



Miraculously, warm weather has FINALLY arrived in New York City and I could not be happier (or more relieved).  With sunshine comes drinks on the roof, dinner al fresco, backyard barbecues, waterfront parties and lazy days on the beach.  Of course, all of this outdoor activity in heat and humidity requires some adjustments to the ol’ makeup routine, which, for me, is mostly aimed at making myself look as much like Jennifer Lopez as possible.  When you’re out in the sunshine, you don’t want to have caked-on makeup, you just want that subtle, natural, J. Lo glow.  Amiright?


Sadly, God did not bless me with her flawless, ageless Puerto Rican skin, however, God did give me an internet connection and access to the Nordstrom beauty department.  Today, I’m breaking down seven easy-to-use products that will give you the perfect summertime glow.  Six of these products I’ve used for many years, and one is a brand new favorite that I’ve completely fallen in love with…   



 Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta® Glow Pads


1.  // Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta® Glow Pads


These little pads are simply one of THE. BEST. beauty products on the market; I’ve been using them religiously for years.  To start, they provide the most natural, streak-free sunless tanning glow and since I’m careful about keeping the sun off my face (because wrinkles!), these are mission-critical in helping to keep my face from looking ghost-like in the summer months.  BUT THAT’S NOT ALL FOLKS.  These little pads are also loaded with tons of anti-aging benefits, most prominently, alpha and beta hydroxy acids.  If you read my recent skincare memo all about exfoliation, you know that acid exfoliation is one of the most important parts of my skincare routine (and hopefully yours too!).  It’s the unique combination of the subtle color with the AHAs, BHAs, Vitamin D and other skin-nourishing ingredients that leave your skin truly GLOWING after one use of this product.  I can’t recommend them highly enough.





Mario Badescu Facial Spray


2.  // Mario Badescu Facial Spray


In the summer, I keep one of these in my bathroom and most days, I carry a second one in my purse.  Here’s the deal: this amazing spray provides a cooling boost of hydration that’s packed with antioxidants.  I use it in the morning under makeup to infuse more hydration before applying moisturizer, but I also spray it on top of my makeup whenever I need a pick-me-up (i.e. after a long day when things start to look tired and/or dried out.  When I spray it on top of makeup, it brings everything alive and creates the prettiest dewy finish.  For an extra cooling boost, you can even store this in your refrigerator.  Definitely a summer must-have for me.




Laura Mercier Radiance Primer


3.  // Laura Mercier Radiance Foundation Primer


As you know, this Laura Mercier radiance primer has been my go-to for years.  It really keeps foundation in place and also gives you a little bit of that “glowing from within” radiance.  I typically wear matte foundation, but starting with this product really helps achieve that perfect summertime glow.




Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter



4.  // Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter

My Shade:  4 – Medium


This is the newest product in my makeup bag and I’m utterly OBSESSED.  I don’t even fully know how to describe this product.  It’s like a lightweight foundation, a highlighter and a primer had a weirdly perfect baby.  On low-key days where I’m going for that no-makeup look, I simply apply a thin layer of this product all over my face with nothing other than a little mascara and blush. And, as the name suggests, it honestly looks like I have that glowy snapchat filter IRL.  You can use it as a primer, mix it with your foundation, use as a highlighter or apply all over.  It’s the best and absolutely perfect for a minimalist summer beauty routine.





TOM FORD Shade & Illuminate Highlighter & Shader Duet


5.  // TOM FORD Shade & Illuminate Highlighter & Shader Duet

My Shade:  Intensity Two


This cream contour palette, in my humble opinion, is the best on the market and another summer must-have.  It’s a little pricey, but honestly, I have used this palette almost every single day for the past two years and I still have tons left.  (I know, I know there are rules about throwing away makeup after one year, but I swear I clean my brushes like crazy, etc. etc.)


This contouring duet comes in two shades depending on your skin tone and the fact that it’s a cream product is the key to creating a natural, dewy look.  The highlighter side provides a completely translucent subtle shimmer, perfect for dabbing on the tops of your cheekbones, down the bridge of the nose, on your cupid’s bow and right under the arch of your eyebrows.  As for the darker contour side, I place this right under my cheekbones and at the top of my forehead, to add subtle structure and definition.




 Laura Mercier Facial Illuminator


6.  // Laura Mercier Facial Illuminator

Shade:  Indiscretion


On a regular day, I will often skip the highlight side of the above Tom Ford palette (since it has a stronger effect) and will just dust a little of this highlighter on the tops of my cheekbones, down the bridge of my nose and right beneath the arch of my eyebrows.  I feel that I have a little more control with this powder product on days when I only want the most subtle highlight.  If I have a special occasion, I will typically use the highlight side of the Tom Ford Contouring Duet above, and then set that cream product with a light dusting of this Laura Mercier highlighter over the top.  Like the Tom Ford highlighter, this product is the perfect color (it also comes in a few other shades depending on your skin tone), is not sparkly, and blends beautifully.




Nars Bronzing Powder in Laguna


7.  // Nars Bronzing Powder

Shade:  Laguna


I’ve been using this Nars bronzer since high school and there’s no question that NARS wins the bronzer game.  I use this on my face and even dust some on my chest and shoulders in the summer.  It has a very subtle shimmer, but looks totally natural and never orange which is the danger with most bronzers.  Also, their Laguna shade somehow magically works on absolutely every skin tone.




Thanks to Nordstrom and ShopStyle for partnering on this post!

8 thoughts on “My 7 Ride-Or-Die Products For The Perfect Summer Glow”

  1. The Tom Ford Shade & Light Illuminate Highlighter & Shader Duet, as well as the Laura Mercier Facial Illuminator look amazing! This products have been on my wish list for ages now. Honestly, I’ve kind of been waiting to see if you liked them and would recommend them! I really trust you when it comes to everything! Have a lovely weekend dear!

  2. Hello! I think it’s amazing how you can stay away from the sun and still have that beautiful sun-kissed look! You do a great job! I’ve heard about staying away from the sun for anti wrinkles but oh! I LOVE MY SUNSHINE. Anyways… do you have a video of how you do your makeup? I’d love to see it if you do!!

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