Try Something New: Bye Bye Blackheads

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we love keeping easy-to-use beauty products on-hand for weekend adventures, like our anniversary staycation in dallas this july.

Summer does a number on my skin. You, too? And the frequency with which you wash your face is something that needs to be carefully planned. Over-washing or excessive exfoliating can end up leaving you even more blackhead- and pimple-prone than before. Sigh!

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But if you’ve got those pesky black spots and need a quick fix, this beauty blogger highly recommends a blackhead removing wipe. Joey New York offers a fantastic addition to their blackhead-geared line of products. And it doesn’t get any easier than a wipe you can take on-the-go. Infused with Young Green Coconut Water that’s packed with potent antioxidants and essential minerals, these soothing wipes store easily in your purse or beach bag and help improve the look of your skin. You’ll find a decrease in the appearance of blackheads, tightening of your pores, skin hydration and even makeup removal in one awesome sweep.

clearskinI highly recommend the entire line of skin aids from Joey New York, and these are a great place to start. You can purchase a pack for only $18 here or here

On Summer Skin & Other Things

Thrilled about the onset of summer? You’re not alone. But while you look forward to tan legs extending out of short shorts, gelato dripping down the sides of a cone, and brunches that last hours while the easy breeze floats on by, your skin is entering panic mode. Let’s be kind and take a listen.

Sunscreen is important all year round, but especially from June to September. If you’re beach-bound, you must also remember that hazardous rays reflect off the sand and back onto your pretty face, meaning you have wrinkle-enhancers coming at you from multiple angles. Get yours prepped and protected with some of my favorite products:

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$55, chanel.com

If there’s ever an excuse to splurge on product, the health of your skin is a great choice. I adore CHANEL’s UV Essential Broad Spectrum SPF 50 for the face. This powerhouse product blends in smooth and creamy for an instantly moisturizing feel. It goes on to protect your face from the dangerous rays of the sun all day long. Also serving as a protectant against free radicals and pollution, this oil-free, lightweight sunscreen is an excellent choice for city girls. My face sees it every morning, first thing, all summer long.

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Moisture Surge CC cream, $35, clinique.com

Shellacking on the makeup is another opportunity to improve the health and tone of your skin. But try lightening up and ditching your heavy winter foundation as the temperature rises. If you haven’t settled on a BB or CC cream yet, now is the time to experiment. Ask the cosmetics girls at the counter for testers; most brands are pushing these right now and should have samples for you to try. The idea is to find a product that helps improve your skintone while delivering minimal coverage and a healing effect. I’m really into this Moisture Surge CC cream from Clinique right now.

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starting at $84, esteelauder.com

Got a burn? Don’t fret, my pretty. Every girl messes up sometimes. My oft-tested and 100%-approved method for healing skin post-sun is Estee Lauder Advanced Repair Night Serum. You should be using this product anyway; I have recommended it to countless women who all report back with glowing reviews–and skin to match. I’ve been known to slather on this product periodically throughout the day when suffering from a sunburn, and it works actual miracles. Trust.

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a true obsession of mine… $9.50, kiehls.com

Complement your gorgeous summer skin with a fresh lip color or shiny balm. Remember that the skin on your lips is susceptible to damage and burns just like elsewhere on your face; invest in a good product with SPF to keep your pout perfect.

PS. Your summer complexion is a canvas for all the exciting makeup trends you’ve been dying to try. But remember you can look just as gorg by keeping things simple. My favorite thing about summer is the freedom that comes with deciding whether to amp up the volume on my eye makeup or keep it really clean and natural with just a coat of mascara. Have fun! And make sure that beautiful tan is faux.

Summer (skin) Lovin’

It’s almost that time of year, and this Lawn Gisland girl has to admit to being VERY torn on the sunscreen front. Now, if we’re being honest, it’s been drilled into our heads for years that tanning is unsafe. More and more articles and TV news pieces are surfacing constantly to caution us about safe skin practices. (This morning, on the Today show, I learned that we should be using a SHOTGLASSFULL of sunscreen on our bodies every two hours every day?? Wild. And expensive, no?) But, the reality is, it’s time to smarten up about our skin. That said, as much as I don’t want to wind up leathery one day, and I certainly don’t want skin cancer, I am obsessed with looking tan. It’s in my DNA. Just part of Long Island’s regional charm, I guess. What’s a tanorexic to do?

SPRAY TAN! Okay, I know what you’re thinking. Smelly, messy, and yellow (orange?) in the wrong places. But, no, the new spray tans, while pricey, can actually be JUST what the doctor, and the tanorexic, ordered. I was lucky enough to receive my first local spray tan (I had one in LA last year that didn’t go so great) at one of Manhattan’s finest spots–the Spa at Trump SoHo. Danielle, one of their aestheticians, delivered a customized spray tan in a comfortable, beautiful environment. Now, I might have been a little cold at times, but there was practically no dry time, and absolutely no smudging. I have never had a prettier tan in all my life, and my skin was glad to know that it wasn’t being affected in the slightest (except, maybe with some moisturizers!).

Do I, or do I not, look like I just spent a few days in Cabo (as opposed to where I really have been spending my time–which is in a dark room, in Brooklyn, writing)?

The spray tan will only last you about a week, but I drew mine out a little longer by using Clarins and Mystic home products on my face, arms, and legs afterward. My natural-looking glow was complimented by friends, coworkers, and (duh) my boyfriend. Look, I understand the desire to be tan, but this is one of those public service warnings we should really heed. Within my immediate family alone, there are two people who survived melanoma. They were lucky, but not everyone is. With one in five American adults contracting skin cancer these days, wouldn’t you rather pay a little more to look tan the safe way?

PS. If you go to the Spa at Trump SoHo during the week, spray tans are only $95!

Easy Tip: Fake bake at home

I have pretty fair skin, at least at this time of year. And, when it looks especially pale it seems that much easier to spot my spots, dark undereye circles, and other unpleasantries. Ever notice during the summer when you have a slight tan, that you tend to wear less makeup and feel naturally prettier? Well, there is no need to enter a tanning salon to get your bake on today. With one product and five minutes or less, I’ve got you covered.

$28, beauty.com

I first experimented with Mystic Tan’s Sunless Tanning Lotion a couple of years ago, and it’s one item I still keep in my bathroom cabinet for emergencies. Despite the market presence of some more expensive (and, ahem, better smelling!) tanning products, this is the one I turn to again and again. All you need to do is wash your face with a foaming cleanser, making sure to get your ears and neck in the process. Pat dry gently with a hand towel.

Once your skin is dry yet dewy, drop a dime-sized dollop of this cream into your palm and work into the skin of your face in a circular motion. Make sure to apply evenly, pulling toward your hairline, ears, and just under your chin. When your face has dried, you can put on a little more moisturizer with SPF and then some eye and lip makeup. But chances are you won’t need foundation (or much concealer) because that glow will have you looking gorg within twenty minutes tops.

Craving your hottest summer face? Fake it at home today.