The dead of summer is not my favorite time of year.
I live in Chicago, so hot days are an exciting rarity. It's freezing for about seven months out of the year, and then there are another two to three that are somehow not the climate you expect them to be. I've spent many a rainy, 50-degree Memorial Day in this fair city I call home.
That's one of the reasons I make some adjustments to my makeup routine in the summer. You want to wear items that are lighter, so they won't run down your face and make you look like a Jackson Pollock painting. Easy re-application is key and from a fashion perspective, less makeup on your face probably goes better with your breezy, slightly more casual summer clothes.
Here are some of my staples for enhancing my features without going too heavy.
1. Tinted moisturizer
There are several reasons that I ditch my foundation in favor of a tinted moisturizer in the summer. My skin type is normal to oily, so I find that moisturizing too much when I'm sweating on top of it makes me break out. If you're prone to dry skin, you can continue to use your regular moisturizer at night or whatever you need to do, but for me it ends up being a one-stop shop.
In addition, I want sheerer coverage that accompanies a tinted moisturizer. It becomes less cakey during a day in the sun, and (sorry, I'm going to say it) if I'm sunburned or more tanned than usual, it's better at smoothing out my skin tone.
At a little more than $10 a bottle, Neutrogena Healthy Skin Enhancer is a great drugstore choice. It's easy to match with your skin, even though you're not trying it on, and it's got a nice light texture. Whatever you choose, it's really handy if it contains SPF. If you use full-body sunscreen on a daily basis, not just when you're going to be out in the sun for a long time, you're a better woman than I am. But protecting your face should always be part of your daily routine, even if you're not prone to sunburn.
2. Combination cheek and lip color
For a while I was not a fan of cream blush, so I stayed away from combination cheek and lip color. Recently, I impulse-purchased Bobbi Brown pot rouge in pale pink, and it was a great summer purchase. A more affordable choice is Revlon's Baby Stick.
Every time I use it, I recall my mom putting lipstick on her cheeks when caught without any blush to reapply. Especially after a long, hot day, or if you're like me and humidity just makes all the color drain from your face, you may need to get a little color back into your cheeks. But it can be cumbersome to carry around powder blush and a brush in your small summer clutch, so why not kill two birds with one stone?
A combo cheek and lip color is also usually less pigmented, especially if it's billed as a "tint" or a "stain." It looks a lot less fussy for summer.
3. Blotting papers
None of this will be easy to reapply if you're still sweating. If it's really a lost cause, I love portable cleansing pads too. Sometimes you just need to start over.
There are a couple other things already in your makeup bag that complete the perfect summer face. For eyeshadow, neutrals rule this season. Sephora is currently carrying Benefit neutral palettes that contain six shades each, four powder shadows and two of creaseless cream eye color pots. I like the Easiest Nudes Ever palette -- that name is not lying.
Use your regular mascara and eyeliner, unless you're getting serious raccoon eyes. Switching to a kohl liner and waterproof mascara can help, but make sure you also invest in makeup remover if you're going the waterproof route. You'll want to still have lashes left at the end of the summer.
(E-mail Kristyn Schiavone at Kristyn@simplestyleguide.com, follow her on Twitter at @KKSchiavone or write to her c/o Tribune Media Services, 435 N. Michigan Ave, Ste. 1400, Chicago, IL 60611.)