12 hours ago
With summer holiday season in full swing, we thought it was only apt to talk through the products that kept us going throughout some of our favourite days of the year. Whether you're heading off on a beach holiday, city break or are just staying at home and praying for a heatwave, these are the products that we'd recommend giving a try to make it all that bit better.
From in-flight hydrators to neon nail polishes, from summer fragrances to travel-ready makeup removers, these are the products that stayed hot in the heat. Click through the gallery to see our picks...
Why we love it: Replaces makeup remover, micellar water and cleanser – great if you are travelling only with hand luggage.
Review: “This wash cloth has ‘wrong’ written all over it. When you are used to fine muslins, cotton flannels and cotton pads for removing makeup and general daily debris, the synthetic feel and eye-popping pink of the Makeup Eraser seems more ‘service station cuddly toy’ than multi-tasking beauty wonder. How can it possibly clean your skin with only the addition of water? I was so sceptical I even did a half-face test with micellar water and with cleanser. The Makeup Eraser held its own – even making short work of waterproof mascara. It’s made of microfibre, which is knowns to be anti-bacterial, so you can use it for a week with only a hand washing and then stick it in the machine after that. As such it was the perfect liquid-free cleanser to take with me to France for a week this summer travelling only with only hand luggage."
“It has a shorter ‘nap’ side for cleansing and a longer one for exfoliation. I still prefer my normal cream exfoliator, but both sides work well for gentle cleansing without the cotton pad mountain, which has got to be a good thing.”
Reviewer: Victoria Woodhall, Deputy Editor
Why we love it: An exhilarating perfume for women who are about to embark on life’s biggest journeys: finding themselves.
Review: “This fragrance has very quickly become a favourite; it’s fresh, light and perfectly embodies the summer. It has a sweet floral scent that's described as an “explosive combination of contrasting floral and woody facets that create a beautifully bold statement” and I couldn’t agree more. What I love about this fragrance is that it isn’t too overpowering or heavy; the scent lingers, which is what you want really, and you quite often find yourself ‘rediscovering’ it throughout the day. You’ll never be shy of compliments and questions about your fragrance either, and who doesn’t want that pick me up on a regular basis?!”
Reviewer: Rachael McGowan, Graphic Designer
Available from 5th September
Why we love it: A lightweight hydrator that sinks in quickly
Review: “During the summer, I usually find my dry and dehydrated skin to not be as troublesome as it is throughout the rest of the year. However, I still need something, albeit a little more lightweight, that will still deeply hydrate my skin. This facial serum from Aesop is perfect for this and can be used alone, or underneath another hydrator when you feel as though you need a little extra. I chop and change how I use it, but use it regularly and from doing so I really have noticed the difference, with my skin feeling more hydrated and looking more radiant. It sinks in quickly, leaving no residue and allowing you to apply your makeup on top of a perfectly hydrated base."
“This concentrate works to combat pollution, making it perfect for your city breaks throughout the year. I used it in Bilbao (and on the plane there and back!) and where I usually would be left with dull and dehydrated skin, it was in fact quite the opposite. Whether you’re looking for a lightweight hydrator for your summer city breaks or an addition to your in-flight skincare routine, this really is a must try.”
Reviewer: Lorna Patrick, Marketing Assistant
Why we love it: A happy, neon shade that will set off your tan.
Review: “I am never knowingly seen without nail polish and though a gel manicure would perhaps be sensible before a holiday, I’ve been buffing and painting my own nails for as long as I can remember and find it a joy rather than a chore. That joy is always heightened when I have a new shade to play with and the new Polish for Tan collection from Models Own is my latest obsession, with this neon-bright, coral-like Surf’s Up colour topping my list - and my nails - as the perfect summer shade which really does complement even my modestly sun-kissed skin. I’ve had countless comments from friends and strangers alike since wearing it, and while I may not be on a beach right now, just one glance at this high-gloss hue makes me think of sangria, sea, and Ibiza sunsets… it’s my happy place in a bottle.”
Reviewer: Judy Johnson, Online Editor
Why we love it: A luxurious, richly scented, silky cream treat for summery skin.
Review: "The sun doesn’t come out often, but when it does, I am a total sun worshipper and after a session in the sun, nothing makes my skin feel more sparkly and gorgeous than slathering it in a cool, thick and buttery moisturising cream: one that evokes the senses and reminds me of long hot summer holidays and far flung exotic destinations."
"I was almost not prepared for the seductiveness and creaminess of Estée Lauder’s Bronze Goddess Whipped Body Crème: a truly luxurious, silky cream that radiates a richly perfumed scent, reminiscent of warm evenings in the sun slowly turning to dusk. This cream sits so highly on the ‘utterly divine’ scale that using it really feels like quite an extravagant treat - one that I think should only to be reserved for special evenings. Use it like that and this cream will last you a whole summer. But I notice it is sold out in many stores, so I advise a quick purchase if you want to try it."
Reviewer: Gemma Painter, Digital Marketing Manager
Why we love it: Brightens my smile...literally!
Review: "Whether the sun is shining brightly or hidden under blankets of cloud, this little ray of light is enough to brighten any summer’s day. Bagsy Wow Lips in Cocktail Hour is a bold coral chubby stick that moisturises as it goes - ideal for me as I ordinarily need to layer up with a foundation of Carmex before applying any colour to my lips. To add to this appeal is the sweetest scent of what I can only describe as strawberry laces, conjuring memories of sitting on a wall in summers’ gone by with my hand in a bag of pick ‘n’ mix! To round it all off this lovely chubby stick is mini in size, so it’s perfect for flinging into your clutch bag for a day at the beach or big night out. I am a fan."
Reviewer: Gemma Bellman, Managing Director
Why we love it: Refreshes hot, irritated scalps instantly and makes hair look and feel swishy and clean FOR DAYS.
Review: "Apparently this grainy, zingy paste has been a big deal in France for quite some time, and given the shelf space it commands in Parisian branches of Sephora (I did my research on the Champs Élysées last week), I’m not sure how I hadn’t yet encountered this summer scalp saver. A gentle yet thorough exfoliator, this cleanser feels more ‘body buff’ than shampoo, but stick with it, as working the scrub into your scalp is deeply satisfying, and as you do so a lather will build, adding a cloud of moisturising lusciousness. Once rinsed out and roughly blow dried, hair felt soft, shiny and light without falling into flyaway territory. What’s more it kept my hair in line for a full three days without the usual onset of greasy roots and frizzy ends. It’s the stuff of dreams, unless you’re dodging sulfates, in which case you’ll have to look elsewhere for your detox kicks."
Reviewer: Anna Hunter, Senior Features Writer
Why we love it: For giving any skin tone a fast yet potent pick-me-up, this palette’s got colour covered.
Review: “When it comes to packing for my holidays, my suitcase policy seems to follow a somewhat alarming pattern - 70% beauty products, 30% clothes, (no wonder then that I usually find it problematic sticking within luggage limits...). If there’s a way to help streamline my bulging beauty baggage, I’m the ideal candidate for it and that’s where this multi-tasking palette comes in. It’s proven to be just the ticket for lightening my load this summer and beyond."
“Compact and customisable to suit either day or night, staycation or vacation, its selection of five eyeshadows and two blushes provides plenty of pigment for your pennies. ‘Tan/Deep’ was my match and its range of neutrals and bolder shades has provided the perfect pick ‘n’ mix for when going from beach to bar in a hurry. With four palettes in the collection to choose from, each has been carefully curated to complement and enhance all skin tones to refreshingly dismiss the idea that a palette be one-size-fits-all. A definite must-pack.”
Reviewer: Ayesha Muttucumaru, Senior Features Writer
Why we love it: A nourishing super saviour that I need in my holiday kit.
Review: "I've just returned from 5 weeks of travelling in intense heat, sun, dust and dirt in India, and I required something to thoroughly clean my skin every day while adding some much needed moisture! Enter my new found hero, the VOTARY Super Seed Cleansing Oil. This natural cleansing oil is designed to bring unhealthy skin back to life, and when you are in the tropics, it is truly a calming, hydrating and deeply nourishing treat at the end of the day. A powerful blend of 21 super seeds oils, scented with the purifying parsley seed essential oil, it is designed to target irritation and inflammation, whilst being anti-ageing, which was a saviour for my dry and battered skin! Plus you get a face cloth included so that you can pack it straight into your suitcase. I've never been a fan of a facial oil as I always feel they are too greasy, but this is so lightweight and very soothing to massage into the skin. I know I will be stocking up for every month of the year."
Reviewer: Sarah McGinnis, Art Editor
14 hours ago