As we swing into the hottest summer months, you’ll want products that can keep up and stay put as you seize the best that the season has to offer. From a sun-protecting mist for your hair to vitamin c-infused setting spray to bold, dopamine-boosting makeup that packs lasting power and more, here are our top beauty picks for the month of July.
Build a healthy base
If you don’t yet know Canadian-made FirstBase Skincare, the brand’s Double Dose Organic Vitamin C Serum makes a great first impression. The brand is focused on clean beauty and fuelled by a holistic vision using organic-certified formulas. While FirstBase plans to expand its line to include two new skincare products in the coming months, the Double Dose Organic Vitamin C Serum is a good-for-you, antioxidant rich, hydrating serum to help smooth your skin and keep your skin’s PH and natural microflora balanced. Key ingredients include baobab extract, lotus flower extract, Botox-mimicking acmella oleracea extract and willow bark extract.
FirstBase Skincare Double Dose Organic Vitamin C Serum, First Base Skincare, $118.
This decadent-yet-light moisturizer lives up to its name’s promise: to drench your skin with long-lasting and skin-plumping moisture. Peter Thomas Roth’s Water Drench Moisturizer uses a 30 per cent hyaluronic acid complex with Pentavitin – an ingredient aimed at locking in hydration for up to 72 hours – as well as hydrolyzed silk. The cream is free of the many usual suspects (parabens, formaldehydes, etc.), but also of retinyl palmitate, oxybenzone, triclocarban and triclosan; it also features less than one per cent synthetic fragrance.
Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Moisturizer, Sephora, $70.
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A great natural and clean option for cleansing sensitive skin, Lotus Aroma’s Daily Mousse Facial Cleanser is part of Shopper’s Drug Mart’s The Thoughtful Choices lineup – curated to help shoppers find conscious options. The products, at a minimum, need to be cruelty-free, free of nasties such as parabens, phthalates, BPAs and more, and also mindful of the planet. Lotus Aroma’s cleanser does this and more, working to gently cleanse and remove makeup and the day’s build-up. Its formula features soothing Lotus water (hence the brand’s name), as well as the hydrating Aloe Vera leaf juice. It is all-natural, GMO-free and has no artificial fragrance.
Lotus Aroma Daily Mousse Facial Cleanser, Shopper’s Drug Mart, $21.
While the cold, winter months are known for sapping skin of critical moisture, so too can the dry, hot sun-kissed months. To keep your skin supple and soft, L’Occitane’s Almond Delightful Body Balm nourishes your head-to-toe skin inside-out. A little goes a long way to keep your skin looking and feeling healthy with this oil-infused, almond-scented balm. Ingredient callouts include actual almond oil as well as almond butter, and it’s free of sulphates, SLS and SLES, parabens and phthalates. And, in case you’re curious, L’Occitane sources the almonds it uses in this product from Haute Provence in France, known for this multi-tasking staple. Best part? The brand also supports the sustainability of the almond trees in the region so future generations can enjoy their bounty and their beauty.
L’Occitane Almond Delightful Body Balm, Sephora, $46.
Add some dopamine to your makeup bag
If you missed the Shiseido’s delightfully-Bodacious collab with singer Canada’s Drag Race winner, Priyanka, earlier this June, fear not – you can still tap into that spirit (and the delicious Bodacious wine); play with bold colours, express your fiercest self, and be unapologetic about it. We can’t say enough good things about Shiseido’s Modern Matte Powder Lipstick but the brand’s POP Powder Gel Eye Shadow is a standout with its collection of bright, bold and beautiful richly pigmented cream-powder combos. Blendable and weightless, it’s perfect for the hot summer months when you’re on the lookout for waterproof and crease-resistant colour and long-lasting eye looks (those with almond-shaped or hooded eyes know the struggle). Inspired by Japanese graphic art, each colour is named for an expressive sound, emotion or action in the Japanese language. The formulas are both dermatologist and ophthalmologist-tested.
Shiseido POP Powder Gel Eye Shadow, Shiseido, $29.
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Planning a trip and looking to pack light? Trinny London’s stacks offer great multi-purpose options for anyone who finds themselves frequently on-the-go. Bring out the best of the season’s warmth and that sun-kissed look with its Summer Glow stacks, featuring the BFF Cream SPF 30 (for an instant glowy, skin-protecting base), Eye2Eye cream-based colour (available in an array of warm hues), Golden Glow cream-based bronzer and Sheer Shimmer – an iridescent tint for your lips and cheeks to create a fresh, dewy and luminous glow.
Trinny London Summer Glow Stacks, Trinny London, $126.
Dubbed “the ultimate power pout,” stila’s creamy-matte, full-coverage and long-lasting lip colour features a weightless texture that won’t bleed or transfer, and will stay put for up to 12 hours of continuous wear — so you can set it and forget it as you go about your day. The formula is enriched with vitamin E and avocado oil, so your lips stay moist.
stila Stay All Day® Liquid Lipstick, Shopper’s Drug Mart, $29.
We’re already big fans of Urban Decay’s All Nighter Setting Spray (who knew your makeup didn’t need to completely evaporate within a few hours of application?). So we decided to splurge on the vitamin C version of the spray, and love it. The scent is refreshing and citrusy, yes, but it also adds a little glow, too. In terms of setting power, this version works just as well as the original on foundation, though eye makeup still needs to be checked for touchups.
Show your hair some love
Did you know that the sun’s harmful rays can also impact your hair? Voir Haircare’s Moisturizing Heat & UV Protecting Mist helps keep those rays in check. The leave-on mist is formulated with five marine seaweeds, while also doling out lightweight moisture to fight against dryness and damage.
Voir Haircare Moisturizing Heat & UV Protecting Mist, Shopper’s Drug Mart, $30.
If you’re on the look-out for value when it comes to a shampoo and conditioner combo that will also fight breakage and very dry hair, BIOLAGE is a great option because it’s also formulated with clean ingredients. It features aloe, cupuacu butter and apricot kernel oil. The products are suitable for colour-treated hair and work well with fine to medium hair.
BIOLAGE Ultra Hydrasource Shampoo and Conditioner Set 1L, Amazon, $55.