It’s just finally starting to feel like summer again where I live (we had a long, grueling winter), and I really want to EMBRACE the SEASON. I think pink lipsticks are super cute, love nudes, and absolutely adore a bright red lip (all very summery looks I think), but my true beauty soulmate is the dark lipstick. I generally wear deep plums or oxblood, but all these shades remind me of winter. Is there a way to combine beautiful dark lips with summer vibes? —Marya, 18, Vermont
Hey, plum of my eyeballs. I share your tastes here—I type this to you from the precipice of East Coast summertime, where my purse currently houses two black lipsticks—LUV SUMMER STYLE! Really, though, I’ve been giving those guys a rest in favor of my number-one, top-of-the-Popsicles summer lip product: CoverGirl’s Outlast Lipstain, which comes in a Magic Marker–lookin’ package that I enjoy deeply because I get to feel like I’m scribbling all over my face when I use it. Though these lip pens don’t smell QUITE as good as their cherry-scented Crayola forebears, they will tint your lips darkdarkdark. The liquid settles in a way that will look like they weren’t colored in, marker-style, but naturally sunburn-flushed that way. (Or maybe that they were Popsicle’d in, if Popsicles came in plum—which, why don’t they?) Watch one of these babies in action in a Face-ics video I made some time back for proof:
At a meager-ish $8.50, these are a rad deal because they last for AGES—not only on your skin, but in terms of their longevity before the tubes dry out. I swear I have some that are three years old and still functionally magenta-izing my zones, including my cheeks. I love to color in my face with these, too, and not only because I want to feel even more like a misbehaved five-year-old (which, yo, I DO)—the tint works beautifully as blush, as well! My favorite shades are Plum Pout, Cinnamon Smile, and Wild Berry Wink, which you can build and layer until the color is deep as the diving board–end of a swimming pool. Also, this stuff stays on as you swim, should you want to mix that simile right on up in reality.
Finally: WHO THE HECK DECIDES which colors “belong” to which season? In the U.S., plums—the actual fruit—are in season from May to October, aka THE GOL-DANG SUMMATYME. So you ARE being festively aestive, ya queen of darkness! Take heart—and seek these magic lip-markers out at your local drugstore. —Amy Rose
I am camping for a month in 90-degree (dry) heat and doing a manual-labor-type service project this June. I will have access to potable water (yay!), but limited access to showers. Do you have any tips for maintaining hygiene and all that basic stuff, and still looking fly despite the circumstances? —T., 15, East Coast
Your trip sounds awesome! I spent some time working in the desert on a rain catch–only (!) goat farm…so I know some about maintaining hygiene in dry heat, sans shower. One lucky thing: Your sweat will evaporate quickly. This doesn’t mean you are sweating less—so make sure to always drink plenty of water. However, it does mean that you should feel less sticky/sweaty/grimy than you would if living under humid conditions, and so it should make staying clean a tad easier.
Bring a washcloth and a small bottle of Dr. Bronner’s Castile Liquid Soap to sponge off with at night. Some great things about Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap: (1) it’s eco-friendly, (2) it’s super-concentrated, so you only need to use a teensy squirt on your washcloth, which means you can take a small bottle and save room in your backpack, (3) it doubles as body wash and hair shampoo, and (4) all the scents smell awesome (I’m partial to Almond).
This isn’t the most environmentally friendly advice, but I like to bring face cleansing towelettes with me. Towelettes really get the job done: They get dirt off and outta your pores and leave you feeling fresh-faced. I prefer Burt’s Bees because they’re less chemical-y and don’t come in a hard plastic container, but really any brand will do. Any towelettes that aren’t full of salicylic acid can be used the wipes to wipe off any body part! Some friends of mine who travel on the road a lot and don’t have much access to showers swear by baby wipes. When you are too pooped to wash up, or don’t have access to water, towelettes will feel like a lifesaver. Just make sure you bring enough to share—whenever I’ve been wild-ing it with friends, and break out the wipes, folks are always scrambling to get in on the action. Bring a little personal trash bag with you to dispose of the wipes, as well as any other hygienic/feminine care items you want to throw away discreetly.
I’m always envious of hikers wearing fanny packs, because (1) I think they’re cool and (2) you can keep a little notebook, pencil, face towelette, handkerchief, et cetera on your person without needing to lug around a backpack. (Do I sound mom-ish? Are fanny packs mom-ish? American Apparel sells fanny packs, so they must be pretty hip…although I’m sure you can find a cheaper/more unique one at a thrift store).
Oh yeah, and don’t forget a carabineer, so you can clip your water bottle to your fanny(pack). My biggest beauty tip: Drink! Water! Water! Water! —Anna M.
I have a broken blood vessel under my eye, which I don’t exactly find attractive. I’ve tried putting green-tinted concealer over it, but it never seems to cover it very well, so I’m looking for another fix. Also, I was wondering if you had any tips for general under-eye circles—I have really fair skin, so they are really visible. —Allison, 13, Michigan
I do not have severe under eye circles, but I empathize with your struggle. Green-tinted concealer is best for blemishes and red spots, but it doesn’t do the job entirely. You want a pink or peach toned concealer for blue-ish under eye scenarios. My friend has, like, ghostface-level under-eye caverns, and she swears by Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer ($32, Sephora). It’s heavy-duty and requires some futzing about so you don’t cake it on and get it in your eyes, but it makes a gigantoid difference.
I also recommend using an eye roller, which is a tool with a small, rotating ball on the end that you gently massage your under-eye areas with, in the morning. Garnier has one that includes concealer, so it’s like a two-for-one ($9.50, Ulta). First Aid Beauty also has an eye cream with a cool metal tip ($36, Sephora) that aids in reducing swelling—it really comforts me, and I do notice redness and swelling going down when I use it—both are definite contributors to how tired or irritated your eyes might look, so maybe you’ll like it, too. Hope this helps! —Arabelle ♦
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