You picked up a fresh pack of razors (RIP, winter leg hair), swapped your nightly glass of Noir for Grigio, and have your shorts-and-sandal situations on lock. The last thing I recommend doing before summer officially hits is upgrading your makeup, a remarkably easy thing to do when brands are churning out great products like they are right now, and when the first hint of a tan makes your winter concealer obsolete.

Summer beauty revolves heavily around a few staples: concealer, foundation, blush, highlighter, and powder. The items are few, but true to almost everyone’s everyday life, a backbone to be customized and built on if/as needed. Here’s what made the cut:


Concealer is a crowded market, but Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer is endorsed by everyone. It’s a standout for a number of reasons, namely that it has buildable coverage and even doubles as foundation in a pinch, all without feeling like you have anything on. The look is sheer and silky, much like the vibe of my summer wardrobe, (which could also explain why I’m so into it right now?), but in all seriousness, the finished product- your perfect skin- will speak for itself.


When “summer makeup” started equating to “no makeup” is beyond me, but unfortunately, hotter weather doesn’t mean the discoloration and unevenness of my skin magically disappears, so foundation is still happening! The name of the game here is medium coverage. Light coverage doesn’t have enough staying power in hot weather, and I just cannot stomach full coverage, especially in the summer. Halfway between those two lies NARS Velvet Matte Skin Tint. A dime-sized amount is enough to cover your entire face since this stuff is potent with a capital P. No acne scars, no redness, nada. Oh! And it has SPF. I don’t mean to oversell it, but buying this is definitely going to be one of the best decisions you’ve ever made, at least about your skin.


Curated is the buzz-word that just won’t die, but it’s a fitting motto for summer. A curated routine, especially when it comes to beauty, is tightly edited, meaning every product has to serve it’s purpose perfectly; no need for unnecessary add-ons. Even better is when a product is so good it pulls double duty, like Laura Mercier’s Creme Blush in Canyon. It’s peachy with a little bit of tawny-ness, meaning it looks fan-fricken-tastic used on its own on top of a tan, or as a base for bronzer.


As far as the highlighter, I go straight for golden tones—all of the summery girls I see on the streets of LA (and on Instagram) have makeup that looks nondescript except for a glowy bronze on their cheeks, and they all look exactly how I want to look during the summer. The best bronze highlighter I can find is Glossier’s Haloscope. Not too sparkly, blends to actually look like skin, not like it’s sitting on top of the skin, and, pro tip, it looks great when used on your eyelids!


I know, I know. Powder is not in its prime right now. Everything is dewy, everything is shiny, and everyone is moisturized, but there comes a point for even the driest of us when that healthy glow crosses the line to sweaty. Most powders feel too thick and heavy for 80 degree days, though, and I feel that. Makes a girl want to skip powder altogether. But nobody does light & matte better than NARS, as evidenced by their aforementioned Skin Tint, so as soon as it starts getting warm out, I dust their Translucent Powder all over to keep things soft and non-sticky.


Greyson Tarantino