How To Do Summer Beauty Like A California Girl

by Jessica DeFino

As someone who spent the first 20 years of her life on the East Coast and the past nine on the West, I can confidently say that where you live totally affects your personal style. Living in California convinced me to give up the winged liner and red liquid lipstick that were my signatures back east, in favor of a more low-key — and low-effort — vibe. Today, you’re more likely to catch me in barely-there shadow (sans mascara, of course) and a swirl of bronzer, and these 22 summer 2019 beauty products make it so easy to look effortless.

No matter where you live, I’m sure you can appreciate the beauty of a lightweight summer routine (no heavy foundations, thank you!), which is probably why the latest launches across skincare, makeup, and hair care focus on simple products that deliver results. The past month alone has introduced my new Holy Grail face oil, the best-smelling shaving cream in existence, a clean hair care line that actually works, and a shimmery eyeshadow palette that’s pretty much the epitome of summer. I’ve tried my fair share of CBD skincare, too, and now swear by one to rule them all.

Wondering who makes these swoon-worthy summer beauty products — and how you can get your hands on them? Of course you are. Ahead, the 22 best beauty buys of the season (at least, from the POV of a California girl).


A Face Oil That Doesn’t Feel Greasy

A limited-edition release from Sonya Dakar to celebrate the 30th anniversary of her iconic Organic Omega Booster, this fresh formula (now with frankincense and myrrh) is quickly becoming my favorite face oil. A base of flaxseed oil means it absorbs easily, leaving my skin feeling like, well, skin (and not an oil slick).


A Hand Cream That I Can’t Put Down

New “slow skincare” brand SpaRitual sent me its Citrus Cardamom Hand Salve to try, and it hasn’t left my hands since. Over the past two weeks, I’ve taken five flights — and this stuff has been my companion on all of them, thanks to its moisturizing power and delicious-but-not-intrusive scent.


A Face Mask Natural Enough To Eat

I was already a fan of Golde’s Turmeric Tonic Blend for at-home golden lattes, so when the brand segued into skincare, I had to try. The Clean Greens Anti-Pollution Face Mask is basically like taking a green juice to the face (and I mean that in the best way possible).


A Shaving Cream That Smells Incredible

When it comes to all my shaving needs, I’m a dedicated Billie subscriber. The brand's latest release — a collab with Madewell — is arguably its best yet. The Billie x Madewell Shave Cream features an exclusive cypress, lavender, and sandalwood scent that keeps me fresh from ankles to pits.


A Sweet-Tasting, Non-Toxic Toothpaste

Is it weird to say I’ve fallen in love with a toothpaste? Well, I have. This naturally whitening, subtly minty one from new brand Risewell is my go-to.


A Concealer That Eliminates The Need For Foundation

I’m not a foundation girl, but I do get the occasional under-eye bag or hormonal zit — which is when I reach for concealer. This one from UOMA (there are 50 shades!) is full-coverage but blends really well.


A Teeny-Tiny Makeup Blender

I’m obsessed with the super-cute Microfiber Rosé Mini Sponge from Juno & Co. This size is perfect for blending concealer under the eyes or around the nostrils.


A Lightweight Setting Powder

Full-coverage makeup in the summer usually equals cake face. Except when I use a light dusting of Lune + Aster’s Powerfinish Translucent Powder.


The Scent Of Summer

I plucked Bigarade Concentrate from the limited-edition, five-scent Frédéric Malle Les Eaux Collection and probably won’t put it down ‘til fall. Its clean, soapy vibe just feels right for summer.


A Custom-Made Moisturizer

I’m a sucker for all things rose-scented, so when I got the chance to custom-create my own moisturizer with Rose & Abbot, of course I made sure it was sprinkled with rose essential oil — which has calming skincare properties, to boot.


An Extremely Gentle Exfoliator

I am perpetually scared of over-exfoliating, since my skin is super sensitive, so I’ve taken to using this gentle physical exfoliator (made with jojoba beads and hyaluronic acid to simultaneously buff and plump) once a week. Those with tougher skin can use it daily, though.


A Rose Gold Highlighter

Jessica L. Yarbrough

I mean, it is rosé season, so I’ve swapped out my usual light-toned highlighter for Guerlain’s Terracotta Skin Highlighting Stick in Universal Blush.


A Face Mask I’ve Already Used Up

I only received the Bioactive Face Masque from LESSE about a month ago and it’s already gone. It’s detoxifying (care of charcoal) and acne-fighting (thanks to tea tree extract), yet replenishing, too (all credit goes to the mango and cocoa butters).


A Shimmery Shadow Palette

Jessica L. Yarbrough

The pink marble packaging of MAC's new Electric Wonder collection is almost too pretty to touch… almost. Once opened, it reveals the ultimate shimmery shadows for summer, like Fresh Innocence (a metallic pink for day) and Duabandita (a glittering blue-green for night).


A Tie-Dye Eye Mask To Help Me Sleep

I kind of have a thing for silk eye masks. This one is super pretty and tie-dyed with dried flowers.


An Easy-To-Use Bronzer

Jessica L. Yarbrough

Sculpting my face with contouring? Nope, not gonna do that. Faking a summer glow with a casual swirl of bronzer is more my thing, and this one from Gee Beauty is fool-proof.


Hair Growth Vitamins That Are Tasty *And* Effective

I’m testing Grow Girl's Biotin & Vitamin B Hair Growth Supplement right now. Does it work? I’ll report back in 30 days. So far, all I know is these gummies are tasty.


A Deep Berry Lipstick That Stays On, Even While Sweating

Jessica L. Yarbrough

You can never go wrong with a MAC lipstick, right? I’m feeling this new deep berry shade, Natural Born Leader.


The CBD Serum To Rule Them All

Kat Rudu's new Sanctuary Glow CBD Serum, released last month, is my fave CBD skincare product of the moment. In addition to the buzz-worthy ingredient, it boasts antioxidant raspberry seed oil and illuminating Asian pearl powder.


A Powder-To-Mousse Face Mask

This wins the award for coolest product texture. Out of the bottle, Eluo Forma Rosea Facial Polish is a powder, then when you add water, it transforms into mousse; at which point, I spread the rose clay mixture on my damp skin and wait five minutes. Once I rinse it off, my face feels smooth and calm.


A Clean Hair Mask That Fixes Split Ends

My hair hasn’t been looking its best lately (I’m working on it), but this new overnight mask from clean hair care brand KYN. is definitely helping, thanks to the coconut oil inside.


Water, Water, Water

Ever since I found out that my clean beauty idol (Gwyneth Paltrow, duh) drinks Flow alkaline water because it's full of minerals and electrolytes, I had to have some for myself. I *swear* drinking a full eight glasses of water a day boosts my glow from the inside out.