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4 Summer Beauty Savers to Test Drive This Weekend

We fell hard for Natalie Alcala last fall, when the LA-based writer and blogger spent a week guest blogging for us. In fact, we loved her posts so much that we asked her to be a contributing editor. In addition to blogging for us once a week, she’ll also be writing for the Birchbox Magazine and keeping us up to speed on all things fashion, beauty, and fun.

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Photo: Gina Tricot

Now that summer is fast approaching (the season unofficially started after Memorial Day, but officially starts on June 21), my makeup bag is more minimalist than usual. When I’m in a setting where the sun is beaming and the water is splashing, the last thing I want is a full face of (melting) makeup, which is why “keep it simple” is definitely my beach beauty mantra.

Inspired by Aussie model Shanina Shaik’s look above, here’s a roundup of four products that will help my channel a similar so-fresh-and-so-clean vibe this weekend.

1. Clinique Bottom Lash Mascara ($10): I can’t stop talking about this adorable little lifesaver. Although it’s meant to groom your tiniest lashes, it’s also a great overall mascara to tote in your back pocket or little pool party clutch. To look as fierce as Shanina, apply a light coat after jumping in the water.

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Coachella Packing List: 5 Beauty Essentials to Beat the Heat

We fell hard for Natalie Alcala two years ago, when the LA-based writer and blogger spent a week guest blogging for us. In fact, we loved her posts so much that we asked her to be a contributing editor. In addition to blogging for us once a week, she’ll also be writing for the Birchbox Magazine and keeping us up to speed on all things fashion, beauty, and fun.

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Happy first day of Coachella! Here’s a roundup of tried and true beauty products that I’ve packed for 72 hours in the desert.

1. NCLA Nail Wraps in Stephanie’s Galaxy ($16): I’m utterly obsessed with this LA-based nail art company. Not only do these intergalactic wraps satisfy my ongoing passion for all things galaxy-inspired, but they also guarantee chip-free tips for the entire trip.

2. Jouer Matte Moisture Tint ($38): I can’t sing the praises of this tinted moisturizer enough. Not only does it keep my combination oily skin from looking embarrassingly glowy, it also provides ample, SPF-powered coverage throughout the day. (To be extra safe, though, don’t forget to touch up with another SPF during the day!)

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How Many Products Do You Use A Day?

Next February, Estée Lauder is launching a new global (read: all-in-one) anti-aging cream that claims to make skin smoother, firmer, and more uniform in a single step — no serums required.

Sounds great, right? Perfect for every ultra-busy woman. But here’s the catch: Lauder has designed the cream specifically for European ladies. The brand found that women across the pond “favor simplicity” in their beauty regimens and are looking for a one-step solution to combat the signs of aging. While, say, Americans have multiple specific products to address each wrinkle, lip line, or brown spot.

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Guest Blogger: We Heart This Picks Five Worth-Every-Penny Products

Today is the last day of our We Heart This guest blogger series. We’re bummed to see Stef and Tyna go, but they’ve left us with some awesome beauty-for-thought, from red lips tips to glitter for grown-ups. Here, Tyna gives us her list of must-splurge products.

With a makeup addiction since our teens and 10 years of beauty reviewing between us, my We Heart This co-founder Stef and I have seen it all. From washes and scrubs to foundations and powders, from matte to glitter eye shadows and pale pink to deep red lipsticks - we’ve tested it all as well. While some products that promised a miracle weren’t even worth a second use (live and learn – and research your beauty purchases!) we also discovered a number of beauty purchases worth the splurge. Without further ado - Our Top Five Beauty Products Worth Every Penny:

1. Clarisonic: The best beauty invention of the last decade, this wonder is worth the hype — and the price tag. With daily use I’ve seen multiple improvements in my skin, including less noticeable pores, fewer breakouts, smoother skin (it’s fab for those little red bumps on arms and chest), less visible fine lines, and a brighter complexion. I’ve already got four years of use from my Clarisonic for the cost of one day at the spa — it’s a wise investment for girls with problem oily skin. (Prices range, from $135 for the travel size)

2. La Mer Eye Cream: I was happy to discover the famous Crème de la Mer face cream was too heavy for my oily skin – my wallet was too. Then I discovered the wonders of La Mer’s Eye Concentrate, an incredibly lush eye cream that completely absorbs into skin and fights off wrinkles, puffiness and dark circles. My eyes have never looked brighter. Plus, bonus points for the included silver-tipped applicator ball that allows for tug-free applications and adds a cooling effect to the skin. (0.5 oz, $135)

3. Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Daily Peel: Stef says “As a beauty reviewer for five years, I have tried A LOT of skincare products. Here’s one that has produced the biggest results. My skin glows after every use; it exfoliates, clears up any blemish that may be rearing its ugly head and minimizes everything I don’t want maximized. Quite simply, it’s my holy grail skin product!” (Try the Extra Strength Alpha Beta Peels, 10 pads, $35.)

4. Mason Pearson Hairbrush: A hairbrush is a hairbrush, right? That’s what I thought until I finally laid my hands on one of the world-renowned Mason Pearson hairbrushes. Originally designed in 1885, this classic handmade brush continues to set the standard in hair care. Daily brushing with these beauties gives me shiny, conditioned hair and adds a ton of volume to my limp locks. The price is steep, but well worth the cost and with care, your Mason Pearson brush will last for years. (Prices starting at about $100)

5. Erno Laszlo Soap: The ladies at Birchbox know all about this legendary brand and have declared it worthy of the term Cult Favorite. Join the ranks of Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Jackie O. by choosing one of Laszlo’s soaps for daily washing. The Sea Mud Soap is great for oily/combo skin, while my dry friends swear by the Active pHelityl Soap. These finely milled soaps seem to lock into and correct your skins flaws, and each densely packed bar lasts for months. ($39 per bar)

Read all We Heart This’s guest posts here.

Shop our favorite splurges here.

hawaiian sunburn remedy: kukui oil

a co-worker always used to ask me to bring her back kukui oil whenever i visited hawaii. it worked wonders on her dry skin, she said. i never saw the appeal - it’s unscented and a bit oily - until i got a bit too much sun on the north shore this past week and needed something to stave off the flake-fest. i picked up some pure kukui oil at the north shore soap company and it’s already doing its job. it also works on scars, so you can bet i’ll be saving some for the next time i take a tumble and scrape up my legs. you can order it here.