If you’re like me, you want your skin to look nice and you could use some outside help. Here are my top five picks for moisturizing skin, evening complexion, disguising imperfections, and adding a sun-kissed glow.
But before we get to the list, I’d like to parenthetically add that–as you can tell from the title–I’m a drugstore-brand kind of girl. The few times I’ve ventured out haven’t left me anymore satisfied than I am with what I can pick up from my local Walgreens. Drugstore brands offer quality products at a price I’m willing to pay. Consequently, this list may not be for the MAC and Sephora lovers of the world.
1. Face Lotion: Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Oil-Free Moisture
The Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture bottle markets itself as “lightweight, non-greasy,
I prefer Neutrogena moisturizers, but I’ve tried other brands like L’Oreal, Garnier, Jergens, Ponds and a few generics. The two real differences I’ve seen between brands are (1) the consistencies and (2) the scents. Obviously, we’re all going to have our own preferences on these subjects so it’s important to test the lotions out for yourself and find something that works for you.
For me, I find L’Oreal lotions are too thick to be everyday moisturizers. Most generics I’ve tried tend to be too thin. Other picks have certain scents that I don’t love. So although I experiment every now and then, I tend to always gravitate back to my Neutrogena.
2. Bottom Foundation Layer: L’Oreal Feel Naturale Light Softening One-Step Makeup
The L’Oreal Feel Naturale One-Step is an oil-free, SPF 15 foundation. I find it to be the perfect compromise between liquid and powder bases, giving the benefits of both and the drawbacks of neither.
Applied with a sponge, it leaves my skin looking even and natural–more even than with liquid and more natural than with just powder. And since the formula is an SPF 15, I find it unnecessary to add additional sunscreen on a typical day, eliminating one more hassle from the getting ready process.
3. Top Foundation Layer: L’Oreal Bare Naturale Mineral Makeup
I prefer to complement the One-Step with L’Oreal’s Bare Naturale Minerals, a loose powder of gentle mineral makeup. If you don’t need much coverage, either foundation can be used on its own. But for me, the combination works best.
Even though my bottom layer of foundation isn’t a liquid, I still find it helpful to set it with an additional product. I skip this step if I’m not going all out, but on the days I want to look my best, I apply a small amount of the loose mineral powder over my skin for a more overall polished look. The mineral makeup also acts as a sunscreen, being SPF 19.
4. Concealer: Cover Girl Continuous Wear Make-up
Cover Girl’s Continuous Wear is a long-lasting, oil-free, and hypoallergenic formula that can actually be used as a liquid foundation or concealer. Although I just use it as the latter, Cover Girl is definitely my brand of choice when it comes to liquid concealers.
Continuous Wear is the perfect finishing touch for any troublesome blemish or imperfection that I might have. I don’t presently have extreme under-eye troubles, such as dark circles, so I can’t verify if this product would be the best fit or not for that specific issue. But in general, I think it works wonders.
5. Bronzer: Bonne Bell Powder Bronze
Bronzer is one of the best ways to add a little bit of color to the face. Simply using a darker foundation than your natural skin tone can often produce undesirable results whereas a well-matched bronzer can add color and glow in a more pleasing way.
Bonne Bell is a great brand for bronzed powder. Bronze is usually added to the areas of your face that would naturally catch more sun (i.e., cheekbones, forehead, tip of the nose). The right colors can also be used for shading and contouring the face, which–when properly done–can create the effects of looking slimmer and more toned.