An Editor Favorite Gets Revamped

Beauty editors far and wide sing the praises of Kevyn Aucoin’s cult-favorite, The Sensual Skin Enhancer. Naturally full-coverage, we usually recommended blending it with moisturizer or primer to give it a more sheer application. Not anymore. The folks at Kevyn Aucoin just answered our prayers, (and years of constant nagging) when they introduced the sheer coverage Sensual Skin Tinted Balm, $48 this month (available online soon). With the gorgeous velvety finish of the Enhancer (but more translucent), and the botanicals and peptides of a BB cream, it’s just what we’ve been waiting for. The Tinted Balm blends in easily and let’s my slight freckles peek through. It’ll be my weekend foundation go-to.  And the packaging is über fabulous, with a silicone front that allows you to squeeze out just the right amount of product. The only downside? The shade range is slightly limited with only four options.

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Reader Q: Should I try a BB Cream?


Reader Question: I’m looking for a new tinted moisturizer for the summer, but I’ve heard a lot about BB Creams. Should I try one? – Courtney

The Answer: Yes, yes, and yes! BB Creams (short for beauty or blemish balm) are kind of the same, but better than a tinted moisturizer because they are packed full of skin treatments and antioxidants. A multi-tasker’s dream. They basically act as a skin brightener, tone evener, moisturizer, anti-ager, sunscreen, primer and tinted moisturizer all in one. Seriously good stuff, right? They’ve been all the rage in Asia for years and are finally catching on — or blowing up, really — in the US because of the amazing skin benefits and coverage. We love Clinique Age Defense BB Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 30, $37 for it’s sheer coverage and broad spectrum sun protection. Lucky for you, they are hitting the market faster than we can keep track. Here are more of our favorites:

Garnier Skin Renew Miracle Skin Perfector BB Cream, $13

Estee Lauder DayWear BB Anti-Oxidant Beauty Benefit Cream SPF 35, $38

Smashbox Camera Ready BB Cream SPF 35, $39

Do you already know about BB creams? Would you try one?

– Carrie Stern Kleiner

5 Makeup Swaps I'm Making for Summer

Diane von Furstenberg Spring 2012

As summer approaches, the beauty editor in me gets more and more giddy. It’s half because I was really inspired by the fresh makeup looks I spied backstage at the spring 2012 fashion shows and half because there’s something so liberating about ditching the full-coverage foundations and bright blushes I used to brighten my mood (and complexion) in the dreary winter months. Here are makeup swaps I’m happily making for summer. I hope they get you psyched too.

Beauty Swap No. 1: Foundation for Tinted Moisturizer

Practically every makeup look on the spring 2012 runways started with youthful-looking and glowing skin — especially at Alexander Wang. So I’ve already swapped my beloved Georgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, $59, for a lighter tinted moisturizer that will let my skin breathe in the New York heat. I recently fell in love with Aveda Inner Light Mineral Tinted Moisture, $28 for it’s sheer, natural look, but also for the fact that it stays on longer than most. Because a tinted moisturizer doesn’t offer up enough coverage to disguise my dark under-eye circles, I’m also using concealer.

My favorite application trick: Apply tinted moisturizer before concealer, so you can really see where and how much coverage you need. It’ll prevent your face from looked caked with makeup — something you definitely want to avoid come summer. Try Neutrogena 3-in-1 Concealer for Eyes, $8, which also contains SPF 20 to protect your delicate eye area — bonus!

Beauty Swap No. 2: Pink Blush for a Liquid Luminizer/Bronzer Combo

I totally dig the fresh, radiant faces seen at The Row’s spring 2012 show. All winter I dusted (and probably over-dusted) Nars Blush in Sex Appeal, $28, on the apples of my cheeks — it made me feel cheery and bright. But, now that I’m ready to look more beachy, I’ll be using this tip I picked up years ago: Mix a dot of liquid bronzer (I heart Laura Mercier Bronzing Gel, $38) with a dab of luminizer or highlighting liquid (try Stila All Over Liquid Luminizer, $20) on the back of your hand. Tap it right along the top of your cheekbones. It gives me a (faux) sun-kissed glow that looks totally natural.

Beauty Swap No. 3: Metallic Eyeshadow for Powder Bronzer

Monochromatic bronze shades are not only easy (multi-tasking, anyone?), but using the same shade family on your eyes and cheeks is also totally on-trend. We saw the look at Diane von Furstenberg, Narciso Rodriguez and Alexander McQueen. So, I’m ditching my metallic shadows like DuWop Crush 18 Carat, $18, and instead sweeping my go-to bronzer Nars Bronzing Powder in Casino, $34 on my eyes from lashlines to creases. This trick ensures a natural look that works for day or night.

Beauty Swap No. 4: Tweezers for Bold Brows

Full brows made a big statement at the Proenza Schouler and Derek Lam shows, so instead of worry about keeping my brows perfectly groomed, like I usually do, I’m going to let them grow out. To keep them tamed, I’ll use a clear brow gel, like Ardell Sculpting Gel for Brows in Clear, $4. I know, not touching your brows with tweezers sounds like crazy-talk, but I promise, after you get used to it, you’ll fall in love with the natural shape of your brows — I did. Also, a bold brow looks super chic when paired with a soft neutral lip, so don’t go crazy with the rest of your makeup if you have dark, look-at-me brows.

Beauty Swap No. 5: Matte Pink and Red Lipsticks for Sheer Lip Stains

Lightening up my lipstick situation has been a welcome change — one I’ve been waiting for since I spied the prettiest petal pinks at the Carolina Herrera fashion show. That’s why I’ll be stashing my matte bold lip colors for a washed-out pink that looks like a stain when dabbed on gently with a fingertip. My new go-to: Laura Mercier Cremé Lip Colour in Rose, $24. If you want a product you can just swipe on quick, go for the It Cosmetics Vitality Lip Flush 4-in-1 Reviver in Je Ne Sais Quoi, $20. It’s a stain, lip balm, lip stick and gloss in one.

What products are you looking forward to using this summer?

— Carrie Stern Kleiner

Main image: Style.com

5 Makeup Swaps I’m Making for Summer

Diane von Furstenberg Spring 2012

As summer approaches, the beauty editor in me gets more and more giddy. It’s half because I was really inspired by the fresh makeup looks I spied backstage at the spring 2012 fashion shows and half because there’s something so liberating about ditching the full-coverage foundations and bright blushes I used to brighten my mood (and complexion) in the dreary winter months. Here are makeup swaps I’m happily making for summer. I hope they get you psyched too.

Beauty Swap No. 1: Foundation for Tinted Moisturizer

Practically every makeup look on the spring 2012 runways started with youthful-looking and glowing skin — especially at Alexander Wang. So I’ve already swapped my beloved Georgio Armani Luminous Silk Foundation, $59, for a lighter tinted moisturizer that will let my skin breathe in the New York heat. I recently fell in love with Aveda Inner Light Mineral Tinted Moisture, $28 for it’s sheer, natural look, but also for the fact that it stays on longer than most. Because a tinted moisturizer doesn’t offer up enough coverage to disguise my dark under-eye circles, I’m also using concealer.

My favorite application trick: Apply tinted moisturizer before concealer, so you can really see where and how much coverage you need. It’ll prevent your face from looked caked with makeup — something you definitely want to avoid come summer. Try Neutrogena 3-in-1 Concealer for Eyes, $8, which also contains SPF 20 to protect your delicate eye area — bonus!

Beauty Swap No. 2: Pink Blush for a Liquid Luminizer/Bronzer Combo

I totally dig the fresh, radiant faces seen at The Row’s spring 2012 show. All winter I dusted (and probably over-dusted) Nars Blush in Sex Appeal, $28, on the apples of my cheeks — it made me feel cheery and bright. But, now that I’m ready to look more beachy, I’ll be using this tip I picked up years ago: Mix a dot of liquid bronzer (I heart Laura Mercier Bronzing Gel, $38) with a dab of luminizer or highlighting liquid (try Stila All Over Liquid Luminizer, $20) on the back of your hand. Tap it right along the top of your cheekbones. It gives me a (faux) sun-kissed glow that looks totally natural.

Beauty Swap No. 3: Metallic Eyeshadow for Powder Bronzer

Monochromatic bronze shades are not only easy (multi-tasking, anyone?), but using the same shade family on your eyes and cheeks is also totally on-trend. We saw the look at Diane von Furstenberg, Narciso Rodriguez and Alexander McQueen. So, I’m ditching my metallic shadows like DuWop Crush 18 Carat, $18, and instead sweeping my go-to bronzer Nars Bronzing Powder in Casino, $34 on my eyes from lashlines to creases. This trick ensures a natural look that works for day or night.

Beauty Swap No. 4: Tweezers for Bold Brows

Full brows made a big statement at the Proenza Schouler and Derek Lam shows, so instead of worry about keeping my brows perfectly groomed, like I usually do, I’m going to let them grow out. To keep them tamed, I’ll use a clear brow gel, like Ardell Sculpting Gel for Brows in Clear, $4. I know, not touching your brows with tweezers sounds like crazy-talk, but I promise, after you get used to it, you’ll fall in love with the natural shape of your brows — I did. Also, a bold brow looks super chic when paired with a soft neutral lip, so don’t go crazy with the rest of your makeup if you have dark, look-at-me brows.

Beauty Swap No. 5: Matte Pink and Red Lipsticks for Sheer Lip Stains

Lightening up my lipstick situation has been a welcome change — one I’ve been waiting for since I spied the prettiest petal pinks at the Carolina Herrera fashion show. That’s why I’ll be stashing my matte bold lip colors for a washed-out pink that looks like a stain when dabbed on gently with a fingertip. My new go-to: Laura Mercier Cremé Lip Colour in Rose, $24. If you want a product you can just swipe on quick, go for the It Cosmetics Vitality Lip Flush 4-in-1 Reviver in Je Ne Sais Quoi, $20. It’s a stain, lip balm, lip stick and gloss in one.

What products are you looking forward to using this summer?

— Carrie Stern Kleiner

Main image: Style.com