It’s cruelty-free collaboration time again!!! J Since the official start of summer is only a few days away, today Liza from Makeup Matters by LNC, Catherine from Buying Cruelty Free, and I are sharing our 5 Must Have Summer Beauty Products! For some reason I had a really hard time narrowing this one down! I’ve gone back and forth over what to include so many times, but I think I’ve finally gotten my list to five – or close enough! J So without further ado, welcome to my humble little blog, and thanks for checking out my Summer Beauty Picks – and don’t forget to head over to Liza’s post and Catherine’s post for their picks as well!!! J

Catherine from Buying Cruelty Free

If you take away nothing else from this post, please realize the importance of sunscreen!!! It is important year-round, but especially in the summertime. I do my best to apply sunscreen every day to any areas that are exposed to the sun in the summer. My all-time favorite sunscreen for my body is the Alba Botanica Natural Hawaiian Sunscreen Revitalizing Green Tea SPF 45 Broad Spectrum. It protects from both UVA and UVB rays – you need to protect from both to help prevent skin cancer and premature aging! It is water resistant, and it has a pretty high SPF of 45. It smooths on like a standard lotion, but protects from the harmful rays of the sun. It smells pleasant and it’s not a strong or long-lasting scent. It is not too thick, it’s not greasy, and it absorbs nicely so you’re not stuck to your clothes all day. It’s an excellent sunscreen for the body and I absolutely swear by it! J
I’m not including this in my list, but feel I need to mention sunscreen for the face as well. Is that cheating? J I always use a moisturizer with SPF included, but since everyone’s skin is different, I wouldn’t dream of saying one moisturizer fits all, and that’s why this is kind of an aside. For my face, I rely on the Broad Screen SPF 40 from the Josie Maran Argan Daily Moisturizer (read my full review here). It’s a great moisturizer and I love that it has such a high SPF because I feel more protected – whether or not I really am! JIf I were to be outside all day, I would probably add a separate sunscreen for my face as well, but I do not have any specific face block to recommend. Just make sure there’s somethingprotecting you from those harmful UVA and UVB rays – both face and body!
Next I actually have two products that, when used in conjunction, will keep your skin soft, smooth and healthy looking…not to mention smelling delicious!!! Since most people are showing more skin during the summer, keeping your skin looking and feeling its best is important! I would highly recommend getting a dry brush to use before you get in the shower. I have the Yerba Prima Tampico Skin Brush that I found at Whole Foods. You simply take the dry brush and, in two long strokes towards your heart, brush it over your entire body. You want to avoid the décolletage because it is quite sensitive. This brushing will remove any dead skin, improve circulation, and leave you so soft and smooth, plus it will make for a closer shave and better absorption of the next item!
Once you’re out of the shower, you’ll want to moisturize that freshly scrubbed skin and replace the moisture that’s stripped by the shower. I absolutely love the Coconut Body Butter from Trader Joe’s. It smells sooooo good! It has a warm toasted coconut scent that is so perfect for summer (obviously if you don’t like coconut, you’ll hate this, but I adore it)! It’s a nice thick moisturizer, but it absorbs beautifully. It is made with Coconut Oil, Shea Butter and Vitamin E to leave skin amazingly soft and smooth. And I can’t not mention that it smells incredible again because I love, love, love the scent! J The scent is initially noticeable, but dries down to a faint hint of coconut that no one but you will notice, and it does fade away within a few hours. It’s also completely affordable (I believe it’s around $5 for 8oz) and I think it’s so much nicer than any other body butter I have tried! If you have a Trader Joe’s anywhere near you, pick up a tub. You won’t regret it! J
Moving on to the face, I struggled between a concealer, or a full-face light coverage-type product. I think I’ve finally settled on a tinted moisturizer. More specifically, I lovethe Jouer Matte Moisture Tint! I’ve been using the shade ”Linen.” It is oil-free, fragrance free, hypo-allergenic and contains a broad spectrum SPF 15 (great if your moisturizer doesn’t include sunscreen and you don’t want another step). It’s quick and easy to apply (I just use my fingers) and it provides surprisingly good coverage without feeling or looking heavy. It is buildable for those more troublesome areas too. It looks very natural and, though it’s considered matte, it seems to control shine without reducing radiance! Because of this, I feel like it can work for any type of skin as well. It’s not too greasy for oilier skins, but it’s not too dry for those with drier skin-types. It’s really the perfect every-skin tinted moisturizer! It’s an amazing product and I can see why it seems to be getting a lot of buzz lately! J
Sticking with yet another no fuss kind of summer essential with SPF 15, I have a tinted lip balm! It is the ELF Lip Balm SPF 15 in “Rose”from their Studio Line. It provides a decent punch of a natural flush, while protecting lips from the harsh rays of the sun. I don’t find that I need a mirror to apply this, which I really appreciate, yet it adds enough color to my lips so that I do not look like a corpse. It has a subtle tingly mint taste, and is moisturizing without being greasy. I have tried a few other shades of the ELF Lip Balm SPF 15, and some of them provide virtually no color, but the “Rose” is definitely great for just a sheer wash of visible, but not overdone, color. The “Peach” is nice as well, but the “Nude” and the “Pink” are practically invisible on my relatively pale lips.
Finally, I have a blush that is amazing and perfect for summer! I feel like mascara would make a better “complete” simple summer look, but there’s not one mascara that I would say is in my top five, so I’m sticking with the blush! It is the Josie Maran Coconut Watercolor Cheek Gelée. I have the shade “Poppy Paradise” and it’s a beautiful natural flush of pinky-peach. The color looks scary in the pot, but provides a sheer stain of color that is perfect for summer! It really does stay all day and it is translucent on the skin, so it looks very natural. The color is buildable as well, so you can adjust the intensity. It has a cooling effect when you apply it and it is also water and sweat resistant, giving it another check in the “perfect for summer” category! J The texture is quite interesting as well – it kind of feels like gelatin. Another really unique product that I absolutely adore and feel like it’s one of the best blushes I have for the summer!!! J
So there you have the 5 – ok 6 or 7 – items that I finally decided on as my top beauty picks for summer! I hope you enjoyed them and are ready for a wonderfully beautiful summer!!! J Please don’t forget to check out Liza’s and Catherine’sposts for their cruelty-free summer picks as well because I know they’ll be amazing products as well! Thanks again for checking out my picks and I hope to see you again next time! J

If you’d like to check out the other cruelty-free beauty collaborations Catherine, Liza and I have done, you can find them listed below:
5 Favorite New Products:

Top 5 Cruelty-Free Brushes:


  1. Hi Christine! I had a really hard time narrowing down my Top 5 too. I was just realizing how my two favorite foundations don't contain SPF, so I've been looking for a good sunscreen. I'm definitely going to check out the JM one… though actually my wallet would probably appreciate it if I looked at the Alba one too 😉 Ohhh the JM gelee… it looks amazing. I'm including it in my next “eye-catchers” post… I'm soooo itching to try it. As always, LOVE your post. So happy we are doing these. Ooh that was a good idea to include a little roundup of our past collabs at the end, I should do that next time 🙂

  2. I am dying to try those Josie Maran cheek tints. those are on my wishlist and look perfect for summer!! I'm a big fan of her SPF 40 moisturizer too. good choices! That Alba sunscreen looks great too! I'll have to try it for sure!

  3. If you want to try the JM, they may have a sample size. If not, they have a lot of sample size sets on QVC and a few at Sephora. I really love the moisturizer and I love that it's a nice high UVA/UVB SPF. It's hard to find that in a moisturizer!

    The gelee IS amazing! 🙂 The texture's fun to play with too. It's SO nice for summer because it's easy, stays put and looks really natural.

    I'm so glad we've been doing these posts too! It's a nice challenge for me, and seeing what you and Liza pick is so much fun! 🙂 It's also nice to have a bunch of cruelty-free suggestions all linked together 🙂

  4. Let us know how you like the gelee if you try one! I'd love to hear your thoughts! 🙂 I really love them for summer because they really last and they look so natural. Plus, they're really comfortable – especially in hot, sweaty weather! I forgot to mention that they can be used on the lips too!

    Tha Alba Sunscreen is great, although I'm not a fan of the Very Emollient version. It doesn't blend in very well. The Hawaiian one is great though! 🙂

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