This is a story about glowing skin—not the kind that radiates questionable incandescence and precedes an emergency 911 call—but skin that looks natural, warm, and healthy. It comes from two channels (one if you’re really lucky): skincare and a little bit of makeup. Let’s dive into both.
Healthy skin begins with clear skin, which is married to a dedicated lineup of products. Above all else, cod liver oil helps promote my clear skin the most. I’ve discussed that at length here.
My current anti-acne favorites include cleansers from Glycolix (Gly/Sal 5-2) and Murad (Clarifying Cleanser); Clinique’s Clearing Gel (super helpful on my forehead and chin), and Murad’s Acne Spot Fast Fix treatment (for stubborn blemishes).
After the acne battle, I turn to radiance-boosting supplies. For that, Paula’s Choice’s Weekly Retexturizing Foaming Treatment 4% BHA reins supreme. Simply put, it’s the best at unveiling smooth, even skin overnight. It’s the kind of product you want to write a love song about and carry pictures of in your wallet, but you won’t because you’re not John Legend and wallets are for cards and cash, duh.
Ren’s Radiance Renewal Mask also helps create even skin. It employs micro skin-polishers, glycolic and lactic acid, to lift dark spots and resuscitate dull skin. The gel-like mask smells great too, which is a welcome shift from my usual tubs of sulfur and clay.
As of late, Clarins’ Double Serum is my morning post-cleansing treatment of choice. The ingredients read like a Gwyneth Paltrow shopping list, with green tea, vitamin E, quinoa, avocado, and macadamia, rounding out the serum. A study proves that Double Serum helps skin resist oxidation by 140% (cars aren’t the only things that rust), boosts production of collagen by 915%, and delivers a more even skin tone for 88% of users. The super hydrating serum is like a Caribbean vacation on your face. I was sold immediately.
Before bedtime, Paula’s Choice’s 1% Retinol Treatment with Peptides and Vitamin C carries me through the night and distributes smoother, plumper skin in the process. As far as retinols go, it’s one of the best (I’ll let you know when it’s available for purchase).
And no glow-worthy skincare regimen is complete without sunscreen. I love RoC’s Multi Correxion 5 in 1 Daily Moisturizer with SPF 30. The creamy formula never leaves my face chalky or greasy beyond repair.
The shortest road to a crazy-town face is foundation ill-matched for your skin. Spend the extra time at Sephora to match your color and tone to save a lifetime of wacko-pictures (Instagram filters aren’t Jesus; they can’t save everyone). Most drugstores allow returns on cosmetics, so no excuses there either. I mixed L’Oréal’s True Match foundation with Clarins’ Instant Light Radiance Boosting Complexion Base in Rose and applied all over my face with a Beauty Blender. The mixture gives a glow you can’t even buy at a 5-star resort (I’m pretty sure, but I’m willing to test the theory as well).
Around the perimeter of my face is Jouer’s Mineral Powder Bronzer in Suntan—a bronzer deep and yellow-based that frames my face and allows the brightest parts to shine even more. As for cheeks, I don’t mind heavy blush for the right occasion, but for a subtle flush I turn to Tarte’s cheek stains, which are refreshing in just about any shade. Here I’m wearing “Exposed.”