Summer Skincare Essentials – Face

As I pack for my trip abroad, I have been thinking of the summer beauty essentials that I want to bring with me. My skin is oily and acne-prone, but I also try to find products that are gentle. Here are some of my summer facial skincare essentials.

Summer Beauty - Face


In the morning I have been cleansing with Lush’s Coalface. I love this soap. I think the charcoal works really wells to absorb oil and lightly exfoliate. But this soap also has rosewood oil, sandalwood oil and licorice root.

At night, I’m usually too lazy to wash my face and am thankful for the creation of facial wipes. They make it super easy to remove makeup and Yes To Tomatoes gets the job done and gently treats acne.


Some use toner and some don’t and I am still unclear if this is a universal skincare necessity. I think that anyone with oily and acne prone skin can really benefit from using astringent because it has made a great deal of difference in keeping me acne free and less oily throughout the day. Witch hazel is gentle, effective and a multi-tasker. Plus these wipes will be perfect for traveling.


During the day, I have been using L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Miracle Blur cream. I wanted to try this pricy, drugstore product since if debuted and I’m pretty happy with the results. The texture is primer-like and leaves my face matte. It is pretty hard to find affordable, MATTE sunscreen and this fits the bill. Cetaphil Dermacontrol Oil Control Moisturizer is another safe bet during the summer months. It’s light and gentle but still has SPF 30. But it doesn’t give me a matte finish ūüė¶

At night, I use Ambi Fade Cream. It is amazing at evening out my skin-tone and is incredibly affordable. Another great option that is hydroquinone¬†free is Clinique’s Even Better Dark Spot Corrector. I used it for a couple of months last year with superb results. The serum texture works well during the hot months and layers well under sunscreen, making it easy to use twice a day (for more effective results).

Eye Cream:

As I have gotten older, eye cream has become increasingly important. During the day, I love using Clinique All about Eyes De-Puffing Massage. The roller ball feels cool and refreshing on the skin and the packaging makes it easy to bring with me in my makeup bag and use throughout the day.

At night I have been using Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Serum. This stuff is amazing on dry skin. I have been using samples of this when I had a period of very dry skin around my eyes in early July. Constant use of this eye serum helped to moisturize the dry skin around my eyes without irritation or any greasing feeling. I am now convinced that I need to buy a full bottle.

Lip Balm:

I have written before about my love for lip balm and now you will hear it again. Lip balm is an essential to my daily life. I love Burt’s Bees and¬†Nivea, but a¬†cocoa butter stick¬†makes a great lip balm too. I use them interchangeably throughout the day.

What skincare items are a must for you during the summer?



Inspiration: Summer Business Casual

Summer business casual used to be a foreign concept to me. For women, business casual is a creative concept and for me the most important thing is to look professional. This can sometimes be hard when heat and humidity are involved. But I find that as long as I layer, it is easy to peel off clothes when I go outside into the heat and humidity and pile on when I’m inside with freezing air conditioning. Here are some of the looks that have inspired me and what i love about all of them is that they include; bright colors, stripes and are all modest enough to be classified, in my mind, as business casual.

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All images from Pinterest.

What does summer business casual mean to you?


My Summer Update

Blogging can be hard.

I write this statement in hopes that readers will understand my absence from blogging since early May.

As I stated in my about page, this blog was started as a learning experience for me and the experience has been great! I love interacting with the blogging community and find that blogging is challenging, interactive and creatively rewarding.

But it is also time consuming. It takes time to learn and apply new skills when it comes to taking photos and editing to put out work that you take pride in, and sometimes other priorities take precedence. With summer going by so quickly and my schedule dramatically changing from month to month, I have found little time for blogging until today.

So here is a quick synopsis of my summer so far.

I have been doing some serious closet cleaning. My premonitions for closet cleaning started in June and came at a good time because I am planning a move in September. I have been planning this move since early July and I am excited to be in an apartment building with a rooftop deck (that will be perfect for gatherings with friends and 7/4/2014 fireworks), a gym (hopefully this will encourage me to work out more), and close proximity to the DC metro! Here are just a few items that I have for sale on Threadflip. Check it out when you get a chance.


I made an amazing trip to Philadelphia at the end of July to see Major Lazer with some of my NYC buddies.


The weekend trip to Philly was loads of fun and a welcome retreat. I stayed in Fishtown which reminded me a lot of my neighborhood back home. Most of all, I really enjoyed cheesesteaks from Geno’s,


and Dim Sum from Ocean City Seafood Restaurant in Chinatown. I hope to be back soon.


On another exciting note, I am going to Turkey at the end of the week!


I have been planing this trip ever since I found out I was accepted into a study abroad program in Istanbul through my graduate school. It was such a fantastic opportunity to add to my graduate experience and will be such a great ending to a fun and productive summer. My study abroad program in Istanbul will last for a week, but I have planned to extend my stay for another week to sail the Turkish Turquoise Coast for a little R&R. I have an exciting two weeks ahead of me! To carry my through the summer, I have created a Pinterest board to be inspired by Turkish culture,


and reading Who Really Speaks for Islam: What a Billion Muslims Really Think by John Esposito to learn more about Muslim culture and values.

While I am really excited about my trip, packing really stresses me out. I am not used to planning my outfits. I think my experience with the 30 X 30 remix challenge has really helped me to look at clothing differently. I am more conscious about using pieces in multiple ways. So I hope I will be able to pack modestly.

On a final note, I must thank my readers for all of their support. Blogging is a really great creative outlet and I am glad that people are enjoying my work. I have learned so much and am looking forward to putting some of my new ideas to work. Check back soon.