Three beauty buffs give us the lowdown on the summer make-up & skincare products they swear by to provide hot-weather inspo for holiday season

If you’re reading this, then chances are you’re a bit like us – you’ll take any opportunity to have a nosey into someone else's beauty routine. It’s as fun as it’s informative. Lucky then, that we’ve managed to interview three wonderful women who live all across the world, (Los Angeles, Dubai and Amsterdam), in order to find out what make-up and skincare products have earned pride of place in their routines. Let us introduce you to Carly, Cigdem and Katie who have all the tips and tricks that may just help us inspire our own beauty bags as the temperatures start to rise – both at home and away.

Image of Carly Pike
Carly Pike

Carly moved from Wales to sunny Dubai five years ago. She’s 36, a mum to the seriously adorable Teddy and Blossom, and works as a retail manager. 

"There are several challenges when it comes to perfecting a beauty routine in Dubai," explains Carly. "When the heat increases my skin becomes oily and that can be hard to manage at times. We’re also currently wearing masks inside the malls. I have one on for at least 11 hours a day so I tend to suffer with outbreaks around my chin and neck. As a result, I’ve been on a mission to find great make-up that stands the test of time."

It’s no surprise that Carly’s beauty bag consists of products that don’t overwhelm her oily complexion. Instead, she reaches for those she’s found to work in harmony with her skin.

"I get on incredibly well with NARS Smooth & Protect Primer SPF50. It’s amazing as an extra layer of protection against UVA and UVB rays which is super important when living somewhere as sunny as Dubai. I’m always on the go too, so it’s vital to have something that’s quick and multi-use – it really does act as the perfect base for make-up too.

"And I have to say my Nars obsession is real, because when it comes to my base, I have another two faves from them! NARS Light Reflecting Foundation is buildable so I can choose my coverage based on each occasion. I pair it with a dusting of NARS Light Reflecting Setting Powder – Pressed, to ensure it doesn’t budge.

"Dubai’s known for its stunning sunsets, so picking a blush that flatters my skin and compliments that beautiful late evening light is a must for me. MAC Powder Blush in Melba is my perfect summer shade. I’ll complete my look with some lipstick – I’m a huge lippie lover! MAC Cremesheen Lipstick in Bosom Friend is my favourite thanks to its semi-gloss finish that’s very light on the lips. Matte lipsticks tend to crack in the heat and humidity, drying out my lips way too fast."

Carly’s ultimate summer beauty take-away?

"Always have blotting paper to hand for a quick fix if you’re feeling oily or sweaty! I use Boots Skin Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets."

Pic Credit: Carly Pike @carlyblossomandbear

Image of Cigdem Tanrioglu
Cigdem Tanrioglu

Say hello to Cigdem. She’s a 32-year-old former beauty and fashion journalist. Nowadays, she splits her time between London and LA, and works in E-commerce.

"When I’m in LA, I always notice that my skin care priorities begin to change," says Cigdem. "My skin is fairly normal, but travelling can make it dull, so I focus on hydrating, brightening and protecting. The one product I couldn’t live without is Clinique Moisture Surge 100H Auto-Replenishing Hydrator. I always slather it on my face at the start of a long flight and it keeps my skin feeling soft and plump for days. I also apply La Roche-Posay Anthelios UVMUNE 400 Invisible Fluid SPF50+ – an excellent SPF is one of my beauty must-haves."

In terms of make-up, Cigdem likes to focus on a sheer, natural look that doesn’t look OTT in the sun. Consider her the classic, effortless Cali cool girl.

"My base consists of Benefit The POREfessional Face Primer Minimising Pores and IT Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream with SPF50. I’ll then spritz Urban Decay All Nighter Make-up Setting Spray, all across my complexion. These three are my ultimate combo and allow my make-up to remain flawless for hours – even in the hottest of sun! I love powder blushes as they’re easy to build – Dior Rouge Blush Couture Colour Long-Wear Powder Blush in Delicate Matte suits pretty much all skin tones and suits me when I’m both tanned or paler. When hot weather equates to dry lips, then I’ll often find myself reaching for a gloss. Maybelline Lifter Gloss Plumping Hydrating Lip Gloss is a total treat and the infusion of hyaluronic acid really plumps and moisturises my pout. A slick of the lash-enhancing  IT Cosmetics Superhero Mascara Black is my final step and I’m good to go."

And the one tip Cigdem wants every beauty lover to know?

"Never ever go to bed without taking your make-up off! It doesn't matter how tired or drunk you are, cleansing is key for pe

Pic credit: Cigdem Tanrioglu @cigdemtan

Image of Katie Andrew
Katie Andrew

Katie Andrew is a 27-year-old social media manager and fashion and beauty influencer living in Amsterdam, where she’s been since moving from Northern Ireland in 2021.

"It’s a really nice way of life here,’ she says, ‘And the fact that the majority of individuals are super interested in fashion, beauty and wellbeing makes life that bit more exciting."

Needless to say, we’re pretty excited to delve into her summer beauty bag. Katie’s vibe? All about the glow.

"My summer skin care always includes Boots Tea Tree Oil – I find it really helps calm my complexion. In Amsterdam, there’s a big love for brightening products, so I always try to include Clinique Fresh Pressed Daily Booster with Pure Vitamin C 10% – it’s brimming with skin-nourishing goodness. 

"I’m a huge advocate for using SPF every single day, even if I’m WFH on my laptop. Carbon Theory Day-Lite SPF 50+ is a great, lightweight option. When it comes to make-up, I’m never without Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base. It’s amazing for all skin types and gives the best base for foundation. For days when I’ve a long day of meetings, I’ll use a fuller coverage base like Milani Conceal + Perfect 2-in-1 Foundation + Concealer and when I want a “no make-up” look, Sculpted By Aimee Connolly Second Skin Dewy Finish Foundation is gorgeous. I’ll apply these with a damp beauty blender for ultimate staying power – a must when living in a busy, hot city.

"I always finish my complexion with some bronzing. I prefer brown undertones as opposed to grey, so Nars Mini Bronzing Powder in Laguna is perfect for popping in my handbag. I’ll apply it all over my face and across my eyelids. I’m a recent convert to lip oil and Collection Lip Spa Lip Oil leaves change from a fiver and looks so effortless."

One summer beauty myth Katie wants to dispel?

"Just because you have oily skin in the summer, doesn’t mean you have to aim for a matte finish. Radiant, dewy skin is so gorgeous and more natural in my book. Bring on the glow!"