I would like to receive the following free email newsletters:

Newsletter Signup
  1. Bridal Party
  2. Dining Out
  3. Kliman Online
  4. Photo Ops
  5. Shop Around
  6. Where & When
  7. Well+Being
  8. Learn more
Best Face Forward
Comments () | Published July 1, 2009

Best Bronzers and Tanners

The latest self-tanners develop gradually, smell nice, and give subtle, credible color.

We loved Clarins Radiance-Plus Self Tanning Cream-Gel ($52 at Nordstrom) and Jergens Natural Glow Healthy Complexion Daily Facial Moisturizer SPF 20 (around $8.50 at drugstores).

Or consider bronzers. We found fabulous powder bronzers you can sweep on and wash right off. Victoria Stiles recommends applying them wherever the sun would naturally hit your face—forehead, nose, cheeks, chin. She likes MAC Bronzing Powder ($21 at Macy’s), with a bit of shimmer. We also like two by Bobbi Brown: Illuminating Bronzing Powder ($33 at Nordstrom) and Shimmer Brick for Body ($75 at Nordstrom).

Oil-Free, Even in the Heat

Whether or not you wear foundation, try a foundation primer over moisturizer. “It helps absorb excess oils and keeps skin matte but still luminous,” says Stiles, who uses Liquid Powder Shine Eliminator by Natural Born Cosmetics ($16.50 at

We were equally impressed by the three Smashbox Photo Finish primers, all at Nordstrom: the original Foundation Primer ($36), oil-free Photo Finish Foundation Primer Light ($36), and moisturizing Photo Finish SPF 15 With Dermaxyl ($42).

To keep eye shadow in place, we liked Chanel’s Professional Eye Shadow Base ($32) and Trish McEvoy Eye Base Essentials ($24), both at Nordstrom. Stiles uses Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion in Ultra-Sheer Nude ($17 at Sephora).

Lay on Foundation—Lightly

TV’s switch to high definition has changed foundation and loose powder. But you don’t have to be in front of a camera to achieve what Stiles calls a “flawless” complexion. She uses two Make Up For Ever products: HD Invisible Cover Foundation ($40), a sheer formula with good coverage that comes in 25 shades, and HD Microfinish Powder ($30), which looks ice-white yet is colorless on every skin.

“It’s the go-to powder in the industry right now,” Stiles says. “There’s nothing like it.” Both products, available at Erwin Gomez Salon & Spa in Georgetown, are lightweight and perfect for summer.

For concealer, Stiles says Keromask Concealer and Camouflage Cream ($36 at is the best.

Blot Out Shine

Blotting papers are a summer godsend because they remove shine without making makeup heavier. Stiles uses Nurturing Force Continuous Roll Blotting Papers ($14 at We like Boscia Fresh Blotting Linens ($10 for 100 sheets at, which come in seven scents including peppermint and orange.

If you prefer pressed powder, Stiles recommends Natural Born Cosmetics Oil Control Blotting Powder Compact ($9.95 at, which looks white in the container but is translucent and provides a matte finish.

Stiles isn’t a fan of mineral powder; she won’t use it on her summer brides because she says it can look chalky in photographs.

The Eyes Have It

To keep eyeliner from moving in humidity, Stiles loves MAC Liquidlast Liner in the color Point Black ($16.50 at Bloomingdale’s): “This does not budge. You have to use a cold cream at night to break it down.”

If you prefer an eye pencil, Stiles suggests Aqua Eyes by Make Up For Ever in Matte Black($17 at Erwin Gomez Salon & Spa): “It stays put all day, even underwater.” We loved Lancôme Le Stylo Waterproof Long Lasting Eyeliner in the color Minuit ($23.50 at and Chanel Stylo Yeux Waterproof in Marine ($28 at Nordstrom).

For a fun palette of 40 pretty summer eye shadows, Stiles suggests Yaby World of Pearl Paints ($136 at We loved Laura Mercier crease-proof Metallic and Satinée Crème Eye Colours, respectively in Platinum and Peach Organza; they feel creamy in the tube, and they dry like sheer powder ($22 at Neiman Marcus).

If you’re going swimming or to the beach, Stiles says, wear waterproof mascara; use water-resistant for every day. Her faves are Max Factor 2000 Calorie Extreme Lash Plumper Mascara in the color Extreme Blackout (around $11 at drugstores) and Chanel Inimitable Multi-Dimensionnel Mascara in Noir ($30 at Nordstrom).

We had fun with Lancôme Ôscillation Water-Resistant Mascara ($34 at Bloomingdale’s); a vibrating wand “oscillates” 7,000 times a minute. It was weird. In a good way.


Subscribe to Washingtonian

Discuss this story

Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question. The Washingtonian reserves the right to remove or edit content once posted.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Posted at 05:00 PM/ET, 07/01/2009 RSS | Print | Permalink | Comments () | Articles