Summer Beauty Essentials

We’re excited about summer fragrances that not only smell great in the heat, but also evoke the perfect sunny retreat. We asked Sarah Zaret and Iris Brostowicz—two of our Beauty Stylists who specialize in fragrance—to spill on the most delectable new and classic scents inspired by summer memories.

Lei It On: Say, “summer vacation” and instantly an island getaway comes to mind. We all agree that nothing smells more like paradise than exotic flowers. Bronze Goddess from Estée Lauder teams classic suntan coconut with Tahitian gardenia. Sarah says it makes her want to turn up Ziggy Marley’s “Beach in Hawaii” for an instant mahalo moment. Eau de Lune by Laura Mercier picks mysterious plumeria to linger above other white florals and musk. The results? The perfect scent for an intimate island evening spent in a moonlit grotto. Iris loves BVLGARI Omnia Coral for a “fresh, fruity scent that somehow doesn’t overpower the senses on a sweltering day.” We bet the delicious combination of sparkling citrus with the allure of hibiscus will keep you cool in the cabana.

Stylist Tip: Summer gives perfume a one-two punch. Scents smell stronger on the skin, but sweat makes staying power take a dive. The solution? For easiest wear, opt for fragrances with excellent sillage but fewer spicy and sweet notes.

Island Longing: The noses at Bond No. 9 blended Shelter Island to recall every detail of a laid-back Long Island summer. Starting with an opulent opening of precious oud, shore-skimming marine notes quickly lure you to grab your weekender and escape the big city. Our experts love that this unisex scent satisfies both women and men looking to break out of their summer fragrance box.

Gold Coast: Feeling even more adventurous? Iris suggests Rive d’Ambre by Tom Ford for its “warm and compelling” notes. “It wraps the wearer in a blend of citrus fruits and amber. Based in essential oils, this perfume elevates daily fragrance,” she says. We couldn’t have made it sound any more daringly delicious.

Scent Staycation: Finally, for those of us who can’t get away, we can always take a journey of the mind with a great summer read. Iris cites The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende as a fave because it “pulls you into its complexities and fully entertains your mind. I would pair it with Oyédo by diptyque. It’s just as complex and fulfilling to the nose as the book is to the reader.”  Yuzu citrus lends its multifaceted Asian charm to this intricate olfactory treat, named after Edo, the former name of Tokyo.

For more summer fragrance suggestions—from fresh to floral to fruityvisit our Summer Scents Shop.

Photo credits: Mona Lee, Liz Marklewicz, Stefanie Frank, Marcie Rouman & Amy Morgan

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Christopher Stark, one of our talented Beauty Stylists from Nordstrom Natick Mall, shares some of his go-to summer beauty essentials as well as his current favorite makeup trends.

Twenty years apiece of hairdressing and makeup artistry allow me to be fairly edited as far as what and how I sell to my customers. 
It is my biggest belief that every person who sits in my chair should be given a look that she loves and can achieve at home. I always want people to feel their best and, most importantly, feel confident that they can apply their makeup themselves. Being a beauty stylist is a dream job, as I can be honest and straightforward about everything I recommend…and stay away from!

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Whether we’re seeking out the sun or not, UV exposure is pretty much a given during the summer. We all know the risks of overexposure—from premature aging to sunspots and worse—but most of us still don’t apply protection every single day. Newsflash or not, the experts agree that everyday sunscreen is a must! Read on for their tips and recommendations.

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Beach-bronzed skin is a summer must. But the consequences of overexposure are not so hot. Our experts Debra and Kate are sharing their top sun-care picks & tips and making it simple to soak up the rays without getting burned.

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Pool-Party Pretty, Pronto

Ahh, summertime, when cold-weather gear gives way to…bathing suits. The first pool-party evite hits your inbox and you realize you never got around to those extra Pilates classes and spa appointments. No need to panic or send lame excuses—these pool beauty lifesavers will get you head-to-toe-gorgeous in no time flat.

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Mascara is the one makeup item most women won’t leave the house without, but who wants to look like a raccoon in the pool? On the other hand, removing waterproof mascara can often be a bear. CARGO ‘Better than Waterproof’ Mascara truly lives up to its name, and comes off (when you want it to) with warm water and gentle pressure—no need for special eye-makeup remover.

With no time for a waxing or dealing with ugly razor bumps, you’ll be glad to have the Bliss ‘Trim & Bare It’ Grooming System. This handy cordless gadget has four attachments for trimming and micro-shaving delicate areas (and also can be used on eyebrows and facial hair). Best of all, you can use it in the shower to cut down on prep time.

Self-tanner: the slimming, concealing gift to bodies everywhere. We love Clarins Self Tanning Instant Gel—it dries ultra-fast, and the oil-free, streak-free formula gives you a natural golden (not orange) color that lasts.

When it comes to poolside makeup, most of us want to look carefree and water-sporty, but could use a little help to cover imperfections or dark circles. CARGO ‘blu_ray’ High Definition Concealer is waterproof, long-wearing, and designed for completely natural-looking coverage in places you want it—with a line-smoothing ingredient to boot.

Kate Somerville truly gets pool appearance anxiety: her ‘Body Glow’ Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 20 is the perfect topper for self-tanner. Not only does this lightweight lotion give you the best kind of sun protection, it contains caffeine for firming, algae for conditioning, and mango butter for softening (and a delicious smell). Bonus: light-reflecting pearls make your skin glisten beautifully in the sun.

To add extra glow to your cheeks, try AERIN Beauty Multicolor for Lips & Cheeks. This natural, radiant color looks gorgeous on every skin tone, and its subtle, luxurious rose scent makes you feel like you’re poolside at a bungalow in St. Barth’s. (Currently available in selected stores; call a Nordstrom Beauty Stylist or Live Chat to order now. Available online mid-July.)

Wearing lipstick to the pool sends a signal you’re that person who never gets her hair wet (like your mom). Up your down-to-earth factor with Dior ‘Addict Lip Glow’ Color Reviver Balm, which looks pinkish in the tube but deepens when applied to lips for a soft, natural-looking tint that lasts for hours. (It also contains sunscreen—Mom will be happy.)

The one place it’s essential to look ‘done’ is your toes. Get in the spirit of the season with Deborah Lippmann The Mermaids Summer Collection: fun, sparkly shades that glisten like treasures in the sea. (Beauty Stylist Sarah Zaret, Nordstrom Mission Viejo, turned us on to this pool-perfect line. Thanks, Sarah!)

Shop our full collection of summer essentials including sun care, skincare, makeup and fragrance.

[Story & photos by Stefanie Frank]

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Since my recent re-lo to Seattle, I’ve discovered there’s no need to get away during the summer. With the sun finally shining on nearby mountains, lakes, beaches, waterfalls and brilliantly blooming backyards, a Northwest staycation hands-down beats the hassles of long-distance travel. And while I love getting back to nature, I do have my limits with going au natural; luckily, I’ve found the perfect, portable beauty companions for each of my favorite staycation destinations.

Boating on Lake Washington. When you’re jumping in and out of the water, you need makeup that’s waterproof and towel-proof, like stila lip crush lip & cheek stain. This amazing product reacts with the pH levels of your skin to create a perfectly natural and unique pop of color that stays put, and the brush on the pen makes application a breeze. My favorite water-sporting color: Pomegranate Crush.

Camping near Mt. Rainier. My husband always challenges me to get everything I need into one backpack, so multipurpose items are a must. The answer to all of my skin needs (healthy, protected, natural-looking) comes neatly packaged in one tube of Supergoop! Daily Correct CC Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 35. This wilderness wonder product covers and smoothes imperfections, provides an anti-aging serum and protects with a higher SPF. The silky formula is a treat when I’m roughing it.

Hiking on the Olympic Peninsula. When you finally reach the summit or waterfall, it’s nice to look (and feel) fresh for a picnic and your Instagram-worthy pictures. To keep sweat at bay, I always carry a few packets of DERMAdoctor MED e TATE Hyperhidrosis Control Wipes. Specially medicated for extra sweating, this handy product can still be used on your face, underarms and even your feet, and helps you stay drier on any trek.

A day at Alki Beach. Sunscreen is a no-brainer, but I also like to keep my hair from looking like it’s been through a hurricane. Salt water is so drying, and the breezes from Puget Sound can whip tresses into a frizzy tangle—unless you come prepared with a leave-in conditioner in your beach bag. My favorite: B. the Product Leave It In Conditioner. This lifesaver doesn’t weigh down even fine, thin hair like mine, and the spray pump helps the product reach your head instead of blowing in the wind. It’s great for kids’ hair too, and makes comb-out time much less painful.

Spa time at home. Why deal with traffic when you can simply lie back in the tub with a good book, a glass of Washington wine and some Aveda Stress-fix Soaking Salts? With lavender and sage essences infusing mineral-rich salt and sugar, this total-body indulgence is my go-to remedy for relaxing and unwinding—especially after days spent hiking, camping, boating and playing on the beach. (Sometimes I need a staycation after my staycation…)

I hope wherever you live, you’ll take some summer staycation days of your own. A little downtime is one of the best beauty treatments out there!

Shop our store for more summer beauty essentials.

Images courtesy of Washington State Parks & Recreation Commission

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Get your glow on and gear up for summer at our in-store Summer Beauty Event. Our makeup and skincare experts will work one-on-one to show you what’s new, what’s essential and how to make it all work for you. Plus, when you spend $125 on beauty or fragrance you’ll receive a hot-pink jelly clutch filled with selected samples—free! So grab a friend, find a store near you to make an appointment—and enjoy an afternoon that’s all about you. We’ve even created a handy shopping list with our picks shown below to print out and bring with you.

Our top-ten summer beauty essentials:

1. Foundation with SPF. Our pick: Shiseido Sun Protection Liquid Foundation SPF 42.

2. Sunscreen. Our pick: Clarins Sun Wrinkle Control Cream for Face SPF 50+.

3. Bronzer. Our pick: Vincent Longo La Riviera Sun Face & Body Bronzer in Beauty Sin.

4. Nail polishOur pick: NARS ‘Pierre Hardy – Ethno Run’ Nail Duo.

5. Lip balm with SPF. Our pick: Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15 in Rosé.

6. Waterproof mascara. Our pick: Giorgio Armani ‘Eyes to Kill’ Waterproof Mascara.

7. Foot Cream. Our pick: philosophy ‘soul owner’ exfoliating foot cream.

8. Self-tanner. Our pick: Xen-Tan Dark Lotion.

9. Hair remedy. Our pick: ALTERNA ‘Bamboo Beach’ Summer Sun Recovery Spray.

10. Summery fragrance. Our pick: Hermès Un Jardin sur le Toit.

Learn more details about our event here.

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