I think I may have been a solar panel in a former life. Admittedly that’s a slightly unconventional thing to have been in a past life – people tend to cite cats, dogs, birds, royalty – but I can’t think of anything, either living or inanimate, that sums me up better than a solar panel. I like nothing more than to lie completely flat under the blazing sun (albeit in full SPF and for sensible periods of time); I get an instant sense of wellbeing, a palpable surge of energy. It’s as though my batteries are being recharged. Five minutes in the sun and I’m a completely different person, and I say this with only the smallest hint of exaggeration.
None of this bizarre intro has anything to do with the post below, other than the fact that I love the sun, and the products featured remind me of the sun if it happens to be in hiding. Tenuous, but there we go. If you would like to douse yourself in smells of the summer, then continue reading. These are my instant uplifts – they are cheering on a dull day but really come into their own when the heat is on. Heady, exotic, sultry, they’re like a blast of holiday spirit.
Let’s start with Bronze Goddess from Estée Lauder, perhaps one of the most popular summer scents of all time. I’m guessing at that, so don’t quote me, but surely it must be. This year sees the return of the Eau Fraiche Skinscent, a lighter version of the perfume but with the same “warm skin” notes.
(Sounds slightly creepy to say “warm skin”, but you know what I mean; beachy, coconut-oiled skin. Not skin that’s being slow-cooked in a sous vide.)
Coconut, amber, Tiare flower – it’s a walk to the beach bar on a lush exotic island, it’s a nap in a well-placed hammock (ie, not beneath a palm tree because HOW CAN ANYONE RELAX BENEATH COCONUTS?).
L’Oreal Professionel’s Nutrifier DD Balm is on this page for two very good reasons: the first, it smells amazing. Really quite similar in overall effect to Tom Ford’s Soleil Blanc, below. It’s got the heady florals, the coconut creaminess and some sort of sexy warmth, though I couldn’t tell you the notes. It’s not a fragrance, it’s a hair product.
And that’s the second reason it’s here; the Nutrifier DD Balm is my current daily treat for dry ends. With my post-partum hair-loss issue (again, I know, it seems like only yesterday it was happening for the first time!) I have to try and keep what’s left looking good. This seems to smooth and tame without adding any heaviness, so I’m going through it like the clappers. You can find the Nutrifier Glycerol + Coco Oil DD Balm (to give it its official title) here* at Amazon. It’s £9.15.
You know the drill with my Colab Dry Shampoo by now, surely: the most hardworking haircare product you’ll find this summer, it adds amazing fragrance as well as tidying up greasy roots and adding volume to limp, lank lengths. Bestselling scent “Paradise” is another desert island nap in a well-placed hammock, this time with outstandingly great hair as well as sexy-smelling skin. Quite often I use the dry shampoo and skip wearing any actual perfume – it’s got the tropical thing going on, with the white flowers, tonka bean and coconut, and the scent lasts for ages. No white residue so you can keep on topping it up and reviving your roots – it’s at FeelUnique*, Superdrug* and BeautyMart, £3.50. (I am a proud founder of the Colab Dry Shampoo brand, so please do give it a try if you haven’t already!)
I can’t baste myself in enough of this body oil from Tom Ford. I’ve declared my undying love for Soleil Blanc before, but the oil in the same fragrance is a bit of a treat. Not before the beach, because you’d be a walking sand statue in around three seconds flat, but for all other scenarios, it’s a dream. (Except, perhaps, anything where you need a bit of a grip on things. Surfing. Or posing on a car bonnet. You’d just slide straight off! And don’t even think about trying to open a jam jar if you have this stuff on your hands…) Again, notes are warm and sexy – amber, almonds, a spot of coconut, and then the requisite heady white flowers. That old chestnut! Or I should say tonka bean… You can find Tom Ford Soleil Blanc Body Oil at Selfridges here* – it’s £48.