Beach / Summer Hair and Skin Essentials

The Easter holiday may have just ended, but summer still seems to be in full swing here in the Philippines, and beach season hasn’t ended just yet. I personally wasn’t able to jump in on the bandwagon of local travellers over the long weekend, but I’m in high spirits I still have maybe over a month to schedule another beach trip. That being said, going on vacation by the sea can be great for one’s personal well-being, but quite stressful on our hair and skin, so I’ve rounded up my go-to hair and skin care products for the summer for a not-so-quick review and recommendation.


1.) Clairol Shimmer Lights Shampoo and Shimmer Lights Conditioner - If you have bleached hair or if you’re hair has been dyed a lighter brown than your natural hair colour, purple shampoo and conditioner are essentials for maintenance well beyond the summer. The purple pigment in both products tone the hair color to prevent it from turning brassy, or put simply, it prevents your hair color from fading into an unsightly orange. I feel like more people need to know about these products as it’s quite often I encounter people whose brown or blonde hair have turned orange, and in the previous years I’ve gotten my hair coloured, none of my stylists then ever mentioned it to me. It was only when I got my hair bleached by my current stylist, Leslie, that she taught me about maintenance of bleached hair with purple shampoo and conditioner. Clairol Shimmer Lights products are available locally at

2.) Aveda Color Conserve Conditioner -  I personally love the textured look my hair gets after salt water dries from it, but bleached hair exposed to the sun and salt water for extended periods of time can get extremely dry and wiry. When I’m not at the beach, I usually just alternate this with the Shimmer Lights Conditioner, but during my stay in Bohol, I would combine it with the Shimmer Lights Conditioner to add moisture to my hair when I shower at the end of the day. You can Purchase Aveda products at Watsons in SM Makati.

3.) L’Oreal Elseve Extraordinary Oil - I got this as a Christmas gift and hadn’t used this till the summer because it's supposed to be a pre-blow dry kind of product but I don’t really blow dry. I just thought of making the most out of its UV protection feature by using it as a pre- and  in-between-swims leave on hair oil. The more protection and moisture you can give bleached hair, the better.


1.) Green Mama Golden Tanning Lotion - This product delivers exactly what it promises— a golden tan. I used it on my first two days in Bohol, and also during a day spent poolside over the Easter holidays (about a month apart), so I was able to compare how it works when used at the beach and just by the pool. I’ve found that either way it delivers an even tan with a nice warm glow, and without any burns, as promised (Though I did layer SPF on top of it). This tanning lotion also has coffee extract as one of its ingredients, which makes it smell divine! Green Mama has a store in Ayala Solenad 3, Nuvali, or you may purchase their products online at

2.) VMV Hypoallergenics Armada Sport SPF 70 - I use this as my everyday SPF because it leaves a matte finish with no white cast, and is easily absorbed by the skin, so it doesn’t get sticky. VMV is available in select Watsons stores and also has stand-alone stores in SM Megamall and High Street at BGC.

3.) Avene Hydrance Optimale Rich Hydrating Cream - This is my go-to moisturizer during the dryer and colder months, but it’s great for soothing the skin post-tanning. I discovered this product back in 2013 during my semester in Europe, when my skin went haywire from the dry autumn weather, and was grateful Mercury Drugstore and Watsons started stocking it shortly after I got back. Its consistency is dense, so a little definitely goes a long way, but what I like best about it is, like the Armada Sport, once the product has been absorbed by the skin, it doesn’t leave a sticky feeling. I used this also as a body lotion after showering at the end of the days I spent tanning, and it helped keep the peeling minimal about a week and a half later.

4.) Lucas' Papaw Ointment - Do I even have to rave about what’s already a cult favourite? I guess it’s worth pointing out that this is actually an effective ointment that relieves minor irritations such as itching and minor burns, and I’ve used it for those, though more often I use this as a lip balm.

5.) Benefit Cha Cha Tint - This is actually a product that falls under make up more than skin care, but I bring this around with me everywhere, and if I had to live with just one make up product, this would be it. The peachy / coral color is more flattering for women with olive or darker skin tones because it looks more natural on us than bright red or deep magenta tints. It’s also extremely swift to apply— I just brush on a bit of product on each cheek and blend with my fingers, and proceed to apply on my lips as one would normally put on lip tint. 

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