Thursday 19 January 2017

Happy Holidays - the essential items to look your best

Everyone wants to look their best on vacation, says our beauty expert, but you don't need to bring the bathroom cabinet

Sarah Caden

Published 04/07/2016 | 02:30

Pictured, from left, Clarins Booster Repair; Redken Beach Envy Volume Wave Aid; Aussie Beach Mate Dry Shampoo; Trilogy Rosehip Discovery Starter Set for Combination/Oily Skin (Balancing Face Lotion; Balancing Gel Cleanser; Rosehip Oil Antioxidant); Dr Hauschka Soothing Cleansing Milk.
Pictured, from left, Clarins Booster Repair; Redken Beach Envy Volume Wave Aid; Aussie Beach Mate Dry Shampoo; Trilogy Rosehip Discovery Starter Set for Combination/Oily Skin (Balancing Face Lotion; Balancing Gel Cleanser; Rosehip Oil Antioxidant); Dr Hauschka Soothing Cleansing Milk.

We all suffer from the belief that while on holidays, we will be our perfect selves. On holiday, we will be the person that work, school, and responsibility prevent us from being for the rest of the year. We will be rested, calm, energised and, above all, gorgeous. For those without children, there is the wonderful indulgence of pre-holiday prep, which can include fake-tanning, extensive waxing, manicures, pedicures, maybe even one of those "lose four inches in four minutes" treatments. Maybe. For those with children, all of this prep can still happen, just all in those four minutes.

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However, for a lot of us, it's during the holiday that we plan the preening. We plan to scrub, slather, oil and exfoliate like there's no tomorrow, thus revealing our hidden gorgeousness. The only problem is that hawking around half your bathroom cabinet isn't really an option with luggage weight limits. And, really, are you going to use all that stuff? This is supposed to be relaxing time, after all. So, choose sensibly when packing to reach peak pretty on holiday. Bring what you'll use, and believe the simple truth that just being on holiday makes you look better.

Best Overall

Clarins Booster Repair, €39, Clarins counters nationwide

Tired, weakened, congested? Is that your summer? Well, Clarins has the answer. Sort of. They've launched three little bottles of so-called boosters, a few drops of which you add to your skincare to address either fatigue (Energy), stress (Repair) or congestion (Detox). We particularly love this one, aimed at weakened or reddened skin. That can mean post-beach skin that's screaming for succour. "Honestly, I believe this kept my skin on an even keel on holidays," said a panellist. "I had no redness, no roughness, nothing. I added it to my body lotion and my face cream."

Best Holiday hair

Redken Beach Envy Volume Wave Aid, €22.50, Redken salons nationwide

On holiday, you want to look good, but you not like you've tried too hard. Straightened hair can look a bit too slick on holiday, and that slightly tousled look is what a lot of us want to achieve. This new styling product does that very well, for all hair types. Salt-free, it lends more flexibility than some beach-hair products. "I don't like the crunchy feel of a lot of beachy products," one panellist said. "With this, my hair felt soft to the touch, but held its tousle well, too."

Best Coiffure Cheat

Aussie Beach Mate Dry Shampoo, €6.59, available nationwide

There's no getting away from dry shampoo these days, and this is a pretty good example of a no-residue quick fix. On holiday, this is even more handy than at home, because it's easy to end up washing your hair twice when nights out follow days at the beach, and that can ravage your tresses very quickly. This spray revives volume, absorbs oil, and has a nice beachy scent. "A spritz of this meant I could skip the morning hair-wash on holiday and look good at breakfast all the same," a panellist said.

Best Box of Tricks

Trilogy Rosehip Discovery Starter Set for Combination/Oily Skin, €19.95, Arnotts; selected pharmacies and health stores nationwide

Holidays are a good time to try out something new, but judiciously, so you don't get stuck with something awful when you have no fallback. Trilogy have a selection of travel-size taster sets this summer, and each contains a bottle of its award-winning rosehip oil. This set for combination/oily skin is a godsend for those who go shiny when the weather is hot. "Nice sizes that will get you through a fortnight, without being a huge commitment," said one panellist. "Lovely products that I'd try again."

Best Cleansing Break

Dr Hauschka Soothing Cleansing Milk, €8.95, Avoca shops; LloydsPharmacies and selected pharmacies and health stores nationwide

This is one of four limited-edition travel sizes released for the summer, four favourites in a generous 30ml. The cleanser is a classic; quite rich but great in the shower or, as the brand suggests, also a great shaving product. It will remove sun cream residue, any amount of bronzy make-up and even make a good go of waterproof mascara. "The size and the price are pretty good," said a panellist. "A quality product in a nice bottle, not those flimsy travel types."

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