There's no denying we all peak in Summer. Radiating confidence, strutting around with sun-kissed skin and salty hair, glowing from extra vitamin D. The sun makes our zits go away and we almost crave watermelon instead of cheesy fries. Summer withdrawals are already killing me.I want to have drinks on the beach until late and smell like coconuts all year round. I miss having well-behaved skin that didn't need makeup, a swipe of coconut oil through my hair and I was good to go. Take me back. For many of us, having limbs on show and wanting to feel confident at the beach is an excellent motivator to up the grooming standards. As much as I enjoy having the smooth skin of a dolphin, come Winter all the pedicures, waxing and exfoliating seem pointless if we’re going to wrap ourselves up in layers anyway...If you’re anything like me, it’s not just your beauty routine that suffers in the colder months. The magic spontaneity of Summer, when the evenings were balmy and endless is replaced with a monotonous retreat home from work in the dark. Instead of waking up with the sun each morning, I battle my alarm and toss up my options: stay wrapped in my duvet like a toasty cinnamon bun or brace the cold outside for a jog? Guess what wins. There’s scientific reason why we may feel sluggish in Winter:
Less exposure to sunlight causes lower levels of serotonin in our brain, the happiness hormone that helps regulate our mood. In Northern parts of the world, where you might see a few hours of sunlight a day for months on end, the Winter Blues are no joke.
With more people experiencing Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), some opt for light therapy or even medication to help stay positive in Winter. Although the climate is milder in New Zealand, the change to shorter days still messes with our circadian rhythm and can take a toll on our mental health.
Looking after ourselves in Winter is more than skin deep, so I encourage you to prioritise mental health this season. Obviously we should be eating well, staying active with low-impact exercise like hot yoga, exposing ourselves to more sunlight and allowing ourselves to enjoy the rest we so desperately crave.
But I’m also a big fan of fooling myself into feeling warm and summery again, which is why scent is the hero of this month’s beauty picks. No other sense has the power to take you right back to a moment in time and flood you with nostalgia. If you aren’t ready to embrace Winter just yet, seek out smells you associate with holidaying and bask in the glow a little longer...
Maison Margiela Beach Walk EDT. A hint of sunscreen, coconut milk, ylang ylang and bergamot take you straight to the beach. Best thing since sniffing a bottle of Hawaiian Tropic.
Diptyque Jasmin candle. “That night I could see the moon on the Pacific and smell jasmine all around...” reading Joan Didion fall in love with Los Angeles in Goodbye To All That will always reminds me of Summer, same with this bougie candle.
French Girl Organics Sea Spray. The best natural salt spray for post-swim texture without the crunch. Coconut oil and aloe keep your hair soft, while jasmine and neroli essential oils make you feel like a beach gypsy in the best possible way.
Lush Bucks Fizz Body Conditioner. Someone order a fresh boozey mimosa? Brazilian orange oil, champagne and cognac puts you in cocktail-hour mood and kalahari melon, coconut and jojoba oils hydrate scaley winter limbs.
Nars Monoi Body Glow. A luxuriously thick body oil that gives you a subtle bronze sheen and smells like a beach-side massage somewhere in the Bahamas.
Lara Daly is a freelance writer and makeup artist specialising in creative editorial looks. Her ultimate goal is fly to Korea and Paris every year, purely to stock up on sheet masks and French Pharmacy products.
Lara is based in Auckland, New Zealand.