July beauty essentials

July is one of my favourite months of the year. It’s where we usually have the best weather, days are at their longest, we have Wimbledon to watch and the summer holiday season is in full swing!

With that in mind, my make-up bag sees some interesting changes around this time of year. The heat (we’ve certainly had a lot of that recently) plays a major part in that, as no one likes the feeling of a heavy face of makeup when it’s humid. I’ve always had combination skin, where my face manages to be dry and greasy at the same time! Typically this is at its worst when it’s warm outside and from talking with friends, it seems a lot of us have similar problems when sweat and the sun has its fun with our skin.


I’m all about moisturiser and I have so many favourites, I have to be careful not to constantly change them over and confuse my skin. During the summer months I steer clear of thicker, more protective moisturisers and lean towards lighter alternatives.

My go-to make up base is a classic Olay Beauty Fluid. Their Non-Greasy Sensitive Moisturising Fluid is perfect for July. Using a finger-tip amount provides the perfect coverage for your face and neck, without you left feeling suffocated. You’ll find it in Boots (or any other drugstore/beauty department) for around £4.39 per 100ml. That 100ml typically lasts me around a month and a half, if not longer.

Renate O'Connor, Kettle Mag, July beauty essentials, Image:

Another great moisturiser that’ll help combat greasy skin is Simple’s Clear Skin Oil Balancing Moisturiser, also available from Boots at £4.49 per 75ml. It’s light and kind to your skin at the same time, all whilst protecting you from breakouts. 

On the more expensive end of the scale is Clarins Hydra-Matte Lotion, at £27 for 50ml. It adapts to your skin to help regulate oil production, making it perfect for those of us with oily or combination skin. Now this may seem a lot for a moisturiser, but a lot goes a long way here. Using a small amount is key in the summer. You don’t need to smother your skin in product to keep it feeling hydrated, the natural oils in your skin will do that for you. (As well as drinking plenty of water – always make sure you do that!)


I always think one of the best looks for those long summer days is the simple, yet effective au-natural. If you’re heading to the beach, doing some summer shopping or chilling round the BBQ you might not want a full face of makeup. The best way to make sure you don’t look flushed out, (if I don’t wear much make-up I always get asked if I’m ill or why I’m so tired– eurgh!) you need some killer brows.

Anastasia Beverley Hills is the queen of eyebrow products. Loved by the Kardashian’s and basically all of Hollywood, her dip-brow products are available to buy here in the UK from Cult Beauty. At £15 a pot plus delivery it’s a bit pricey, especially if you’re a student, but so so worth it. Dip-brow is waterproof, smudge-proof and ideal for creating defined, yet natural looking eyebrows. Of course, it’s recommended you’ll need the matching brush to apply it (#12 is the best) and at another £15 for that, you’re looking at a pricey first purchase, but after reading all the 5 star reviews it has I’m sure you’ll be convinced just like me.


Beautiful @sayaka_xx Brows using #Dipbrow in Ebony Artist Palette on eyes Craft #liquidlips #anastasiabrows #anastasiabeverlyhills

A photo posted by Anastasia Beverly Hills (@anastasiabeverlyhills) on

A cheaper alternative is Rimmel’s Professional Eyebrow Pencil at a mere £2.99 from Superdrug. It’s a bargain for a very good pencil, but the only issue I tend to have with it, is the shades just aren’t versatile enough. With just hazel, dark brown and black, there isn’t really a shade for everyone, especially if you’re in-between, which typically I am. Being very blonde and fair, I use the hazel shade but then to lighten it further, I apply a pressed powder over the top, to make sure it looks natural with my complexion.


Summer is all about colour! It’s time for your nails to be bright and beautiful. I’m constantly changing the colour of my nails, so always looking for new vibrant shades.

When I’ve found a colour I really like I tend to wear it to death, so the longer it’ll last without chipping or peeling off is obviously also very important. Nobody wants an amazing colour that’ll constantly need sorting out. A collection that really stands out to me for both colour and longevity is Barry M’s Gelly Hi Shine range. 

Renate O'Connor, Kettle Mag, July beauty essentials, Image:

Available at £3.99 per bottle from basically anywhere, these are extremely popular and I can see why. The gel effect means the varnish is thick enough for you to only have to apply one coat, which is always a bonus and makes it a lot easier to dry your nails without smudging. If you’re tempted to apply two coats I really wouldn’t! I’ve found that two coats are just way too thick on the nail and end up peeling off way too easily. One coat tends to last up to 5 days on my nails, which is really good for me!

The variety of colours are perfect for the summer. My favourite is Mango, which is a lovely bright orange – perfect for summer and looks great with a tan. Another favourite of mine is Kiwi, which is deep green that really stands out. The ‘Hi Shine’ effect of the varnish means it literally shines in the light and I’ve received a tonne of compliments after people noticing that.

So there you have it, my July beauty essentials. Do you think I’ve missed anything major? Let me know in the comments below.

Be sure to check out our other articles too for advice on the perfect lip colours and using dry shampoo over the summer months, and most importantly enjoy all that sunshine whilst we have it!