It's gonna get sappy up in here.
Do you guys remember my iconic and timeless Summer of Gold article from a couple summers ago? Okay good, neither do I. I’m definitely not going to link it because I can barely look back at text messages I sent last week without having a panic attack, let alone a beauty article I wrote years ago.
Well, if you loved that one, you’re in luck, because I’m back with another round. SUMMER OF GOLD 2015: BIGGER. BADDER. GOLD…ER. I’m still working on the name. Conversely, if you thought my first article sucked, just wait until you read this one!
You’ll ask yourself, do any of us really need beauty products made with real gold? The answer is yes. The answer is always yes. Especially in the summer, where everyone’s skin is supple and dewy and glowy. Why settle for being bronze like every other chick on the block when you can be gold?
I’ve sourced a couple of products for your skin and hair to transform you into the summer golden goddess that you have always dreamed of becoming. I even roped in a few of my friends to help me road test one of the products. Lucky them.
Listen, I may not bring a whole lot to the friendship, but who else is going to text you at 10 am on a Sunday like “Come over. We’re drinking champagne and doing solid gold face masks.” I figured a luxury-ass face mask necessitated a nice bottle of champagne. Hashtag Spa Day.
So let’s start with a face mask. But first, let’s get pop a bottle, because I want to do this article like I do everything else: With a slight buzz, flanked by cute boys.
He died as he lived.
Arguably the most luxurious and insane product of the bunch is Peter Thomas Roth’s 24K Gold Mask, $80.
This is an anti-aging mask that aims to energize, firm, and tighten skin. It’s made it real 24K gold as well as colloidal gold (or activated) gold to help tighten skin and, obviously, give you a lasting glow throughout the day. Caffeine works to energize skin to lift fine lines and increase skin’s elasticity.
Peridot, yes, the gemstone (and my favorite limited edition Chanel nail polish from 2011) is included because it contains a ton of magnesium, helping soften signs of stress. Finally, hyaluronic acid, which is naturally found in your body, and can also be injected as a cosmetic filler, helps to hydrate and plump skin. Should I get my lips done?
If I could do this mask every morning, I would, and, er, I guess I can, because I’ve got a whole jar of it to go through. The morning we all masked ourselves, each of us had just come off of a particularly long weekend, and it was showing on our faces. After we slathered our faces in the mask, our skin looked noticeably more hydrated, plumped, and glowy. Within 10 to 15 minutes, my skin went from sallow and dull to bouncy, tight, and energized. This mask is like your entire morning routine in one product.
I never really think the before and after photos of face masks really do them justice, but you guys always drag me to the pits of hell when I don't include them. Haven't you had enough extreme closeups of my face? But here. Here are your damn before and afters:
My face definitely looked brighter and more even after the mask with reduced redness, and I think you can see it in the photos. Disagree with me in the comments.
My face isn’t the only thing that needs a mask every once in a while. My bleached, fried, and color-treated hair also needs some attention. For that, I turn to the Miriam Quevedo’s Gold Mask from the Sublime Gold collection, $52.
Now that my hair is much shorter than it has been in the past, it’s easy to push it back in the morning and forget about it. Low-maintenance hair is a definite perk, but I have to remind myself that to achieve this dumb-ass pastel color, I had to beat my naturally dark hair into submission, leaving it dry and brittle. It’s not that big of a deal, since no one besides me is running their hands through my hair on the regular, but I still like to keep my hair feeling and looking like it's somewhat healthy.
All products by Miriam Quevedo contain ingredients that are so luxe that they don’t even sound real, like caviar, diamonds, platinum, and gold. Her line sounds more like a Cartier ad than a beauty collection, and needless to say, I am down.
Caviar oil and argan oil combine to be intensely nourishing and hydrating, while powdered 24 karat gold intensifies shine and brings out dimension. The product only says that it brings out hair’s natural highlights, but like hi, my hair is mint green, I don’t exactly have highlights or anything that can be considered “natural,” but the gold mask did add depth and shine, giving my hair more noticeable dimension.
I always think of face and body oils as being ideal for winter, to seal moisture into your skin and act as an extra barrier from harsh winds. Really, though, they’re perfect for summer, too (long story short: they’re great all year round) because instead of layering a bunch of skincare products when I’m getting ready, I swap out almost everything for just a face oil, and I’m on my way.
Face oils in the warmer months are great because oils actually help regulate your skin’s oil production. I know a lot of you are worried about looking too shiny halfway through your day, especially those of you who already have oily skin. Typically, we use toners and face washes that strip our skin of oil and leave our face with a matte finish. The reason we then end up looking shiny halfway through the day is because our body’s reaction to this is to think that our skin is dehydrated, and produce more oil. So we’re fighting an uphill battle.
When you use an oil on your face, it tricks your skin into thinking it’s perfectly hydrated, and falls back on the oil production.
What makes the Restorsea oil special, besides being packed with gold, hello, is that all of their products contain an exfoliating enzyme Aquabeautine XL. Unlike most chemical exfoliants that burn through both dead and living skin, Restorsea’s only dissolves dead skin cells, leaving the living ones to thrive. The end result is improved texture and tone, more hydrated and nourished skin, and a soft glow, thanks to the gold flakes.
While Restorsea’s oil contains very fine gold flakes, Tatcha’s just stunts on all of us with giant chunks of gold all in their beauty oil.
I actually prefer this oil over the aforementioned product, not only because it’s more obnoxious to look at, but because it’s very lightweight, melts right into skin, and contains camellia, macadamia nut, and rice oils, which are a powerful blend of antioxidants.
It’s gentle, it feels great, and it wears beautifully all day with just a subtle, demi matte glow. I don’t even have oily skin, but in the hotter months, when I wear my typical four or five skincare products, I tend to get shiny throughout the day, or especially at night, if I’m running around behind the bar.
However, when I strip things down and wear only this (OK, this, and an eye cream,) I never find myself in the bathroom, blotting with a rough paper towel.
Plus, gold flakes, am I right? It just sits there on my bathroom counter being straight disrespectful to everything else around it.
Would the oil work just as well without the gold? Yes. Would I like it as much? Absolutely not. Well, and it wouldn’t leave your skin quite as glowy, which is the whole point.
Do you use any products with precious metals in them? What about other weirdo ingredients that I should be messing around with? What does your summer skincare routine look like? Do you strip it down, or add anything? Tell me all of your secrets in the comments!
Tynan is solid gold on Twitter @TynanBuck.