Mists are the feather boas of skincare. A little frilly and far from mandatory, they give skin an extra zhuzh without much effort. Since I’ve never shied away from tiny beauty indulgences––a lip balm packaged like a lipstick, a blush almost too pretty to use––a frou frou face mist always seemed my speed anyway, but these days, a spritz here and there goes way further than ever before. It’s like face mists had a team huddle when we weren’t looking, and decided they were tired of the cheap shots! They’ve buffed up, so now they’re not just hydrating, but brightening and balancing, and equipped to perform a full face and body routine. And that’s good because it’s hot, and a cool mist that I can swap in for a sticky serum or moisturizer never felt better. Right now, I’m loving:
It’s the ideal in-between skincare product. I spray this on my face on mornings when I’m not quite ready to head to the bathroom and complete the whole cleansing spiel. My face feels alive enough to perform like a human being, and once I’m in the shower, I can carry on with a proper cleanser for a thoughtfully spaced out double cleanse.
“This sounds like the chic version of Windex from My Big Fat Greek Wedding!” said insightful commenter, Tina, after reading Ali’s review of the Tower 28 Spray. In short, it is. In long, what makes it a magical, skin-clearing treatment is its slightly acidic mix of water, salt, hypochlorous acid that kills the bad bacteria known to worsen acne and open wounds. Because it kills germs fast, it also helps clear skin with impressive speed. I’m a chronic face picker (yup, it’s true), so during anxious moments when I wreak havoc to a hormonal blemish on my face, I like to spray this on the affected area, then slap a hydrocolloid sticker on top. When I use the spray consistently, the swelling and redness subside a lot quicker than when I don’t. And that’s not nothing!
At this point in my skincare career, I’d love to say that I’ve learned to tread slow and steady when integrating serious actives into my routine, but I still slip up! And dermatitis and tender, flaky skin rear their ugly heads every time. I have a full routine I follow when my skin throws a tantrum, but if I could scribble an addendum to this BRAT diet of a skincare routine, I would toss in a bottle of this stuff. Its hero is galactomyces ferment filtrate, a fermented yeast ingredient that moisturizes skin while also calming inflammation, controlling sebum production, and restoring radiance and smoothness. When I’m paring back my skincare routine to a lineup of fortifying, barrier-protecting goodness—lots of ceramides, plant-derived oils and sunscreens—my first layer is the Soothing Face Mist. I’d imagine it’d also be a great canvas to apply my BHA gels and retinoids on top of, to prevent a skin horror story going forward.
So, you can’t get yourself to apply a hydrating serum or heck, even a moisturizer in the morning. This mist is your shortcut. In another time, I would have used the Neogen Youth Repair Mist as a setting spray of sorts—not to keep my makeup in place, but to keep my skin looking supple as the layers of concealer and blush gradually fade. I was happy to discover that its biphase formula is moisturizing enough to stand alone because you get a good dose of hydration and sealing action in one step. It sprays milky, and the glycerin keeps my skin comfortably plumped as the day goes on.
SPF mists are tricky. Unlike their lotion-y counterparts, it’s hard to know how effective they’ll be until you’re out in the elements, surrendering your face and all caution to UV rays. Unless…you count your sprays. Habit Skin gives pretty clear instructions on getting the most of their SPF 41: Hold the bottle 10 inches away, spritz 7 times over your face, neck + chest. It’s been great for sitting indoors where the sun beat isn’t too offensive, but the fact that it’s totally clear and non-greasy has made heading out for strolls and quick errands a seamless task.
Going through summer without regularly scheduled beach trips makes me do peculiar things. Like create ocean sound playlists to listen to as I work. Or purposely seek out sunscreens that smell the most sunscreen-y of them all. As much as I appreciate the gesture, I’ve never been a patron of sea salt hair sprays—they dry out my hair too much—but a sea salt body gloss makes complete sense to me. Instead of a body oil, I’ll spritz this over my body after showering, and stay softened and shiny until the glisten fades. The best of summer fun, scents and all, without the sandy butts.
Photo via ITG