9 Products You NEED for Perfect, Glowing Skin This Winter

Ella Petrushko (Marilyn) in cashmere Prada top and hat, available at select Prada boutiques, and Eddie Borgo bell necklace.

Are you having issues with “winter skin”? Has your nose gone the way of Rudolph? Makeup can work miracles, surely, but it needs a good base so it and you can look your best. Let us paint a picture: dabbing foundation onto flaky winter skin will hardly get rid of flakes.

Yes, there’s wind, cold, and a little snow — no matter the conditions, we’re moving ahead with the goal of seeing happy, healthy, hydrated, beautiful skin. Here’s how to avoid a red nose and chapped cheeks, because we can’t all pull off the same glowing colors as some reindeer we know.


So–all about that base.

In the winter our skin needs some assistance with hydration. This mandates a bit of vigor when it comes to a moisturizing routine. Adding extra steps can seem stressful, but here’s a pleasant one. We like to start with an actual hydrator–a product you may not have thought to include in your regimen. Boscia’s cool blue hydration essence is a highly concentrated and light gel formula containing skin boosting ingredients like sake and caffeine. Consider it an external drink of water for your skin.


Of course, endless moisturizers exist to address innumerable concerns, but if you’ve been hesitating to try a face oil, Boscia’s Tsubaki oil is lightweight enough for face oil beginners.


For a an extra hydration boost to flaky skin on a when-you-need-it-basis, grab a Dr. Jart Water Replenishment Cotton Sheet Mask. This is a perfect (and enjoyable) extra step to make sure your base is smooth, calm, and healthy before adding any color cosmetics.

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If redness is more of an issue than dryness, try Boscia’s aloe packed cool blue calming mask.


Keeping in theme with the added sources of hydration for the skin, we like Dr. Jart’s Pore Medic Pore Minish Primer, a product packed with hyaluronic acid, another moisture-boosting ingredient.

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Now that your base is #flawless (and primed), we can move on to any additional cover up required.


Tom Ford’s Traceless foundation is light enough to barely feel like foundation at all while still providing coverage.

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But, if the thought of foundation (period) makes you cringe, try a lighter coverage with a teensy, but subtle glow, like Urban Decay’s illuminating BB cream.

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Add extra coverage to any spots with concealer. Conceal any blemishes or dark under-eye spots with Eve Lom’s creamy concealer.

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Finally, for any stubborn dry patches, and soft, kissable lips (we’ll come back to this soon!) keep like 12 of Glossier’s all-purpose balm dotcom around. One in every bag and pocket is a safe bet.

Get more holiday beauty tips and tricks here.

Photographer: Justin Bridges

Makeup Artist/Hair Stylist: Ashley Rebecca

Fashion/Beauty Editor: Alyssa Shapiro

Location: Ammon Carver Studio

Get a Naturally Glowing Complexion with 8 Tips from Indie Lee

Daylight savings has passed, it’s practically dark before 4 p.m., and my face has already turned its seasonal hue of on-the-brink-of-chapped-red–winter is coming. Thanks to natural beauty guru Indie Lee, we’re ready to be hydrated and glowy no matter what the Polar Vortex/Bomb Cyclone hurdles our way.

indie lee

1. Beware of Overwashing

Since your skin is already predisposed to dryness in the winter, it’s important not to over-wash or tone it. “Choose a gentle cleanser (like our Rosehip Cleanser), that will cleanse without drying or stripping skin of natural oils and nutrients that it needs,” Lee advises.

Indie Lee's Rosehip Cleanser

2. Mo’ Moisture

Fall and winter–not the time to slack off on your moisturizing routine! Remember to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. If your skin gets dry and you need to moisturize more than once a day, there are great low-maintenance options available (like Lee’s Unscented Body Lotion) that offer a blend of shea butter, calendula and jojoba to keep skin supple without any added fragrance (so you aren’t overdoing it on the scents with multiple applications).

Indie Lee's Unscented Body Lotion

3. Extra H20  

Keep skin both hydrated both inside and out. Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day. “I love drinking warm water with a lemon wedge at my desk!” Lee says.

4. Skincare On-the-Go

“Keep backup moisturizers at your desk and in your car as reminders to take extra care when the air is cold outside,” Lee says. Too often, we forget until the damage has been done.

5. Happy Hands

Our hands take a beating and we often ignore them until it’s freezing out. Even if the freezing temps haven’t hit yet, it still might be time to take the gloves out. Even if the temps aren’t plummeting yet, now might be a good time to bust out the fingerless gloves (like the ones shown here!)

6. Oil, Oil, Oil

Indie Lee's Oil Trio

These are a few super-hydrating oils to look for as ingredients in your winter skincare moisturizers: Apricot Kernel Oil (Prunus Armeniaca), Coconut Oil (Cocos Nucifera), Evening Primrose Seed Oil (Oenothera Biennis), Avocado Oil (Persea Americana).

7. No Alcohol–On Your Face

Instead of using an alcohol-based eye makeup remover (that will strip skin of necessary nutrients), choose a multi-tasking cleanser or eye balm to help remove unwanted makeup (and give a boost of nutrients where they’re needed most)!

8. Salve Your Problems

Treat extra dry spots (like heels, elbows and hands) with a body salve before bed. It has humectant properties that will help better hydrate overnight.

Your New Favorite CC Cream from Your Old Favorite ‘French Pharmacy’ Brand

Images courtesy of La Roche-Posay

La Roche-Posay stands out amongst endless beauty products –it’s not just its “French pharmacy” status (or former status, since it’s available at fancy Duane Reades now,) we love it for its accessible price point, clean packaging, and consistent reliability.

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The latest product is the double-punch Rosaliac CC Creme, which both provides cosmetic coverage for rosacea, while also working on a deeper level to correct redness over time. It’s the first over-the-counter redness-correcting CC cream and is meant to combine the lightweight texture and hydrating properties of a BB cream with the more substantial coverage of a foundation. Think coverage plus 24% reduction of visible redness within 8 weeks. Plus, it’s got SPF 30–and you should wear sunscreen every day. (Not to sound like your mom.) Get it here.

Jillian Wright Will Hand-Mix You a Kale Face Mask

Who would have guessed it, but green juice is the ultimate muse. From nail polish to skin care, our collective adoration for putting kale and its sibling-veggies in our mouths has quickly translated to a love for putting it on our bodies too. Greens are everywhere, but IMO no one does it quite like Jillian Wright, who set up a mini-mask-making apothecary right inside her facial spa on the Upper East Side. Imagine a trendy bar-cart of superfoods in chic glass cannisters. It feels like you’ve stumbled into a best-kept secret on a cobblestoned street in Provence.

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I went to Jillian’s spa for what felt like a 15-minute vacation–really all the time it takes for Wright to mix up a custom mask of high-caliber ingredients. She made me a superfood-smoothie of a mask.

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Jillian uses aloe as the base for the masks and the health-packed powders each provide their own skin-boosting benefits. “Aloe contains excellent hydrating, softening, and soothing properties. It also has been shown to have strong antibacterial and antifungal properties,” Wright explains.


The rest of my mask is a concoction of rosehip, which is extracted from wild roses and rich in vitamin C.  “It’s a moisturizing antioxidant and can help protect from capillary damage,” Wright says, and also helps to “firm and tone the skin.” The Moroccan lava clay is “great for sensitive and mature skin types.  It comes from the Atlas Mountains in Morocco. It’s highly absorbent and is rich in minerals such as silica, magnesium, iron, calcium, potassium and sodium. It improves clarity and removes dead layers of skin. It smooths and improves elasticity.”

My mask contains honey which is known as a natural humectant and has the ability to attract and retain moisture. And last, but not least, obviously a healthy dose of kale was added to my mask. Says Wright, of everyone’s favorite superfood, “It is a very good source of copper, tryptophan, vitamin B6, and potassium; and a good source of magnesium, vitamin E, vitamin B2, protein, vitamin B1, folate, phosphorous, and vitamin B3. Also worth noting in kale’s nutritional profile is its vitamin K content. Kale contains nearly twice the amount of vitamin K as most of its fellow cruciferous vegetables.” (Case closed, kale skeptics). Wright suggests the masks be refrigerated since they are truly natural products. They are totally naturally preserved with Japanese honeysuckle, so they last a bit longer than they might otherwise.

Wright allows you to custom-scent your mask, adding further to the luxe experience she creates in mere minutes. I picked rose, which Wright notes “brings balance and harmony and has stimulating and uplifting properties that create a sense of well-being and self-confidence.”

The mask itself is pretty incredible. Seeing it made, I wasn’t sure what could come of something that looked so, well, simple. But when I put the mask on a few things happened.

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First of all, unlike some other masks that quickly become uncomfortable, or you feel itchy and start a staring contest with your phone timer, I ignored the timer’s bell and left the mask on a few extra minutes. Second, the mask truly tightened my face in that way that makes you think, ”ooh, this is working its magic right now!” And it did. $40 for a totally natural, and totally customized face mask from one of NYC’s leading aestheticians is a treat I will take any day.

Put Oil On Your Face! Natural Beauty Guru Tata Harper Says So

Not so long ago, I’d have cringed at the thought of slathering my face in oil. Even as someone without a particularly oily countenance, it seemed simply counterintuitive. But we learn something new every day, and for those who feel the practice is a little… off… Tata Harper and her natural (and mostly organic!) products are here to change your mind.

Tata Harper is beloved for her natural products, developed in house at her farm in Vermont — and yes, it is as dreamy as it sounds. I spoke with Tata herself about why oil is actually awesome on your face, double cleansing (you’ll see), and a few tips straight from Tata on how to wash your face.

What are your favorite ways to mix and match your products?

One product mix and match I always recommend is a cocktail of our Hydrating Floral Essence and our Rejuvenating Serum. The Floral Essence is a lightweight hyaluronic acid toner that brings hydration deep into the skin, which, when combined with our serum, it gives the skin unstoppable hydration by boosting our own natural production of hyaluronic acid, plus all of the anti-aging benefits of our serum. Just spritz the Floral Essence a few times in your palm, add a pump of the serum, then massage all over face and neck.

Another combination I love involves double-cleansing, which is a method of washing the skin twice to first lift away impurities and makeup, and then to wash again for a super-deep, penetrating clean. In the evenings, I love to use my Nourishing Oil Cleanser first to clean the surface and soften my skin, and then I follow with the Purifying Cleanser which is a detoxifying wash that totally clears the pores and is great for every day. This combination leaves my skin smooth and super clean. In the morning, I use the Regenerating Cleanser to polish, exfoliate and wake up my complexion.

Should someone who uses an oil cleanser also use facial oil?

Yes, especially if you’re someone with dry skin. The Oil Cleanser washes away makeup and impurities while preserving hydration, and the Beautifying Face Oil replenishes moisture and locks it all in.

Do you recommend mixing facial oil with other moisturizers?

Yes, definitely! Mixing a few drops of the oil with other moisturizers, or even your serum, is a great way to boost hydration for results that last all day.

A lot of people are skeptical about the idea of putting oil on their faces when they are concerned about oiliness–what do you say to that concern?

Putting oil on your skin when oiliness is a concern for you is actually a really good idea! You just want to make sure that the oil you use is totally natural and biocompatible, because when you apply it to the skin, your skin recognizes that oil as a hydrating, balancing substance, and it produces less of its own oil in return. It has a very balancing effect.

On the flipside, many skincare-aficionados are embracing the popularity of oil for skin health–how do your new products differ from other oils out there?

Our Oil Cleanser is very unique because the oils and esters in its formula are super high-quality and are packed with nourishment for the skin, making it look and feel replenished and healthy. It doesn’t have any synthetic ingredients or fragrances, so it’s totally pure and good for you. Our Beautifying Face Oil has an added energizing element, thanks to an ingredient called Brown Algae, which infuses the skin with a youthful metabolism to literally turn back time in the skin’s age clock. Plus, it has Sacha Inchi Oil, which is one of the world’s most concentrated sources of Omegas 3,6 and 9.

What are the benefits of the ingredients?

Some of the key ingredients in the Nourishing Oil Cleanser are Rosehip Oil, which promotes regeneration in the skin to help reduce premature aging, and Argan Oil, which is rich in vitamins and antioxidants. Also, Camellia Oil, which is soothing and softening. Overall, it’s a richly moisturizing and nourishing combination. In addition to the Brown Algae Extract, our Beautifying Face Oil contains our Estate Grown Beauty Complex, which is a concentrated blend of flowers and herbs that we grow here on our Vermont farm! It contains alfalfa, borage, calendula, arnica and meadowsweet, a combination that’s anti-inflammatory, oxygenating, and nourishing for the skin.

purifying cleansernourishing oil cleanserbeautifying face oil

 Additional images courtesy of Tata Harper


Stressed Out Skin? Celeb Facialist Joanna Vargas is Here to Help

Joanna Vargas (celebrity facialist and founder of Joanna Vargas Salon and Skincare Collection,) is one of the most well-known names in the world of skincare, and with good reason. Her facials are awe-inspiring, and as someone approaching hoarder-levels of face wash, serum, moisturizer, and beyond, I can confidently say that Joanna’s products are some of the absolute best–year-round.

One reason I love her collection is that it’s small. It’s not overwhelming. Each product serves a distinct purpose. Five items (for now), and each is excellent. So–when I found my skin lacklustre and even (gasp) breaking out after NYFW, I knew just who to consult. Here are JV’s exclusive tips on how to restore your skin to it’s best self after a change in routine (be it a flight, fashion week, or just a stressful day)!

Why does a change in routine sometimes wreak havoc on our skin? (i.e. going from sitting at a desk, to running around, staying up very late to cover the shows, or anything of the like)

A change in routine affects the skin because the body relies on our regular patterns of sleep and diet to manage stress. Sleep is the body’s big chance to repair itself from all the damage and stress we put it through during the day. Less sleep means the body really can’t finish the repair cycle which, in turn, means more inflammation and breakouts.

More running around means higher stress levels. If someone isn’t eating well, or is simply experiencing higher stress levels than usual, this will cause more internal inflammation. This makes our skin get red and patchy more easily, and gives us a harder time digesting our food properly. Lack of digestion causes breakouts and internal inflammation and can result in eczema.

Skin needs more TLC during the fall especially, because the transition from humid to cold weather can be extremely drying. Dry skin is so fragile, and you have to do more to protect your lipid layer.

I suggest adding a day cream to your routine that contains soothing shea and cocoa butter — they melt at body temperature so they go right into the skin and stay there all day, so you don’t end up feeling dry halfway through the day. Also, another great ingredient to look for is avocado oil.  It contains so many amazing vitamins for the skin and lymphatic system, so it will depuff, hydrate and soothe the skin.

Should you do something to prepare your skin for a change in routine?

I always tell clients that my job is to figure out a fix for the skin in spite of their busy schedule.

Good skin care begins with a good diet. If you are breaking out or if you simply have dull skin, the best solution is to add more greens to your routine. I also recommend, applying my Daily Serum, which is like green juice for the skin because it stimulates the lymphatic system, oxygenates and hydrates without clogging skin.I always start with drinking more greens. I personally love Dr. Lipman’s Recharge shake (ed note: shoutout to my Dr.) because it’s quick and easy. I encourage clients to carry around those little envelopes so they can just mix it with water on the go. Another quick fix is a shot of chlorophyll in the morning before a long day. It actually gives you energy and will act as your skin’s savior for the day.

What can you do to “press reset” on your skin?

My secret weapon is a treatment called the Power Peel. It’s a detoxifying, resurfacing peel followed by LED therapy and oxygen to make them look like they have spent the last month in a health spa! Their glow is restored, and all the tired dehydrated skin is gone.

Exfoliation is like mini facial to restore your glow instantly!  My favorite at-home technique is super simple. I cleanse the skin and then apply my Exfoliating Mask to sleep in overnight. It will flatten any breakouts that you might have and I love that it evens out pigment in the skin so you look even and fresh in the morning.

What can you do to protect your skin during a crazy week, shift in your schedule, be it fashion week or anything else?

Sleep with a humidifier in your bedroom. It will add just enough moisture to the environment to give your skin the chance to do some real healing.  For those who are afraid of the bacteria that sometimes can accumulate in a humidifier, you can even get a little one that attaches to a mini water bottle. Another great tip for dealing with winter skin is to throw a half an avocado into your morning smoothie. The extra fats in avocado will make your skin soft and smooth from the inside out!

Thanks JV! <3, Sara

Your Beauty Drawer is Getting Glossier and Glossier

Image via glossier.com

In 2010, Emily Weiss changed the game with Into the Gloss, the first site of its kind, giving women everywhere a look at the step-by-step beauty routines and product favorites of tastemakers around the world. After photographing countless medicine cabinets–some of the best curated assortments of products in NYC and beyond, Weiss is putting the ITG stamp on products going in those very cabinets. Case in point:

So it’s with endless experience and the opinions are many in-the-know women that Emily decided to “reset the beauty game.”

Glossier, ITG’s new in-house line, has started with four products, some of which are being hand-delivered by Emily herself. The line will be released in phases. Phase 1, out today, focuses entirely on skin care, because as we at BlackBook certainly believe, healthy, radiant skin is really the primer for any makeup.

The whole Phase 1 set is $80 and contains the first four products with their white and pale-pink minimalist branding. Part one: a soothing facial mist made with roses and aloe (conveniently, two of my fave ingredients). Part two: a priming moisturizer for use alone, or not. The “balmdotcom” is an all purpose salve and finally, the perfecting skin tint–for the “imperceptible wash of color” that exists “In the land between bare skin and makeup makeup.” And, these days, that’s kind of the land everyone wants to be in anyway!

Alexander Wang Bags + 8 Hot Beauty Must-Haves: Your Saving Summer Grace

A high of 100. Staggering humidity. Blaring sun. Summer’s coming, alright; it’ll be full tilt before you can organize a week’s work of breezy, floaty things.

But before you allow your spirits (and general surroundings) to dampen, take a proactive step and secure a few vital products to make the hot, sticky, summer months more bearable and beautiful. It’s these eight products (plus one amazing bag) that’ll save your summer, whatever sunburns, oil slicks, and other shiny situations come your way.

Dr. Dennis Gross Hydra-Pure Smart Spray
Spritz this two or three times over a parched and overheated face for some cooling relief and free radical protection, thanks to peppermint oil and other skin savers.

AG Hair Cosmetics Deflect Fast-Dry Heat Protection
The less time spent under a hot hair dryer in the summer months the better. Use this to decrease drying time and smooth hair in the process. It’s the work of an AG complex including abyssinian oil.

Tatcha Aburatorigami Japanese Beauty Papers
Flecks of gold leaf in these Geisha-approved papers turn blotting excess oil into a glamorous endeavor.

MAKE Custom Finish Effects Matte/Dew
Skip foundation and reach for a lighter dose of skin perfecting makeup with this duo. The peachy, matte side is perfect for your T zone, while the pink side adds moisture to sun-parched cheeks.

Koh Gen Do Refresh Spa Aloe Gel
Sunburned and sensitive, or just looking for lighter summer hydration? This light weight, refreshing aloe treatment soothes and moisturizes.

Skinceuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense SPF 50

Get glowing and protect against sun damage with this universally tinted broad spectrum SPF. It’s adaptable to every skin tone, so you can reapply every few hours (like you should) without worrying about streaks or a mismatch.

Skinceuticals Physical Eye UV Defense Sunscreen
Does for your sensitive eye area what the above does for your whole face. What crows feet?

NARS Satin Lip Pencil (pick a bright color, like Yu)

If all else fails, distract ’em from frizzy hair and ultra *dewy* skin with an ultra bright lip. It’s a game changer.

Oh, and about that bag, Alexander Wang sent thermo-reactive (aka heat sensitive color changing) materials down the fall runway — the leather bag pictured in transition above goes from near navy to bright blue. Like a suntan without the burn.

Alexander Wang thermo-reactive accessories available mid-August at Alexander Wang, New York and alexanderwang.com 

Bright, Shimmering Beauty Hope

Officially, it’s spring. The weather has yet to catch up (though the sun is shining today) but we’re ready, you know? Enough of the doldrums, the winter blues, and seasonal affective disorder. It’s time to shed the shadows (metaphorically and otherwise) and step into the light! Floral fragrances, dewy skin, and hot colors abound.

Byredo — Flowerhead — First things first, we need to get the mood right. And seriously, sometimes nothing helps more than a good whiff of something fantastic. Enter Byredo’s latest fragrance, Flowerhead. Riffing on the major floral power invested in Indian weddings, this is a rich scent with an overwhelming sense of exotic flowers — the kind of thing we like to be overpowered and intoxicated by. It’s hot. It might help keep us warm enough until actual summer, when real flowers can mingle with our eau de parfum.

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Coast to Coast — Skin Illuminating Cleansing Water — Next up — that glow. The one that you can only get a few different ways… And also with proper skincare. Step one? Eradicating any sign of dull, dark, sad times. Coast to Coast’s cleanser is tops for this. A no-rinse formula with sweet orange, it purifies our skin, gets rid of makeup, all without wasting a drop of water. (Great in the instance that you should you find yourself in a desert, on the go, or in the company of green enthusiasts.)

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Caudalie — Eau de Raisin — And aprés-cleansing? Hydrate yourself back to healthy with the help of Caudalie’s mist. After cleansing, after moisturizing, heck, even after makeup. Mist away, pretty kids.

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MAKE UP FOR EVER — HD Blush in 210 — And then there’s makeup, something we’ll need less of when the mercury rises. One of the products sure to make the cut? A super lightweight cream blush. Though it’s a new color, you’ve seen this before, flushing the cheeks of Mad Men‘s gorgeous Christina Hendricks. And if it works for her…



Tom Ford — Lip Color Sheer — Sheer is sexy, and it’s new this season for Tom Ford Beauty. Warmer temps mean lighter layers, and the guy who does sex better than anyone has us feeling the need to pare down — but in the right ways. Sheer, shimmering colors will undoubtedly be stunning against the backdrop of a perfect, glowing tan. Soon, soon. Our fave? Pink Dune, a sexy, pink-y buff that will be perfectly matched to our nails…

Tom Ford — Nail Lacquer in Incandescent — Molten, vast, sunlit beaches come to mind. Swipe this on and languor poolside, or at the very least, stare down at your fingernails as you type and imagine doing just that. Spring is just the beginning of the hot fun to come, after all. Might as well get ourselves acquainted.


Main image: photograph by Guy Bourdin