Summertime takes a lot out of our skin – from saltwater to chlorine, sunny weather to air conditioning. This year, Pretty Birds, we got your back, no matter where you’re at. This list of the best drugstore beauty and skincare products includes everything you could need to get your summer beauty routine right.
Best Drugstore Beauty & Skincare Finds
Travel with us, Pretty Birds, to 8 of our ATPB Team’s favorite cities. There’s nothing better than conveniently forgetting to bring q-tips or sunscreen while traveling, so you have an excuse to pop into the drugstore or pharmacy and discover new or sought-after brands from the source. Drop us a comment if you can relate. Plus, the French pharmacy products that we all love so much, have continued to grow in popularity – from Lotion P50 to anything Caudalie.
New York City Drugstore Beauty and Skincare Products
- Carmex – I love the slightly tingly feeling of Carmex on my lips and the medicinal smell of the product. I usually pick it up in CVS, Duane Reade or Ricky’s.
- Burt’s Bees Facial Cleansing Towelettes with Cucumber & Sage – I’m a fan of many Burt’s Bees products, especially these face wipes. They are effective at removing makeup and they feel so refreshing on my skin.
- Jamaican Black Castor Oil with Vitamins A, D, E – I make a homemade oil mixture for my hair. It’s a blend of coconut oil, jojoba oil, and black castor oil. All three can be found in drug stores like CVS or Duane Reade.
- Nivea Essentially Enriched Body Lotion – Because I never want to be ashy, always smooth and it literally lasts for hours and doesn’t feel thick.
- Garnier Micellar Water – I love to keep in my bedroom for when I’m too lazy to wash my face before bed, but still want to show my skin some love. Swipe, swipe away.
- Shea Moisture Coconut Hibiscus Lotion – I love lotion, and this one smells divine.
- Anything from Peter Thomas Roth – Every time I go to NYC Sephora is my first stop for PTR. It’s super hard to find in the UK, and although I can order online, I much rather value buying my favorite Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream as part of a product bundle for the same price.
- Too Cool for School Firming Egg Cream Mask – One of the few masks that gives instant results, this mask pulls my face all the way together.
- Mahana Coco Infusion by Leahlani – If you ever want to smell exotic and edible straight out of the shower, this body oil is the sh*t. I think this product might be exclusive to Cap Beauty in NYC but let me know if I’m wrong!
L.A. Drugstore Beauty and Skincare Products
- Yes to Coconut Cleansing Wipes– Those times that I may be wearing a bit more makeup or traveling on the plane, I love these drugstore wipes to clean my skin in a rush but also to hydrate.
- Cetaphil Daily Cleanser – Every once in a while I will just use Cetaphil to wash my face because it is simple and non harsh with no crazy additives. I leave it in the shower normally and wash my face with it.
- Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula – People are always confused when I whip out this rather large swivel stick to put on as a lip balm. It is normally for blemishes or marked skin, hence the size, but is the perfect moisture for my chapped lips.
London Drugstore Beauty and Skincare Products
- Indeed Labs Retinol Reface – This is a great product for anyone wanting to work Retinol into their daily routine. I always stock up on Indeed at Boots on Oxford Street – it’s often in their 3 for 2s! Also love their Hydraluron Moisture Booster Serum to give my skin a daily plumping boost.
- Surratt Auto Graphique Liner – This is a game-changing eyeliner I picked up from Space NK. I wish more brands would get on board with refillable products! But it’s not just the sustainability that I love; you’d be hard pressed to find a finer liner anywhere. It’s no wonder it’s beloved by the likes of makeup artist Katie Jane Hughes.
- Lush Buffy Body Butter – So, Lush isn’t a drugstore but the amount of stores makes it an easy pop-in kinda place. This Body Butter is actually a moisturizing scrub that you use in the bath or shower (shower’s easier). I buy this on REPEAT. A must for anyone with dry skin or someone who wants their skin to be glowing all summer long.
Paris Pharmacy Beauty and Skincare Brands and Products
Elisa Dray’s Favorites
- Bioderma – I like both the Crealine line for sensitive skin, especially the Micellar Cleansing H2O AR and Photoderm sun care products. I never go out without my 50+ very high protection natural tinted cream mixed with my everyday cream for the face.
- Avène – I can’t live without the Avène Thermal Spring Water spray and the Cicalfate Healing and Restorative Cream for irritation or any scratch for both my kids and me.
- Boiron – Homeoplasmine usually a soothing balm against irritation for the nose when you get a cold. I use it for the lips before going to bed, especially if dry.
- Laroche-Posay – All 50+ Anthelios sun care products!
- Nuxe – Rêve de Miel lip balm!
- Hexomedine – This is actually a disinfectant solution, but it works really well for taking care of spots as well as redness and swelling. It’s very inexpensive in the French pharmacy, but also available to purchase via Le French Skincare.
- Nuxe Huile Prodigieuse – I’m obsessed with oils and really anything that smells good (like most people, I imagine)… and this smells amazing. Note: I always ask for samples by whatever brand I buy a product from – which is how I found Nuxe’s Anti-Pollution Moisturizing Creme Prodigieuse. It’s a light cream, but they have a night cream if you’re looking for something heavier.
- Avène Eau Thermale – This is a summertime French pharmacy staple for me, though it’s available stateside as well. I use it at home, at the beach, or anywhere there’s air conditioning which can dry skin out. There’s also a cute, petite travel size to keep up your skincare routine wherever you go.
Milano Pharmacy Beauty and Skincare Products
- Bioderma Sebium H2O Micellar Water – When my face is feeling super dirty, I pass over my face about two times with this to get all the excess gunk off before actually washing my face.
- Klorane Dry Shampoo – I am rather lucky that I do not have such oily hair and get away with a couple of days of not washing my hair. But on those days that I need some extra freshness and cannot wash my hair, this dry shampoo has me feeling fresh.
- Caudalie Detox Night Oil – My local pharmacy stocks Caudalie and I have to make sure that I always have the detox night oil in my cabinet, because not only do I use it but my husband steals it from me. He also likes to remind me when we have run out, obviously due to him using it on himself.
- Acqua Distillata alle Rose – I keep this rosewater tonic in the fridge to refresh my face and neck from the hot, hot summertime heat. I always keep a travel size on planes to use after cleansing with their facial wipes and before moisturizing my face.
- Marvis Toothpaste – Classic Italian packaging plus convenient travel-size tubes. I like the Ginger Mint and the freshness of the Aquatic Mint.
- Erboristica Sweet Almond Oil – I use this light and sweetly scented oil once per week after a deep exfoliation in the shower to hydrate my skin, which is very dry. It’s a great way to relax and let the oil soak into your skin while you listen to a podcast or some activity that doesn’t involve your hands, which are covered in oil. Bad time to read books.
Tokyo Drugstore Beauty and Skincare Products
- MegRhythm Steam Eye Masks in Lavender or Rose – Great for a little relief from any tension or headaches, on planes or trains, while in the bath, or even during a meditation. There are other like Chamomile and Yuzu, as well as an unscented option. Thank you to my dear friend Kumiko who gifted and showed me this product!
- Bifesta Face Wipes in Brightup – Very handy and high quality face wipes, the packaging (okay it’s plastic, so that’s not great) keeps the wipes from drying out.
- Anessa Sunscreen – I’m always on the quest for a perfect sunscreen and this one is great, not leaving too much shine.
Capetown Drugstore Beauty and Skincare Products
- Neutrogena Hydroboost SPF25 City Shield Lotion – I like it because it helps me stay protected during warm, sticky summer heat and the product is easily-absorbed.
- Neutrogena Hydroboost Water Gel – This is hydrating, easily absorbed and perfect to use at night.
- Wet’n’Wild Megaglo Highlighter – This is a cruelty-free, relatively affordable that stays on in humid weather. Plus it’s a multifunctional product. You can use it as a highlighter and eye product!
Marrakech Drugstore Beauty and Skincare Products
- Argan Oil – It’s easy to pick up argan oil in any drugstore these days but, I’m always eager to support women’s cooperatives directly at the source in Marrakech or a local brand, like Natus, to assure an organic and undiluted product. For anyone stateside, Shea Moisture has a nice, accessible argan oil product.
- Eucalyptus Black Soap + Hammam Glove – After being treated to regular hammam appointments with a close friend when I lived in Marrakech, this soap brings back the memories, heavily-scented, and is great for keeping skin soft and healthy. French brand Charme d’Orient’s Scents of Hammam is a great option outside of Morocco. Don’t forget the hammam glove for extreme exfoliation!
- Chabi Chic Orange Flower Water – Amazing smell to spritz your way through dry or humid hot months.
Read more on beauty, skincare, and fitness travel tips:
- Designers Share Their Must-Have Travel Tips
- No Gym, No Worries – The Best Streaming Workouts
- 10 Lazy Tips for Radiant Skin
- What to Pack for the Ultimate Long Weekend Getaway Bag