Katie James
September 29, 2014

Now that summer has officially ended, T+L editorial assistant Katie James shares her favorite new products to help you shift seasonal gears.

Dolce & Gabbana Aurealux Mask ($169 for six): The beginning of fall means cooler temperatures, layered wardrobes—and all-around confused skin. To combat summer-level oil production and fall dryness, facemasks are my pinch-hitters. I’ve tried plenty, but this one—from Dolce & Gabbana’s debut Aurealux skincare collection—is supremely hydrating. I smooth the fabric over my face and neck right before bed (it fits like a glove), let sit for 10 to 15 minutes, and upon removal, my skin feels plump and refreshed—a recipe for sweet dreams, indeed.

T3 Featherweight 2 Hair Dryer ($200): I am perpetually five minutes late. (It’s in my DNA, I can’t help it.) Needless to say when I’m rushing to work or meeting friends for drinks across town, this hair dryer is a lifesaver. It touts a specially-engineered fan to deliver maximum heat, and the internal components are infused with tourmaline (the “electric stone”), which emits negative ions to give you a healthy shine. Finally, a dryer that helps hair instead of stripping it down—and one which saves me that extra five minutes.

Giorgio Armani Eye & Brow Maestro in Gold, plus Eye & Brow Maestro Brush ($34; $32): When Linda Cantello, Armani’s International Makeup Artist, introduced me to this product, I was amazed by its versatility. The waterproof cream formula contains a next-generation polymer that holds as a solid in the pot, but transforms into liquid against skin. The mousse-like texture is foolproof in application—made even easier by the brand’s complementary brush. I typically swipe a thick, gold line along upper lashes for high-impact shimmer—my beauty staple, day or night—but subtler shades can also be used to shape brows or contour cheeks.

Deborah Lippmann Limited Edition Nail Color in “I’ll Take Manhattan” ($20): I caught up with Deborah Lippmann recently at NYFW, where she imparted some of her manicure wisdom (“Always wait two minutes before applying a matte topcoat, so the solvents have time to evaporate.”), and predictions for what you’ll be rocking this fall: less nail art, more neutral shades. While “I’ll Take Manhattan” is anything but neutral, it’s a great transitional color, since I’m not quite ready to let go of summer’s beachy tones.

Tom Ford Contouring Cheek Color Duo in Softcore ($77): No matter how hard I try, I never feel like I’m able to master the art of contouring. This new compact, however, has finally made it possible—and in doing so, completely overhauled my look. Simply swipe the pearlescent lighter shade above and below cheekbones to highlight, blend the matte blush in between, starting at the apple of the cheek, and voilà—perfectly-toned, supermodel-esque bone structure.

Bobbi Brown Smoky Nudes Eye Palette ($65): Bobbi Brown has the palette down to a science, and this one—from her limited-edition Smoky Nudes collection—doesn’t disappoint. This two-level, tortoise-shell compact holds eight shades (four matte, four metallic) for an exceptional range that takes me from day to night in a cinch.

Sephora Collection Spotted Eye Lash Curler ($18): I’m a sucker for animal prints, and couldn’t resist swapping my bland eyelash curler for this fun, leopard-print alternative. Lo and behold, it works even better—now my eyes pop like a gorgeous feline.

Gucci Première Eau de Toilette ($101): Jasmine sambac and Bulgarian rose are at the heart of Gucci’s latest version of Première—this time, in a lighter, more delicate eau de toilette. The florals are balanced by heavier notes of leather, patchouli, and musk for a modern interpretation of feminine scent—just as the glass bottle’s horsebit charm gives contemporary nod to the brand’s iconic imagery.

Diorskin Star Foundation ($50): Dior’s new studio makeup line is quickly becoming my staple. The liquid formula contains a “Light Pulsion Complex,” with revolutionary new hollow silica beads that capture and diffuse light to replicate a studio-quality glow. I apply the foundation in the morning, and it stays put throughout the day, even helping to combat the inevitable T-zone shine. The real benefits: it feels light, but provides major coverage (my skin tone is immediately uniform), plus it contains paquerette (daisy) extract to regulate the production of melanin, thereby reducing pigment spots.

Almay Soothing & De-Puffing Gentle Eye Makeup Remover Pads ($6.50): A mainstay in my bathroom cabinet—these pre-formulated pads wipe away waterproof eye makeup in just one swipe, and leave behind no oily residue.

Katie James is an Editorial Assistant at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @kjames259.

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