COACHELLA SKINCARE SURVIVAL GUIDE
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You survived Coachella, you survived the apocalyptic traffic out of Indio, and for the first time in three days, you finally catch a glimpse of yourself in the rearview mirror. If your first thought is “OMG EW,” you are not alone, my sweet babe--the dust, sweat, smoke, sun, dehydration, lack of sleep, and even your glamorous ‘Chella makeup can wreak havoc on your skin. Follow these tips to protect your skin, get your glow back, and prevent permanent damage to your cute face.
First things first, hydrate like you’ve never hydrated before!
If you are not inconvenienced by peeing, you are doing it wrong. Dehydration is the principal culprit of dull, dry skin and can make undereye bags and dark circles worse. It can be difficult to know once you get there to know when and where you’re going to get water, so chug that sweet agua like the elixir of life in the days leading up to the festival. Infuse water with cucumbers, mint, citrus, or berries to give yourself a vitamin boost and make plain water tastier.
I would have thought this was a no-brainer until I went to Paradiso and saw how many humans let themselves get completely crispified. Now I know I’m not your mom, but, you NEED to wear sunscreen to protect your skin from permanent and irreversible damage. If you’re worried about the greasiness causing breakouts, opt for an oil-free version specifically for the face. And yes, SPF matters. The lower the SPF, the more often you’ll have to reapply, and my guess is you’re not to be stopping off after every set to take a sunscreen bath.
Neutrogena Clear Face Sunscreen SPF 55, from $6.90 on Amazon
Dare To Go Bare(er)
The temptation to reach for a thick, full-coverage foundation may be fo' real considering how many pics you’re going to be taking at Coachella, but if you can, resist. Even oil-free, non-comedogenic foundations can suffocate your skin and clog your pores when mixed with sweat, dust, and smoke. A BB-Cream (with SPF!) is a great alternative to heavy foundation. I would even recommend skipping foundation altogether and just dusting a loose powder over your face to even out your complexion. If you do use liquid foundation, get yourself a silicone applicator. They’re easier to clean, so you won’t be smushing bacteria into your face while applying your makeup.
Bare Minerals Complexion Rescue Tinted Hydration Gel Cream, $30 at Ulta
MUA Silicone Makeup Applicator, $5 at Freedom Rave Wear
Still looking for a low-maintenance Coachella makeup look? Shop dozens of styles of stick-on crystal face gems, starting at $5, at Freedom Rave Wear
Strip That Down For Me
Never ever ever ever go to sleep with your makeup on! This is an Unforgivable Offense against the Skincare Gods. Put a few cotton pads and a bottle of micellar water next to your pillow so no matter how tired you are, you’ll remember to take off your makeup. A makeup removing cloth like the Makeup Eraser just needs water to get every last particle of makeup off your face so you can sleep squeaky clean.
Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water, $9 from Garnier USA
MakeUp Eraser, $12 at Freedom Rave Wear
Go the f**k to sleep
Look (and feel) like the love child of Emperor Palpatine and Samara from The Ring? Sweet dreams, babe, let us know if you need a wake-up call. Your body needs rest to restore itself, and this includes restoring hydration and circulation to your skin to flush away the ickiness. It may be tempting to binge-sleep after Coachella, but 8 hours is plenty to help you feel rejuvenated. Any more than that, and you could end up disrupting your sleep schedule even more.
That first day after Coachella may call for a horse’s trough full of coffee, but try to abstain, at least for a couple of days. Coffee not only promotes cell-damaging inflammation, but its diuretic effect could leave you even more dehydrated. Try green tea instead, which will provide enough of a boost to get you going and is packed with toxin-asskicking antioxidants. If you absolutely MUST brew, drink 16 ounces of water for every 8 ounces of coffee. You’ll be back and forth to the loo all day, but at least you’ll feel better and have an excuse to take plenty of breaks. You’re welcome.
Pro tip: while it may do more harm than good to put caffeine IN your body, using a coffee scrub or caffeinated eye patches can increase circulation and reduce puffiness! DIY your own coffee scrub!
Wait, MORE oil?
It sounds counterintuitive, but yeah. You loved that your festival makeup was clinging on for dear life AT Coachella, but two days later? It’s time to move on. Oil cleansers and balms are trending worldwide. There’s a reason why, and it’s basic chemistry: like dissolves like. While water-based cleansers are great for removing sweat and dirt, oil-based impurities like sebum and makeup dissolve in--you guessed it--oil. Banila Clean it Zero is arguably the most popular oil cleanser on the market.
Banila Clean it Zero Oil Cleansing Balm, $19 on Amazon
Deep pore excavation
Charcoal is an incredibly underrated skin-care ingredient. It sucks impurities out of your pores like vacuum and is still gentle enough to use every day. I love Destiny Boutique Charcoal Detox. It comes in cleanser or bar soap form and is vegan, cruelty-free, and all natural. You can also try one of these DIY charcoal masks, but beware, they can be painful AF to peel off!
Charcoal Facial Detox Cleansing Bar, $10 at Destiny Boutique
Say “‘allo” to aloe!
You had every intention of coming back from Coachella with a gorgeous glowing tan, but you got a little too ambitious and now you look like a Roma tomato. It happens to the best of us. For instant relief, apply aloe liberally to burned, dry, or peeling skin. You can’t overdose on aloe, so gobbing it on to the point where it feels sticky is totally fine and actually creates a protective barrier against further damage. Ideally, the aloe should come straight from the plant, but for those of us who don’t have succulents lying around, anything that is 98% pure aloe or above should do the trick. Aloe with lidocaine and/or menthol is extra soothing.
Pain-Relieving Aloe Vera Gel with Lidocaine and Menthol, $5.79 at Walgreen's
Pizzaface, the monster from your nightmares.
With all the sweat, dirt, and makeup that accumulated on your face during Coachella, you may wake up the morning after looking like a pizza. It can be absolutely maddening, but do not fear, and DO NOT POP. ANYTHING. All your bodily processes are probably a bit sluggish right now, so it will take twice as long to heal any craters you leave on your face. Instead, spot treat with tea tree oil. Dilute two drops of pure tea tree oil with two drops of witch hazel or water and apply with a Q-tip. You can use all over your face as a toner if you like! Just make sure you dilute the tea tree oil enough so it doesn't sting the living daylights out of your face!
Thayers Witch Hazel with Rose Water, from $8.67 on Amazon
The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil, $10 or Buy 3 Get 3 from The Body Shop
Orange you glad I gave you this advice?
Vitamin C is a miracle for your face. And to think you’ve been, like, drinking it in juice form this whole time. Vitamin C serums provide antioxidants that can brighten your skin, even out your skin tone, and even REVERSE sun damage. It’s true kids, and it’s the only ingredient that has been shown to do it. What’s even better is that a little goes a long way, and it’s usually pretty affordable.
LilyAna Naturals Vitamin C Serum, $20 on Amazon
This will be your cup of tea
We all know that music festivals can invite, erm, pollution. Particles of pollution can weasel their way into your pores and release free radicals, which damage cells and speed up aging. And while you love your mom, you’re not ready to look like her quite yet. Green tea contains antioxidants like EGCG, which battles free radicals and increases circulation to your skin. Red wine contains an antioxidant called resveratrol, which also fights free radicals and can combat signs of aging due to sun damage. The Creme Shop, a Korean brand, makes both green tea and resveratrol sheet masks for a bargain price. Innisfree, another Korean brand, makes green tea and red wine sleeping packs, which do all the work while you snooze.
Green Tea Face Mask, $3 from The Creme Shop
Innisfree Wine Jelly Sleeping Pack, $17 on Amazon
Just Keep Drinking
NOT THE BOOZE. That is not what I meant. You are super dehydrated. You just are. Keep drinking water and *Michael Jackson voice* don’t stop ‘til you get enough.
Pro tip: turn on a humidifier and restore moisture to your skin while you sleep!
PurSteam Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier, $35 on Amazon