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Confession: I’m super stingy when it comes to spilling the beans on the potions I partake of to preserve the porcelain poreless-ness of my mien.
I mean, I was all for stashing away these secret skincare staples of mine, but I suppose good things must share… (*Insert grumbling growls*) Presenting my personal pick of the cultest of the cult on the market right now, for your perusal and purchasing consideration:


Verso Anti Pollution, from Escentials

This evanescent elixir ranks as of my favourite finds this year thus far. For starters, the dispenser does an ace job at dispersing the mist all over my mien – you can expect only the most delicate of droplets here; no sloshy splashes that’ll mess up your makeup. The antioxidant actives in this fast-acting spray are said to shield your skin from age-accelerating airborne aggressors, but the formula is also superb for setting your makeup and works just fine as a hydrating topper throughout the course of your day. Entirely welcome bonus: A spritz or two seems to shrink the appearance of dilated pores, so spray away!


Allies of Skin 1A All-Day Mask, $99 via

Support local! This fabulous fuss-free fix from Singapore son Nicolas Ian Travis is well and truly an absolute skin saver of the highest order.

But what in Gaga’s name is an ‘all-day mask’? Think of it as a souped-up moisturiser packed with so much goodness that it functions, for all intents and purposes, as a leave-on ‘mask’. Armed with an arsenal of antioxidant actives the likes of acai oil and exotic algae, this richly restorative silicone-free salve is said to soothe stress-induced inflammation, alleviate acne and quench parched skin – the sum result of which is complexion that’s as crystal clear and pore-free as that of creator Nic himself.

Its terrific not-too-creamy texture also makes it perfect for priming purposes; pat it on under facepaint and you’ll find that your makeup will “cling” better. (This is superb for sharing with your guy too, as it’s tint-free and undetectable.) Oh yeah, one more thing. The caffeine in this concoction really helps with draining water retention, at least in my experience. Slap this on the morning after and it should rejuvenate skin rendered lacklustre from one too many all-nighters.


Aurelia Probiotic Refine and Polish Miracle Balm, $173 via Net-A-Porter

Behold, the next big multi-hyphenate miracle. A scrub-in-oil cleanser that does double duty as a rinse-off mask? Methinks you’ll be hard-pressed to find something quite as cool this month.

This so-called Miracle Balm is in many ways a conventional cleansing oil, by which I mean it works by binding with “bad” oils as you massage it into your mien face. Then, when you work warm water onto your skin, the oils “emulsify” – that is, the liquid envelops the tiny globules, turning into a milky solution – which can be rinsed right off.

So far, so familiar. What sets Aurelia’s Probiotic Refine and Polish Miracle Balm apart from the rest is the “polishing” part. This baby boasts beautifying beads and exfoliating enzymes, both of which promise to work in tandem to scour off surface spots for comfortably clean skin. Try your hand at an ad-hoc mask by massaging it into damp skin, letting it sit for 20 minutes, then rinsing off for a visibly smoother visage. Magic!


For Beloved One Melasleep Brightening Daily Defence Cream, $53 from Sephora Singapore

Colour correctors in the formula lend a hint of a tint to your complexion, sans greasiness or excess weight, plus it’s so much fun to use. The finely textured fluid is souffle-soft in consistency, so it glides on like a dreamy dessert – this in turn means you’re apt to slather on more of the good stuff and enjoy the full protection required to fend off the fury of the Singapore sun.

Formula-wise, this cream promises to function like a shield in fortifying against external pollutants – a massive boon if you’re an urban warrior marinating in a slurry of smog. Another big beauty bonus: The perfectly respectable SPF rating – SPF 45 for the rose version; SPF 30 for lavender and peach – means that cubicle-dwelling folks should be able to skip their regular sunscreen if they like. (Just remember to top up before venturing out into the searing glare of our streets!)

Which colour to pick? My money’s on the rose-tinted one, which boasts a universally flattering flush that is just fantastic on bare skin as a as a brightening base; on no-makeup makeup days, this alone should suffice.


Right, then. See if any of these products are calling out to you or your girlfriends, and #HappyShopping.