I’ve already written a post about my relationship with selfcare. The post you’re reading now is a little different as it focuses on my use of ‘beauty’ products or activities.
I genuinely enjoy engaging in the selfcare practices I discuss in this post and I think it plays a big role in maintaining my sense of self. I have noticed that I will not reap the full benefits of the selfcare activities if I eat poorly and do not exercise. Processed and unhealthy foods will dehydrate my skin and hair, and I get pimples when I eat too much sugar.
I’ve decided to kick off this post with a definition of selfcare, followed by what I do.
What is selfcare?
To me, selfcare is a way of life, not a destination. It is about looking after yourself and being mindful of what works for you, and working on changing habits that don’t. It’s also about being self aware and having a strong sense of self.
Face moisturiser and eye cream
I’ve always had dry skin and I only ever used Rosehip oil to moisturise my face. I got married in May this year and I had my makeup trial in April. My makeup artist reminded me that my skin is very dry.
I had my trial in the morning and I planned on wearing the look late into the night to see how well it held up, and if I really liked it. My skin was so dry that my face started to hurt, so I had no choice but to wash off the makeup in the afternoon!
Not wanting to experience the same pain on my wedding day, I did research on affordable skin care products that would hydrate my skin. I still wanted to use the Rosehip Oil, but I wanted the other products to be as natural as possible without breaking the bank account. I went with the eye cream in the middle and the face cream on the right and have been using them since.
I avoided exfoliating for years as I have rosacea (it literally covers my cheeks) and was concerned it’d aggravate my broken capillaries (that’s essentially what my rosacea is). I actually started exfoliating my face three weeks ago. Now I only exfoliate my t-zone: forehead, nose, upper lip and chin. I haven’t been doing it long enough to notice if it’s made a difference.
I’m pale and prone to getting freckles and moles. I had one mole cut out a few years ago and have to get the rest checked out yearly.
I try and wear sunscreen every day in the warmer months when the UV rays are stronger. I do slack off at times which isn’t ideal. I really like to use the Cetaphil Sun Ultra Light SPF50+ Lotion as it’s non-greasy and doesn’t smell as potent as other sunscreens can, which makes it great for reapplying.
I wash my makeup off before bed
I’ve only gone to bed a few times with my makeup on. Sleeping with it on clogs my pores and makes my pillow dirty. I also don’t like the feeling of it on my skin when I’m trying to sleep.
Homemade lip scrub
I occasionally use a lip scrub made of honey and raw sugar. Honey doesn’t go off, so I keep the scrub in a drawer in my bathroom. I’ve found I need to use this more in the colder months. It helps makes my lips smooth and is a good way to prepare my lips before applying lipstick.
The old toothbrush trick
I always brush my teeth last when I go out. If I’ve forgotten to use the above lip scrub, I’ll rinse my tooth brush when I’m done brushing my teeth, and then lightly brush my lips. It’s a quick and easy alternative to the scrub.
Dry brushing is a form of exfoliating. As the name implies, you use a dry brush like the one below and brush it against your skin. This is great for removing dead skin cells and making your skin smooth. I try and do it 2-3 times a week in Spring and Summer. I do slack off in Autumn and Winter, or in other words, when my skin needs it the most.
I do notice a big difference in my skin when I do this. I also notice that my skin absorbs my moisturiser a lot easier when I do it.
Dry brushing is also fantastic for keeping my in-grown hair at bay! But wait, there’s more: it feels great, almost like a mini massage! You think by how much I rave about it, that I’d do it every day! But alas, I’m too lazy. Maybe I should do a dry brushing challenge?
DIY Body Scrub
Occasionally I like to make a body scrub containing olive oil, raw sugar and sometimes I add instant coffee. It’s perfect because I have the ingredients in my pantry. I use it when I feel my skin needs a good scrub and I won’t do it if my skin is too dry as I feel it aggravates it more.
This homemade scrub is fantastic for getting rid of fake tan!
I like this Aveeno moisturiser because it’s almost all natural, it’s very affordable and a little goes a long way. Once again, I need to do this the most in Autumn and Winter but I don’t. That’s something I need to work on next year. The only downside is that it’s probably too thick for the warmer months.
My hair is naturally very dry. I’ve pretty much perfected my hair care routine and I don’t get bummed if I’m having an off day because you can’t have perfect hair everyday. Doing the below helps keep it hydrated and split ends at bay.
I like to leave the Keune Care Vital Nutrition Masque product in my hair for a few hours on ‘life-admin’ days, which is usually a Saturday or Sunday. I know this works because I notice a big difference when I don’t use this! This is the most expensive item in my ‘selfcare’ arsenal, but I have one container for a year.
Leave in conditioner
I like to put this Salon Only’s Miraculous Leave-In Treatment in my hair every day or every second day. It prevents my hair from getting too dry in between my hair mask treatments. It also lasts forever – I’ve been using the same bottle for almost six months and probably have a few months left with it! The only con is that it is a little glittery so it leaves a bit of glitter residue on my hands, but I can live with that.
Concluding thoughts on selfcare
I hope I’ve shown that you don’t need to spend a fortune to look after yourself. Like I said earlier, doing this helps me maintain my sense of self.
I would love to know: what are your favourite selfcare practices? Do you do any of the things I’ve discussed?