Following on from last week’s column about stressed skin, this week, I’m going into self-care skincare. I believe there is a lot to be said about skincare as a mode of self-care. I will always be results-focused when it comes to skin and I believe that you should be using the right ingredients but at the same time, there is an enjoyment and a relaxation element to be gleaned from it.
Taking care of your skin is taking care of yourself and doing your skincare may be the only 5-10 minutes you spend on just you. Sometimes you need to treat yourself and have a thorough pampering session to unwind, centre and make yourself feel like the glamorous, together hooman that you are. “Me time” is an incredibly important part of a regime with us, to the point that it features on the nerdie diary that we send to clients after their consultation.
Without further ado, here are some fabulous products and sets to use during your all-important “me time”….
Academié Scientifique de Beauté Multi-Masking Box (€32.50)
Multi-masking allows you to address multiple skincare concerns at one time… It also allows you to therapeutically paint yourself in different colours. This set contains a Lime-Blossom Mask, a Purifying Mask, a Honey Mask and an Apricot Mask.
The Purifying Mask is a clay-based mask that contains apricot almond oil and plant extracts to absorb excess oil whilst soothing the skin, the Honey Mask is nourishment in a tube as it features honey extract complex, shea butter, mango butter and macadamia oil, the Apricot Mask is high in omegas, vitamins and minerals to give the skin a boost of health and the Lime-Blossom Mask works to bring down areas of redness.
Make sure to take time to identify which mask should be going on which areas – if you have an oily t-zone, you should be popping the clay-based mask there but not on areas of flaking or dryness as these areas would benefit the most from the Honey Mask.
YonKa Phyto Bain Bath Oil (€45.00)
YonKa are an aromatherapy-based brand and the Phyto Bain Bath Oil helps you to create an aromatic spa experience in your very own tub, for when you neither have the funds nor the time to book in to a spa. It is full of concentrated essential oils such as lavender, cypress, rosemary, sage and petitgrain to simultaneously help you to relax and to revitalise your body. Use lukewarm to warm water rather than scaldingly hot, as immersing yourself in hot water can damage your skin’s all-important barrier! Pop a tablespoon of this into your bath and settle in with a good book – candles are technically optional but I see them as an essential.
IMAGE Body Spa Rejuvenating Body Lotion (€42.00)
There are few better feelings than the feeling of smooth skin all over your body. The IMAGE Body Spa Rejuvenating Body Lotion is high in glycolic acid to increase cell turnover and slough off the dead skin cells that are leaving you with rough, dry “elephant skin”. It also contains peptides that aid the skin in its own exfoliation, retinyl palmitate, vitamin C and hydrating macadamia.
Smooth it over your skin gently and give yourself a bit of a massage while you’re at it! Be wary of using it on areas of broken or freshly shaven skin as the glycolic acid may irritate this more vulnerable skin. This is perfect prior to false tan, to tackle ingrown hairs after hair removal (but not directly after, as mentioned), for those with keratosis pilaris aka chicken skin and for those who may get some lumps and bumps across the body.
Making your skincare routine a self-care ritual
Although the occasional treat is important, self-care is something that should be part of your daily life. Make your AM & PM skincare regime into your reliable ritual. I find that doing deep-breathing exercises between removing my cleanser and applying my serums helps me to feel more focused and takes me out of the juggle. Look at yourself in the mirror properly and appreciate yourself (and your skin). If you are an in-mirror pep-talk hooman, finish your routine with this, whether it’s a simple “You are great and you’re going to have a great day” or your full Oscar acceptance speech.