Talking about beauty might seem frivolous when the rest of the world is struggling. But beauty is intrinsically linked to self-care: The one thing that we, who are privileged enough to #stayhome to do our part to protect others, can indulge in for the sake of our mental health. Below, we recommend how to treat your skin as gently as you should your soul in such unsettling times. While you’re at it, check out these guides to workouts you can do at home, and how you can stay calm in this crisis.
Keep your gut in check for the sake of your skin
Now that you’re home and cooking more, it’s time to take control of your gut health. Good gut health builds up your body’s ability to fight infection and prevent inflammation, which also protects your lungs and other vital organs. That aside, it is also the secret to getting clear complexion. Start off by introducing probiotics into your diet with fermented foods such as tempeh, kimchi, and kefir. These introduce good bacteria — while killing off the bad ones — along with vitamins and antioxidants into your system. Avoid dairy, and other inflammatory foods. Add more Omega-3 fats found in fatty fish, chia seeds and flaxseeds, and vitamin C-rich vegetables, which can fight free radicals that break down collagen in your skin. Watch as your complexion starts to glow, reflecting good gut bacterial balance.
Make your skincare routine a ritual
The COVID-19 outbreak can take an emotional toll on anyone, as it elicits anxiety, stress, feelings of uncertainty and grief. Take it easy on yourself. If you find your thoughts racing and heart palpitating, take a step back, stop reading the news, and breathe deeply. Take a long, warm shower, inhaling deeply as you scrub your skin or shampoo your hair.
To maximise skincare benefits, don’t rush through your routine. Take this rule with you: Like the muscles in your body, your face muscles need to be moved in order to tone and lift.Take your time with application and pay more attention to massaging your face. Doing this warms up the muscles, boosts blood circulation and enhances absorption of ingredients from your skincare. It also allows for lymphatic drainage, and reduces puffiness and fluid retention.
If you want to elevate your skincare routine, consider adding facial massage tools, such as a jade rollers. It massages your face, which in turn also boosts drainage.
Maximise your existing products
If you already have facial tools, maximise their use by thinking double duty. Tip: While you have a sheet mask on, go over it with a jade facial roller to massage the ingredients into your skin to de-puff and boost circulation.
You’ll also want to maximise the shelf life of your skincare products. In 2019, Skincare Mini-Fridges blew up on social media. Compact in size, these fridges aren’t just pretty fixtures for your vanity area. Chilling your products, particularly those with active ingredients such as vitamin C or retinol, can extend their shelf lives because these products are sensitive to heat and light. They also oxidise faster if stored in warm or bright places. Just be sure to check if the formula suits a colder temperature. Oils for instance will lose consistency and thicken in the fridge.
Chilled skincare products, like eye creams and beauty tools such as facial rollers and eye massagers, also aids in reducing swelling and redness. Cooled facial mists, toners, and sheet masks can instantly refresh dull and tired skin. Other benefits of owning aSkincare Mini-Fridge? Your serums and sheet masks no longer have to jostle for space with your groceries. There’s no need to worry about odours contaminating your products either. Pictured here is the K-Sisters Glow Up Fridge, which has two shelves — ample storage for your skincare. The door-side shelf rack also allows you to store multiple sheet masks.
Missing your monthly facials? Try something high-tech
Clean thoroughly with a Foreo brush, improve facial contours and activate a skincare product’s ingredients with NuFace’s micro-currents, or invest in an LED Light therapy mask — a godsend if you’re not leaving the house for facials. The lights boost the production of collagen, brighten skin, and reduce fine lines.
Change the way you shop
As tempting it is to step out of the house even though we’re not on a lockdown, it’s recommended to stay home to flatten the curve. If you’ve run out of skincare, shop from the many options available online. MTM Skincare now delivers with free local shipping (minimum spend has been reduced to $50), so you can repair your skin without being exposed to pollutants and free radicals. The custom-blended relieving oil contains sugarcane-derived squalane that forms a protective barrier on skin, and retains moisture and nutrients, delaying skin ageing in the long run.
And if you’re looking for your favourite brands in one place, there’s always Sephora with international cult brands galore, and Tangs, home to all your favourite luxury beauty names such as Christian Louboutin, Tom Ford, La Prairie and Sulwhasoo.