Refreshing your beauty routine is also about refreshing your attitude to self-care. When you're an adult, it's easy to forget to look after yourself. Because, unlike when you are a kid, if you forget to brush your teeth, there's no one there to whip you into shape and march you to the bathroom sink.
At first, the independence that comes with age is dizzying. I know I spiraled down a fizzy drink trail the minute I moved out of home. I could drink this sugary fizz whenever I wanted! No rules! No consequences! ! Or so I thought... that was, until I broke out terribly on my forehead from eating too much sugar, not washing my face enough, and staying up too late. A bad skin recipe, that's fo 'sho.
Yes, I kicked the Diet Coke habit. But sometimes, I still need to take a long, hard look at myself (not just metaphorically, but also literally - in the mirror, that is) and admit that I'm just not taking care of myself as well as I should be. If you see the symptoms of any of the following, it may be a sign you need to slow down and administer a little self-TLC...
#1 Your head is starting to hurt from all the top knots and high ponys you do every day
Last week, I woke up with a huge headache. On the top, right-hand side of my head, it felt like I had a massive bruise. Did someone break into my apartment and punch me in the head, all while I slept soundly and unwoken? Unlikely. So, what could've caused this sore head? Cue what Oprah calls an 'Ah-ha' moment... 'It's all those top knots I've been wearing!' Then cue the shame: 'That's because I'm lazy with hair washing, trying to get 3 days instead of two out of a blowdry ... and I'm more than lacking when it comes to my repertoire of trying new hairstyles...' * mentally looking down, while kicking can along the ground and both hands in pockets*
Wearing your hair up all the time not only causes hair breakage, it can results in sore heads from all the tension of tight hair and elastics and bobby pins uncomfortably sitting atop your head. It can also help hide day-old hair, which might be ok every now and again, but in the long run isn't doing you any beauty favours. Consider my lesson learnt.
I've been madly pinning new hairstyles to try, for days when I can't get by with my hair down. I've also bought myself a fancy new Shampoo and Conditionerfrom AlfaParf. And for those dayswhen I simply must do a top knot?I'm reaching for Twistband (in the pretty Tie Dye Hair Ties, for summer) as they are a little more gentle to locks than your regular ties.
#2 You don't remember what's its like to not have scaly legs
It's ok to admit it. Sometimes, your (my) legs get so dry and scaly that even all the moisturiser in the world won't help. So you (I) give up, and live in a slightly dry, sometimes ok no-mans-land when it comes to your pins, and pray that it won't be too hot for tights when they're less than great. But you can't do this forever. And it's getting warmer and warmer. Time to scrub! It'll help slough off the dry skin sitting on top of your legs, making way for the fresh, glowing skin waiting beneath.
#3 Your always so tried, you hit the pillow before you cleanse
Tut tut tut. But yes. I am guilty as charged. Sometimes you just get too tired/ stayed up too late watching too many eps of the Kardashian variety to wash your face before bed. We all know this is bad, but still do it anyway. So, why not give yourself an extra incentive, just like the lollipop you used to get for going to the doctor...
Swap a delish cleanser that'll make the effort worth it, like the ASAP Daily Facial Cleanser, and then consider swapping your bed linen...
Try one of the best 'inventions' in anti-aging since serums and get your hands (and face) on a silk pillow every night. The Meili & Grace Anti-Aging Pillowcase incorporates precious silk fibers to reduce and prevent wrinkles. Plus, it feels extra cooling and soothing on skin. Now, you won't want to ruin that with old makeup on your face, will you?
#4 Your attempts at fighting blackheads and white heads is squeezing and picking your skin
Uh, oh. Now, not only do you most likely still have blackheads/whiteheads/blemishes (or all of the above) you've also got a scab/red marks/spread the infection (or, all of the above). Learn new - and better - habits, with b.Liv. One of the most popular skincare brands sampled with our bb sistas in Singapore, this amazing line of products really help to disband blackheads that just won't budge. Stay tuned for their drop in the bb online store any minute...
#5 Your nails are always chipped, peeling, or breaking
This is one I try never to fall into, but on days when my mani is chipped, I know I really need to book in for some beauty TLC. A fresh mani not only makes you feel clean and put-together, it also signals to the world that you're one well-groomed lady! Try a classic red shade that'll bring mega-watt shine to your tips, and make you go the extra mile to painting them pretty, at least once a week.
#6 You can't remember the last time you ate 5+ vegetable or fruit in a day
Now, this is something I am very guilty of. And no, a touch of chili and bean shoots in Pho doesn't count. That's a garnish!
The solution? Shopping up at the start of the week at your local grocers, and planning ahead. It might not be as fun as buying your lunch on the fly every day, but it will help you get your daily greens, as well as save you $ in the long run! Or, you go try a juice cleanse. Not sure it's for you? Stay tuned for next week, when I reveal the results of one I tried earlier (read: am on NOW!) Like I said, stay tuned...
How do you try to take a little extra care of yourself? Are there any telltale signs in your beauty routine, or life in general, that alert you to signs of a lack of self-TLC? Let me know! - Lauren