The world has felt like a very challenging place recently. With the spread of the global coronavirus pandemic, most people have been working from home or quarantining. Most of our usual shops and gyms are shut. Everything has literally been turned upside down, and some of us have found our beauty and fitness regimes to be the first thing to suffer. Looking (and feeling) your best may feel like an uphill battle right now.
At first, staying in your pajamas all day, binge-watching Netflix, eating snacks, and Zoom calling your best friends seemed like a fun adventure. Sort of like an extended snow day. But as it’s begun to sink in that things won’t be going back to the old version of normal anytime soon, we’ve had to rethink what we’re doing with our lives.
It’s easy to give in to depression and anxiety in these challenging times, but lockdown also poses the opportunity to work on yourself. In fact, with all the extra time on your hands, you might find that you have a chance to do things like establish a proper skincare routine for the first time.
A wave of ‘glow ups’ have been streaking across our social media feeds as people embrace the change and decide to invest in themselves. So, if you want to get in on the lockdown glow-ups, where do you begin?
Start With Sleep
It might sound strange, but getting a good night’s sleep is key to looking your best. Scientists refer to it as a ‘cornerstone habit,’ and there is a whole host of data showing that those who prioritize shut eye are happier, healthier and more productive. If you want glowing skin with no dark circles, it should be one of your main priorities.
In lockdown, a lot of us have gotten out of our usual daily routines. With no commute to get up for, we’ve lapsed into a pattern of late nights and late mornings. Plus, with many people also experiencing higher levels of anxiety, insomnia is a rising problem too. If any of this sounds like you, it could be time to work on your evening routine in order to promote restful sleep. This will help improve your skin, your health, and your mood!
Start doing things to wind yourself down gradually, around 1-2 hours before you want to go to sleep. A deep bath using aromatherapy oils helps the body wind down, and some people find that drinking chamomile tea or a malt drink made with almond milk is also a natural way to become sleepier. It could also be worth trying a diffuser, such as the Neom Organics Wellbeing Pod, to promote relaxation. If you’re someone who has trouble quieting your mind you could also try a mindfulness app such as Headspace.
Restless nights could be a result of your bedroom, as well. Try banning electronic devices like televisions, smartphones and tablets from the room. They emit blue light which disturbs the body’s natural production of melatonin, the hormone that signals it’s time to sleep. It’s also worth making sure that the room you sleep in has a consistent, slightly cool temperature, and is fitted with either lined curtains or blackout blinds to keep it dark.
Focus On Nutrition
They say you are what you eat, and that has never been truer than during lockdown. Stuck at home, the temptation to eat and eat is always there. Indeed, many of us have been indulging (perhaps too much) in processed comfort foods and sugary, salty snacks that don’t do our skin, hair and nails any favors.
A true lockdown glow-up means you need to address your diet to sort out issues such as bloating, eye bags and peeling nails. Aim each day to ‘eat a rainbow.’ Getting different colors of fruit and vegetables gives your body a variety of different nutrients and vitamins that it needs in order to function optimally–and make you look and feel your best. Making over your diet doesn’t have to be difficult. Try adding some smoothies and soups to your routine or finding healthier snacks to cut down on the sugar and salt you’re taking in. Keep in mind your five a day.
There is also still time to get into cooking during quarantine. Start by finding some simple healthy recipes you can try out making at home and skip the fast food. You may even discover a new passion for playing chef!
Although there is no substitute for fresh produce, adding supplements to your routine can also work well. A powdered supergreens supplement can enhance your fresh intake. There is also a lot of evidence that taking a multivitamin with a probiotic can help to support your gut microbiome, reduce inflammation and bloating, boost your immune system, and give you that impressive glow. In essence, everything you need to look and feel your best!
Love Your Skincare
Now is the time to get your skincare routine sorted. With extra time to devote to self-care, a ten step Korean skincare regime suddenly seems possible. But even if you don’t want to go that far, there are plenty of quicker boosts you can give your skin. Start by using a good cleanser to make sure dirt and make-up residue are being removed at the end of each day. Then try an acid toner once or twice a week to gently exfoliate and keep you looking fresh faced.
Moisturizers that use hyaluronic acid are great at keeping skin plump and fresh. And even if you’re only popping out for a daily walk then you should always make sure to have a broad spectrum facial sunscreen on to prevent damage and fine lines. You can also spend time researching how to get rid of acne when nothing else is working.
If aging is something you want to prevent, try including some retinol products. These can be really effective at keeping skin fresh, especially when paired with Vitamin C. Great quality skincare products are available at all price points, including purse friendly brands like The Ordinary or The Inkey List, so getting into a great skincare routine doesn’t have to cost the earth.
Once you have the basics sorted, you’ll be able to spend your remaining time following YouTube tutorials for the best makeup looks and hairstyling tips to add the finishing touches to your glow up. You could be emerging from lockdown looking and feeling fresh!