A few years ago, when the self-care trend first started to emerge, the term was used to empower people to put themselves first—after all, we can’t pour from an empty cup. After the barrage of bad news, a crazy election, and continued bad news (that sadly is still dominating today), taking care of yourself is not only a small act of kindness for yourself but the world around you. Audrey Lorde, American author, activist, and poet, said it best: “Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.”
But sadly, the term self-care has been co-opted by businesses and websites that want to sell you some miracle “self-care” cure—tinctures, drinks, products, all designed to make us think we’re caring for ourselves but really are just a way to make money. Let me be clear: Self-care is not about spending money. I’ve done way too many spontaneous online shopping hauls to know that it’s definitely not the answer. Instead, self-care is all about honoring your own feelings, nurturing and caring for yourself.
“Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.” — Audrey Lorde
And that’s where my skin care routine comes in. My skin care routine is not necessarily about the products themselves (although my Sulwhasoo products DO make me happy). It’s about the ritual of caring for myself and my skin. With all the chaos in the world, and even on days when things are relatively good, my skin care routine grounds me. Even in the depths of my past depressive episodes, when everything else fell to the wayside, the one thing I never gave up was my skin care routine. To me, that’s the true power of self-care. And during these wild, unpredictable times, I know my skin care routine is always there for me.
There are a few ways I like to really infuse my skin care routine with as much warm, fuzzy, self-care feelings as possible—all without spending extra money on products.
Music is one of those things that is an instant mood booster. In the mornings, I like to listen to fun, uplifting pop music while I’m doing my routine, and in the evening, I like to listen to Yo-Yo Ma, my go-to for calm, relaxing vibes. Sometimes, if I’m feeling extra fancy, I’ll play some soothing spa music while I massage my oil cleanser into my skin.
Using one sheet mask during your skin care routine is normal, but using two?! Sheer decadence. It’s not even about the results (which are typically incredibly bouncy, glowy skin), but the fact that I can relax and watch TV, listen to an audiobook or a podcast (Who? Weekly is literally keeping me afloat during this time if you want a great recommendation), while simultaneously taking care of my skin is truly revolutionary. It’s 40 minutes of uninterrupted bliss.
As a chronic jaw clencher, there is no better feeling on this planet than massaging my jawbone and temples. NONE. At night, it’s like instant melatonin—my whole body relaxes and I’m firmly convinced that I’m able to sleep better. I like to massage in all of my skin care products but especially my oils. For a tutorial on how to do your own facial massage, check out this video!
How do you self-care with your skin care? Let us know in the comments below!