Judging by the title of this post, you have probably realized that this is not going to be one of my usual posts about style. But it is. I find that having and being disciplined about self-care and beauty regimen play a role just as important as what we wear in our lives. When we feel healthy and great on the inside, it shows on the outside. Glowing, healthy skin and hair are part of the full style package!
I have rounded up my favorite products and tools that have done/do magical things in my busy life. From items that can be found at CVS and Target to Whole Foods, to online beauty shops, my self-care and pampering routine is nothing short of relaxing and feel-good moments!
Moorland Honey in The Rough
I found this jar at Whole Foods and I have been using it twice on a monthly basis on my face. Raw honey has healing and antibacterial properties, and you are guaranteed to feel the difference immediately after using it. I typically wash my face first with my facial cleanser, and then apply a spoon or two all over my face with the exception of my eyes. As expected it will be very sticky, therefore patting it in small increments is your best bet. Then I leave it on for about 5 mms or more (this might depend on your tolerance of dealing with dripping honey due to the skin's natural warmth). Once time is up, I rub the mask very gently in small, circular motion (without forgetting the lips - they need some love too!); then I use a towel soaked in lukewarm water to remove the mask.
My face feels soft and incredibly velvety after using this product, making it one of my favorites. It's also one of the easiest ways to prep the skin prior to applying makeup as skin is matte and oil-free. And if you want to know the type of honey to use for your skin type, check out this post on The Nourished Life blog.
Freeman Charcoal & Black Sugar Facial Polishing Mask
I found this scrubbing beauty at Ocean State Job Lot! I'm a fan of OSJL, and a bigger fan of places and stores that carry good stuff at prices below retail. And this product is proof that quality doesn't always have to signify high price. It's grainy, pasty, tastes sweet, and smells fresh and clean. An awardee of Allure Best of Beauty 2013, this mask serves as both a mask and an exfoliator, and will leave your skin looking bright and refreshed.
Go to www.ulta.com or find it at your nearest drugstore.
Sugar Kiss Whipped Sugar Scrub, Lalicious
By now you have realized I'm a fan of scrubs and exfoliators. This one for the full body gives my typical shower routine a bit of a spa experience. It smells good, and leaves my skin soft and moisturized after the shower. Based in San Francisco, Lalicious' products are formulated without parabens, mineral oil, phthalates, gluten, paraffin, petroleum, sodium laureth sulfatetriclosan, GMO derived soy, propylene glycol, and synthetic colors. They are "98 % natural, 99% vegan, and 100% mindful." What's not to love!
Miss Jessie's Super Slip Shampoo and Creme de La Curl Conditioner, Miss jessies
This duo has kept my curls looking full, tight, and healthy. If your hair is curly, wavy, tight curly, or kinky, these might work well for you. The shampoo has a smooth detangling effect. The Creme de La Curl conditioner gives my hair volume and does not weigh it down as other brands often do.
Cricket Q Zone Tourmaline Ceramic Hair Dryer, 1 AM Beauty
Every time I'm using this dryer, I find myself checking whether or not the speed is at its maximum, and it is, but that's how quiet it sounds and how softly it blows, without compromising its efficacy. It unequivocally lives up to its name, and I have yet to get accustomed to it. The handle has a curve that softens the grip, and helps with longer holds depending on the texture and length of your hair. Absolutely worth the price tag!
G4 Swirled Extended Cork Round Brush (Large), Ibiza Hair
Two words: Time Saver. This brush has drastically shortened the amount of time it takes me to blow dry my curls in the morning. Made in Spain, this large, round brush has a cork handle that makes it easier to rotate and less tiring for your arm. My straight hair has bounce, volume, and shine. And if I want waves or curly ends, the brush's bristles help to achieve that look very seamlessly, without having to use a curly iron.
Cricket Titanium Tourmaline 450 Hair Straighteming Flat Iron 1", 1 AM Beauty
Another great tool that has made a difference in my morning routine. Made to prevent hair damage, this flat iron is light, fast (heats up to 450 degrees in less than 30 seconds), and has a sixty minute auto shutoff for safety. Its stylish, 3 D metallic look is a fun, added bonus.
1 AM Beauty is a Providence based Spa Source Online Company led by a talented team - check out their full array of products.
Maybelline Volum' Express The Colossal Cat Eyes Mascara
Maybelline is one of my go-to over-the-counter makeup brand, and this mascara does eye wonders. You will meeoooww yourself. Promise!
Available at your local CVS, Target, RiteAid.
Butter London Top & Tails Set, Butter London
I can't say enough about this Butter London set. Home manis and pedis have never been the same since I bought these. The results are astonishing, and very similar to getting my nails professionally done.
One thing to remember is that we all have different types of skin and hair. The above beauty/hair products may cater well to my needs, but may not be a good fit for your hair and/or skin. These are merely suggestions. Getting a professional facial consultation/massage/mani and pedi are always great options, and let's admit, having an expert doing it for you while you sit down and relax is so much better.
At the end of the day, whatever your approach is to self-care, have fun with it, invest in it, and linger in the moment. I often put on my mask while my son is in the bath, playing with his toys right beside me. I call that multi-tasking without really multi-tasking - I am going to sit by the bathtub anyway - that's plenty of time for a face mask!
And remember quality is primal! Quality means investment. Quality also means that you're making your life just a bit easier. During styling sessions with clients, quality is a hot topic. Why should it be any different with our skincare, hair regimen, make up needs, our food, fill in the blanks…? This year, let's make a goal to try new things and experiment rather than settling for 'meh-decent'. If you are ready to give your skin/hair care routine a bit of a makeover, give any of these a try and let me know how it works out!