Walking past the mirrors in my house over the past week and a half has been a test for my self-esteem. My skin is looking battered and spotty and so tired. There is no mystery behind this sad state of affairs, I have not been doing the maximum to look after my skin during the holidays. For years I’ve been promising myself that I will take my makeup off before bed, or wear sunscreen, or drink the required 3 litres of water every day. I’ve yet to follow through on these promises. But it’s 2019 and I am turning over a new leaf.
A new year doesn’t mean that you wake up as a new person on January 1st. Very often we (read: I) set lofty goals for the New Year and because they are so ambitious, I seldom achieve them. On New Year’s Eve I sat on my couch with a glass of wine and thought about this. Was I not achieving my goals because they were too hard? Was it something else? I realised that it was a massive lack of intention. I wanted the result of the goal, but I lacked the intention to do the work to achieve those goals. For 2019, I have set no goals and made no resolutions, I have however adopted an attitude of intention. I will keep the promises I make to myself.
I’m not going to unpack the personal things I would like to achieve this year, but I do want to tell you about the skincare promises I have made myself.
ALWAYS WEAR SUNSCREEN
And if you can’t, at least find a moisturiser or foundation with added SPF. I find it really difficult to stick to this because most creams with SPF or most sunscreens feel very thick and leave my already oily skin, feeling even oilier. But there are 2 products that work really well for me: the AVON True Colour Foundation which has SPF 15 and the Pond’s Flawless Radiance Derma+ Moisturising Day Cream which has SPF 30. Both of these products are incredibly affordable. The AVON True Colour Foundation retails for R154.90 and the Pond’s Flawless Radiance Cream retails for R119.00.
MOISTURISE YOUR WHOLE BODY
This one time, I went to work without moisturising and at one point I looked down at my feet, and oh my gosh, you guys! They looked grey. They were so ashy and dry that my skin actually looked grey. Since that day, I have been semi-militant about moisturising my whole body. Summer in Cape Town is brutal and I often feel incredibly clammy after I shower and then moisturising on top of that just feels wrong. It’s not, it’s so important. We all know that the shower (or bath) strips your skin of its natural oils so it’s vital that you (read: I) moisturise as soon as you get out of the shower. I have found that storing my lotion in the shower helps me to remember. I love the Pure Beginnings Hydrating Body Lotion because even though it’s lush and creamy, it absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave my skin feeling heavy. At R109 for a 250ml bottle, it is not really a budget item though. If you’re looking for a major steal, try the Dove Instant Hydration Body Lotion which retails for R60 for the 400ml bottle.
WASH YO FACE GURL
I have such weird skin. Most of the time it looks ok, sometimes it’s prone to breakouts, always it’s peppered with blackheads. It’s dry in some places and oily in others. As I get older, taking proper care of my skin has become such a huge priority for me, especially the skin on my face. Thanks to my large pores, I find that I need to exfoliate a bit more frequently than others. I have been using the Miniso Milk Exfoliation Gel (which is nice because it doesn’t contain microbeads) and recently I stumbled across the L’Oreal Paris Pure Clay Exfoliating Face Wash. I really love it. It smells amazing. It’s not a gentle wash; it really gets in there and cleans the skin. I think there is a chance that this could dry out more sensitive skins, so I would caution against it if you fall into that category. Both of these options are incredibly affordable. The Miniso gel retails for R28 a tube (yes you read that correctly) and the L’Oreal one for R88 a tube.
CLEAN THAT FACE PROPERLY AFTER A GYM SESH
My gym is undergoing renovations and right now there are no showers at the gym. I am not a big sweater so I don’t really mind this, but my face does. Because I go to the gym during my lunch break it’s really hard to do the same kind skincare that I would on non-gym days. My workaround is not wearing makeup on gym days (or very very light makeup) and taking my micellar water with me to the gym so that I can properly clean my face after working out. I have just found a cute little travel size micellar water which I can actually just leave in my gym bag. It’s on takealot for just R31!
CLEAN THOSE BRUSHES
Last year I got into such a good rhythm for cleaning my makeup brushes. Every Sunday morning I would whip them out and give them the care they deserved. We all know that makeup brushes can become ground zero for breakouts. All those dead skin cells, old makeup and skin oils are heaven for bacteria. Work, kids, life disrupts my best intentions and I haven’t been keeping up with my brush care. I am proud to say that I am back on the wagon and happily cleaning my brushes every Sunday again. If you are wondering how to clean yours, I just use lukewarm water and Grace’s baby shampoo to clean mine. There are loads of well-priced brush cleaners you could buy if you wanted to, I just don’t feel it’s 100% necessary.
Like anything else in life, seeing results from a new routine requires patience. I know my skin and I know that with the above steps in place (and lots and lots of water and no sugar) my skin will be back to normal in no time… I just need to stick with it and approach these “resolutions” with intention.
What are some of your self-care resolutions for 2019?