Chances are, you didn’t floss last night before bed. Or, you haven’t really taken a minute to relax in the shower while rushing through your morning. You might not have had enough sleep, or didn’t eat the way your body best responds to this week.
It’s not that we live in a world that isn’t convenient — there are more than enough products to empower us to take care of ourselves and help us live better lives.
It’s that our society champions working and wearing ourselves down. And in reality, sometimes it is what it takes. Families, school, work — it’s all demanding and in some ways, it should be. Part of the fun of being human are these experiences, and even the challenges that might come along for the ride.
But, there is a reason why our bodies start to break down later in life. It’s not entirely because of age alone. It’s from not taking care of ourselves throughout our lives. We treat rest and relaxation like a special experience saved for once in a while. A treat, to treat yourself!
But in reality, we shouldn’t subscribe to this idea. Pampering is not about looking pretty or living luxuriously. It’s about taking care of yourself. Your hair, skin, nails, body, inside and out.
We talked about the ways to lock down a routine and use good products to your advantage. It really does work — and can shave off a ton of time while allowing you to give yourself a little self care every day. Not just when you’ve got a rare free few minutes every couple of months. But every. single. day. (Or at least close to).
A cheat sheet that can work for virtually any busy lifestyle:
- Limit your care to a few key products that get the job done. It’ll vary for everyone, but in general a body scrub, face scrub, gentle face cleanser, shampoo and conditioner, styling gel, body and face moisturizer and gentle soap are the basics everybody needs. Stock these at easy reach. We love natural beauty products at Condiment — they’re less expensive and often do a great job.
- Find your unique needs. Every skin, hair and body is different, and so is the way it needs to be cared for. Washing your hair everyday or your face twice a day might not be what your hair and skin needs. In fact, it might be causing issues. Take some time to get to know and pay attention to how your body responds to self care. For example, don’t wash your hair everyday and see what it does. Skip a morning cleansing of your skin and take note if it seems softer, healthier. If you’re pressed for time, work with a expert — skincare specialists, facialists, hair stylists, etc. can often tell you things about your body’s unique needs and help lock routines down.
- Start small. Treating yourself isn’t frivolous and it can take far less time than you might think. But, trying to take on a huge plan with a lot of elements is just going to feel like another to-do list. Start small. Pick one thing you want to do regularly — maybe using a scrub once a week, or taking better care of your nails. Focus on it first. When it becomes a habit you do regularly on autopilot, add another in.
We live by the idea that living stylishly is all in the little details here — the small efforts, products, and elements that create the bigger picture. It might be a beautiful space that meets your needs, a fantastic meal that took next to nothing in time to prepare. Or taking care of your most valuable asset: Yourself. It works!
Originally published at medium.com