I’m weary, are you weary?
Normally, I like to open with positive energy, but I have always promised to be authentic and I think this situation is no different. This year…it’s been exhausting.
I think we are all busying ourselves, trying to be normal, adjusted but underneath, there is a sense of total fatigue. Constant heightened levels of anxiety, a complete lack of normal parameters of security and reassurance for ourselves, our families, our children and our professional life, living in a community we are largely detached from. We are sleep-walking through our lives a little and without the usual punctuation of social gatherings, treats and so on, it’s easy to feel the overwhelm creep in, the resentment of denial.
Suffice to say if there was a time in life where we would be calling our friends and hotfooting it to a spa for the day - this would be it.
It is one of life’s greatest indulgences to succumb to fluffy robes and slippers as we pad from room to room for facials, body massages or simply to sit and be, resting our busy brains and stepping out of reality for a moment in time.
Sadly, that is not our truth just now; existence is very different to what we actually need; retreat, a sanctuary from the anxiety of our modern world. We are not created to survive without the connections of ‘our people’.
So, let me help you create a little sanctuary in your own home. Of course you can do this for someone else, as a gift for the holiday season, but to be honest, you need it just as much, so take a moment.
Create the TIME and SPACE
First things first, this will only work if you actually take time. You need to make an appointment with yourself.
Decide how long and make a plan according to that as to what treatments you intend to give yourself.
Once you have the time, define the atmosphere of the space. It may seem unnecessary but creating the environment and mood is important to the sensory experience.
Scent is a key part of our sensory experience of spa. Set the scene for yourself with some scented candles or a diffuser that will fill the space with restorative, relaxing notes that transport you to a more tranquil state of mind.
The Neom Scent to De-Stress™ collection is blended with 24 pure essential oils to deeply calm the mind and body. Notes of Lavender, Jasmine, Rosewood all help alleviate a sense of overwhelm and banish stress. Try their Luxury Home Mist and spritz liberally around the space you are locking yourself away in. Fragrance works on the olfactory system so it is directly connected to our memories and will help trigger that sense of tranquility that is carefully curated in a spa environment.
Select some soothing music that will not distract but just help ease tension and soothe your senses. The music will help quiet mental chatter and help you focus in on what you are doing, rather than allowing household and environment noise to crowd in.
You are starting your time off by sending messages to your brain that this is your respite, so take time with the mood and environment.
Decide on FOCUS or TOP-TO-TOE
So what will it be? Pedicure? Manicure? Body Scrub? Facial?
This is as mental as it is physical. Naturally there will be a physical improvement from the products and time spent, but this is about replicating the spa mindset as much as possible and how we gravitate towards treatments and activities that bring us a sense of peace plus something that we can relatively simply replicate at home, on our own.
I have put a few thoughts together on little treats that are simple to replicate at home and will make for a relaxing moment of self-care.
Most of us take good care of our facial skin, day to day. But, often, we are in a rush. Simplify the steps and work through them thoughtfully.
Use a Hot Cloth Cleanse to ensure skin is perfectly cleansed of daily impurities and makeup.
Try the ultimate game changer, the original Eve Lom Cleanser. Massage this into the skin to not only deliver a deep, thorough cleanse and help dislodge impurities and clarify pores but help to stimulate the tissue beneath the surface. This will revitalise the process of cellular renewal, revealing more radiant, soft and supple skin each day.
The Beauty Insider puts the SPOTLIGHT ON: Eve Lom
If you are looking for the perfect way to introduce some at home spa to everyday and really notice the difference and see your skin glow, look no further than the iconic Eve Lom Cleanser.
One of the original cleansing balms, this unchanged formulation is arguably responsible for changing the face of cleansing. Now I love cleansing, I am never not extolling the virtues of a good double cleanse and the transformative power of a good cleansing routine. I have used a myriad of different balms and I don’t mind admitting that the Eve Lom Cleanser had been relegated to the archives for some time, it’s easy to get caught up in what’s new or trying other cult classics. But, when I re-used it for this article – I honestly was blown away by it, again.
With a super silky texture, that authentic therapeutic scent of natural oils and the way it glides over skin, melting away the day, it’s second to none. Take time with this, enjoy the process, follow the direction of steeping your muslin cloth in warm water and laying it over the face a few times to really draw out impurities and dissolve grime and makeup. Then buff gently and I promise, the glow you get is like a spa facial, taking only a few moments of your day.
Once skin is deeply cleansed, apply a Mask of your choice. There has been a complete revolution in face masks and a myriad of options for total skin solutions. I cannot recommend solutions for every single option in this article, perhaps that is a topic for another time…(notes down…) but at this time of year, if you are stuck for what to choose - most of us need hydration desperately. Now sit back for 20 minutes and do nothing. Go on. You deserve it!
Once you have washed off the mask. Take your favourite facial oil, add a few drops and massage across the face with fingertips. The face has a number of powerful pressure points that relate to different parts of our body.
Using the fleshy part of the finger or ideally, a Jade or Quartz Roller apply even pressure and concentrate on the lymphatic drainage lines and pressure points to help stimulate, clarify and aid decongestion.
Start in the middle of the face, use light fluid movements, remember not to press too hard as you can drag the skin.
Simple Massage technique:
Press middle finger to either side of the nose at the just under the brow. With firm pressure sweep the fingers up to the hairline, one over the other move along the brow and back and repeat the alternate direction.
Repeat the starting placement of the fingers, rest the thumbs on the temples, sweep up and outward along the hairline to the temples and hold for a moment. Repeat 5 times.
Place the tips of your middle and index fingers on your temples. Glide the fingers inwards under your eye area along the orbital bone, towards the bridge of the nose, then sweep under the brow and repeat tracing with gentle pressure on the orbital bone. Repeat 5 times.
Next use the knuckles of your index and middle fingers, place them above and below the cheekbone starting at the side of the nose and glide them moving outward. Repeat 5 times.
Using the same knuckles, place either side of the jawbone. With firm pressure, slide from the centre of the chin towards the ears.
This will help to drain lymphatic fluid, while firming the jawline.
Taking the soft pad of the same fingers, place them resting on the mid jawline and push up and apart in a V under the cheek bone. Repeat 5 times.
Finish by using the palm of your hand to stroke down the side of the neck and down to the décolletage. Repeat 5 times each side.
Our hair and scalp health is often a clear indicator of our general wellbeing. If you hair feels brittle, dry and prone to breakage it is a clear sign of dehydration. A simple oil treatment and massage, will help replenish the scalp balance, barrier function and nourishing the hair itself.
Simple Scalp Massage Technique
- Apply a few pumps of hair oil to fingertips and rub together to distribute through towel dried hair
- Work into the scalp and through the hair lengths
- Start massaging the scalp with both hands, in straight, firm movements from front to back
- Once you have worked across the whole scalp, repeat but with fingertip circular movements
- Reverse direction and work from the nape of the neck up and forward
- Massage in small circles around the sides of the head behind the ears
- Place hands slightly to the back flat to the scalp so your thumbs are resting under the bony part of your head at the top of the neck. Keeping the hands still, bring the thumbs along the base of the hair-line, together and upwards, repeat this sweeping motion for a minute
- Stroke the fingers through the hair from front to back once again, finishing with a light ponytail tug to help ease tension.
- Finish by wrapping your hair in a towel while you enjoy your other treatments, to help transform the shine and strength of your locks
We neglect our bodies terribly, especially as the winter months draw in, because we layer on the knits and hide a multitude of sins!
Giving your skin a needed boost does not need to be labour intensive.
Now is the time to wash off the oil from your hair and start the next phase of treatment. Run a warm shower, avoid hot water however tempting, as it will dehydrate and stress the skin.
Exfoliation is key to encouraging a smoother skin surface, so select a luxurious body scrub such as one from the Molton Brown Body Polisher collection. The delicious choice of scents will fill the bathroom and your skin will be smooth, invigorated and delicately scented. Always work in circular movements away from the direction of the heart to encourage circulation. Concentrate on stubborn areas such as the backs of arms and legs to encourage fresh skin cells to the surface.
Finish by locking in moisture with a body oil, in place of your usual light moisturiser. Body oil glides easily and helps feed the skin with nourishing essentials that improve barrier function, repair and elasticity. Why not try The Organic Pharmacy Detox Cellulite Body Oil or the heavenly scented Molton Brown Body Oils as a decadent spa treat?
BEAUTY INSIDER TIP
Let go of the guilt.
As a mother and a professional, I know how we tell ourselves we don’t have time for this level of self-care. But as the saying goes, “you can’t pour from an empty cup”. Hey, even on an airplane they suggest you apply your mask first so you can be more helpful. So do that. Help yourself so you can remain strong and inspiring for others, especially as we navigate our way through this crazy time.
Go on, make a date with yourself.