Friday, June 21, 2019

How I Tricked Myself Into a Better Skincare Routine

How I Tricked Myself Into a Better Skincare Routine
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When I was younger, I prided myself on having amazing skin while doing absolutely nothing for it. Boy was I stupid. If I could go back in time, I'd tell myself to be consistent with my skincare. Of course that wasn't always the case... As a tween I read in a magazine that using anti-ageing cream was good for any age, the earlier the better and I got in trouble for stealing my mom's Oil of Olay. But somewhere between that young age and my late teens, I got lazy and to be honest, it didn't seem to make much of a difference. I didn't have acne, I didn't have dry skin and the compliments never stopped, so I wasn't worried... As an adult I've gone through phases, but consistency has not been my strong point and the older I get, the more I notice the effects... I'll do a skin routine really well for about 3 weeks and then I fall off the wagon and get into old, very bad habits of sleeping in my makeup, forgetting to moisturise, skipping sunscreen... You know the drill. This year I've made it my mission to get a routine going once and for all. I'm going to be 40 in less than two years, so it seems that the time is now. Six months in, I can report that I'm now quite diligent about my skincare routine and I've seen massive improvements. Even my facialist has complimented the progress. I had to trick myself into this new routine and it has totally worked. Here are 5 ways you can trick yourself into a better skincare routine too!

1. Invest
The first thing I did when I decided to up my skincare game was to treat myself to some things I knew I'd be excited to use in an effort to incentivise myself to stop being lazy. Because I'm a blogger, I do get a fair amount of freebies (all of which are disclosed - it's not a secret) and while I enjoy trying out new products from time to time and I never feature anything that I don't love, I've come to discover that I love some products more than others and that there's nothing like that feeling of walking up to a beauty counter, treating yourself to something lush and walking out the store which a nicely packaged little bag, excited to get home to use your new purchase. One of the products I bought is the Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm which I'm absolutely obsessed with and never get tired of. I used a sample of it years ago and to be honest, for me nothing else compares. It feels great on the skin, it smells great and it works. It's a personal preference really, but no matter how many cleansers I try, this is one that I'm always excited to use and it's meant that I haven't been to bed too many times without washing my face since I bought it (something I've been really bad about in the past). I also invested in a new moisturiser. I'd been hearing so much about Aēsop for years, so I walked into the shop in Chelsea and asked a salesperson what I should be using and I bought it then and there. The Aēsop Camelia Nut Facial Hydrating Cream has become one of my favourite moisturisers and it's always a treat to use. It smells amazing too! Neither of these products is cheap - in fact, they cost a lot more than what I would normally spend, but having them feels like a luxury that I can look forward to, so the plan totally worked. I've hardly skipped the opportunity to use them since I invested in my own skincare, so they've been worth every penny.

Bonus Tip: If you get bored, treat yourself again. Buy a new product to try... If you're anything like me, this will incentivise you to get back into your routine and keep it going.

2. Back-up
In my opinion, it's unreasonable to expect that you'll always be on top of your game when it comes to skincare. Whether it's because you've come home from a late night out and can't be bothered, your roommate or spouse is hogging the bathroom, you fell asleep on the couch and simply stumbled into the bedroom or you overslept and don't have time, there's always the possibility that you'll have to skip something and for some of us, it's our skincare routine. This is why it's important to have a backup plan. I keep a few products in my bedroom so that I never go to bed or put on my makeup in the morning without doing something. If you spend a lot of nights away from home with your significant other or traveling, it's essential to have some products you can carry with you as well. Things like micellar water or a wipe off cleanser, cotton pads and eye makeup remover are key. No need for a bathroom if you can cleanse your face with these types of products when you need and they're quick. When it's been a late night or I'm too exhausted, I typically reach for an oil-infused micellar water. If I'm feeling motivated, I'll use toner, serum, eye cream and night cream, but if I'm super tired, lazy or short for time, I'll use either a moisturiser or just a serum, but it's better than nothing, right? I've found that having this little backup plan has been essential to maintaining my skincare routine even when I don't want to. It's not what I prefer and probably not good enough for every day, but it's simply a plan B that I can rely on when I need to.


3. Storage
In the past I've been guilty of hiding my beauty products away in drawers or baskets and you know what they say... Out of sight, out of mind. For me, it's been a game changer to have my products staring me in the face where I can't forget to use them. I'm a firm believer that if you can see something, you're more likely to use it. It's similar to your wardrobe - you're more likely to wear clothes or accessories that are in plain sight. I keep my beauty products on the counter in the bathroom or on top of the dresser near the mirror in my bedroom and since doing this I never open a drawer anymore and think, Oh, I forgot that I had that - it's a simple solution really.

4. Professional Care
I used to get facials all the time, but somewhere along the way I got busy or found other things to spend my money on and my appointments got fewer and farther between. As a result, my skin suffered and I lost out when it came to accountability. My first facial this year was a bit brutal to be honest... I had to have a lot of extractions and listen to a lot of reprimanding about the state of my skin, but by my next appointment 6 weeks later, I had to have very few extractions and my facialist could actually see the improvement in my skin. This type of validation and accountability is so important for knowing whether or not what you're doing is working and maintaining the incentive to keep up with your routine. Furthermore, once one area improves, it opens up the opportunities to work on other things. I started out my facial appointments simply focusing on getting my skin clean and back in shape. My appointments now are more geared towards hydrating, treating my fine lines and finding solutions for more intricate things like the busted capillaries around my nose and cheeks.

5. Plan
As with anything worth doing, having a plan is important when it comes to creating and maintaining a skincare routine. If you're like I was and you're a bit lax on what you need to be doing, then you might just have to plan everything for a while. Set reminders in your phone so you don't forget to cleanse and moisturise at night. Strategically position products in places where you know you'll need them - for example, put an exfoliator in the shower and on the sink, so you'll remember to use it no matter where you are. Figure out how many facials you'll need and book them into your schedule. Plan out how, when and where you'll purchase your products so you don't run out. Schedule your regular at-home face masks - this is a big one for me because I forget to do them more often than not. Once you get into the swing of it, you'll be working on autopilot, but until then a reminder and a solid plan is always helpful.
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