What is mindful skincare? For me, it is creating a space where I give myself time to connect with my self, my skin and my senses and to give my skin some loving attention and nourishment. It is a daily ritual for me, like two bookends to the day. The morning routine helps invigorate and set the tone for the day ahead, while the nighttime bookend is my signal to the brain and body that it is time to unwind, decompress, and descend into slumber.
In the morning I start with a mild cleanse. Depending on the weather and how my skin is feeling, I either wash my face with a gentle cleanser or just splash some water onto the face. Pause. Take some cleansing breaths. Feel the body and soul become activated and brimming with life energy. I then proceed with a face mist or toner, a serum, a face oil, and sunscreen. Every application of each product is its own experience to be savored.
At night I enjoy doing a double cleanse. The first step involves using an oil or balm cleanser. This is applied to a dry face and massaged into the skin. Scoop out, rub between the fingers, feel the creamy oils emulsify in my hands. Feels like silk gliding across my face. This act of cleansing helps to melt away any makeup, sunscreen, or grime that has accumulated throughout the day. After the first cleanse, I go in with a second cleanser. This could be the same cleanser if desired. I usually like to use a mild creamy cleanser. It feels like a soothing, nourishing hug from the steamy waters. After patting the face dry with a soft towel, I apply a toner, serum, and face oil.
Either morning or night, or both if I have time and energy, I’ll try to do a 5 minute face massage. This is such a wonderful practice for movement of lymph and breaking up any stagnation. It helps to promote circulation and reduce inflammation. It also gives me more space to turn inward, acutely aware of the sensation of my fingers gliding and caressing my face, feeling the light pressure and the skin to skin contact. I close my eyes and listen to the sounds within. My shoulders lower as my mind quiets. My skin smiles from the love it is receiving. There is nothing else I need to pay attention to besides this.
In these moments I turn off all distractions and gift myself this moment for self care and connection with the spirit. It can be such a sensorial experience, from the fragrance of the oils and serums, to the feel of my hands and fingers touching the skin, to the sound of my own breath as I inhale and exhale in sync with each glide of the hands. Breathe in. Breathe out.
With every application of an oil or moisturizer, I am aware of the contact it makes with my face and how it feels against my skin. I enjoy using products made from botanical and herbal ingredients and this helps me feel connected to the outside world of nature. I love finding small brands that infuse their products with love and high vibrations. The aromatherapy benefits of such botanically driven goodies envelop my skin in an aromatic dream.
I end my skincare ritual with a moment to feel gratitude for my place in the world in that very moment and for the opportunity to have nurtured my skin and my soul.
What type of daily chore/task/routine can you turn into a more mindful practice?
If you’re looking for recommendations, these are some of my favorite brands: