10 Easy Beauty Resolutions That Will Make You Look Prettier
It’s the New Year, which means it’s the perfect time to recalibrate and start afresh – in life as well as with your beauty regimen. But let’s be real, when was the last time you stuck to your ambitious New Year’s resolutions? So this year, it’s all about the small tweaks that will improve your life and your skin and hair. These achievable New Year’s resolutions only require little changes so you’re closer to healthier, more beautiful skin and hair.
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Images: Shutterstock, 123RF.com, Unsplash
Text: Joyce Cheo
The health benefits of adequate sleep are many, including better productivity, less weight gain and improved cardiovascular health. Yet, more and more urbanites are getting less and less sleep, especially with our growing dependence on our smartphones and the need to watch the latest series on our favourite streaming service. To improve your sleep quality and get more sleep, try gradually reducing the number of episodes you watch nightly and dim the lights in your bedroom so it’s more conducive for bed time. A candle that has a relaxing scent might also help. And don’t forget to switch your phone’s blue light filter on or completely stop scrolling an hour before bed.
As Long As The Sun Rises, Wear Sunscreen
An extra skincare step can be a hassle when you already have a dozen things on your daily to-do list. And thanks to the rainy season, it can get tempting to skip sunscreen altogether since the days are grey and cloudy. However, no matter how gloomy the sky might look, an estimated of about 80 percent of UV rays still penetrate the clouds to reach us. And over time, it can also accumulate to cause serious damage to skin. Alternatively, switch to a day cream that comes with SPF protection so you can combine two skincare steps into one. We like Avene Hydrance Optimale UV Light SPF 20, $50.90, which soothes, hydrates, protects and balances skin’s sebum production.
Dry Your Hair Before You Sleep
At some point, most of us have hopped into the shower and then into bed, only to drift off to sleep with damp hair. It might not seem like a big deal, but sleeping with wet hair can cause breakage. Hair is most brittle when wet, so tossing and turning will almost surely mean hair damage. But beyond that, sleeping with wet hair and a damp scalp means bacteria and fungus can breed thanks to the moisture and lead to flaking, itching and stunted hair growth. If you’re prone to acne, the moisture on your pillow case can also help bacteria proliferate.
Change Your Pillowcase
As mentioned above, pillowcases can be a breeding ground for acne-causing bacteria. And even if you don’t sleep with wet hair, your skin still emits perspiration and sebum overnight. Not to mention the dead skin cells that can accumulate on your pillowcases, which is why changing your pillowcases once a week will go a long way in keeping bacteria at bay for clearer skin.
Skincare Really Is Self-care
Trust us when we say you’re not the only person who finds skincare a hassle, especially when all you want to do is lie down and call it a day. To help cultivate the habit, don’t think of your skincare regimen as yet another thing to check off your to-do list. Instead, approach it as a time of self-care and pampering. Look for skincare products that have a calming scent that appeals to you, so that when you’re applying layer after layer of serums and creams, it’s almost like you’re giving yourself an aromatherapy facial. We like the Aromatherapy Associates Nourishing Face Oil, $117, which softens and smooths dry skin, thanks to its high content of fatty acids. It is also crafted with sandalwood and geranium essential oils for a relaxing and uplifting effect.
Cleanse Your Skin Adequately
If you think about it, most of your skincare concerns can be traced to a haphazard cleansing routine. This year commit to a thorough cleansing routine beginning with a cleansing oil massaged onto dry skin to dissolve makeup, including waterproof eyeliner and mascara. Then, add a little water to your palms and continue massaging. The addition of water emulsifies the cleansing oil to effectively lift it away from skin before you can rinse it all away with tepid water. Afterwards, follow with a cleansing foam to eliminate traces of dirt and gunk embedded within pores.
Practice Mindful Eating
While it takes only a few clicks on your smartphone to find out what you should be eating for healthy skin and hair, it’s often easy to be swayed by temptation. Setting resolutions when it comes to food can be tricky, and more often than not, they don’t end well because we all know what happens when you deprive your body of certain things. To take a moderate stance on this, try keeping a food diary. This gives you a food log to look back on and be more aware of what you’re eating. Or try the 80/20 rule where you eat healthy 80 percent of the time and indulge in foods that are potential triggers for skincare disasters only 20 percent of the time. Over time, instead of mindless eating to quell hunger pangs, you will begin to make a deliberate decision of feeding your body healthier food that it really needs versus what you think it wants.
Wash Your Brushes Regularly
Like your pillowcases, makeup brushes are an excellent breeding ground for bacteria as they are often moist and kept in dark containers. Which is why you should be cleaning them once every week or two. All you need is a gentle baby shampoo and some tepid water. Dip your brushes in a solution of diluted baby shampoo and gently massage the bristles to get as much of the makeup out as possible. Repeat if needed and lay your brushes flat on a towel to dry as this helps prevent them losing shape.
Use A Face Towel
How often is the bath towel hanging in your bathroom ever completely dry? If your answer is hardly, then just think about how much bacteria has accumulated on that towel before you reach for it to dry your face. Unless you want to constantly introduce a colony of bacteria to your freshly washed face, you might want to use a face towel. Dry both your face and bath towel in a sunny, airy space to avoid any growth of bacteria and change them regularly to eliminate both as causes for your breakouts or rashes.
Drink More Water
While it is widely advocated that the average adult should drink six to eight glasses—or two litres—of water every day, the truth is, it could vary with each individual. Depending on your height, weight and physical activity level, your intake of water might not fall within what’s “usual”. Instead, check in on the colour of your urine to see if you’re adequately hydrated. If it is colourless, that is a clear (no pun intended) indication that you have enough water in your system.