They say Sunday is the day of rest, but regardless of religion, it does seem to be the one day of the week where most of us find time to slow down. As someone who struggles with anxiety, it’s the one day I always make time to check-in and take care of myself. I often find it difficult to slow down my mind, but I find I can ground myself by doing something physical that I know is good for my body and good for my mind. The easiest way is with my beauty routine.
While I have a simple beauty routine that I follow every morning and evening, on Sundays I like to up the ante. I’m talking about more moisture and something for my much-neglected body. After all, my face is only one small part of my skin, so why do I consistently neglect the rest of my body?
This is my little self-care beauty routine for Sundays that helps me slow down, and be ready to start the next week knowing that I’ve done something good for my mind and my body.
You’ve always got to start with a cleanser, and while I double cleanse during the week to get rid of any makeup and then do the actual cleansing, I like to go for something a little fancier on a Sunday. I love Ren’s Evercalm Cleansing Gel because it’s gentle enough for my sensitive skin, but still super hydrating. The texture is a little more luxurious than my usual cleansers and it feels like a real treat for my face.
Sheet masks are never going to be something I use more than once a week, for one simple reason. I wear glasses. This means that I either need to pop single-use contact lenses in for the sake of a face mask or commit to the world being extremely fuzzy for 20 minutes. I generally choose the near-blindness, which I would find extremely distressing in any other circumstance. However, in the comfort of my home, either in my bathroom or bedroom, it’s a short period of time in which I’m forced to relax. I can just about read a magazine if I lie down on my bed and get quite close, but watching TV is out of the question, so a sheet mask is an enforced relaxation time for me. Since it’s winter at the time of writing, most of us are struggling with dry or dehydrated skin thanks to the lower humidity and central heating systems, so I’ve been enjoying the Vichy Minéral 89 Hyaluronic Mask which is perfect for a concentrated shot of moisture.
Once I’ve peeled off my face mask, I leave the remaining serum to soak in after patting it down my neck, but next on my Sunday beauty to-do list is to tackle my poor, neglected body. While I occasionally slather on an emollient or body moisturiser of some kind to try and hydrate my scaly limbs, Sunday is the day for exfoliation. Facial exfoliation has come a long way since the St Ives Apricot Scrub days, but for some reason, most of us still use physical exfoliants for our bodies. As someone who suffers from bouts of eczema, although quite mild, I tend to avoid anything too physically abrasive. Instead, the new chemical body exfoliants brands are bringing out are my absolute saviours. The Ren AHA Body Serum is a dream, using gentle lactic acid to exfoliate while also hydrating. It soaks in pretty quickly and has changed the game for me during the colder months.
By the time I’m done taking care of my body, the remaining serum from my face mask has completely soaked in, and it’s time to lock in all that moisture. It’s always best to follow up any hyaluronic acid product with a moisturiser, otherwise, it can actually end up drawing the hydration out of your skin, instead of helping it to absorb more. On Sundays, I reach for a water cream moisturiser, like the aptly-named Renewed Hope in a Jar from Philosophy. It contains even more hyaluronic acid (because can you ever really have too much moisture?) and absorbs quickly.
Finally, I never go a day without lip balm, liberally applied throughout. My boyfriend has suggested tracking some sort of Wi-Fi or RFID enabled tracking dots to all of my lip balms, as I invariably lose them for hours at a time each day. This is the one that I never lose. It sits amongst my skincare stash, and is only applied once a day after my skincare routine. I’m not particularly faithful to any one lip balm, but I always make sure I have some of the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Intensive Lip Repair on standby. It has cult status for a reason and is guaranteed to heal my lips overnight even on the days when I lose my regular lip balm at 8 am and don’t find it until the next day.
For exactly this reason, it never leaves my skincare drawer in the bathroom.