Keep a Regular Skincare Routine (Mental Health Series Part 12)
Welcome back to this series on mental health. I am delighted to have you back for the final blog in this series. As I mentioned in the first part of this series, I will now introduce you to more techniques and tips to help you with your state of mind after sustaining a spinal cord injury (SCI)! This time, I will talk about skincare.
Many people do not realize that having a regular skincare routine can improve your mental health in many different ways. I already discussed how mindfulness and meditation improve your mental health, and a regular skincare routine in the morning and at night can become a meditative practice. A skincare routine allows you to take time in the morning, and before you go to bed to reconnect with yourself and provide yourself with daily self-care. Involving things like calming music or aromatherapy may further increase the benefits of your skincare routine.
A regular skincare routine may improve your mental health by:
Research suggests that having a simple three-step skincare routine can decrease the cortisol levels in your body by up to 83%. A possible reason for this statistic may be that a skincare routine promotes mindfulness and produces a calming effect.
Additionally, taking the time to massage your face when applying products allows you to reconnect with yourself, lowers your heart rate, and improves feelings of anxiety. Suddenly, you have a safe space where you can provide yourself with important, and often much-needed, self-care. Even if you require assistance from a caregiver, you still feel connected with yourself and likely feel a sense of connection to another person.
Plus, whether you do a three-step routine, experiment with additional products, blast music and sing along, watch an episode of your favourite show during your routine, or include aromatherapy, crystals, or candles—a skincare routine is fun and exciting!
Lastly, if you are having a difficult time mentally, a skincare routine is something that you may do to bring you out of a dark time, even if it is for a short time. I think we forget how important a short moment of joy and calmness can be for our mental health.
I often have to force myself to get out of a funk and do my routine, but after I finish, and I’ve been jamming to my music, I genuinely feel so much calmer, more relaxed, and happier.
Strengthening your self-worth:
Sometimes sustaining and living with an SCI can negatively impact your self-worth, and if you are experiencing severe mental health symptoms, your confidence may be even lower. In many cases, our self-worth becomes so low that we begin to believe that we do not deserve self-care. However, you deserve self-care, and one way to improve your confidence is by incorporating a regular skincare routine into your life.
Furthermore, you may often feel like you have not accomplished much lately or feel like you cannot accomplish much of anything now that you have an SCI. You can do a skincare routine to feel as though you accomplished something more in your day or prove to yourself that you may achieve the things you want, even after an SCI.
I know it is often incredibly challenging to force yourself to do your skincare routine when you have a day where you feel as though you just want to stay in bed. Or you may feel like you have too much work to do and no time for self-care. Maybe you already feel exhausted from your day. By simply taking some time out of your day to focus on yourself and nurture your skin, you will improve your self-worth. Additionally, nurturing and taking care of your skin will improve your complexion and boost your confidence every time you look in the mirror. It may sound silly, but every time I finish my skincare routine, look in the mirror, and see a glowing, refreshed face while accepting the acne and imperfections, I feel incredibly beautiful and powerful in my own skin.
Accomplishing something healthy for your body and mind truly does provide you with confidence. Relish in every victory you achieve during your day, regardless of how small you may consider them to be.
Provides structure and stability:
If you recently experienced an SCI, you likely lack a sense of stability and feel as though you are in a state of uncertainty with all the changes you are experiencing.
When your life lacks stability and structure, your brain finds it very difficult to relax. However, incorporating a daily skincare routine is a positive habit that both occupies and calms the mind, giving you a sense of control over your life. This control may also give you the confidence to be driven in other areas of your life.
Even nine years after sustaining an SCI, there are many aspects of my life that I have little control over, such as the success of my bowel routine or if my caregiver is sick. However, I know that every morning and night before bed, I have a routine that I have complete control over. This skincare routine takes my mind off my lack of control, brings me to the present moment, and gives me a sense of independence
How do I start? What does a daily skincare routine look like?
A skincare routine does not need to be complicated, excessively long, or expensive for you to experience incredible skin and mental health benefits. Typically, all you need is a cleanser, serum, moisturizer, and sunscreen to see and feel the benefits of a skincare routine. My skincare routine typically takes twenty minutes in the morning and thirty minutes in the evening, unless I am also doing a mask. However, I am obsessed and slightly excessive about my skincare! Do try your best to do your routine daily, and preferably twice a day. Additionally, take some time to understand what type of skin you have and the best products for your skin!
If you are new to skincare or even just love skincare like me, I recommend following these influencers for advice, product recommendations, and education:
- YouTube: Hyram
- Instagram: skincarebyhyram
- James Welsh:
- YouTube: James Welsh
- Instagram: james_s_welsh
- Andrea Suarez, MD, FAAD:
- YouTube: Dr Dray
- Instagram: drdrayzday
In this blog, I have told you about some benefits of skincare and why I have loved having a skincare routine. Thank you for joining me for this series on mental health. I hope it has been helpful and that you have learned some tips that you can use in your life! Take care!