This post is an advertisement feature with Boots UK but all thoughts are my own
It’s always at times of uncertainty when everything feels out of my control that I really hone in on my self-care routine. When daily goals and long-term ambitions feel as though they’re slipping through my fingers like sand, I double down on the things that make me feel my best. This is something I’ve been concentrating on a lot over the last few months as we all try to adapt to this new normal.
With all press trips haltered and my non-negotiable summer holiday on hold, I’ve thrived at home and found new joy in simple self-care acts that I perhaps took for granted before. From indulging in new bed linen to pushing forward with the house renovations, I’ve found myself in a calmer and more confident headspace than ever before. And while I’m excited at the thought of exploring the world again, for now, I’ve focused on a few self-care rituals that set me up for the very best day.
A LONG SOAK
I’ve always been a bath kinda girl so when, after 3 years, we finally installed a beautiful roll-top free-standing bath in our new bathroom, I knew I was going to be in my element. The epitome of self-care, a bath full of plush salts, luxury oils, and one-off bath creme’s that I’ve saved for months has become my favourite weekend ritual. And no, the novelty has not worn off yet!
Every Sunday like clockwork, I fill the tub, shut the door, and line-up all of my indulgent skincare for an hour of guilt-free me-time. A chance to wash off the week and re-set for the next 7 days with a relaxing French playlist and a novel within reach.
What is generally considered a mundane necessity, bathing has quickly become a practice that I look forward to every week.
THE RITUAL OF SKINCARE
My penchant for a good retinol and AHA peel is well documented over the last few years. But what was once a quick 5-step regime has now become a slow and steady formality that benefits me far beyond just glowing skin. The calming act of melting away my make-up, double cleansing with a hot cloth, and taking the time to pay attention to what my skin really needs leaves me relaxed, satisfied, and enjoying trying new skincare products more than ever. It’s a form of self-care I’ve never thought of before.
As a result (alongside less stress at the moment!), my skin has never looked so toned and refined to the point where I’ve given up foundation in favour of a tinted moisturiser and a little concealer here and there – something I NEVER thought I’d say.
A FRESH LAYER OF TAN
We may have been basking in a heat wave over lockdown in the UK, but if my years of sunbathing have taught me anything, it’s that my sun-worshipping days are over. As much as I revel in the warm glow of a summer day, I’m strictly a in-the-shade-after-20-minutes bather, complete with a large sun hat and factor 50!
Plus, why would I risk the health of my skin and a boat-load of pigmentation when self-tan products are peaking in quality? I’ve been tanning since I was 16-years old and my goodness things have come on leaps and bounds since then. For me, tanning is the most basic form of self-care as it leaves me feeling more put-together and ready for anything (even if I’m not!) But over the years my expectations have soared and my needs are very particular when it comes to choosing a tanning product. I don’t want to ruin my spenny bedsheets and I don’t have time to stand naked in my bathroom for hours until I don’t stick to furniture anymore.
This is why I opt for Tan Luxe’s clear tanning water after my morning shower. It dries clear instantly with zero transference so I can slip on a white sundress and let it do its thing, leaving me golden brown come lunchtime and feeling the very best version of myself. I gave up on tanning my face a couple of years ago because all products just dried out my skin and faded quickly due to all of the skincare I use.
Enter Isle of Paradise Tanning Serum. I’ve heard so much about Jules Von Hep’s vegan brand on Instagram that the promise of hydrated, bronzed skin was enough for me to give it a try. Packed full of hyaluronic acid, it feels exactly like skincare with no tan smell and left my face dewy but not sticky. The end result? A very subtle golden sheen that lasted around three days making it the best face tan I’ve used yet!
QUIET MOMENTS IN NATURE
Never have I felt so grateful to live in the countryside over the last few months. A country girl born and bred (i talk about this more HERE), I have never taken my surroundings for granted but a global lockdown has provoked daily gratitude for open fields, fresh air, and joyful wildlife. It’s self-care in its purest form and as much as I adore all of the seasons the UK throws at us, there’s always something magical about summer in the countryside.
Taking the time to clear my head, breathe slowly and walk off negative thoughts leaves me feeling stronger and more confident than ever. From that first morning cuppa in the garden, as the sun rises to chasing the sunset through the fields after supper, I can’t imagine living anywhere else.
A WARDROBE OF CLASSICS
I couldn’t finish a blog post about self-care and feeling my best without mentioning my fashion choices of late. While I’ve never been a big print or colour girl, I’m continuing to build a seasonal capsule wardrobe of high-quality basics with a strong focus on luxurious fabrics. There’s something about wrapping a cashmere jumper around my shoulders on a chilly winters day or the feel of silk on my warm skin on summer evenings that makes me feel like I’m living my best life.
Not content with a flattering cut and the right hue, I want the pieces in my wardrobe to make me feel something when I wear them. Whether that’s relaxed in a soft linen shirt at home or the way a satin slip skirt drapes over a freshly tanned leg at dinner, I’m happy to invest in those pieces that will last forever.