We’re all about looking for those silver linings to keep spirits up and help you feel like you are achieving something, which is so important for good mental health and overall wellbeing, especially at the moment. Touch is incredibly important to our bodies and minds and the lack of contact we are having to experience to keep us safe makes self-care even more essential.
Humans take great comfort in daily routine and yet that has changed for most of us right now. Nearly all of us have also got more time on our hands but even so, the thought of getting into new routines can sometimes feel overwhelming. So, as with anything new, try starting with something simple. A home facial is the perfect place to begin; it not only brings immediate comfort to skin and wellbeing but also has amazing long-term benefits.
As your skin takes 30 days to complete one renewal cycle, if you start giving yourself regular Slow facials today – repeating 1-3 times a week - you will have dramatically improved its condition, tone and appearance in a month’s time. There really is nothing to lose! With more of us using video messaging apps like FaceTime, Zoom and Houseparty, it’s also a lovely pick-you-up to know that even if you might not be feeling on top of the world emotionally, friends and family will see you radiating an increased glow and confidence.
If you’re anything like us and working from home at the moment, self-isolating or furloughed, you’ll probably have noticed that increased hours indoors and less fresh air than usual has taken a bit of a toll on your complexion, leaving it drier and duller than usual. Stress too always shows in our skin, making a good skincare regime even more important. The good news: a home facial really couldn’t be easier! Here’s our version of a heavenly, restorative spa-style facial that will boost your skin as well as lift your spirits:
Set the Scene
If there are others sharing your home, let them know you are taking some time out alone; you could even create a mini spa sanctuary in your bathroom. Maybe light a candle or two, put on some relaxing music, grab a book and line up all the products you’ll need so you won’t need to stop to look for something, which will interrupt the flow (and enjoyment!) of your pampering. It doesn’t matter if your products are not Slow Ageing Essentials; simply gather your regular skincare staples and substitute them as necessary. Why not also print this page out so you can leave your phone in another room or switch it off completely, so you can be uninterrupted by the outside world for a while?
Start with a super clean face and neck. This ensures skin will be at its most receptive to all those luscious formulas you’ll be applying. If you are using our Face Wash, fill the spatula 1/4 full and apply to the palm of your hand; mix with a little warm water to create a light cream. Massage the lather over your entire face, neck and décolleté using circular motions, avoiding the eye area. This gentle facial wash uses naturally cleansing coconut and rebalancing ylang ylang essential oil to really cleanse deep down, removing debris, toxins and grime; skin will feel ultra fresh afterwards (don’t be put off if you feel any dryness – the ‘squeaky clean’ feel the wash creates becomes part of its charm as you get used to incorporating it into your routine). Rinse away any excess with warm water (or use a damp cotton cloth or soft flannel) and pat dry.
Deep cleansing will have begun the process but using a dedicated exfoliator will ensure skin is left feeling super smooth. Slow Ageing Exfoliating Polish is gentle enough for use on your face as well as your body so apply a spatula full to your palm, activate with a little warm water and massage over with a light pressure using small circular movements. Orange peel and ginger root powders plus pomegranate extract deliver a deliciously tingly feel and lift away dry, dead skin cells and smooth any rough patches for a silky softness. Wash away any excess with warm water and towel dry.
Possibly the most important stage of your facial (and certainly the most blissful!), self-massage will improve your skin’s oxygenation, increase blood flow to deliver nutrients and lymph flow to flush away toxins not to mention intensely de-stress you. Your facial muscles – all 43 of them - will also get a great workout as it improves texture and evens tone. Massage ensures your products are perfectly absorbed and activated too, so they can travel deeply into your skin, to restore and revitalise from within.
Our 12-step ‘Skin’ergy self-massage’ technique really wakes skin up and quickly becomes second nature. Try to use a medium pressure - you want to feel it – and as a guide start with applying 4-6 drops of a facial oil like our Facial Essence (more if skin needs it) to your palms then rub hands together, close your eyes and deeply inhale the heady scent 3 times to trigger your body’s natural relaxation response then…
Step 1 - Apply the oil upwards and outwards with a light but definite pressure.
Step 2 - Massage up and down the meridian line.
Step 3 - Massage palm from brow to forehead.
Step 4 - Massage pads of fingers around the orbit of the eye.
Step 5 - Sweep finger pads under the eye from side to side.
Step 6 - Massage temples in an upward circular motion.
Step 7 - Massage from nose; sweep down and outwards along the meridian line and up over cheek.
Step 8 - Pinch fingers either side of the jawline, massage chin to ear.
Step 9 - Three fingers on top lip, circular motion massage around mouth.
Step 10 - Massage in circular motion across the top lip; repeat for bottom lip.
Step 11 - Massage thumb and forefinger slowly up the neck and chin.
Step 12 - Finish by placing hand on opposite side of your chest, massage up to the shoulder, swap sides and repeat.
Aim for 12 repeats of each stroke; this should last around 5 mins. You can watch our inspirational Co-Founder, Margot, demonstrate Skin’ergy by clicking on the video on our Facial Essence and Face Balm product pages.
Finish your facial by massaging in either a rich, buttery balm (our intensive Face Balm is perfect) or your favourite moisturiser (Essential Face Moisturiser is algae-rich and loaded with natural protectors and skin-pumping polyphenols). The final step in your home pamper session, a layer of nourishment helps ‘seal in’ all the goodness that has gone before and help protect skin too. Choose your product according to your skin type. If skin is very dry or you want a real skin ‘rescuer’ then a balm will channel hydration deep down – this is especially ideal if you are having your facial before bed as it can be left on overnight to continue the great work. If you are enjoying your pamper session during the day, or your skin is quite oily, you may wish to simply use a daily protector instead.
There really are so many benefits to investing some time to treat yourself in this way, from the immediate (and long-term differences in your skin), to how it makes you feel – mentally, emotionally, physically - and let’s face it, the better we feel makes us all at lot nicer to be around! This enforced ‘time out’ is actually a brilliant opportunity to become experienced in understanding your skin’s specific needs, setting you up with great skincare habits for life… and radiant, smooth skin in the meantime!
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In these days of social distancing our MD, Sian, recently took top celebrity makeup artist and This Morning beauty expert and presenter, Bryony Blake, through a ‘virtual’ facial. “I’m absolutely loving my evening routine thanks to @slowageing and Sian Jones for showing me this amazing Skin’ergy way of massaging my face” commented a very chilled looking Bryony on her Instagram @bryony_blake. You can view her post now in our Slow Journal stories @slowageing or check out Bryony’s Instagram on Friday 17th April for the next instalment!