When leaving the house isn’t an option.
The unfolding coronavirus (COVID-19) situation means that we are all dealing with a lot of uncertainty and change to our day-to-day routine. At Gritty Pretty, we want to help you navigate through this time. We’ll be sharing self care advice and tips on how to look after your body and mental health. If there are any topics you want Gritty Pretty to cover, please send us a DM on Instagram.
2020, huh? Just a few weeks ago, we were cruising along, business as usual and then WHAM – COVID-19 infiltrates Australian shores, forcing us to practice ‘social distancing’, work from home and forgo handshakes.
Jokes aside, Australians young and old are being encouraged to stay home where they can. For the most part, anyone who can work from home is doing just that. Social gatherings of over 100 people indoors and over 500 people outdoors are now banned; Australia has closed its borders to non-residents; outbound international travel is strongly discouraged.
When your day-to-day has been turned on its head, it’s important to create a new routine (it will feel normal soon – promise) and take care of yourself. If you’re confined to the house, now is the time to whip out your best skin care products and recreate a facial at home. It might sound frivolous but a) your skin will thank you and b) your mind will feel all the better for it.
Here, the Gritty Pretty guide to creating a salon-style facial experience at home:
Before you even think about pulling out the big guns (aka serums and masks) you need to make sure your skin is uber-clean and free from any makeup, dirt or other pollutants and residue.
Grab an oil cleanser – we love Go-To Fancy Face and SK-II Facial Treatment Cleansing Oil – and apply a generous amount to dry skin. (Key word: dry skin.) Take a good 30 seconds to really work the product into your skin. Then wash off with water and dry skin with a muslin cloth or towel.
Next, cleanse as normal with your standard daily cleanser. [Author’s note: I switch up my cleanser often but always look for something gentle that won’t strip my skin – at the moment, the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser does the trick.]
Prep your skin for the treatments to follow by creating a DIY facial steam. The process is super simple and will cost you nada:
- Heat up a pot of water on the stove until it starts to boil
- Add dried flowers, herbal tea or even a slice of lemon
- Let the mixture steep for a few minutes before pouring into a bowl
- Place the bowl on a table, place a towel over your head
- Hold your face above the bowl for up to 10 minutes
This process helps to unclog pores and give the following products a chance to really get in there – plus, it’s pretty relaxing too.
Now, time for the MVP: a mask! This step is very much ‘choose your own adventure’ depending on your skin type and the product you have on hand. There are so many face masks to choose from but some of the main categories include: sheet masks, exfoliating, clay and sleep.
Sheet masks come drenched in a serum-like concoction; they help your skin absorb way more product than it would with a standard serum application. We love hydrating sheet masks as they have an immediate plumping effect on your complexion.
Exfoliating masks use chemical exfoliants (AHAs and BHAs) to gently dissolve dead skin cells and unclog pores, revealing the juicy new skin underneath.
Best for: Oily and acne-prone skin
Shout out to: Sand & Sky Australian Pink Clay Porefining Face Mask
If your skin is congested, a clay mask will sort you out. Clay is next-level for drawing out impurities from skin, reducing the size of pores and dissolving blackheads.
Spoiler: you don’t need to be tired to reap the benefits of a sleep mask. These nifty treatments do their best work while you get eight hours of shut-eye. Simply apply all-over, go to bed and then wake up in the morning with plump, hydrated skin.
Jade rollers and gua shas are more popular now than they’ve ever been. These centuries old tools are great for lymphatic drainage and stimulating blood flow. The only catch? You need to use them correctly – or they may work against you.
- Apply a generous amount of facial oil to your skin before you begin
- Always pull the tool (rather than pushing it) and hold the tool at an angle to the skin between 15 and 45 degrees.
- Using gentle pressure, start from under the ear, down the side of the neck towards the underarm; from the centre of the chin towards the side of the face; from the side of the nose toward the side of the face; and from the centre of the forehead out towards the temples. Finish by rolling from the temple along the side of the face.
Pro tip: If you don’t have a face oil on hand, you can use a serum or moisturiser instead – or even use your roller over the top of your sheet or sleep mask (it won’t work for clay or exfoliating masks). The key is to have some ‘slip’ so you’re not pulling and dragging on your skin.
If you used a face oil with your jade roller/gua sha – that’s it! You’re done! A face oil is always the last step in your routine – it acts as a barrier to lock in everything that went before it.
But if you didn’t use an oil, now is the time to apply a generous dose of your daily moisturiser before you go off on your merry way.
Do you have a DIY facial that you roll out when the world is burning and you need a distraction? And do you have any tips or tricks that we need to know? Tell us in the comments below! We want to hear from YOU.