It’s that time of year again. Time to make some resolutions that you will undoubtedly break before January is out. Just how many times have you promised yourself that you would take up running or give up chocolate? If you are looking for some different pledges to make this year then look no further; we’ve come up with five beauty resolutions that will do you the world of good. What’s more, we’ve chosen a selection of products that will help you stick to them. Here’s to a healthier, happier, more beautiful you!
1. Wash Your Makeup Brushes Regularly
Ever wondered why those spots that you only get on your cheeks just will not go away? Chances are the culprit is your blusher brush. Makeup brushes pick up dirt, dead skin cells and oils, and can be a breeding ground for bacteria if they are not washed regularly. You should aim to wash them at least once a week, then lay them out flat to dry naturally. You don’t need any fancy products to clean your brushes, just a gentle shampoo. The perfect product for this is Dr. Bronner’s Magic Castile Liquid Soap (you can use it for just about anything!). It comes in several varieties; opt for tea tree or lavender for an added antibacterial effect.
2. Wear SPF Everyday
You may religiously slather your face in Factor 50 throughout the summer months, but did you know that the sun’s rays reach us all year round, even on cloudy grey days? They aren’t usually strong enough to burn our skin in winter, but they can still contribute to premature ageing. To combat this, you should always wear a minimum of SPF15 on your face and neck (and other exposed areas like the backs of your hands!). The good news is you don’t have to cover your skin in heavy sun creams – lots of moisturisers and even most mineral foundations now contain SPF. Look for products containing mineral sunscreens such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide (rather than potentially harmful chemicals such as oxybenzone and octocrylene), which help protect against both UVA (Ageing) and UVB (Burning). Try Neal’s Yard Remedies SPF15 Daily Moisture, which also contains antioxidants to help prevent skin damage.
3. Clear Out Your Makeup Bag
Did you know that like food, makeup actually has an expiry date? On most products you will find an open jar symbol with a number inside, such as 12M. In this case it would mean that the product will be past its best twelve months after opening. Out of date makeup can harbour bacteria, which is not good news for your skin. If you have drawers full of makeup, it can be difficult to ensure that all your products get used up before they go off, so the best thing to do is get rid of your old makeup and start afresh. Some products can have multiple uses, meaning you may not need to buy as many items as you think. For example, mascara can double as liquid eyeliner, and lipstick can be used as a cheek tint. Beauty Without Cruelty’s Duo Pressed Mineral Blusher in Caramel Fudge could be used as a blusher, bronzer, highlighter, shader, eye shadow, eyeliner and maybe even a brow powder! Once you have sorted out which products you actually need, try to get into the habit of checking your makeup regularly – if something has a funny smell or has changed consistency then it’s time to replace it. Go ahead and spring clean your makeup bag – why did you even need a dozen different mascaras anyway?
4. Moisturise All Over
When was the last time you moisturised your feet? Your elbows? These are some of the body parts that often get neglected, which can result in rough, dry skin. Find the time to moisturise from top to toe – your skin will thank you for it in the long term. Use your facial moisturiser on your face, neck, and décolletage areas, and a body lotion for the rest of your body. The hands and neck can often feel dry so be sure to top up these areas throughout the day (you can massage any excess hand cream into your neck – don’t forget the back of your neck too!). If your underarms get dry and irritated then gently apply a little moisturiser to the area before bed. You may need a thicker, super-moisturising product for areas such as elbows, knees, feet and cuticles, such as Ultrabalm by Lush. A natural alternative to petroleum jelly, this multitasking wonder can even be used as a lip balm!
5. Cut Out The Chemicals
There are mixed messages when it comes to the use of chemical ingredients in cosmetics and toiletries. There is some evidence to suggest that certain chemicals could have potentially damaging effects on our bodies (and also to wildlife), yet many sources say we shouldn’t worry. It may be better to be safe than sorry though, as who knows what years of chemical build up could do to us? The main chemicals to avoid are parabens, phthalates, propylene/butylene glycol, mineral oils (paraffinum liquidum and petroleum jelly), sodium laurel/laureth sulfate, and triclosan. Try to switch to more natural products where you can. A fabulous company we love is PHB Ethical Beauty – their natural product range includes everything from shampoo to lipstick!