If you’re reading this magazine, there’s a good chance you care deeply for others (animals included) and the environment—among other things. When you’re passionate about something, whether that’s fighting for animal rights or taking care of those around you, it’s completely natural to have days, weeks or even months when you have trouble summoning the emotional energy to keep fighting the good fight. This is nothing to feel guilty about: activists, educators, and caregivers alike, although often naturally altruistic, are susceptible to burnout and compassion fatigue. Caregiver stress is a recognised condition, and activism burnout can strike anyone on the front lines of a noble cause.
While taking an extended break from everything could be an ideal solution and a surefire way to reignite your inspiration, most of us don’t have that option. The beings and causes we care about need us today—which is why taking time for regular, if brief, self-care is the next best option.
Self-care can be one of the best routes to healing weary spirits without derailing a week’s worth of plans. You just need a Sunday afternoon. Although it may initially feel selfish or frivolous to indulge your needs to unwind, reflect, and pamper, these practices are critical when it comes to staying effective in your most important pursuits. In fact, self-care is a staple for those in the counselling field. You don’t have to be a counsellor to benefit from self care, of course. The truth is that we all give ourselves to our jobs, loved ones, and passions—and we simply need to refuel so we can keep on giving.
Because the bulk of my career takes place online, I find that engaging my senses in my self-care routine helps balance the effects of hammering away at the computer. Lately, my go-to is a luxurious bath. The following are some of the vegan, cruelty-free, and naturally formulated goods that really elevate the experience. The important part is to take time for yourself, of course, regardless of what you stock your bathroom pantry with—but sometimes we all need that beauty fix, and that’s when these goodies might come in handy.
Bath time is the perfect time to do double duty and pamper your face with a mask. This finely milled mask combines white and pink French clay with rosehip and comfrey root to absorb impurities and reveal a softer, clearer complexion. It’s a lovely choice if you experience breakouts but don’t want to use anything too drying. Plus, the earthy pink hue adds calming, serene vibes.
Created with a combination of Epsom salt, Dead Sea salt, and Himalayan pink salt, this blend delicately scents bath water with the luxe combination of bergamot, neroli, vanilla, sandalwood and cocoa while lacing your bath with important minerals like magnesium. It’s perfect for sore muscles or any time you want to elevate your bath.
Jojoba oil, olive oil, plum seed oil, and rosehip seed oil are just some of the skin-nourishing ingredients in this dreamy-smelling body oil. It quenches thirsty skin yet absorbs fairly quickly and can even be combined with your favorite body lotion. For best results, apply while skin is still damp.
Even a simple bar of soap can feel special when it smells as lovely as this one. Scented with a phthalate-free fragrance, this gem-shaped soap brings to mind carefree days on the beach. As a bonus, it features oat protein to help condition skin.
Follow your mask with a skin-quenching serum. Rich in vitamin C, this brightening oil is designed to support collagen and is suitable for sensitive skin. I find it gentle enough to use around the eye area as well as after applying retinol (vegan, of course). The wild-crafted ingredients also help soothe dry skin and provide natural protection from the elements.
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Mood photos by Anita Austvika via Unsplash, product imagery by author