From Skincare to Selfcare
As an advocate for all things eco friendly, I have become a go to for friends, family, and even strangers to recommend products, from sustainable alternatives for cleaning to plastic free travel accessories. But the thing I get asked about the most is beauty – skincare specifically.
We live in a world where marketing bombards us every moment of the day, whether we are driving to work, walking through town, surfing the web, or watching our favourite television programs. Product placements and advertisements tell us the latest cream we need to plump, tighten, and smooth; the best new serum to erase those fine lines, take ten years off your face, and mask those bags under your eyes; or the luxury oil that costs more than two week's groceries that will zap pesky blemishes overnight and totally renew your complexion leaving it better than your best skin day. People want to know what really works. What will make this thing they see as a problem go away?
Don't get me wrong, I adore skincare. The ten shelves full of plant based goodness in my bathroom can attest to that. What I do not love so much though is the singular focus on skincare as a surface level fix. Yes, well made skincare products have incredible benefits and can transform your skin over time, but they can offer so much more than moisture and a glow boost.
Over the last several years my stress levels have been through the roof, with a poorly supervised PhD, work worries, blog responsibilities, home management, and family concerns leaving not much time to take care of myself. My only moment of pause tended to be when I was washing my face and doing my skincare ritual, and that is when I really began to appreciate the full potential of the formulas I was using. A moment of peace in all the chaos. Aromas that could ease some of the tension that was continuously building. Ingredient blends that aid focus, add calm, and prompt happy vibes – these creations have been made to heal mind, body, and spirit rather than just provide an external beauty boost, and showed me that if care is taken when selecting these treatments an important shift can be made – a switch from “skin care” to “self care.”
Holistic healing can come from surprising places, and that is what I discovered over the last few years. When it comes to beauty, finding and using a formula that targets multiple conditions is key – and as I became more and more familiar with expertly made skincare from artisan brands like Holistic Kitchen, the more I saw a transformation occurring. I found myself seeking out formulations created with intention and that would soothe both my skin and my senses.
Not all skincare heals. Creams and serums and masks that rely on synthetic ingredients rather than those borrowed from nature, might regenerate the cells, but they do not work on the whole picture. They do not contain the aromatherapeutic elements that comfort the mind, nor do they utilize the curative qualities found in essential oils, extracts, and botanicals. A holistic approach can turn something as seemingly simple as skincare into a powerful influence for your mental and physical wellbeing.
Not only have my beauty products helped manage my anxiety, with oils and distilates like lavender, chamomile, blue tansy, rose, and jasmine enveloping me with nature based serenity and grounding me to the present moment, but they also actually help manage my ADHD at times too. I found oils containing rosemary, vetivert, and frankincense can quiet my thoughts and even kickstart concentration on a good day. Starting the morning with a routine matched to my wellbeing needs as well as my skin's --- it makes such a difference in how I approach the rest of the afternoon and can really set me up for success, openness, and confidence.
Approaching body, mind, and spirit as one and not targeting specific aspects in isolation has been a big part of how I made it through my PhD and all the other stresses in my life lately. Even without being able to take time out for myself in the traditional sense, I can still find ways to rest, relax, and recover. I can breathe in the excess product left on my fingertips, close my eyes, and let the healing ingredients work their magic.
For me, the act of moving from skin care to self care is invaluable, and leads to better understanding of the beauty within nature, more appreciation for those spending countless hours perfecting these potions, and an awareness of how closely connected our mental and physical states are.
So next time you are out looking to restock on lotions and potions, consider what it is you need not just externally, but internally. Are you feeling lost and afloat? Struggling with stress? Aching and tense? Whatever it is, whatever your body or mind calls for, you can find a targeted product from Holistic Kitchen, that addresses and heals it all, tackling dry skin AND unbalanced emotions.
I would love to know if this is something you have thought about before, and if it is, then what products sparked your journey with holistic beauty. Is there anything you find particularly helpful? Any blends that you wouldn't be without? Do let me know!
Bryanna is founder of The ecoLogical, a blog focused on green living, ethical subscriptions, clean beauty, and natural wellbeing. She also teaches at university, is finishing her PhD in literature and applied linguistics, has been part of the judging panel for The Beauty Shortlist Awards, and is an avid lover of house plants, reading, and coffee.