As hunkering down at home becomes the new normal, many of us are discovering that anxiety, boredom, and gloom can sap our glow as quickly as cubicles, computer screens, and bad office coffee. But done right, quarantine can be the perfect opportunity to amp up your outer – and inner – radiance. Here are self-quarantine tips from Robin Emtage, Beverly Hills makeup artist, hairstylist, clean beauty expert and founder of Silktáge – a line of natural, vegan multi-purpose treatment oils.
- GET VITAMIN D ANYWHERE YOU CAN
Most of us know that vitamin D helps regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body, keeping skin, bones, teeth, and muscles healthy. But it also helps encourage the production and release of serotonin – the “happy chemical” that exerts a positive influence over mood, depression, and sleep.
Studies examining the relationship between vitamin D and depression have found that deficiency can lead to mood disorders; the receptors in vitamin D were found in the same areas of the brain associated with depression. Other studies show evidence that vitamin D could be a "fountain of youth," helping the immune system fight off viruses and the flu.
Beyond being one of your best mental friends, vitamin D also helps stimulate skin cell growth and prevent skin aging. A lack of essential vitamin D can make wrinkles appear deeper and more visible; it may also result in new wrinkles developing at a quicker rate. Having optimum vitamin D is essential to a natural, healthy glow!
So where do you get more ‘Miracle D’?
Most experts highly recommend getting at least some vitamin D from the sun daily, and fortunately, staying at home doesn’t mean staying inside. Most cities still permit walking, running, hiking and biking (while practicing safe social distancing).
If you can’t leave your home, sit quietly by a window for 15 minutes and allow the sun to hit your face (do it while you meditate for extra beauty benefits). Glass from the window will absorb 37 percent of UVA radiation – the equivalent of an SPF30 sunscreen – so your risk of overexposure is low.
Bonus: According to Daniel Kuritzkes, an infectious disease expert at Brigham and Women's Hospital, ultraviolet light can be a powerful disinfectant, and that the UVA light we get from the sun can help weaken the staying power of viruses on surfaces. This goes for your face, too. The sun warms your nostrils, heating nasal passages and helping to kill viruses. Tip: A blow-dryer can have the same effect, used correctly: Hold it about 20 inches away from your nose, breathing in the warm air for 5-15 minutes.
If you’re diagnosed with a vitamin D deficiency, your doctor will likely recommend you take a daily supplement. If you must be indoors all day, this is good advice.
2. ELEVATE YOUR SKINCARE AND SELF-CARE ROUTINE
It’s a double dose of positivity: The very act of taking care of yourself (and others) can do wonders for your spirit and your skin. Give your face some extra love and you’ll reap mental benefits as well.
Facial massage is relaxing, stimulating and rejuvenating. It’s an all-around therapeutic for your complexion, reducing lines and wrinkles while increasing your mood. A good facial massage leaves you calm, peaceful and glowing.
Use your hands or a massage tool like a facial roller. A roller helps to stimulate collagen and promote lymphatic drainage and elasticity. This helps to reduce wrinkles and puffiness and increase circulation, resulting in brighter, youthful-looking skin.
Treat yourself to a 5-10-minute facial massage once a day, either in the morning or at night just before you go to sleep. Always start with a clean face, then apply a few drops of your favorite facial oil or moisturizer, which will penetrate deeper into the skin as you massage. Silktáge’s $18 Argan Rosehip Rollerball is one of the line’s best sellers; silktage.com/collections/face
Masque up! A weekly facial masque cleans pores, exfoliates and freshens your skin tone. It’s like face painting with benefits – post on your social media and have some fun with it!
3. IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY, GIVE CBD OIL A TRY
If you can get your hands on the non-THC CBD oil used to treat anxiety or sleep issues, it can also help you relax, without any intoxicating effects.
Studies exploring CBD concluded that one of its most powerful and effective uses is applying CBD oil directly to your face, forehead, and body. Hemp-derived CBD containing no THC (the intoxicating compound in marijuana) affects the body’s own cannabinoid system, called the endocannabinoid system. CBD works on the brain’s chemical receptors to stimulate serotonin production.
CBD also has anti-inflammatory properties that reduce swelling and acts as an antioxidant to protect the body from free-radical damage. Add some CBD Beauty Oil to your skin-care routine for relaxing, hydrating, age-defying benefits.
- USE DAILY RITUALS TO KEEP UP YOUR SPIRITS -- AND YOUR HEALTH
As we deal with the chaos that has become our daily lives, establishing some semblance of a routine has critical physical and mental benefits. Daily self-care rituals calm and reassure us, and give us a sense of control over our circumstances. In challenging times, self-care rituals aren’t an indulgence…they’re a necessity. Here, she shares 21 of her favorites.
- Get at least eight hours of sleep. If you’re not going into the office, you can likely squeeze in an extra hour of shuteye – a rare luxury.
- Drink a lot of water –bottled or alkaline if you can find it. If not, regular water is fine – no one’s hoarding tap water.
- Eat nourishing food. You may actually have time to prepare real meals now, and while many stores are low on canned food and pasta, fresh produce has remained relatively plentiful.
- Add Vitamin C and Elderberry to your vitamin regimen. They have known immunity boosters.
- Move your body, even for just a few minutes – cleaning, dancing around the living room, and nature photography walks (new hobby alert!) all count.
- Take 12 deep breaths — hold for 5 seconds and exhale. This helps calm the mind and send oxygen throughout your body.
- Take warm baths. Adding Epsom salts or lavender essential oil will make it extra soothing.
- Unfollow social media accounts that don’t make you feel good about yourself or the world in general. A little social distance from social media can be healthy.
- Engage with your kids by baking treats to leave on a neighbor’s doorstep, making funny videos to boost a grandparent’s spirits, or competing in online games. No one says 24/7 family time is smooth sailing, but take the long view – these are hours you otherwise would never have with your kids.
- Fill your mind with uplifting messages any way you can, and help others do the same.
- Get out of your own head by doing something special for someone. When we help other people it reminds us how good it is to connect and how much value we have to offer.
- Try something new. Perhaps that new hobby, blog, language lesson or project you’ve been putting off?
- Center yourself. Find quiet time for daily prayer, mediation or yoga.
- Find a few things each day to be grateful for. Even in trying times, there is always something to appreciate. Find joy in the little things.
- De-clutter your home or closet and set aside clothes to donate when things return to normal.
- Put your favorite music and dance it out.
- Create a bucket list of places you'd like to explore, trips you want to take and the food you've wanted to try – and spend some time researching them online.
- Let it go. Acknowledge and release anger and resentment. Forgiveness is liberating.
- Use a neti pot or nasal rinse to irrigate the nasal passages. Used with a saline solution, this can help clear up congestion from allergies and viruses. (Always use bottled or distilled water.)
- Drink green tea, rosehip tea or hibiscus tea. These teas can help strengthen the immune system and is loaded with powerful antioxidants called polyphenols that may kill influenza viruses. While you’re at it, explore a bit –choose a blend you haven’t tried before or try adding honey and lemon to soothing and detoxing benefits.
- Gargle with warm salt water. At the first sign of a cold or itchy throat gargle with salt water. This is very soothing to the throat and helps keep viruses and cold from entering the lungs.
- Chicken soup for your immunity. Good old fashion chicken soup does wonders at soothing the throat and by thinning mucus and breaking down head and chest congestion. It also helps keep you hydrated and nourished.
- Cook with spices. Food tastes better with spices, but some spices have anti-inflammatory properties that help keep you healthy, prevent colds and viruses: turmeric, saffron, rosemary, garlic, cayenne pepper, ginger, and apple cider vinegar.
- Wear a face mask or scarf. Every time you leave your home cover your nose and mouth. It can protect others from you in the event you are asymptomatic. It also protects you from particles that can transfer from someone's spit, sneeze or cough.