I find it really difficult to keep up with my daily skin care routines when busy, let alone additional ‘pampering’ treats. What I’ve noticed however, is that if you can somehow fit in a face mask or body scrub, not only will you feel better but the additional stress won’t take a heavy toll on your appearance (or it’ll be minimised at least 😉 ). Here are a few of my ‘beauty hacks’ and products which make life easier. If you happen to have some tricks up your sleeve which aren’t to time consuming, do let us know! 😀
About an hour before taking a shower/bath, smother your hair in an oil of your choice (coconut, argan, olive, macadamia, flaxseed etc.). Applying it to dry hair at least and hour before showering means that the oil will have time to penetrate into the hair shaft, moisturising it deeply and reviving it. While it is working it’s magic, you have the time When applied to wet hair, it will only coat hair strands, smoothing hair cuticle temporarily. Such a treatment is worth doing weekly, however, if your hair is seriously damaged, you could try to fit it in before every shower/bath for a few consecutive washes. I have two favourite products for this purpose. The Hello Hair mask is the bomb (I reviewed the original Hello Hair Mask a while ago, but you can find it here). Hello Hair now has three versions of the mask (original, Island Escape Edition and Botanical) but all of the masks use a blend of oils, which work together to hydrate and repair hair. I prefer this concoction of hair oils over say pure coconut oil because it’s lighter on my fine hair. I currently have the Island Escape Edition, which contains all the same oils as the original (coconut, argan, olive, castor and almond oil) but also contains pomegranate seed oil and grapeseed oil. The oil washes out easily and after shampooing twice, I still use my regular conditioner (and my fine hair isn’t to weighed down by it all!). The Hello Hair website still says that the Island Escape Edition mask is limited edition, but it’s been around for aggges (def a year or two). A sachet costs $18 and will last you 3-6 washes depending on your hair type and the length of your hair. When it does come to pure oils, I’m loving the ArganLife, which are an Australian brand, just like Hello Hair.
Arganlife’s pure Premium Moroccan Argan Oil is cold pressed and organic. It can be used as a hair mask of course, but I also love it as a hair smoothing oil after washing. They also do a Deluxe Hair Treatment Serum which combines argan oil and camellia oil (another nourishing yet light oil). Again, this oil can be used as a styling/smoothing serum or a hair mask. Multi-purpose oils for the win!
Half an hour before your shower/bath, use a makeup wipe to remove grime and makeup and slap on a mineral rich clay mask. The clay mask will deeply cleanse the skin, you don’t need to worry about your regular cleansing routine (unless you are wearing waterproof or long-wear makeup). My favourite makeup remover wipes are from Wotnot. They are the softest wipes in the world, are 100% biodegradable and contain some fab organic ingredients (rosehip oil, papaya, pink grapefruit and petitgrain extracts). By the way, so far, all the products recommended thus far are Australian! 😀 Next is a Kiwi offering but let’s be nice.. 😉 It’s best to apply a clay mask before a warm shower or bath, because warm water will disturb your skin’s natural lipid barrier, potentially drying your skin out to much because a clay mask will remove dead skin cells while it’s at it! A clay mask will not only deeply cleanse your skin and unblock pores, but they usually also contain zinc, calcium, magnesium and potassium, giving tired stressed skin a boost. Leave the mask on for as long as possible (half an hour is perfect) and it will wash off easily in the bath or shower (make sure the water isn’t to hot!). I looove Trilogy’s Mineral Radiance Mask. This is hands down the best clay mask I ever have used. You know how clay masks can go unbelievably dry and itchy when left on for to long? That doesn’t happen with this one! Along with mineral rich Kaolin clay, it contains sweet almond oil, jojoba oil and rosehip oil. It never feels like it has totally dried out, so it keeps the skin moist. I have a travel sized mini at the moment and will write up a full review when I purchase the full sized tub. It’s also a good idea after your bath or shower, to apply a sleeping mask to your skin or a nourishing night cream (if it’s the evening) as your skin will be perfectly prepared for some nourishment (your pores will be a little open from the warm water).
Exfoliate your skin in the shower, to save time and keep your skin feeling soft and smooth. When I am running low on time, a full body scrub can seem like an added chore. A great substitute is a body wash which contains exfoliating ‘particles’ (though do try and find one which contains natural abrasives over plastic micro-beads which are terrible for the environment) or use a moisturising body wash with an exfoliating mitt. L’Occitane’s Cleansing and Exfoliating Shower Scrub with Flaked Almonds is wonderful. It foams up nicely, contains gentle crushed sweet almond powder to exfoliate the skin gently (better than nothing when it comes to exfoliation especially on the body!). Flaked almonds and almond oil make it a more hydrating body cleanser. It also has a different scent to the other almond products in the line, it’s very floral (almond tree flowers I’m told – but dissipates quickly after a shower).
Use a hydrating body wash/oil. A hydrating body wash if not a scrub is a must, so the L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil is just as good! I have another travel sized mini of the product. It contains not only almond oil but also grapeseed oil (a hydrating light oil). I didn’t expect there to be so many oil-based products in this post, I swear it was a coincidence! Since the L’Occitane Shower Oil is a little pricey, a good budget alternative is Dove’s Triple Moisturising Body Wash.
Use a body conditioner in the bath/shower, which will save you from having to moisturise your body afterwards. If you’re like me and you usually moisturise after every bath or shower, sometimes even a hydrating body wash or scrub isn’t enough. At the same time, standing around and moisturising from top to toe is time consuming. This problem can be solved by using a in-shower body conditioner. After washing, smother yourself with an in-shower conditioner, rinse it off and voila! All done! 😀 It is so quick and easy. You can either go for a budget version and use the Nivea In-Shower Rich Body Lotion (there’s two versions of this) which is often on sale at woolies or Priceline, or you can go a luxe version – I also have Lush’s African Paradise Body Conditioner.
You can’t go price with Nivea products. I bought my In-Shower Rich Body Lotion at Woolies for $4. You get 400ml worth of product, which is a massive amount! The cream has that traditional Nivea creme scent – super nostalgic and comforting for me. The one thing I hate about this product is the packaging. You have to squeeze the conditioner out of the tube, which is really difficult because of the tough plastic. Once your hands are also coated in product/residue, this also makes it more difficult to get more product out. I really hope they rethink the packaging design with this one. Otherwise, it spreads easily, leaves no residue on your towel/clothes and does keep your skin protected and softened for at least 24 hours. It feels like you have a ‘protective barrier’ over your skin. It doesn’t leave you slimy or oily. The ingredient list is pretty ‘basic’ but contains some goodies like glycerin and apricot oil.
The Lush African Paradise Body Conditioner, is super luxe next to the Nivea offering. It comes in at $37.50 for 225g. It has a very comforting, rich, ‘creamy’ scent that is difficult to describe. It contains fresh mango juice, but I think the scent probably comes from the moringa oil, marula oil, baobab oil, cocoa butter and vanilla absolute. I’ve come to realise that Lush products are really darn expensive when you think about it for a little to long… but the ingredients are wonderful, so while it’s not a ‘staple’ product for me, it is a massive treat.
It does feel more nourishing than the Nivea conditioner and a little goes a long way (while with the Nivea conditioner, you can be generous and slap it on)! The African Paradise Conditioner is pretty subtle scent wise and not offensive. Lush also do a rose version (Ro’s Argan). Body conditioners are not sticky at all (because you rinse off any excess) so it means you can get dressed quick sticks after you are done washing. This makes them a fabulous option for colder weather (when moisturising your naked body not cool!) or for warmer weather, when excess product makes you feel sticker and greasy.
That wraps it up beauties! As you can see, most of these products and tips work best when used right before your bath/shower or in the bath/shower, saving you time and making you feel relaxed and beautiful! Let me know what your tricks and tips are for saving time in the beauty department (we all probably need some help to get us through tough days!).
Catch ya next time,