As much as I could without more ‘just relax’ talk, the phenomenon of persuading people to join together and have a little ‘me’ time – which is mainly doing absolutely nothing in a short period of time – I can see why people are buying into the idea especially around Christmas. With the crowds of people fighting through the aisles, we all tend to buy gifts just for the sake of it (who else bought five different types of bath sets?), and spending money as if it doesn’t count, it’s tempting to escape it all by staying indoors, preferably under a duvet, just to have a bit of ‘me’ time. My obsession with having time alone has evolved from dedicating extra effort into moisturising my skin with the good stuff into having a full blown winter pamper night routine.
Whether I’m still indulging into Christmas films or catching up on my latest, slightly strange and yes, way behind favourite, Louis Theroux, I want luxurious, creamy and of course, relaxing products to completely relieve myself of any stress or get myself back on track for when I’ve completely forgotten to do the essentials. I want deeply cleansed, rejuvenated and a smooth complexion and for this I use e.l.f’s Hydrating Bubble Mask (£15). It’s the latest craze in the mask world, which definitely has my vote, with the main focus to gently wash away dirt and deeply clean out your pores. To follow, I use Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid (£26), a chemical exfoliant to reduce redness, create even-toned skin and diminish enlarged pores. As it’s winter, this is the best time to use chemical exfoliants as you haven’t got the sun causing stress to the skin (please still apply SPF) and there’s less moisture in the air.
To finish I love using a hydrating mask that gives my complexion a radiant touch and for this I use Oskia’s Renaissance Mask (£51). This mask is really thick and works brilliantly to moisturise, and it smells quite zingy. When I’m having a bad hair day I reach for Lush’s Roots Hair Mask (£11.50 for quite a generous pot) as within as little as 20 minutes, my hair goes from dry, dehydrated and straw like, into smooth, shiny and hydrated. Whenever I have the luxury of time to indulge in a bath I always, without a doubt, proceed to showering afterwards so the hair mask is perfect for applying before your bath and rinsing out in the shower.
When I’m feeling extremely stressed, or I have more time than usual, I love proto-col’s instant body bliss (£19.95), a perfect blend of essential oils and Dead Sea salts that with one scrub my skin is left feeling that all famous silky smooth for days after! The scrub may be a little messy with mixing the two together but the results definitely make up for it. There’s also an instant manicure and pedicure in the range so it caters for just about every part of the body.
One luxurious yet very simple indulgent I love using is Aveeno’s Moisturising Cream with Colloidal Oatmeal (£5.62), a light formula designed to actively hydrate dry and sensitive skin. The easily absorbed cream takes seconds to apply and massage in and if paired with the instant body scrub, you’ll only need a tiniest amount.
With a few simple luxuries teamed up with your favourite book, programme or film and the relaxing background scent of a candle – I’ve definitely got this ‘me’ time down to a fine art. What’s your favourite pamper essentials?