Like many of us I used to make new year resolutions – learn Hindi, visit Thailand, find a new job – but in the last couple of years this has fallen by the wayside. Not because I’ve achieved everything I’ve wanted to do (just like the laundry, this constitutes a never-ending task) but because since the birth of my little boy I’ve been so focused on his needs and goals that I’ve forgotten to set my own… does getting him into a bilingual nursery count? Juggling a full-time job, motherhood, blogging and actually getting out of the house for socialising doesn’t leave time for much else. There are however a handful of beauty rituals I used to enjoy that I’d like to get into the habit of indulging in again. So here are the five new year beauty resolutions I’d like to try and stick to.
1. Rediscover the fun in nail polish
I’ve already mentioned my propensity to acquiring quite a few nail polishes (collection currently sitting at over 50 pots) spanning the colours of the rainbow and beyond, but lately I’ve been stuck in a colour rut. A safe, zero-risk colour rut at that. Think beige, nude and my trusty Essie Cocktail Bling goes-with-everything grey. Because mornings are no longer spent coordinating an outfit to the manicure, mornings are spent rubbing dry shampoo in my scalp and making sure the little one is wearing matching socks. Scrap that, most days my nails go bare because I used to paint them while waiting for my connecting tube at Kings Cross, but my new route takes me on carriages so packed I’d be smearing fresh red polish on a fellow commuter’s Longchamp. Funny story: I once painted my nails travelling on a Southeastern train and got told by the controller that my behaviour was anti-social. I really don’t want to be banned from the Victoria Line or get an ASBO for commuter manicure, so I’ll be painting in the safety of my own home – or the office – and dusting off some bright happy colours like Organic Glam Aqua and Pale Blue which I’ve previously raved about. And to hell with coordination.
2. Sunscreen to protect from further damage
For someone so addicted to feeling the sun on her face I probably should be living in a Mediterranean country, not grey London. So to make up for months of darkness, as soon as the sun is out or I’m on holiday my face turns to the natural light, like a sunflower. That warmth, the glowing skin, the happy feeling – it all felt great until I got my first sun spot along my hairline a few years ago. And now five years on it’s developed into a great big brown shadow that crops up across my forehead every summer and takes months to fade. When I asked my dermatologist what could be done her advice was to keep my face out of the sun, always. Wear a hat. Walk on the side of the pavement that’s in the shadow. When sat at a café terrace, keep your back to the sun. Sorry doctor I’m just not ready to take on these drastic measures, but I will wear The Body Shop Skin Defence SPF50 as soon as there’s the merest hint of sunlight.
3. Nourish my hair
My morning routine doesn’t allow for elaborate hair styling. It tends to go along the lines of shampoo hair in shower, towel dry, brush through, then blast hairdryer at it for five minutes. On non-shampoo days it’s hello Batiste and a little tussle. Needless to say my locks would probably look (and feel) more loved if I added a little cocooning in that routine, so I’m rediscovering Liz Earle Botanical Shine Nourishing Hair Oil. Applied to damp hair it softens and smooths without adding heaviness or greasiness. Along with an express manicure I also used to plait a fishtail braid on my commute, but I think that time is well and truly over.
4. Remember hands need TLC too
This resolution I’m confident I can stick to, it’s so quick and easy. Although my nails get well taken care of, with regular filing, shaping and cuticle oil, somehow I don’t extend this to my hands which in the colder months look like they belong to a sixty year old. I’ll be keeping Clinique’s super thick and nourishing Deep Comfort Hand and Cuticle Cream on my bedside table so that applying it on my hands becomes the last step in my night time beauty routine, one that can practically happen in one’s sleep. And for on the go top ups I’ve got Durance’s mini tube of hand cream in my handbag.
5. Clean makeup brushes!
My final new year beauty resolution is one that you will have come across before… Unfortunately those makeup brushes don’t clean themselves and now that I’ve started using Clinique’s Buff Brush to apply foundation I can’t ignore this hygiene rule. After just one week of everyday use the brush is stiff with congealed foundation and looks like a drowned Shih Tzu. You can buy specific makeup brush cleaner but for their weekly clean my brushes get a gentle scrub with shampoo and are air dried on kitchen towel.
So let’s see how long these new year beauty resolutions last… I’m hoping to make it past the three month mark. What are your new year beauty resolutions? Leave a comment below to let me know.
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