Samantha Silver is an award-winning freelance Beauty Editor and Consultant, and co-founder of thisismothership. Previously Beauty Director at Stylist Magazine, Samantha discusses how beauty not only makes you look good; it makes you feel good too.
About 18 months ago I left my dream job as a Beauty Director. I had worked at the magazine for almost eight years, it was a job that defined me (or so I thought), but even though my working life revolved around giving beauty and lifestyle advice to hundreds of thousands of women a week, I was one husk of a stressed-out self, with the breakouts and bad sleep to prove it. On the outside, my life was all glossy, while internally the stress was eating me up.
It’s not news that we’re a nation of stressed women. Our work lives are so all-consuming (five million people put in an average of 7.7 hours overtime a week) that professionals have noted an increase in women suffering from stress and anxiety. “We swallow life, we say we’re fine when in fact we aren’t really. We’re so unconnected to ourselves that we don’t even know that ourselves,” explains my friend and facialist, Anastasia Achilleos whose words will ring true for many. And while the majority of us still visit spas and salons to relax, there is a new breed of beauty products emerging that promise more, healing us from within our bathroom walls.
With my new normal meaning less work trips, late nights and stressful commutes racing against the clock to pick my son up from nursery, I had more time for me. For the past few years, I’d raced out of the door at 6.30am with nothing more than a haphazard swipe of SPF, applying make-up at my desk, with one eye on my emails. Now, I could fully immerse myself in the vast cupboard of beauty products I had at home, taking my time to really understand just what an impact specific formulas and rituals could have on when it came to balancing, calming and restoring the body, skin and mind, rather than simply a ‘slap and go’ from any old bottle.
Kathy Philips. creator of one of my favourite brands This Works says, “each of my products has its own specific mood boosting ingredient – for example, lavender is known for its relaxing properties, ylang ylang for its uplifting effects, and when tailored to the right time of day, in the right product, they can become a life tool to help give strength and support whether we need to zone out or spark with energy.” I couldn’t agree more.
taking time with you skincare, rather than speeding through it, really shows results
Need a recipe for switching off, rebooting your Zen and getting a good nights sleep? I rely on a capful of Aromatherapy Associates Deep Relax after a stressful day, it’s deeply comforting and I promise it’s worth upgrading your regular shower gel for. And if I don’t spritz Neom Perfect Night’s Sleep Pillow Mist, the quality of my sleep isn’t as good.
I have also been putting into practice what I have long known; that taking time with your skincare, rather than speeding through it, really shows results. Taking time to massage in Elemis Pro Collagen Cleansing Balm and removing it with a warm cleansing cloth will not only melt away the day’s grime but also help to boost blood circulation giving your skin that much needed glow back. It’s more than just skincare; massaging and touching skin helps you to decompress and zone out. But for those evenings that you’re so tired that even brushing your teeth feels like it’s too much effort, This Works In Transit No Traces are cotton pads pre-soaked in rose water that after a quick swipe, leave skin feeling as fresh as it would post-facial. If you do have time though, nothing feels as indulgent as a face mask and I’d love for everyone to experience the skin-zing effects of Liz Earle’s Brightening Mask.
The worlds of beauty and therapy are merging, and intelligent products really can heal a stressed-out mind. I don’t need any more proof. Beauty is therapy.