One of the best things for me, about working from home, or being constrained to stay at home during this pandemic, is that I get to be makeup-free for most of the day.
Well, all day, really.
When I first observed this a few years ago, I noticed that my skin texture had improved, without the daily makeup and the constant air-conditioning. At home, I can’t afford to have the air-conditioning on all day long, so it’s either the fan, or in the mornings, just the morning wind through my windows.
In this period where we’re forced indoors for most of the day, I also noticed that due to reduced sun exposure, my stubborn pigmentation has actually lightened a little! I’d never expected that at all.
However, I did see more than a few people mention that instead of looking better without wearing makeup, their skin has looked worse during this time.
This, despite not touching their face, as recommended by the medical fraternity, so you don’t transfer viruses and bacteria from your hands to your face. You’d think that this prohibition will result in fewer breakouts, and clearer skin. But people have reported otherwise.
I gave it a little thought, and I can hazard a few guesses why this might be so 🙂
Admit it or not, we’re all under stress at this time. Working from home isn’t as wonderful in reality as it is in concept. With everyone in the family at home at the same time, there are household chores to do, children and pets to play with and placate, and meals to cook or plan.
All this, while juggling your work on your laptop or computer, perhaps made worse by demanding superiors at work.
Add to this also the underlying stress and worry about job security, what the future holds, when the lockdowns will be lifted, when life will go back to normal etc. All this takes a toll on us both mentally and physically.
Work aside, I have also noticed an uptick in the need for people to be digitally social. There is more engagement on social media, and I’ve noticed many people having social get-togethers online via apps like Zoom, WhatsApp or Facetime.
I don’t know about you, but I personally find it stressful.
At a time when we are in self-isolation, it seems that we might be even more digitally connected than ever before. It may not be something very noticeable, but it places some stress on everyone.
How your skin deals with this stress, is to break out.
Try switching off for a few hours a day. Don’t go online. Don’t engage. Just switch off, and read or meditate, or just find that oasis of peace and calm. Your mental state and your skin will thank you for it 🙂
If it’s your family driving you crazy, it’s harder of course to find this calm, but this is time to hand over the reins to someone else in the household to care for the kids or parents. Homeschooling and keeping kids entertained isn’t JUST the mother’s job, IMO. If meal times are stressful, consider the occasional delivery. It’s important to care for your own mental health as it is to care for others.
Not cleansing skin properly
I saw some people mention that their skin looked better when they were wearing makeup, as opposed to when they stopped. I have no doubt that this is true, because I’d always maintained that makeup is not inherently bad for you. In fact, it can even be good for your skin!
RELATED READING: Makeup isn’t all bad, I promise! READ HERE
When we wear makeup, we are a little more meticulous about cleansing our skin, especially at the end of the day.
When we don’t, it’s easy to let the evening cleanse slide. We skip the double cleanse, because “I’m not wearing makeup, why do I need an oil cleanser?”
Well, that’s where you’re wrong!
Double cleansing isn’t about just removing your makeup. It is about properly cleansing your skin, especially in the evening, to prepare it for your evening skincare routine.
While you may not wear makeup while staying at home, your skin will still accumulate dirt and sweat. It will still secrete oil. If you use skincare product in the morning (and sunscreen!), you will still need to remove it properly.
A good cleanse at the end of the day cleans it out properly.
So, don’t skip your double cleanse routine.
RELATED READING: How do you double-cleanse your skin? READ HERE
Well, there’s no need to be up early to commute to work is there? We can just get up, and roll off to the computer, and be right at work in 2 seconds. So, let the late nights roll!
Well, bad idea.
Constant late nights can dull your skin and cause it to break out too. Our skin is a reflection of what goes on in our body, and keeping late nights takes a toll on our health and our skin.
Try going to bed early – you don’t have that long commute home either! So, find time after logging off from work, to clear your mind and wind down for the day, if possible.
Granted, this is easier said than done, especially in a busy and full household. But this might be a good time to encourage everyone to have an early night, and to stick to a schedule, so everyone gets some time to themselves.
Get enough sleep, and your skin (and health) will thank you for it!
An interesting phenomenon I’ve noticed in my case, is more vivid dreams. While I sleep at approximately my regular sleeping time, I have noticed that my dreams are more vivid, or more troubled, and I sleep fitfully.
If you are experiencing this, know that you aren’t alone. Apparently, being in lockdown or quarantine can cause us to have more vivid dreams, which I find interesting.
Not sticking to your regular skincare routine
As much as you’d like to think you have all the time in the world to play with your skincare, now is not the time to experiment!
Or wait, maybe it is, because no one can see how bad your skin looks if it doesn’t go well haha! 😛
But seriously, there is absolutely NO NEED to change your skincare routine just because you aren’t going outside. I’m not sure I even understand why there are people saying you can simplify your routine, or that you can skip steps.
Your skin does not know if you’re home or at work. What you need is a routine you can stick to. Skipping steps, not cleansing properly, not wearing sunscreen, it’s all a bad habit.
At this time, what you need in your life is structure, and sticking to your skincare routine will give you that structure.
As for those who are celebrating not having to wear sunscreen while at home, I will side-eye you 😛 You need sunscreen even at home, period. UV rays are everywhere.
If you sit by the window to do your work, or have the curtains open and let the sunlight stream in, you NEED sunscreen.
RELATED READING: I tell you a funny story about the time I did not apply my sunscreen properly while at home and got burnt! READ HERE
What I noticed is that due to reduced sun exposure, and with my regular sunscreen application and Vitamin C serum, my pigmentation caused by sun exposure has lightened a little. Not by a lot, but enough that I notice it. My skin tone is much more even and significantly clearer.
This convinces me even further that sun and UV exposure is damaging to the skin, and that we need to use sunscreen even while indoors, if you really care about protecting your skin. If you don’t, well, carry on 😛
Not eating properly
While some have taken the opportunity to hone their cooking skills and maybe even eat a little more healthily, others have taken to snacking more often, and drinking more sugary drinks or in some cases, enjoying more alcohol.
While it’s tempting to keep yourself in an alcoholic haze while trying to deal with children, recalcitrant partners or parents, and the scary situation outside, remember that alcohol is very dehydrating. Snacks, while tempting, are high in salt and oil, and sugary drinks are just that – high in sugar.
While it’s a good time to indulge, too much indulgence, coupled with a lack of exercise, except for trips to the fridge, isn’t healthy for the body and for the skin.
It is even more important at this time, to ensure that you are eating properly. Try to eat proper, balanced meals. Ensure that your vegetable and fruit intake remains as high as possible.
I had a personal challenge with a reduced vegetable intake, but I’ve rectified that now by stocking up on more vegetables and fruits. There was a fruit and vegetable delivery group buy open where I stay, so I shared some of that to get a good supply in.
At normal times, when I work from home, my fridge is usually very well stocked with fruits and vegetables, and I try ensure that my diet is well balanced that way.
It is also more refreshing to have a fresh fruit in the middle of the day, as opposed to an oily, high-sodium or sugar-filled snack. It helps you stay more productive too! 🙂
RELATED READING: Eating properly is also one of the tips I share to make working from home more productive – read the other 5 helpful tips READ HERE
Have you noticed your skin turning for the better or worse since staying in?
For me, it’s actually looked better. What about you? 🙂