Let's live a little . . .
I keep seeing this hashtag: #newyearnewme.
Setting long term goals on January 1st can be a wonderful opportunity to start anew. It’s a great time to verbalize your expectations and then work towards them for the next 364 days. I can totally see how some people might find success by doing so. If it works for you, then by all means - you do you. I used to be a firm believer in making New Years Resolutions. However, over the years, I have come to accept the reality that I’m not one to change cold turkey. I always try to change too much and I’m always disappointed at the end. So I’m not setting resolutions.
Personally, I feel like I’m getting to the point in my life where I don’t feel the need to reinvent myself every year. Sure, there’s always room for improvement. I’d love to get a little stronger. I long to bleach my hair until it’s silver. I want to keep up with the blog. But all in all, I’m feeling pretty okay with who I am.
At this point, you’re probably wondering why I might even bother writing about the new year if I’m not making any resolutions. Here’s the thing: I don’t have any specific goals regarding health, career, or money. But I do want to spend more time doing more things that make me happy. For the last 4-5 years, I have spent a lot of time driving my career forward. I have worked hard and pushed myself to new limits every year. I have always done everything I can to meet a deadline or accomplish a goal, often sacrificing health and wellbeing along the way. And while I have zero regrets about working hard, I do have some regrets about not taking more time to myself.
Big picture? This year, I’d like to take spontaneous vacations to Mexico (you know who you are), buy myself a wardrobe entirely consisting of Acne Studios, and get a hydrafacial and hot stone massage every other week. But… I live in Manhattan, so it’s pretty unlikely that any of that will happen. Instead, I think I want to make it a goal to treat myself better in smaller ways. I find that taking a couple minutes during a hectic (or bad) day to gather myself can make all the difference. And no, you don’t necessarily need products. But they definitely help! (The level of escapism in my life is pretty impressive)
Here are a few of my favorite instant mood-lifters. Hopefully this helps you live your best life too.
1. Find your pamper product.
I know this sounds silly and super bougie. But it works. There are a couple products that I reach for every time I need a pick-me-up. Aesop's resurrection hand balm (aptly named) is a spa experience contained in a small 2.5 oz tube. The scent is the perfect balance between herbal and floral. I find the scent both relaxing and invigorating. It's great at hydrating your hands, without leaving them greasy. I have gone through more Glossier's balm dotcoms than I'm proud to admit. The mint scented (and flavored!) balm is definitely my favorite. When I take long road trips, I make sure that this stuff is accessible. Because yes, it is that refreshing. Click here for 20% off your first Glossier purchase.
Runner up : Mario Badescu Rose Spray
2. Mask. Mask. Mask.
I don't know about you, but I am almost ALWAYS multitasking. One of the things I like about face masks is that it forces me to slow down for a few minutes. I have no choice but to take a bath, read an article, or catch up on some TV. For the last few months, I have been loving the Kiehl's Turmeric & Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Mask. I barely even need to describe it because the name pretty much sums it up. The ingredients? Turmeric is a spice used in a lot of Asian cuisines. It has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Applied topically, it can help calm inflammation and redness. The cranberry seed bits provide a non-abrasive exfoliation which help scrape off pesky dead skin cells. One application of this, and my skin feels calmer, smoother, and looks significantly brighter. A facial in a jar for when you don't have the time/funds to get one right away.
Runner Up: Water Replenishment Cotton Sheet Mask
I think this is the one I struggle with the most, I have a hard time keeping up with cleaning the apartment or making sure the ambience in my own home is one that I like.
One thing that I've started to do to help myself unwind at night is to light a candle. I don't need to go into the what/why/how of candles. A subtly scented candle does wonders after a long day. Set the mood. Because if your date deserves some relaxing mood lighting, then you definitely deserve it too.
I don't have any particular favorite candles. But Byredo, Diptyque, and Fresh never let me down! For a more budget-friendly option, look into Mrs. Meyer's Soy Candles! They come in a variety of scents and they're a lot cleaner than most candles.
Runner Up: Fresh 'Life' Candle
4. If all else fails, fake it til you make it!
You know those mornings where you look in the mirror and you can't recognize that sallow-skinned, puffy eyed, and just *sigh* person in front of you? Yeah, I have those mornings a lot. My job requires me to have late nights and early mornings. So believe me, I have been there. My favorite trick for those days? Be bold. People always tell me that nothing brightens up a look like a bright lip. That might be the case for some people, but I prefer shades of maroon, brown, and burgundy. I think they suit my skin tone way better than corals or pinks. And let's be honest, pink lips are not really my brand anyway.
My recent go-to lipsticks have been the Nars Velvet Lip Glide in the shade 'Unspeakable'. If you're looking for the ultra matte (aka Kat Von D / Anastasia Beverly Hills) type of liquid lipstick, this is not for you. This is just lipstick in cream form. It glides on easily with beautiful pigment, leaving a soft semi-matte finish. It is not transfer proof - you've been warned.
It should come as no surprise to you that my other lipstick choice comes from Charlotte Tilbury's Matte Revolution line. Other than having a gorgeous matte (but not drying!) formula, the color "Birkin Brown is a rich burgundy-brown. Think of it as the classy older sister to the 90s brown lip trend.
What are your thoughts on resolutions? Do you make them every year? What are your favorite ways to make yourself feel better? I'd love to hear your ideas!