BY JULIE JORGENSEN
Happiest of holidays to each and every one of y’all! Regardless of what holiday you celebrate this time of year, to say that this season can be hectic is quite the understatement. Stress, a seemingly endless to-do list and even hurrying around in the blustery December weather, can really do a number on your skin- not to mention your sanity. Don’t fret, friends. I have a “holiday health-hack” strategy ready to go.
Hustling around outside, stress-related inflammation and even a round of spicy appetizers at the company holiday party, can all amount to angry, red skin. Red is for wrapping paper, not for your face! A good soak in old-fashioned colloidal oatmeal will work wonders for irritated skin. Fresh cucumber is also great to cool down redness when applied topically. Toss chopped cubes into the food processor, spread gently onto your face and relax for a few minutes. Rinse off gently. Try not to linger in a hot shower, as it can only exacerbate redness. Additionally, be mindful of over-scrubbing your skin in the winter months. Should redness and irritation persist, give some thought to adopting an anti-inflammatory diet. Ask your doctor first, of course. Limit spicy food and caffeine and incorporate “cooling” foods on a daily basis. Think celery, apples, coconut milk, melon and papaya. Fortunately, “seeing red” isn’t always a bad thing this season, and fewer things can brighten up your smile in a flash than a bold, red lip. Blue-based reds will even make your teeth look whiter. This is also the perfect time of year to rock a flashy red mani or pedi. The OPI polish shade I’m Not Really a Waitress is practically a holiday party in a bottle!
Lingering too long at a happy hour or combining heavy holiday food with festive drinks can leave one feeling less than 100% the next morning. Take a multi-pronged approach to counteract feeling “green.” Make sure to alternate between alcohol and water or seltzer at a party and try to limit your intake of decadent food to just a taste or two. Wine spritzers are also a good drink option. Steer clear of the eggnog and milk punch- the dairy booze combo may not settle well with your stomach (especially if it’s empty). Get a healthy, filling snack or small meal on board before you head out to the shindig-du-jour and stay super hydrated throughout the day. Breaking a decent sweat is a good way to keep a hangover at bay too, even if it just involves a brisk walk around the neighborhood or playing outside with the kids.
Speaking of sweating, it’s crucial to your health and sanity to maintain a healthy exercise habit when life gets hectic. Don’t overthink it or be hard on yourself, just do what you can. Try not to skip the gym. Hit the sauna. Do some burpees in front of the TV. Anything that gets the heart rate going will help promote pretty skin. Treating yourself to a dermaplane facial or a mild peel will also help get that “glow.” If all else fails, drink a green juice (not one full of sugar- check nutrition labels!), snag a pearly cream highlighter and swipe it onto cheekbones, brow bones, the inner corners of your eyes and your collarbones. Crush up that shimmery powder eye shadow you don’t wear anymore and add it to body lotion for a glowy sheen. Take a few deep, calming breaths.
Smile and raise a glass to looking and feeling great this holiday season! Cheers!
The Beauty Junkie