This week, we’re revisiting our episode about skin, the thin barrier between our bodies and the greater world. At the beginning of the pandemic, I was religious about my skincare routine. Then for a while I fell away from my usual skincare and self-care practices. In some ways, it felt freeing to not care about looks. But when things get difficult, it’s good to show yourself at least a little bit of care.
After some consideration, I’ve revamped my skincare routine and stopped buying new skincare. But I thought I would share a few pandemic skin care tips that have stuck with me.
Wash your face. This one seems obvious, but cleansing is important during a pandemic. All the heat, moisture and friction from wearing masks is a recipe for clogged pores and breakouts. Find yourself a basic, gentle cleanser. I prefer the non-foaming kind.
Moisturize. Cold weather is here, which means it’s time to up your moisturizer game. Your summer moisturizer isn’t going to cut it anymore.
Drink water. Another obvious tip. I still can’t seem to drink enough water even though I’m just a short walk from my kitchen.
Use hand sanitizer and hand cream. An iconic duo. I have little bottles of hand sanitizer everywhere. In every bag, in every jacket pocket, in every car. When my hands feel super dried out from all the alcohol and hand washing, I grab the hand cream. Bonus points for the soothing smells.
Wear sunscreen. I know we’re spending lots of time indoors, but it is still important to wear SPF year round. We take actions to mitigate the risks of COVID-19, like mask and social distancing. Similarly, we wear sunscreen to mitigate the risks of UV damage. Everything is risky, y’all. Sometimes I skip the moisturizer, and just go for a moisturizing sunscreen, one that’s at least SPF 30.
Do what you will with these tips, but I want to remind everyone that while self-care is important it’s also important to care about other people. That used to mean hugs, comfort and togetherness. With vaccines on the horizon, the end of this pandemic is barely within view. But we’re not there yet. In the meantime, we are all faced with some form of this question: What sort of risks and precautions are we willing to take for ourselves, for each other, and for a future where we are all together again?