It is fair to say we’re living in a crazy time. In one way or another, the pandemic has affected absolutely everybody.
We've had to adapt to living with Covid-19 restrictions, and almost a year on this can still feel overwhelming. Whilst some are finding themselves with a lot of extra time on their hands and not a lot to do, others are busier than ever - key-workers are still going to work, parents are learning how to home-school and some may feel like they haven’t got five minutes to take a break.
Whichever end of the spectrum you might be, it is completely normal to feel uneasy or anxious or just plain fed-up! Despite us starting to get used to lockdown, it is important to remember that this is not a normal situation and it’s okay to feel overwhelmed sometimes.
In this post, we share our top tips to help you keep positive and tackle the lockdown blues.
Allow Yourself To Be In The Moment
Feeling tense? Take a moment to take some deep breaths. When we are stressed or anxious, it shows up in our bodies. You may notice that you feel tension in your shoulders or that it is difficult to take a full breath. Set a reminder on your phone and make some time to practice a breathing exercise. This article by Healthline offers 10 examples you may like to try.
If you are constantly busy and feeling overwhelmed, you may also benefit from taking a few minutes to write down your thoughts. It may sound silly, but simply having a list of things in front of you can really help to visualise and prioritise the things you need to focus on. It may also help you to manage expectations of what you are able to achieve. Work through your list one thing at a time and remember to ask for help when you need to.
Encourage Yourself To Keep a Routine
With many of us spending more time at home, it can be difficult to stick to a normal routine. You may feel you’re juggling a bit of everything and struggling with motivation, but that is OK.
Our homes are our safe places where we are used to relaxing but in this scenario, we are bringing work, school and all our social lives home with us! It is normal to feel overwhelmed.
Try putting together a new routine and build your ‘new normal’. Giving yourself just a few things to do each day is a great way to feel a sense of achievement. It doesn’t have to be strict - now is not the time to be pressuring yourself! Even something as simple as making your bed, going for a walk or taking some time to practice your skincare routine every day can really beneficial.
Take Some Time For You
We are all trying our best to adapt during lockdown which can be really challenging. Whether you’re rushed off of your feet with lots of responsibilities or are sat wondering what to do yourself, it is important to remember to take some time for you.
Allow yourself some time to relax and show yourself some kindness. Have a bath, treat yourself to a cup of tea and a biscuit or listen to some soothing music. Even just five minutes can make a positive impact on your mood.
If you’re looking for a way to relax and show your skin some extra love, you may like to take a look at ARK Skincare’s Jade Facial Tool. The ancient self-care beauty ritual Gua Sha has been used for several thousand years as a natural way to achieve skin health and provide a radiant, youthful complexion. It can also be a therapeutic way to relax and unwind.
The sweeping action of the jade tool against the skin stimulates blood circulation and encourages lymphatic drainage. With regular practice facial tension is relieved, the jaw line becomes more defined, fine lines are reduced, skin is lifted and de-puffed. You can learn more about the benefits of Gua Sha in one of our previous blog posts by clicking here.
Practice Positive Self Talk
It is normal to feel anxious or a bit low at the moment. There is lots going on in the world! We are all living in the most peculiar times. Just remember that things will get better. You may not feel 100% everyday but it is important to know that you are not alone. Remember, nobody has a ‘how to happily cope with the lockdown manual’ ...we are all just trying our best.
This article about positive self-talk is well worth reading. It gives some great examples of how you can turn negative thoughts into positive ones and ways you can improve your internal dialogue.
You are doing your best. Be kind to yourself.
Reach Out To Others
It’s no secret that lockdown can be very isolating. We are all missing seeing our friends and family and being able to do normal things. It may feel like there is very little to catch up on at the moment as the days and weeks can be so similar, but even so, reaching out to others is still really important.
Pick up the phone and give a friend or family member a call. Sharing your thoughts and feelings with others can make you feel so much better. Even a quick conversation with a loved one may be everything you need to pick yourself up and it may even make their day too!
Make Some Post-Lockdown Plans
As we’ve said before, it’s important to remember that this won’t last forever. It may take a long time for things to go back to normal, but happier times are coming. You may like to think of some fun things you can do after lockdown to keep you inspired.
How about planning a day out with a friend or family member? Perhaps you could research some different places you might like to visit or plan something nice you might like to do for yourself. Having things to look forward to is a great way to help you keep moving forward. We will get through this.
You can learn more about ARK Skincare and our full product range by visiting arkskincare.com!
Sleep becomes a precious commodity as we age; waking up after a long and restful slumber could be the closest thing we’ve got to a fountain of youth, for it offers up all kinds of benefits to body and mind. We’ve all felt that sluggish, temperamental and irritable feeling that often accompanies a restless night - and we’ve all experienced the radiant and happy reflection that greets us in the mirror after a great eight hours between the sheets. Sleep is often overlooked as one of the most important elements of a great beauty and wellness routine, and best of all: it’s free!
Although you shouldn’t completely neglect your beauty regime in favour of more time in bed, getting into good bedtime habits will have a long-term positive impact in so many areas. Research has shown that even one poor night of sleep can cause swollen eyes, dark circles, more prominent fine lines and even sagging skin around the jawline; a 2017 study* even found that two days of sleep restriction negatively affected the participants perceived attractiveness, health and even trustworthiness. Sleep helps us to feel good and look good too.
But why is sleep so important?
During the daytime our bodies are in ‘defence mode’, focused on protecting against UV and free radical damage, but as this need depletes overnight it can start focusing on the vital process of regeneration and protection. As the sun goes down our skin renewal rate almost doubles, collagen production rises, cell damage reverses and UV-induced damage is repaired - having a hugely beneficial impact on our complexion.
What are the beauty benefits of sleep?
If we regularly get the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep a night we’ll undoubtedly benefit from a multitude of visible improvements in our skin. With more collagen skin appears fuller, more youthful and fine lines appear reduced, while adequate blood flow and drainage will ensure the under-eye area is less puffy and free from dark circles. Investing in your bedtime routine will undoubtedly leave your complexion looking radiant, feeling smoother and becoming more supple over time.
The secret ingredient for great skin.
Although sleep is vital for a healthy looking complexion, there is an additional ingredient that will help support your skin and effortlessly boost the benefits it can provide: a great night treatment.
During those eight hours of abstinence from food and drink your skin needs all the hydration it can get, which is why night creams tend to focus on delivering moisture within rich and creamy formulations. As our skin is in repair mode, it’s also a great opportunity to deliver potent ingredients that can aid that process and ensure you wake up looking refreshed.
Picking a great night treatment will not only boost the benefits of sleep, but help to deliver a sprinkling of added goodness too: the metabolic activity of skin cells is at its peak as we slumber, making it an ideal time to achieve maximum results from a targeted treatment.
A targeted treatment to suit your age and your needs.
Our skin needs change as we age, so using a targeted treatment to deliver exactly what it needs is the key to unlocking your best skin yet. In our teens and twenties skin just needs a little helping hand, with essential nutrients and hydration to boost clarity, so it’s important not to overload the skin; that’s why ARK Skincare keep the Age Protect range stripped back and as simple as possible.
As we reach our thirties and forties our skin is showing the first signs of ageing. ARK Skincare Age Defend Regenerating Night Treatment features a multitude of active ingredients to aid the skin’s natural repair process to leave it healthy, glowing and youthful.
Free radical scavenging antioxidants and Vitamins A and E help to reduce the appearance of skin ageing; Kiwi and Passionfruit Seed Oils are rich in fatty acids and work to hydrate, maintain moisture levels and alleviate inflammation; Blue Lotus extract provides antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits, while Shea Butter helps to alleviate dry, irritated and sensitised skin. The result is a beautifully rich, hard working and effortless night treatment that we know you’ll love.
By the time we hit our fifties, skin requires more targeted support for the established signs of ageing - and richer formulas to counteract the loss of moisture and hydration that occurs later in life.
ARK Skincare Age Defy Repairing Night Treatment features Hyaluronic Acid to maintain moisturisation, firm and tone, Blackcurrant Seed Oil (a natural source of Vitamin C) to help regulate inflammation and dryness, and Vitamin E to condition and protect skin. Borage Oil, incredibly rich in Essential Fatty Acids and Omega 6, helps to treat dry and damaged skin, while Goji Berry extract also provides detoxifying, fortifying and vitalising properties.
The beautifully rich (yet not heavy) cream helps to promote collagen production, improve hydration, boost firmness and elasticity, plus provides a visible improvement of wrinkle depth around the eyes in particular. It’s everything you need to look and feel your best.
Both the ARK Skincare Age Defend and Age Defy Night Treatments can be used right up to the delicate eye area too, delivering smoother and fresher skin. They’re vegan friendly, cruelty-free and have been recognized in the Beauty Shortlist Awards as the best in their category, while the Age Defend has recently been nominated as the Best New Premium Skincare Product in the much celebrated Pure Beauty Awards 2020 – a huge achievement for an independent British brand like us.
What’s the difference between a day and night cream?
You may think you don’t necessarily need both a day and a night cream within your skincare repertoire, but investing in your daily routine will ensure you achieve the results you want.
The key purpose of a day cream is hydration and protection against the elements we face daily while going about our lives – which include pollution, air conditioning, central heating, blue light from devices and damaging UV rays (that are present even on British cloudy days!) A great moisturizer will provide the support our skin needs without weighing it down, acting as a ‘bookend’ to a great morning skincare routine. They’re also lighter in texture so are more suitable for use under makeup, and finding a great one can ensure a primed base that ensures you stay radiant all day long.
ARK Skincare Age Protect Skin Vitality Moisturiser offers the perfect balance of hydration for younger skin. Rich in antioxidants and an active anti-pollution system, it helps to protect skin to leave it looking clear, radiant and vibrant. Enriched with Avocado and Peach Lipids (rich in Vitamins A,C and E as well as Omega 9 fatty acids) to keep skin hydrated and soft, Olive Oil to penetrate deeply for skin cell regeneration, and Panthenol (a form of Vitamin B) to help soothe irritated skin.
ARK Skincare Age Defend Replenishing Moisturiser is specifically formulated to tackle challenges faced in your 30s and 40s, and is packed with natural moisturising agents such as Shea Butter and Olive Oil. Containing clinically proven wrinkle plumping peptides, including Matrixyl, it helps to smooth, plump and tone to diminish the signs of premature ageing. Vitamin A also helps keep skin strong, plump and increases collagen production, while Kiwi and Passion Fruit lipids boost skin’s moisture and Blue Lotus (a powerful antioxidant) boosts firmness and elasticity.
ARK Skincare Age Defy Nourishing Moisturiser powerfully combats the signs of hormone loss such as dullness, dryness, uneven tone and loss of elasticity. Hyaluronic Acid plumps skin to visibly reduce the look of lines and wrinkles, Blackcurrant and Borage Seed Oil contain fatty acids to deeply nourish the skin, while Red Clover is known to soothe inflammation. The rich, non-greasy texture helps skin to look healthier, firmer and more radiant.
Combining your chosen moisturizer with a pump or two of Ark Skincare Skin Protector SPF 30 Primer will finish your skincare routine while ensuring essential sun protection. UV exposure has been identified as a primary cause of premature ageing**, so it’s essential to integrate an effective SPF product into your daily regime – 365 days of the year.
ARK Skincare Skin Protector SPF 30 Primer is the ultimate multi-tacker and perfect daytime solution, combining the benefits of a lightweight moisturizer with a hardworking SPF and a primer too. When layered over your moisturiser for added hydration and protection, it also provides a smooth and luminous base that’s perfect for makeup application; it’s all you need for long-lasting results and a look that looks immaculate all day long.
Vitamin E, Shea Butter and Sunflower extract deliver protection, nourishment and essential vitamins to ensure skin looks and feels its best. With clinically-proven skin benefits, offering broad spectrum defence against UVA and UVB rays to prevent sun damage and premature ageing, and with an advanced active antioxidant system to protect against the effects of pollutants, it’s a one-stop beauty must-have that simplifies your morning skincare and eases any skin anxieties.
If you want to simplify your routine or have a preference for more multifunctional products, then this can also be used alone as a quick and easy way to take care of your skin. It’s also great for travel, when you don’t have space in your case for your usual expansive routine!
Day creams are therefore lighter, and designed to be layered. Night creams, however, tend to be much richer in texture and focused on hydration and replenishment – delivering skin a boost as you sleep alongside targeted ingredients to help counteract the potential damage incurred during waking hours. ARK Skincare’s award winning night treatments have been specially formulated to work in partnership with their daytime counterparts, so to get the best results they should be used alongside a great morning routine.
Embrace the pre-bedtime hour: the perfect nighttime skincare routine.
The hour before bedtime provides the perfect opportunity to take care of your skin, and your mind, while indulging in a little pampering ‘me-time’. Enjoying the ritual of removing your makeup and applying nighttime products will ensure you’re in the perfect space for relaxation and help you drift off to sleep with ease. It’s also a great time to apply all manner of creams, treatments and masques to help deliver your skin what it needs while it’s in repair mode – boosting our body’s own natural processes.
If you’re not sure where to start, then follow these easy steps for an ultimate indulgent nighttime beauty regime:
STEP 1: Lift away the day’s grime with ARK Skincare Pre Cleanse & Make-Up Remover. The multi-fruit lipid blend dissolves every last trace of excess sebum and make-up (even waterproof mascara) while nourishing and soothing skin with a blend of natural ingredients. Massage a small amount all over the skin, taking the time to work it in and lift away stubborn makeup, before washing away with warm water and a flannel.
STEP 2: Follow-up with a non-foaming pump of ARK Skincare Age Protect, Defend or Defy Cleanser to remove any last traces of grime, makeup or SPF while helping to nourish and protect even the most sensitive of skin. It’s important to double cleanse if you’re wearing any kind of makeup or SPF so there’s no kind of residue left on the surface of skin.
STEP 3: Lift away any dead or dull skin cells twice a week with ARK Skincare Triple Action Exfoliator - an innovative triple effect exfoliator with physical, fruit acid and enzymatic action to create exceptionally smooth skin. Skin is left feeling exquisitely smooth and fine lines and scars are diminished, making it a great way to boost your routine.
STEP 4: For a weekly pick me up, apply a generous amount of ARK Skincare Hydration Injection Masque – an intensive treatment that helps to quench skin, plump wrinkles and restore vibrancy. Ideal for skin which looks tired, stressed or lacking in radiance, this can also be left on overnight for even more skin boosting benefits.
STEP 5: Massage a pump of ARK Skincare Age Defend or Defy Night Treatment between your hands and apply across your forehead, cheeks and neck in gentle lifting motions. Suitable for even taking up to the delicate under-eye area, this will help to deliver what your skin needs as you sleep.
STEP 6: Your pre-bedtime routine doesn’t have to stop at your skin; take care of your lips with a small amount of ARK Skincare Advanced Action Plumping Lip Cream. This intensive treatment cream helps to hydrate, plump and protect the entire lip area, while clinically proven plumping Peptides help to increase lip volume appearance and hydration. It also firms, smooths and reduces the appearance of vertical lines and wrinkles on the lips and the surrounding area – something that becomes more prominent as we age.
STEP 7: Finish off by treating your body to a generous amount of ARK Skincare Conditioning Body Serum and ARK Skincare Intensive Hand & Nail Cream, which both deliver skin much-needed nourishment and replenish essential vitamins our bodies need to thrive.
Now you’re armed with the knowledge, skill and products to take care of your skin all day long, your complexion will thank you.
ARK Skincare has recently had some exciting news. Our Defend Regenerating Night Treatment has been nominated as Best New Premium Skincare Product in the Pure Beauty Awards 2020!
Whilst you're here, we'd be so grateful for your vote - it only takes a minute!