Finally. The sun is shining, the days are getting longer and lockdown rules are beginning to ease. Like many others, we are thrilled to be able to re-open our shop and see some friendly faces. It's great get back to work and sense a some more normality.
Although, after living under lockdown restrictions for the best part of a year, getting back into the swing of things can feel a little overwhelming. With that in mind, in this week's post, we share our 6 top tips on how you can feel a little bit more prepared when easing yourself back into a normal routine.
1. Pace yourself
After being locked up with very little to do for the best part of a year, there are many who are desperately excited to get back out there, go to their nearest shopping centre and arrange to catch up with friends and family straight away.
While it’s exciting to sense some normality returning, it is important to take things at your own pace and do what YOU feel comfortable with. Social situations and sensing the world opening back up overnight can feel daunting, so don’t be afraid to take your time when starting to do ‘normal’ things again. Make sure to do what feels right for you.
2. Take Some Time To Get Organised
For many of us, after being cooped up for so long, the idea of going out feels really unfamiliar. Even getting ready to go out and do something as simple as going to the shops can feel strange!
If you are starting to return to a more usual routine, now is the time to get organised. Often, by having a clear vision of what is happening around you and what you need to get done, it can help you to be more productive and feel more prepared for what’s coming next.
Take some time to sit and write a list of everything you need to do and slowly work your way through. If you are returning back to work or education, even doing those simple tasks such as packing your bag or making your lunch the night before can eliminate some of the stress and busyness on the day, allowing you to feel more relaxed and prepared.
3. Practice Self Care Rituals
Are you suddenly having to get used to your commute to work or starting back at the gym again? Many of us have spent so much time at home, especially for the last few months that now a ‘normal’ looking day can feel pretty exhausting! Lockdown easing is a sudden shift for everybody, so remember to be kind to yourself if you’re feeling tired or a little run down.
Give yourself some time to continue the self-care rituals you have learned and practiced during lockdown to make sure you have an opportunity to unwind and take care of yourself.
4. Get back into good habits
Now we are sensing some more normality, you may find it helpful to ease yourself back into a daily routine. By getting into the habit of doing things now, you’ll be doing them in a few weeks without even giving them a second thought.
Have a think of all the important things that keep you feeling well - staying hydrated, eating well, getting plenty of sleep and prioritising daily exercise often help all of us to feel good. Make a plan of when and how you can keep on top of things so you can ensure you have enough time.
Now is also a good time to think about your skincare habits. When was the last time you treated your skin to a weekly treatment? Are you making sure to apply your SPF every day? Do you remember to double cleanse every evening? For more on our Spring Skincare Tips, take a look at our previous blog post by clicking here.
5. Show your skin some love
When you begin to go out more, you may notice skin sensitivities occurring - especially with the change in season. Throughout the winter, skin has been hiding under our long-sleeved t-shirts and jumpers, hats, coats and gloves so spring does bring a significant change in your surroundings such as humidity, pollen and extreme weather changes. Now is the time to indulge in some self care and treat your skin to some TLC.
Top tip: Are you making sure to wear a clean mask each time you go out and nourish your skin to reduce symptoms of Maskne? Read more about our tips for Maskne Prevention here.
A selection of our products were recently individually tested to verify their suitability for sensitive skin - all passed with flying colours and we have had some great feedback from many happy customers who have seen some brilliant results from using them. To learn more about skincare for sensitivity and redness, click here to visit our website.
6. Be Kind To Others (and Yourself!)
We’ve been in the pandemic now for over a year, so with lockdown easing and things returning back to normality, anxieties are bound to be high. It’s not surprising if socialising feels strange or more difficult when you haven’t been doing it, so be kind to yourself and remember to take one step at a time. It’s also important to remember that whilst the rules are easing, we all still need to do our bit to be safe and considerate of one another by keeping our distance, being patient with each other and be mindful of how others may be feeling.
We hope these tips help you to feel a little bit more prepared for easing yourself back into normality. Remember, It’s a really strange time for us all, so it’s okay to feel uncertain, but this is a really positive step and soon we will have lots more to feel excited about, especially when the warmer weather comes!
In the meantime, if you would like to go read our previous blog posts with tips on self-care, you can find them by clicking here.
To learn more about ARK Skincare, head over to our website www.arkskincare.com.
You can also follow us on socials! @arkskincare
What Is Maskne?
Sadly wearing masks has now become a normal part of our daily routines. Whilst we all appreciate why they are needed in the fight against COVID-19 masks can unfortunately be uncomfortable for some, and may also cause skin concerns to emerge for others. The combined effects of friction from wearing a mask, together with the warm moist environment they create, can cause redness, sensitivity, and breakouts which are being called Maskne. Those with inflammatory conditions such as Eczema or Rosacea are particularly at risk.
Maske may result from both the physical irritation of using a mask, as well as the increased opportunity for bacteria to collect.
The human mouth is teeming with bacteria. Human bites can be as dangerous as or even more dangerous than animal bites because of the types of bacteria and viruses contained in our mouths. Each time we exhale we omit high levels of these bacteria and viruses, and by wearing a mask we trap them close to the skin. As the bacteria and viruses collect, they thrive and multiply in the warm humid environment. The increase in skin temperature caused by covering the face may also cause more oil to be produced by the sebaceous glands. Excess oil can block pores and hair follicles, trapping the bacteria, and causing breakouts and acne.
Face masks need to fit snugly to be effective, and the pressure and friction caused by face coverings can cause microtears to the epidermis which is thinner on the face than on other parts of the body. These microtears can allow bacteria to more easily penetrate the skin. Different types of masks may cause different issues to emerge. Fabric masks which are often made from cotton may absorb natural oils causing dryness and sensitivity, whilst surgical masks can cause more friction irritation. All masks should only be used once, and not touched during use. When using disposable masks remember to dispose of them responsibly, and use a new one each time required. For reusable masks make sure you carefully consider the detergent used to wash them with. Harsh laundry liquids and fabric conditioners may cause a whole host of other sensitivity issues!
We are afraid there is more bad news. Stress is also a well-known trigger for breakouts and sensitivities. We have all lived through very stressful times associated with the global pandemic and this, combined with the problems associated with wearing protective facial coverings discussed above, means we all need a fastidious skincare regime to combat the adverse effects seen as Maskne.
What can we do to prevent Maskne?
Here are our top tips to prevent Maskne:
- Use a clean mask each time a mask is required. Always dispose of single-use masks as soon as you remove them. Always wash reusable masks after they have been worn. Ensure you use gentle, perfume-free laundry detergent.
- Avoid the use of makeup under your mask. This increases the chance for pores and hair follicles to become blocked.
- Undertake a fastidious skincare regime to ensure skin is clean and hydrated. Look for FREE FROM products which do not contain known irritants.Ensure your products are rich in antioxidants to fight free radicals.
- Do not overstimulate your skin. Use a balancing collection of products to clean and calm. Do not be tempted to use excessive products or switch regularly between treatments. Be consistent with your skincare regime.
How To Optimise Your Skin Care Routine To Prevent & Treat Maskne
1. Prioritise your cleansing routine
While wearing masks and breathing into them, we create a warm damp area for bacteria to grow, making double cleansing more important than ever to ensure our skin is clean. A first cleanse will help to remove any make-up, dirt and bacteria and the second will clean deeper into the pores, preventing any new blemishes. Opt for a high-quality cleanser with gentle ingredients that will clean the skin thoroughly without causing irritation.
2. Remember your weekly treatments
Another way to prevent Maskne is by giving your skin a treat with a gentle exfoliator to scrub away dead skin and excess oil. This can help reveal a clearer complexion and avoid pores from becoming blocked.
3. Choose a serum to treat your skin concerns
If you already have Maskne which needs treating, you may find a serum will give you the additional help you need to clear it up. Add a few drops of your serum of choice to specific problem areas, or simply mix in with your moisturiser before applying.
4. Be consistent with your routine
Make sure to stay consistent with your products and routine to keep your skin balanced. Remember that less is more and a short yet simple routine will be easier to make a habit and keep up with. Choose products wisely by opting for natural ingredients you can trust will nourish your skin.
With all these tips in mind, here are ARK Skincare's top picks to help you prevent and treat Maskne.
ARK Skincare's Top Products To Help You Tackle Maskne
You might be asking yourself if you really need to cleanse twice and now more than ever, the answer is yes! Whether you wear make-up or not, a double cleanse is essential for healthy skin. The first cleanse will remove any traces of dirt, pollution and airborne bacteria from the surface of your skin and the second cleanse will clean deeper into your pores.
Our popular Pre-Cleanse and Make-up remover is described as a spa treatment in a bottle. It's great for removing the first level of grime while active ingredients such as Grapeseed, Avocado and Kiwi Oil deeply nourish skin and protect against dryness. Another key ingredient, Margosa Leaf Extract, destroys bacteria and inhibits its growth on the skin.
How to use: Apply onto dry skin before cleansing with dry hands. Massage in gently all over the face before adding water to form a thin liquid emulsion. Continue massaging then rinse off with warm water. Follow with your Age Intelligent Cleanser.
After your first pre-cleanse, follow up with the second. ARK Skincare offers three age intelligent cleansers, with nourishing active ingredients specifically for each age group.
Specifically designed for your teens & 20's
Banishes spots & excess sebum
The best cleanser for your teens and 20s. Our soap-free facial cleanser has been designed especially with younger skin in mind. It cleverly balances oily and dry areas to leave skin clear and comfortable. Natural ingredients ensure skin is treated gently while spots and excess sebum are banished. Your new best friend.
Specifically designed for your 30's & 40's
Gentle formula, perfect for sensitive skin
The best cleanser for your 30s and 40s. This ultra-nourishing cleanser helps with skin’s natural exfoliation for a clear, radiant complexion. Effectively removes make-up & excess sebum leaving skin clean, plump and supple. Perfect for sensitivities as the natural ingredients soothe redness and inflammation too.
Specifically designed for your 50's onwards
Reduces pigmentation, softens lines
The best cleanser for your 50s onwards. This rich creamy cleanser is the perfect choice for more mature skin. It effectively removes debris and impurities while treating the skin to a combination of vitamins, antioxidants and lipids. Skin becomes brighter and softer while lines and wrinkles are plumped.
How to use: Apply to damp skin and massage in gently for 60 seconds before gently rinsing off with water.
If you’re looking to tackle specific skin concerns caused by Maskne, our hard-working skin-perfecting serums will make the perfect addition to your skin-care routine to help you battle them.
Banishes bacteria, tightens pores
For a solution to spots and blemishes, our clearing serum is the one for you. Filled with anti-bacterial properties, it’s the perfect remedy for acne and can even help prevent it by regulating sebum production and reducing excess oil and shine.
Diminishes look of fatigue
If you’re suffering tired or irritated skin, try our De-stress serum. This highly protective serum acts as a second skin and helps to reduce the signs of fatigue caused by environmental and lifestyle stresses. Chamomile provides soothing relief for irritation and Vitamin E and Grapeseed Oil boost moisture levels, leaving skin feeling silky and supple.
How to use: Apply one or two drops directly to problem areas or mix in with your daily moisturiser and apply all over the face.
Our three in one exfoliating treatment with physical, fruit acid and enzymatic action has everything you need to give your skin a generous treat.
Bamboo particles help to gently scrub away dead skin, dirt and debris from the surface, creating a flawless, polished texture while Alpha Hydroxyl Acids (AHAs) from Bilberry, Sugar Cane, Sugar Maple, Orange and Lemon increase the range of cell renewal, helping to diminish acne scars and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. The Skin Regenerating Enzyme dissolves desmosomes to release dead skin cells, fade pigmentation and improve nutrient absorption.
How to use: Use once or twice per week. Apply to dampened face and neck. Wet hands and massage lightly into skin using circular movements, avoiding the delicate eye area.
Leave on as stated below, depending on your skin’s age-related needs:
Teens and twenties: Wash off after massaging in.
Thirties and forties: Leave on for approximately 2 minutes.
Fifties and onwards: Leave on for approximately 5 minutes.
Remove with a cloth soaked in hand-hot water. (Please note this product will not simply rinse off, it does need to be removed with a warm cloth. Using a cloth should make removal easy) Pat dry.
Rejuvenating treatment, restores vibrancy
Or rejuvenating treatment masque is the ideal weekly pick me up for skin which looks tired, stressed or lacking in radiance.
The masque instantly cools and calms and can bring instant relief to irritation and redness while Hyaluronic Acid drenches skin with moisture, optimizing the circulation of water through all skin layers and providing 24-hour protection against water loss - perfect for dry skin. It also includes a blend of hard-working vitamins to regulate collagen synthesis and protect against UV damage.
To view all of these products in full detail you can head over to the ARK Skincare website by clicking here.
If you need any help or product advice, please do get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office on 0203 7403303 - we'd love to help!
In the meantime, keep remembering to wash your mask in-between uses to keep your skin as clean as you can!
As we all work together in the battle against Coronavirus be kind to your skin.
Take care & stay safe,
In the last few weeks, we have received some amazing product feedback so, we decided to round up some of the most recent reviews and share what everyone has been loving with you!
“I am so impressed with it that I can’t imagine using anything else at bedtime now. Using this combination of products has my skin feeling soft, supple and brighter, protected against the harsh winter weather” - Even Angels Fall, Lifestyle & Beauty Blogger
“I've used the Age Defend Regenerating Night Treatment most nights for nearly three weeks and I would confidently recommend it to virtually anyone who has skin. It feels a little bit indulgent to use, absorbs nicely and, so far, has made my face feel more hydrated and comfortable than it has in a long time.” Lippy In London, Beauty Blogger
"When it comes to the colder months, my skin needs a bit more oomph in my moisturiser and this fits the bill perfectly. It has kiwi seed oil (omega 3 fatty acids for moisture and to help the skin barrier), passion fruit oil (anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory), Prodizia (for signs of fatigue), and CoQ10 (an antioxidant to help the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles)." Talonted Lex, Beauty Blogger
"ARK Skincare is a brand I've reviewed and raved about on my blog for a while now and I cannot recommend their Age Defend Replenishing Moisturiser enough (it's my favourite product of theirs, closely followed by the new Age Defend Night Treatment" Of Beauty & Nothingness, Beauty Blogger
"Now I must admit I'm always a little nervous about trying new moisturisers as I hate heavy products that feel too rich & worry that they will lead my hormonal skin to breakouts. However, this product is anything but heavy & contains Co-enzyme Q10 & collagen-boosting vitamin A & despite the fact I initially pumped too much out of the bottle I was amazed at how quickly it absorbed into my skin & instantly left it feeling smoother & looking plumper."
"I love candlelight. Something about it is so soothing. And better yet if the candle smells incredible. I’ve recently been loving the ARK Spa Aromatics Travel Candle. It’s small enough to take it with you on your travels so you can take your favourite scent with you wherever you go but big enough to have lots of burn time." Beauty Rocks, Lifestyle & Beauty Blogger
"At night, (especially when I was using the tool on my neck) I felt a lot of tension released. That’s what sitting at a laptop for most of the day typing can do for you folks! I did – through repeated use (and I stress the repeated use) – notice a difference especially to my eye area – it did appear that my brows were lifted and my eyes were more open." Living Pretty Happy, Beauty & Lifestyle Blogger
"I've been using these products for a few weeks now & I'm impressed with both. The Pre Cleanse & Make-Up Remover effectively removes all traces of my make up, even when wearing a heavy smokey eye & when used with the Conditioning Cleanser I've found my skin has been left feeling deeply cleansed & smooth." My Midlife Fashion, Fashion Blogger
"I’ve used the ARK Skincare Triple Action Exfoliator once and I adored it.
Once I washed the exfoliator off my face, my skin felt incredibly soft and smooth. This is such a satisfying feeling and I couldn’t stop touching my face. It reminded me of when I got a microdermabrasion treatment as my skin’s texture felt completely renewed." A Womans Confidence Beauty & Lifestyle Blogger.
" Before I used this serum, I genuinely used to use about four different ones to try and target different issues but this one does it all. It saves so much time only having to apply one product and I’ve definitely noticed a huge difference since using this serum. My pores are definitely way less obvious, it calms my redness and even my blackheads have reduced." According to Alice Beauty & Lifestyle Blogger.
"This went onto the skin beautifully and was super easily absorbed. I had been searching for a new daily SPF product for months and this is literally exactly what I wanted to add to my skincare routine, as I know it's protecting my skin from any harmful UVA and UVB rays, maintaining its youthfulness and overall health as well. "The "airbrush" finish allows makeup to glide on effortlessly and last all day long." Coconut Couture, Lifestyle Blogger
"Another award-winning product I have been enjoying using is the ARK Skincare Gravity Defying Eye Treatment. This product is amazing at reducing the appearance of wrinkles and help to fade dark circles and diminishes puffiness." Juelook, Beauty & Lifestyle Blogger
You can view all of these products using the links above, or click here to go straight to the ARK Skincare website!
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