When we enter into parenthood (or adulthood, overall) we give up a lot of freedom. It’s a given. We know it’s going to happen. But who among us really understands until we’re right in the thick of it? No matter how you do it, adulting isn’t easy, and self-care is one of the first things to fall by the wayside.
One of my biggest lightbulb moments happened one day when I looked in the mirror and saw puffy eyes, parched skin and, to put it simply, no glow. Like, at all. My lifestyle was wearing on me, and I was wearing the evidence on my face.
That’s when I decided to put my nighttime self-care routine back in effect.
It started with some great natural skin-care products and the best favor I’ve done myself in a while: regular do-it-myself lymphatic flush facial massage.
What does “lymphatic flush” mean?
According to Livestrong.com, “Your lymphatic system, comprised of your lymph nodes, spleen, thymus and vessels that carry fluids that protect your body from disease, can become sluggish when you do not exercise, eat the wrong types of foods or endure a prolonged, serious illness.” The good news is that there are simple steps you can take that will benefit your lymphatic system and, in turn, your overall health.
Those steps are wide and varied, from exercising more often to using herbal remedies and even sitting in a sauna (yes, please!) but the one I’m most interested in right now is facial massage. Specifically, lymphatic flush facial massage. I love the idea of the massage because I can do it myself, and it’s 100% all natural and free! (Stimulating lymph flow through light manipulation to the face is quite different than manual lymphatic drainage, which is a medical procedure. Ask your physician if you have any questions. Our purpose here is simply to relax the face, reduce puffiness and stimulate lymph flow.)
After a lot of reading about different facial massage techniques, I have whittled them down to a few that I do each night. They really relax my face and help eliminate the “puff” that gives away my stress and sleeplessness every time. (Coffee, a bit of wine, and not nearly enough water…I’m not doing myself any favors.)
If you’re interested in looking into it a little more thoroughly, my favorite tutorial can be found here: lymphatic flush facial massage.
Tips for an Easy At-Home Facial Massage:
- Start with clean hands and clean skin.
- Always use light pressure and move in an upward, repetitive motion.
- Repeat each stroke of the face several times as long as it feels comfortable.
- Start at the collarbone and massage up to the jawline.
- Next, gently massage around ears (front and back) and along sides of nose.
- Gently run fingers from the inner eyebrow to the undereye area and to the outer browbone.
- End by lightly massaging the temples and across forehead.
A Nighttime Self-Care Routine
Nothing gives you confidence like having great looking skin, and stimulating your lymph system can certainly help. But you also need to make sure that you’re cleaning your skin gently, without overdrying or clogging pores. I’ve been using Burt’s Bees products for years because of their commitment to making the world a little greener and a little cleaner, but now I’m an even bigger fan since they introduced their new Cleansing Oil.
I know, oil. Sounds…oily, right? Nope. It’s not. As the first step in your skincare routine, it gently removes dirt and make-up and leaves no oily residue.
How to Use the Cleansing Oil:
- Dispense product into dry hands.
- Gently massage over dry face. (A great time to do a little massage!)
- Wet hands and gently continue to massage product onto face.
- Rinse thoroughly; pat dry.
Tip: Be careful when dispensing! This is a thin oil, and could end up down the sink if you don’t cup your hand.
A cleansing oil may sound a little different than what you’re used to, but please believe me – this will make your skin feel smooth, silky and moisturized, not oily or greasy. Must be the magic of coconut oil and argan oil! It’s dermatologist-tested, and supports your skin with the nutrients it needs, not the chemicals it doesn’t. Take the first step toward cleaner, softer skin, then take a few minutes for a DIY facial massage.
You’ll feel like a new woman in no time. (But don’t change too much. I like you just the way you are.) 😉
Additional source: xovain.com