JUNE 26, 2020
Routine is too generous of a word for a one step process that consists of face soap. And, in the drier months, a moisturizer that could quite possibly be intended for use on the body, rather than face. That’s about as far as I’ve gone, with any sort of regime for my precious face–until now.
I write this piece candidly. Transparently. Whole-heartedly, and honestly. Because I’m confident there are others like me. Who stand alongside all of the fourteen year old boys in skincare knowledge, chuckling at the ‘10-step skincare routine’ memes on the ‘gram, but pondering what those ten steps could possibly be. Are those all...serums?! Creams? Idk.
When you think about it–and I’ve been thinking about it a lot these days, between sun damage, pollution, and literal dirt, your skin goes through a whole lot, daily. Not to mention the layers of makeup we slap on most days. So it only makes sense that our face gets the cleansing and pampering it deserves as it (literally) faces all things first with us, in this chaotic world. But we’re all just learning.
So here’s to that–and building your first skincare routine with me.
First up–what’s your skin type? Knowing your skin type is the first step to choosing the right products in your skincare lineup. For example, when you’re shopping, look for products that indicate an alignment with one of the following four that best describes your skin:
How do you know what your skin type is? Think about your skin’s characteristics daily, as well as seasonally. Does your skin develop an oily film throughout the course of the day, sans primer? You probably have oily skin. If your skin changes seasonally, or differs in dryness from one part of the face to another, you probably have combination skin.
Firstly, there are two types of cleansers to consider: Oil-based, and water-based. Experts say that you should use them both. ‘Both?!’, you ask? Here’s the low-down:
Oil-based cleansers are great for breaking up and dissolving all of that makeup and buildup on your skin, seemingly magically. Seem like an extra step you could do without? Consider this a replacement for your current makeup remover. Apply 1-2 pumps on dry skin, gently massaging your face for about one minute. Rinse off.
Water-based cleansers break down and wash away that excess dirt and sebum from your pores. Dampen your face and add water to suds up the cleanser on your hands before massaging your face gently for another minute. Rinse off.
Pat dry with a clean towel, and don’t linger. In other words, avoid sitting in your towel on the side of your bathtub while you stare at the wall. Save that meditation moment for post-skincare routine because you want to apply your next step to a fresh face. So get on with the rest of it right away before your skin begins to produce oil as a natural moisturizer!
I note to my fellow skincare noobs: Cleansing does not equal exfoliating. That drugstore three-in-one morning scrub is no bueno anymore. This was news to me, but surely I’m not alone in this discovery?
To put it simply, serums are secret skin weapons, packed with concentrated doses of active ingredients. Here are a few core serums to consider:
To apply effectively, drop 1-2 droplets of serum on palms before patting onto your skin.
Moisturizers assist in preventing water loss through the outer layers of skin. The basic function of a moisturizer is to soften and hydrate. Essentially, a good moisturizer serves as a healthy drink of water for your skin, if you will. For oily skin, opt for a lightweight gel-based moisturizer, and for drier, try a heavier lotion or cream.
Sunscreen. The cheapest, most effective way to avoid wrinkles and dark spots.
Experts recommend using a broad spectrum SPF of at least 30, daily. For more coverage when you’re heading outdoors, or on vacation, make sure to additionally use something stronger, like an SPF 60, and apply regularly.
It’s a lot to digest, I know. But when you think about it, these four steps should take you less than four minutes to complete; that’s less than ten minutes per day. And folks, we can chalk those ten minutes up to self-care minutes, which, in all honesty sounds like time well spent. So join me in seriously treating your skin, because Botox is expensive, and an effective skincare routine feels good. *Places cucumber slices back on eyelids.*
Connecting intimately with close friends who live further than a few KM’s away is near impossible right now. Depending on where you live, it may even be impossible to connect within your own city. In Covid times, hopping on a plane or taking a trip to visit a pal on a whim isn’t spontaneous and caring; it’s actually pretty risky.
So what is there to do when a friend is in need of a little extra love and support? With breakup rates seemingly soaring right now, and the mental health of many facing all time rocky roads, our pals need us more than ever–and us them.
Sometimes virtual hugs just ain’t enough. So, for that reason exactly, we’ve assembled a virtual care package plan. Here are our top recs to provide links to, in eloquent email form of course:
Include that tune you screamed your heads off to in the middle of the club after a breakup in undergrad. Or a couple of old Iron & Wine songs that always have a way of calming your nerves before a big presentation. Curate a mix of moods, or one big one.
Choose a silky serum that also looks nice on any bathroom countertop, or a luxurious cream to indulge in after a long day. Something your pal can purchase online easily. Better yet–purchase credit for them on the chosen site as a surprise to pair with your product pick.
Podcasts like I Love Wellness, Almost 30, or Raw Beauty Talks are all good listens that enrich solo walks, or kitchen cleans. Pick one that really lifts you up when you’re feeling down.
What’s the blog that makes you feel instantly refreshed and inspired after you read an excerpt or two? One that’s perhaps paired with some beautiful photography and good storytelling to snuggle up with before bed? Send a link to that one; a sure win.
Think an upgraded breakfast tea recipe, or a simple dessert that doesn't require baking, just mixing. A quick pick-me-up in times of need.
Pick an old photo that will invoke some nostalgia, and pair it with a simple message to sign off your virtual care package email.
It would be a shame to end the fun there. Invite your pal to a Zoom dinner date on, say, Taco Tuesday. Check out local restaurants in their area for cocktail kits–chances are you can actually send over a ready to assemble cocktail to add to your date night.
Self-care isn’t only found in concrete form. The practice mustn't always mean taking a bath, or signing up for a spa treatment. It can be as simple as a good song–an insightful podcast, or even reading a good quote that really resonates. Moments, rather than routines.
Jade rollers hit the wellness market hard, late 2018. They’re beautiful. They’re decorative. And they’re a seriously hip addition to our wellness hauls. The question we’ve all been wondering is of course, do they actually work?
This question has collectively crossed all of the minds on our team; rest assured. So let’s get to the bottom of this once and for all, shall we?
Remember the cold spoon in the freezer trick? How about the cool cucumber slices, balanced carefully over your eyes after a long day? Let’s first begin by confirming that jade rollers are definitely a step up from those solutions for our mothers’ puffy eyes.
A delicate paint-roller-like apparatus with a smooth jade stone at one end, jade rollers are actually nothing new. Used by Chinese elites beginning in the 17th century, they range vastly in price, based on design and brand. There are a lot out there on the market, and they’re all pretty comparable, we will note.
So what’s all the hype about, you ask? Using a jade roller on your face regularly has comparable results to facial massages. It’s known to decrease puffiness and promote all of the good stuff, like anti-aging, wrinkles, stimulating collagen, tightening pores and potentially even improving inflammatory skin conditions.
The coldness from the stone in itself can decrease inflammation by way of causing blood vessels to contract.
After washing and patting your face dry with a soft towel, rub your favourite face oil or serum into your skin so that it’s ultra moisturized for the process. We love using Rose Organic Face Oil, Nectar CBD Infused Facial Serum, or LOA Hemp All Purpose Moisturizer.
Massaging your face can decrease puffiness by helping to move retained fluid out of areas where it has gotten stuck, when you do it right. Here’s a quick 5-step daily routine to practice:
Our favourite place to store our jade roller while not in use? The fridge! Just remember to disinfect your roller before each use to avoid transmitting bacteria. Rinse and repeat, daily.
And remember to be gentle on your skin. Rubbing vigorously can actually aggravate many skin conditions, like acne. Your rolling technique should feel enjoyable and relaxing, without too much pressure pushing down on your skin as you roll.
BY: SASHA CURRY
JUNE 4, 2020
All lives matter. So why is it so problematic to use such a phrase right now?
In the context of the Black Lives Matter movement, stating ‘all lives matter’ is a whole lot like sweeping a human rights issue under the rug. By stating ‘all lives’, you’re watering down a systematic race issue to be about ‘everyone’.
You’re taking the focus away from the issue of police brutality towards the Black community. All lives matter. Period.
You might find this confusing, at first. We know, because to be quite frank, we made that exact mistake earlier this week. Yes we used that exact hashtag, without realizing its effect against our values as a brand, and as the people that make up the racially diverse team behind this brand.
We listened to our audience’s feedback, educated ourselves with the resources recommended to us, and this is what we learned: our mistake is nothing new. "All Lives Matter" has been around for years, and has been used historically to belittle discussion of racial injustice, especially after high-profile acts of police brutality, in response to people saying the phrase "Black Lives Matter.”
This generalizing phrase glosses over the focus of the issue at hand; Black lives matter. The thing is, if everyone believed that all lives mattered, we wouldn’t be here having this conversation right now. "The slogan 'Black Lives Matter' does not mean other lives don't," Billie Eilish wrote on Instagram this past weekend. Rather it's "calling attention to the fact that society clearly thinks black lives don't f------ matter."
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blackout tuesday was supposed to be about taking a step back from promoting and posting about yourself and instead using your voice to amplify the message that systemic inequality will no longer be tolerated in this country!!! not posting a black square and silence...... we cannot be silent. not today. not any other day. we are here to unequivocally say that BLACK LIVES MATTER. and i want to use the platform i have to help take meaningful action that will create meaningful change!! here is a list of organizations that you can donate to!! some of which i have donated to today. i’m gonna try to donate to as many organizations as possible over the next few weeks and further! and i encourage you to donate whatever you can to these and other organizations in your communities that are working to fight racial and social injustice every day.... even when the hashtags stop. i hope you used today to speak up, donate, protest, educate yourself, listen, learn, and call your elected representatives to demand CHANGE IN THIS COUNTRY. gonna be sharing some resources over the next couple days and i ask that everyone take action with me.
Similarly, Seth Rogan defended his stance against #AllLivesMatter by individually addressing a flood of comments attacking his Black Lives Matter post. We’re talking close to 50,000 comments tacked onto his post at the time of his writing. While many of them were supportive, many were not.
Other celebrities found themselves backpedaling after wrongly using the hashtag #AllLivesMatter on social media. Jennifer Lopez promptly deleted a Tweet containing the hashtag, and Fetty Wap, who, after deleting his Tweet and apologizing admitted that he didn’t fully understand the hashtag before.
Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, an assistant professor of African-American Studies at Princeton University best explains the power in the words used during this movement, stating “The entire point of Black Lives Matter is to illustrate the extent to which black lives have not mattered in this country.”
If you wish to support this movement on social media, say the right thing. Be tactful, and intentional with your words. Replace the use of #alllivesmatter with the phrase Black Lives Matter. Off social, promote Black businesses, Black activists, and Black truth. Sign the Justice for George Floyd petition and donate to organizations. Most importantly, keep educating yourselves.
Like many others, we admittedly are in the process of unlearning, as well as learning. So let’s continue educating ourselves, encouraging each other, and catalyzing positive change. And more importantly, remember that it doesn’t matter how you use it; #alllivesmatter dangerously undercuts the important issues currently being discussed in favour of semantics, demonstrating white fragility.
We are heartbroken over the recent events and displays of blatant racism in North America, and are aware these discriminatory systems are institutionally woven into the fabric of both the US and Canada. It is necessary for every single one of us to pay attention and actively do our part to put an end to these oppressive systems and stand for change. Collectively, we have the power and responsibility to speak out against injustice and racism in this country and abroad. We have compiled a list of resources you can use to contribute positively to the work being done to eliminate racism. Here’s where to start:
This will link you to Color of Change’s petition, which will send a letter to Mayor Jacob Frey and District Attorney Michael Freeman demanding the arrest and murder charge of the four officers.
This petition demands that all four cops involved in Floyd’s death should be charged with murder and held fully accountable.
Every donation counts.
Campaign ZERO was developed with contributions from activists, protesters and researchers across the nation. This data-informed platform presents comprehensive solutions to end police violence in America. It integrates community demands and policy recommendations from research organization and President Obama's Task Force on 21st Century Policing.
The Urban Alliance on Race Relations is a non-profit charitable organization that works primarily and proactively with the community, public and private sectors to provide educational programs and research, which are critical in addressing racism in society.
The Minnesota Freedom Fund is a community based nonprofit that combats the harms of incarceration by paying bail for low-income individuals who cannot otherwise afford it. We oppose "pay-to-play" justice and believe that our work has the potential to catalyze substantive criminal justice reform.
Black Visions Collective aims to center their work in healing and transformative justice principles, intentionally develop their organizations core “DNA” to ensure sustainability, and develop Minnesota’s emerging Black leadership to lead powerful campaigns. By building movements from the ground up with an integrated model, they are creating the conditions for long term success and transformation.
Reclaim the Block began in 2018 and organizes Minneapolis community and city council members to move money from the police department into other areas of the city's budget that truly promote community health and safety. They believe health, safety and resiliency exist without police of any kind.
Unicorn Riot is a decentralized, educational 501(c)(3) non-profit media organization of artists and journalists. Their work is dedicated to exposing root causes of dynamic social and environmental issues through amplifying stories and exploring sustainable alternatives in today’s globalized world.
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