Woman washing her face

By its very nature, self-love is personal. It’s about choosing yourself and only you can determine the best way to love you. This broad and mostly alien concept is widely misunderstood because on the surface it looks like it advocates selfishness and acceptance without growth. Of course, it doesn’t. In fact, one of the most basic acts of self-love, skin care, is an act of self-improvement. 

More than just a pampering ritual, having routine skin care is a gateway to all things self-love. By taking something so big and intangible and turning it into a habit, you learn to open yourself up to its other forms, little by little, day by day. Here are five ways self-love can begin with good skin care.

Personal Hygiene is Self-Respect

On the most rudimentary level, there’s have personal hygiene. This is skin care minus the fancy serums, face masks, and jade rollers. It’s the foundation of skin health — bathing, washing our hair, brushing our teeth. According to the caregivers at National Health Services UK, keeping clean is a way to maintain dignity. If you can do it for yourself, it's a form of self-respect not to be taken for granted. Furthermore, an Australian study published in the Journal of Health and Social Care in the Community found that difficulties in personal hygiene impede well-being.

Skin Care is Self-Kindness

In difficult times, humans turn to coping mechanisms to help improve their disposition. A 2021 whitepaper published by Lycored reveals that focus on beauty as a form of self-care became even more popular during lockdowns. In a survey of 562 consumers, more than 35% said they are more focused on looking after themselves and 31% said they love themselves more. 

Consumption-wise, there has been an increase in skin care, suncare, and supplements. This increased focus on products that “care” for the skin and promote skin health shows how people are choosing self-kindness in stressful times. Yes, most women still want to be beautiful, but for now, that kind of pressure is unnecessary. Instead, women want health. Fifty-one percent of respondents claim they will continue practicing their new routines post lockdown.

Healthy Skin Improves Self-Confidence

Studies show that having healthy skin can make you more confident in social and professional situations.

Practicing skin care is more than just wanting to look better — it’s also about feeling better. This is why it’s a form of self-love, defined as the regard for one’s own well-being and happiness. According to a 2018 study in the National Journal of Women’s Dermatology, skin issues can cause the blues. The study cites acne vulgaris, the most common dermatological complaint, as a huge source of low self-esteem. Eighty-nine percent of respondents claiming “severe embarrassment” and feelings of unworthiness had severe acne. Thirty-one percent claimed that acne interfered with their social activities.

Acts of Self-Improvement Help with Mental Health

The National Institute of Mental Health shares that setting goals and priorities helps improve mental health. These acts of self-improvement, such as practicing skin care to improve the health of your skin or creating a healthy meal plan, can have a big impact on personal growth. More than the idea of improvement, it’s the small acts you do every day that make you feel better and reveal your true potential. 

Rituals and Routines Boost Wellbeing

Make skincare rituals more fun by practicing them with loved ones.

It's no secret that having a routine is good for your well-being. Apart from providing structure and promoting organization, having a skincare routine improves the skin as well as your health. The Northwestern Medicine Journal states that people who don’t have a routine can suffer from stress, poor sleeping habits, malnutrition from an unhealthy diet, procrastination, and lack of exercise. The article adds that routines can also help you relax, leading to less anxiety and a higher quality of rest. 

Add a pampering aspect to your skincare routine with products that nourish your skin while making you feel good. POND’S Pineapple Face Mask is a relaxing step that you can practice twice a week. It has vitamin C and pineapple enzymes that make your skin brighten from first use. 

For the body, make showering a luxurious ritual to look forward to with Dove Liquid Shower Lotus Glow. Inspired by a centuries-old Japanese tradition, this body wash has rice water and lotus flower extracts that purify, nourish, and soften skin. Add it to your skincare routine for a more relaxing shower.

The next time you do your skincare routine (which should be tonight or tomorrow morning!), remember that it’s more than just for glowing skin. Every time you gentle use cleanser, pat on serum, slather on moisturizer, and wear a nourishing mask, you’re performing acts of self-love that have benefits beyond skin health.