If you spend any time on the Internet, you’ve probably seen various posts and articles on social media about “self-care.” Pictures of people at the spa, in some complicated yoga pose, or sipping a drink with an umbrella in it on the beach often accompany these posts.

What is self-care?

According to, self-care is “any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health.” Common examples of self-care are things like exercising, eating well, or meditating. 

With all of the hubbub around this concept and Instagram posts of people soaking in a bubble bath with a flute of champagne, you might be thinking “that doesn’t seem relaxing” or “I don’t have the money or time for that!” So if you’re seeing articles and pictures of people practicing self-care in a way that seems unmanageable or stressful for you, don’t fret! The most important thing about self-care is that it feels good to you. Self-care can look different for everyone, and that’s okay.

What are some examples of self-care?

For example, the popular and ever-growing trend of baby goat, cat, or puppy yoga might be cute and fun for some, but it sounds awful to me. I love yoga, but I don’t want any little animals scurrying around me and jumping on my back while I’m trying to relax. No thanks.

Self-care can be something as simple as taking two minutes in the morning to put some gel in your hair. Or taking the time to floss to keep your gums healthy. Self-care is all about making intentional time to care for yourself in any way you can.

Practicing self-care in daily life

Self-care can be incorporated into your day-to-day life in simple ways. Whether that is making your lunch the night before so you feel less rushed in the morning before work, or turning on your favorite album and applying a face mask. It could be going for a walk, cooking your favorite meal, or grocery shopping during the least busy time of day to avoid stressing out. Self-care is a way to look out for yourself so you feel better and have a chance to recharge. 

Outside of your day-to-day life, grand gestures of self-care are great, too like taking a vacation or finally buying that fancy moisturizer you’ve been saving up for. You’re taking time to set yourself up for success and to feel good, and that’s what it’s all about.

Some of my favorite self-care

My all-time favorite thing to do for self-care is watching reality television. I love turning my brain off, cozying up on the couch, and letting the cast of Vanderpump Rules or the Real Housewives entertain me for 45 minutes. I also enjoy having a morning and nighttime routine to help me prepare for the day and then wind down once it’s done. I love walks and spending time people-watching and reading in coffee shops.

There’s no one right way to practice self-care, but there are wrong ways. If you doing things you think people are “supposed” to do as part of a self-care routine, but it actually feels unproductive or even stressful to you, cut it out! Do what feels good, restorative, and manageable for you.

So brew yourself a cup of tea, turn on The Real Housewives of New York, and relax! Or go for a run, or rock climb, or meditate, or do yoga with some goats. Do what feels right and be gentle with yourself.

Beauty trends come and go so quickly sometimes it’s hard to know which ones are worth it. Beeswax facial for example? No thank you. One beauty and self care trend that is relatively affordable, accessible, and has stuck around for the last few years is face masks. No, not Pandemic Cover Your Mouth and Nose Face Masks, but Soak in the Bathtub, Drink a Glass of Wine and Moisturize kind of face mask. 

Facial masks can be found at nearly every drug store, grocery store, or Target. They usually range from about $5 to $10, depending on the size and intent of the product. There are sheet masks which contain the product on a thin sheet made of paper or cloth, shaped like your face with little cut outs for your nose and mouth. Sheet face masks oftentimes have a lot of product on them and are very wet when you apply them. These masks often have you rub in the excess product afterwards rather than rinsing it off. Because sheet masks are so wet with product and can be rubbed right into the skin, these oftentimes contain vitamin C, rose water, or other ingredients that will brighten or moisturize your face. They are generally fairly gentle on your skin since they don’t need to be rinsed off.

There are also clay face masks. These usually come in a little pouch or a jar with a lid. These masks are spread onto the face with your fingers or a little brush. You’ll feel this type of mask tighten and harden on your face over the period of time you have it on, and it will need to be rinsed off when you’re done. Clay face masks often times contain charcoal, focus on acne prone skin and refining pores, and are usually a little more heavy duty on your face. There are some moisturizing clay masks though, so not all of them are heavy. 

Although these quick at home facial treatments are widely available and easy to do, are they really that good for our skin? The short answer is yes!

Facemasks certainly aren’t bad for your skin, and unless you have an allergic reaction to an ingredient, they won’t make your skin worse. Since face masks are left on for such a short period of time, usually no more than 10 or 15 minutes, the effects of the face mask are likely short lived. I’ve certainly used a face mask and had a little extra glow the next day, but my charcoal mask isn’t going to keep my pores clean for a week or anything like that. Masks that have product that can be rubbed into the skin likely have a more lasting effect because your skin is soaking the product up even after the mask has been removed. Harsher masks that need to be rinsed off don’t really keep working their magic long after the mask has been removed because it’s only on your face for a short period of time. 

Face masks are a quick and inexpensive way to give yourself a little TLC and spend some time on self care. They smell good, make you feel good, and help your skin glow even if it’s only for a little while. If you’re wanting to use a face mask and have very dry skin, I recommend a cream based mask. If you want to unclog your pores, a charcoal or clay mask might be nice. Vitamin C masks are great for brightening, but can also irritate super sensitive skin. Before you purchase a mask, read the fine print and see what the mask is intended to do, then consider how your skin might react to it. The ingredients in face masks are quite mild, so a severe reaction isn’t likely, but it isn’t impossible. Read before you buy!

Now stop by Target on your way home and pick up some ice cream and a few masks and relax tonight!