We were recently joined by my friend, Erika, creative director of NOMAD and yogi, on our Instagram show “Live @ 5”. In one of our most informative shows yet, The self-proclaimed “beauty junkie and wellness warrior” and I chatted about all of the easy everyday things we can do to help keep our skin looking beautiful and our bodies feeling good. Unfortunately, we lost the interview due to a glitch in the app. So, Erika has graciously taken the time to write out everything she taught us so that we can preserve it (and our skin) here on our blog for you to read and reference.
Below is a recap of our fabulous conversation, we can’t wait to have her back on to chat with us all again! Thank you, Erika!
Morning Adaptogen 2. Kishu Charcoal 3. Gua Sha 4. Simply Inulin 5. Cocokind My Matcha 6. Facial Cupping Set 7. Luxury Lip Balm 8. Mainstay Blend 9. Jute Body Brush 10. Skin Tonic 11. Lip Serum 12. Liquid Silica 13. Tongue Scrapper 14. Bliss Booster
First of all, I must say thank you to Lauren and Michelle for inviting me to join them live on Instagram for their new series “Live @ 5“. I mean, how fun has it been to stay connected despite the quarantine? I think it has been the perfect daily escape during these strange times.
I want to express that, during these challenging times, I think it is more important than ever to take care of ourselves.
So, while beauty and wellness may seem petty while we are living in crisis-mode, I think it is crucial to have a self-care routine.
How can we show up to nurture our family if we are not feeling our best? It’s all about balance. Don’t fret, I am not preaching some holier than thou routine, in fact, I was just sipping on rosé while eating Flaming Hot Cheetos.
So, listen to your body, be intuitive and do what feels right.
These are only the things that have worked for me. I am not a doctor or a medical professional, just a girl obsessed with all things beauty and wellness.
My mantra is, “I will try just about anything legal–that is reasonably priced and natural–before I will go under the knife or use injectables.” What can I say? I am super competitive by nature so I always said I wanted to turn 50 not having had any botox or filler.
So, here we are, I am officially old AF and just massaging the shit out of my face hoping to reverse the signs of aging.
I don’t know about you, but I am kind of a stalker and love to see people’s morning routines. So, why don’t we start there?
I wake up every morning and religiously, without fail, go through these few steps:
Last, but not least I don’t ingest anything until I tongue scrape –a Chinese medicine ritual that I started a few years back which is now top five on my list of wellness tips! It improves oral health and removes the bacteria and germs that have collected on your tongue after a good night’s sleep. (Think about it, do you really want to swallow all that gunk first thing in the morning?)
And, speaking of sleep, that’s one of my other beauty secrets.
There is a reason why it’s been referred to as “beauty sleep” for centuries–your cortisol levels are at their lowest while getting shut-eye and it gives your body a chance to repair itself. More on that later!
What I Drink In The A.M.
Let’s get back to my morning routine. After I prep my skin, I hydrate.
I have been drinking room temperature water first thing in the morning for almost eight years.
I truly believe it is one of my most valuable skin tonics.
Not only is it great for your complexion, but it does wonders for your digestion and overall well-being.
I start with 24 oz. of filtered water. Oh, how I love my charcoal filters! I then add Vitamin D, Pink Himalayan Sea Salt in the form of Sole, Silica, as per Dr. Gundry’s recommendation because it helps bind your collagen naturally and, finally, Grown Tonic for Skin, which is a super rejuvenating ultrasonic emulsion of mushrooms and adaptogens.
My second 24 ounces is simple, a splash of Braggs apple cider vinegar, juice of a whole lemon and a dash of cayenne.
So, if that all seems overwhelming just start with the detox water. I did that for about 4 years and felt great. I just love to experiment and discover new brands. Part of my role at Nomad-Chicago is curating the best of the best, so I upgrade my routine as I find things I love.
My Face & Skin Regimen
So, while I am making breakfast & packing school lunches, I am busy chugging my water and massaging my face.
I mean multitasking is a true mom skill!
I believe that it is important to drain your lymphatic system first thing in the morning. You can do this in a few different ways:
I am a collector of facial massage tools, and can confirm that a gua sha tool is a great starter! One of the reasons I slather oil on my face in the a.m. is so that I can properly work my facial muscles. You don’t want to pull your skin, so the oil creates a natural slip AND it’s super hydrating.
Lately, I have been obsessed with facial cupping too.
After my acupuncturist did it on me at the end of my facial rejuvenation sesh, I knew I had to buy a kit for home. It feels AHHHmazing and the benefits are endless. If you need a lesson, check out my Instagram story highlights labeled, “Top Tips Wellness”. I may do an IGTV facial massage lesson too if I build up enough courage.
(Sorry, I digress. Let’s dig a little deeper into lymphatic drainage.)
Besides massage, the other two key components to detox your lymph nodes are dry brushing and cold showers. I will admit, it was hard for me to add yet another step to my morning but, once I started, I couldn’t stop.
I only dry brush for about two minutes before I shower, but every little bit helps. Remember to go toward your heart and that it’s okay to see that bit of erythema; that’s part of the whole process. I have found that a consistent dry brushing routine has improved my skin’s overall texture and reduced the appearance of cellulite.
Cold Water Immersion
Now, let’s chat about cold water immersion.
Honestly, if I could build an ice plunge pool in my house, I’d do it. Think about the benefits of icing sore muscles; the anti-inflammatory properties are key. So, why not dip your whole face in a bowl of ice water to depuff? I find it easier to do three, ten-count yoga breaths under my freezing cold rain shower every morning.
It is a complete game-changer.
You can feel the blood pumping even minutes later. And, if you don’t believe me, read Wim Hof’s book, “Becoming the Iceman”, or go listen to the Goop podcast with him as a guest. You will be a believer!
All in the name of looking younger… And yes, I may seem vain, but recognition is the first step to recovery, amirite?
Extra Beauty & Wellness Tips!
Were these tips helpful? I have a few more up my sleeve.
Yes, you heard me correctly. I have been living by the intermittent fasting technique for most of my adult life without even knowing it and now it is all the rage for people seeking a healthier lifestyle.
I just don’t eat breakfast early because I like to work out and/or teach Pilates on an empty stomach.
So, normally, I eat between 11am and 7pm.
I really do prefer an early dinner (maybe I really am a geriatric??), but I’m not obsessive about it. I don’t deprive myself and I listen to my body.
On special occasions or the weekends, I do what feels right.
But, to be more scientific, giving your body a rest puts it into autophagy mode, which is the body’s way of cleaning out damaged cells in order to regenerate newer healthier cells. Again, I just fell into this routine naturally, but have stuck with it because I do believe it has its advantages and helps reduce the signs of aging on our whole body, not just the skin.
Interested in what I do for a midday pick me up or my evening routine? That may need to be a whole other post! Did you learn anything new? I hope you found this intriguing. Like my mother tells me, I know just enough to be dangerous. And, she likes to claim its good genes…(insert giggle). But really, these are just MY beauty hacks, so do your research and find what works for you and your lifestyle.
Feel free to find me on my personal Instagram @urbanchiqueness or on the store feed @nomadchicago if you have questions or comments.
I could chat about beauty and wellness endlessly. Cheers to staying well and showing up for yourself.
Self-care isn’t selfish, it’s a necessity!
Until next time.
Erika is a retail executive by day and a wife, mom, sister, and daughter by night. A self-proclaimed beauty junkie, a lover of fashion, a Pilates instructor, and a devoted yogi. If she could be anywhere, it would be on a sugar sand beach sipping chilled Rosé in her bikini, rockin’ her giant straw hat, and sunnies. She calls it Vit D therapy!