SLOW BEAUTY: DO YOUR SKIN A FAVOUR
After the social whirlwind of Christmas, apply the brakes and enjoy the rise (or should that be trickle) of slow beauty, says Cassie Steer*
Hardly the most charismatic of words, is it? In fact, in our fast-paced world it has taken on rather negative connotations (“I’d like to request slower service, slower broadband and a slower journey,” said no one, ever). But how about we lose the harder, faster, better mindset and go a little gentler and… slower? After all, this time of year is ripe for shifting down into a more leisurely gear. You’ve heard of slow food and slow fashion, now get ready for slow beauty.
“Slow beauty has emerged as a counter to the fast-paced nature of today’s beauty industry and products that promise results in 60 seconds,” says Sarah Jindal, senior global analyst for Mintel. “By slowing down and taking time to care for oneself, slow beauty gives consumers the chance to connect with products and with themselves.” Jindal cites at-home spa products such as facemasks as being a key part of the movement, as well as brands with an ethical ethos.
So why now? “Wellness” is infiltrating every area of our lives as we begin to link pleasure with awareness and responsible living. And what better time to embrace the philosophy than post party season? “It’s a time for rest and replenishment,” says natural-skincare guru Annee de Mamiel, “but realistically this can be difficult to achieve – which is where using your skin regime as a chance to slow down, breathe and dissipate the day’s stresses becomes a vital part of being healthy.”
Ah, the old “S” word: “Our skin wears the effects of chronic stress, as it affects the homeostasis of hormones in our bodies,” says de Mamiel, who suggests applying products in a way that engages our parasympathetic nervous system to slow things down and bring our bodies back into balance. It’s an idea which resonates deeply with star facialist Nichola Joss: “I love the idea of slow beauty and setting aside time for self-care, especially after the festive period, which is fast and furious and full of rich foods.”
According to Joss, approaching your skincare as a mindfulness ritual using breathing techniques
and massage will reap multiple benefits, from reducing inflammation and toxin build-up to
deoxygenating the cells and regenerating skin. In essence, self-care is being kind to your
epidermis. “I have always believed in celebrating your skin rather than punishing it and subjecting
it to a raft of toxins to smooth out each and every wrinkle,” says Claire Roberts, Jurlique’s beauty
expert. And being kind to your skin starts with simple hydration and focusing on the barrier,
according to Votary co-founder Arabella Preston. “Our philosophy is simple: fewer products are
better for skin health, so as not to disrupt the barrier function. Instead, we should be boosting
and strengthening it – and to me the best way to do this is with plants,” she explains.
Our slow-beauty mantra? Power down, sober up aaand breathe.
WIND DOWN WITH THESE GENTLE SKIN SAVIOURS