It’s never been more important to maintain good skincare habits than whilst hunkering down in your home office. Here’s why…
When the only in-person interactions are with your partner, children or designated bubble, there may be temptation to skip your skincare ritual – after all, Zoom has a soft-focus setting for good reason. Whilst a nourishing skincare regime can feel fruitless at present, with no dinners, parties or coffee dates in the diary, and with almost all of us working from home, and experiencing the stresses associated with it, skincare has never been so important.
“Working from home might reduce our exposure to city pollution and other environmental aggressors, but it’s also an acutely stressful situation for many of us and this stress can cause reactions on our skin,” explains Olivanna founder Janine. “Not only are our cortisol levels elevated but people might find themselves skipping their evening double cleanse as “they haven’t applied makeup” or see themselves saving their serums and face masks for best as there’s nobody to see.”
However, many dermatologists and skincare experts will reason that skin reacts best to consistency, so it’s important to maintain your pre-lockdown habits whilst you’re working from home. Here’s why…
Skincare is an essential form of self-care
We might not be experiencing the stress of our former working lives – train delays, overcrowded tubes and the like – but there are plenty of pressures associated with working from home.
When your space operates as your office, gym and socialising zone, it can be hard to establish boundaries and draw divisions between home and work. Taking the time to unwind, be it before work or at the end of the day, can offer welcome relief, a sense of grounding and mindfulness. Skincare and sticking to a natural skincare routine in this way, can help divide the different chapters of the day and provide a clear transition between work and rest.
“Every week I try to have at least one complete 'switch-off' bath before bed, which I think is needed so much more when you are working from home and you struggle to separate your work and rest space,” says Olivanna NPD manager Kelly.
“I double cleanse my face while the bath is running, the steam from the bath helps to open up pores and allow the actives of my skincare products to be drunk up by skin. Then I apply a few drops of Bakuchiol Serum and top it with thick layer of the Night Cream – I use quite a bit more than usual, so it's almost like a thin mask.”
“I do the same with my eye cream application and finally get in the bath. Then its lights out, a beautifully scented candle burning and some spa, meditation or sound bath music. It really helps me to de-stress and gives my dry, winter skin a nourishing boost! When I get out, I just pat the excess product and leave the rest on for bed.”
It can help reduce the effects of stress of the skin
Acute levels of stress can show its signs on our skin, be it breakouts, redness or increased sensitivity. In fact, recent studies showed that acne severity increased significantly with stress levels, as it contributes to sebum production and the overactivity of sebaceous glands1, whilst elevated stress levels have also been shown to impair skin’s barrier function.
“I’m not sure why but I’ve noticed my skin has been misbehaving whilst I’ve been working from home,” says Olivanna copywriter Natalie. “I’ve experienced far more breakouts than usual, and it just doesn’t look as smooth or a soft as it did prior to lockdown. I’m pretty sure it’s down to the stress of working from home, juggling Zoom call clashes with my boyfriend and deciding who has fewer meetings that day to take our spaniel out for a walk.”
“The one thing that seems to make a difference to stress showing up on my skin is how much effort I’m putting into my skincare practice. If I fall into the trap of skipping my routine because I’m not wearing makeup during the day and let my routine slid, I notice the effects almost instantly.”
“The one thing that’s made a difference to me is just taking ten minutes morning and evening to stick to the good habits I’ve learnt over the years. I double cleanse with the Rosewater & Chamomile Cream Cleanser, which has a really gentle formula that seems to be strengthening my skin’s barrier and lessening my breakouts.
“I’ll then apply a serum depending on what my skin needs most, Bakuchiol Serum if it’s looking lined and flat or Vitamin C if I’ve got a few dark marks, and then sun protection or the Intense Repair Night Cream. If working from home has taught me anything, it’s that a simple routine you can stick to will make the biggest difference to skin,” she adds.
Your skin is still subjected to environmental stressors indoors
You likely know that the sun’s UVA and UVB rays, and pollution associated with commuting into a busy city, spell trouble for skin, but our complexions are subjected to pollution in our homes, too. From dirt to dust and gases, working from home can have an impact on our skin and it’s important not to be complacent.
Small switches such as investing in an air purifier which can remove airborne allergens associated with mould and spores, wearing SPF even when you’re inside (damaging rays can still pass-through glass windows or affect skin during your daily walk) and paying a little more attention to your skincare regime to remove all traces of indoor pollutants from skin – both morning and evening.
“I always make sure to cleanse my face with the Rosewater & Chamomile Cream Cleanser every morning and evening if I've not worn makeup during the day as it's still really important to keep your face clean and hydrated.” Says Ruby Social Media & Customer Care Assistant.
“I also apply the Night Cream and leave it to sit for a while before massaging in – not only does it provide a quick hydration hit but it helps to rejuvenate skin whilst I’m asleep to undo damage made from working at home all day.”
We’re subjected to more screen time than ever
With our colleague’s complaining that their eyesight has been affected by lockdown, the extra screen time isn’t just affecting our minds, vision and leaving us mentally fatigued but it’s also showing up on our skin.
“To counteract dull and tired skin over the last few months, I have been popping my Bakuchiol Eye Cream into the fridge every morning and applying throughout the day. it helps to keep my eye area refreshed and plumped, during those extended hours of screen time and Zoom calls.”
Our Senior Designer Riba agrees. “As a graphic designer, 90% of my day is spent staring at screens and I've found that my skin gets very dull, dry and tired at the end of the day. For someone who is lax with their skincare routine, our Olivanna Night Cream is a personal favourite and has been an absolute lifesaver.”
“It’s extremely lightweight and a dream to use. My skin immediately soaks it up – it's not at all greasy - and I wake up with the softest skin that is super hydrated. Our night cream and countless cups of coffee are the only two things that have kept me looking human through lockdown,” says Senior Designer Riba.
The Team Olivanna-approved working from home ritual
With several factors at play that can impact skin whilst we’re all logging in from our home offices, here’s the simple skincare ritual we swear by and are sticking to:
Cleanse with the Rosewater Chamomile Cream Cleanser, pat skin dry and apply the Bakuchiol Eye Cream using your ring finger. Follow up with our Hyaluronic Firming Day Moisturiser and an SPF – ours is coming soon.
After cleansing with the cream cleanser, apply our Bakuchiol Miracle Night Serum, pat the Bakuchiol Eye Cream gently around the delicate eye are a and smooth on a thick layer of our Intense Repair Night Cream.
Working from home doesn’t mean putting your skincare habits on hiatus. In fact, given the extra layer of stress, indoor pollution and self-care becoming all important, there has never been a more important time to pay attention to your products. Focus on a simple ritual that’s time-efficient, delivers results and is simple to stick to. When we return to the office, your skin will thank you.