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A Quarantine of Errors - A little precautionary guide to prevent mishaps in the name of self care!

As the name suggests, this blog is a compilation of sorts (of moments I'm not extremely proud of), but which have in turn made me wiser to home self-care practices and help ensure history never repeats itself - while this blog will provide you with entertainment, I'm also hoping that you learn from my mistakes!



It's a weird time for us all, since salons, nail parlours, hair dressers, lash technicians, waxing therapists and the list goes on are off limits, we've all been dabbling a little in the 'dark arts'. Yes, that's what I'm calling it because these self-care mishaps really made me believe some demonic forces were at work.


Shaving

This is a common one, it happens to the best of us. I've been waxing since I was 11 years old, and since that's not an option anymore! (I don't like body wax strips), I've turned to shaving. and honestly, it's been a nightmare! I often forget clumps of tiny hair around tough spots like my knees or ankles or the back of my hand, and the worst part is it grows back in just a few days. To top it off, i've nicked myself at least three times in different places. If you're considering shaving your body or facial hair, here are some do's & don'ts that might help save you from this distress!


Do's

1) Prep your skin - make sure your skin is clean and you've washed the areas you want to shave with soap

2) Use a proper shaving gel - I would definitely recommend this! The chances of you getting nicked are a lot higher if you use soap/shower gel/body wash etc.

3) Use the right blade for the right part - I currently use Gilette (women) for body hair and tinkle razors for facial hair because they're much more manageable and less sharper

4) Exfoliate (gently!) after - by exfoliating you want to get rid of the dead skin cells and scrub off all the loose hair.But its important to be gentle and use the most gentle body scrub/loofah you can find, your skin is already pretty sensitive at this point! and trust me using a strong salt or lemon scrub right after shaving is not a good idea and gives you the worst burning sensation. ugh.

5) Moisturise - rehabilitate your skin (be generous - it's always a good idea!)

6) If you do end up cutting yourself, wash the wound under cold running water until it stops bleeding completely, use an anti bacterial cream and then cover with gauze or a band aid. Remember to change your bandaids, every time you shower/ every day!


Don'ts

1) Don't stay in the shower too long, as this makes sensitive areas like the skin around your toes or fingers especially soft and susceptible to a cut - this happened to me just last week.

2) If you think the blade is too blunt, don't try and re-use it because you'll have to keep going over the same parts with little result & the chances of you cutting yourself this way are much higher

3) Don't use an oil as your 'shaving gel', it can make the blade extremely slippery and difficult to control, and cause aforementioned cutting accidents!

4) If it's a disposable razor, throw it out after one use! if not, make sure you clean the blade properly and let it dry off completely before you store it in a cool dry place. Otherwise you could end up with a mouldy looking fungus-y blade (ew)

5) After shaving, don't wear super tight clothing/underwear - wear breathable & light fabrics

(Tip: A good way to know if your razor is within its keep date is to check the blue line, if it has eroded then definitely throw it out!)


Exfoliation

it's great to exfoliate and take care of your skin but make sure you aren't going overboard. Over exfoliation could lead to skin damage, widened pores and in severe cases (a cut or a reaction).


Do's

1) Use a gentle exfoliator (eg: a light facial scrub, pad like body shop's facial exfoliator buff)

2) Ensure you're not allergic to any of the ingredients in the product you're using

3) If you use an exfoliating brush/gloves, make sure to soak them in disinfectant and water, after every alternate use to prevent rashes/infections.

4) Moisturise after!


Don'ts

1) Don't exfoliate more than 2-3 times a week and not on consecutive days!

2) DO NOT step out into direct sunlight for a minimum of 48 hours (even with sunscreen) after using a chemical/physical exfoliator

3) Don't be over-aggressive - you want to remove just the top layer of dead skin cells not give yourself a rash!


Masking at home

The HOLY grail of at-home self-care - homemade, sheet, clay, you name it and it exists! 20 minutes or less to glowing flawless skin! Masking is an easy and quick way to pamper yourself but there is such a thing as over-masking and the results could be shockingly dangerous! I gave myself a first degree chemical burn this last weekend and it was NOT fun. As usual, it was a regular quarantine Saturday afternoon and I was experimenting with a homemade mask. Normally I tend to use things that I would generally eat, (oats- good, lemon - good, undiluted apple cider vinegar - NOT GOOD). While i've made several permutation and combinations of this mask in the past, this time I absentmindedly put too much acid in & nothing to dilute it! Not only was the constitution messed up, but i left it on for far too long and ended up with my face on fire!





After 2 hours of panicked phone calls (*thank god for the gupta-dalmia-mandalias*), ice cold splashing (my bathroom almost drowned), massive gloops of aloe vera, my face finally came around to it's original colouring, save a tinge of red on my nose I could not get rid off. Moral of the story - ALWAYS DO A PATCH TEST! Just because it's homemade doesn't mean it's always good for you! Here are my top few tips when masking at home:


Do's

1) If you're like me and love to experiment in the kitchen, make sure to use the internet for tips on how to make a balanced face mask (don't over do it with the olive oil or acid, you might end up with a terrible reaction)

2) Always do a patch test on your arm - leave it on for 10-15 minutes and if you have NO reaction then move on to applying it on your face

3) Stick with face masks and products that you've used before. If you're keen to try something new, make sure to read reviews and do all your research before you apply!

4) Make sure your skin is always prepped & clean before you mask!


Don'ts

1) Don't mask everyday, give your skin a breather sometimes!

2) Don't use multiple masks consecutively one after the other, especially those with varying acids/chemical exfoliants

3) Do not leave your mask on for longer than a recipe/the box says!

4) If you do have an incident like mine, DO NOT apply any other sort of chemical/yoghurt/milk or ice directly - just splash your face with tons of cold water (even if its uncomfortable and it may seem like you're on the verge of pneumonia, if it's especially bad and the burning/reaction doesn't go away - contact a medical professional!)

5) Don't use anything that is expired on your face! even if it's a few days old, just chuck it in the bin! Remember it's better to be safe than sorry.


If you've had any of these self care experiences or other more traumatic ones, I sincerely apologise! I know how hard it's been, and I cannot wait for things to go back to normal and the day when I can book myself in for a full day of pampering. In the mean time, don't lose hope & stay safe!


(p.s - if you don't already follow me, I'd love if you could follow my instagram @alldressedupandnowheretogo20 & subscribe to the mailing list for more blog updates :))

xx Farah

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