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How To Use Your Extra At-Home Time To Up Your Beauty & Skin Care Game

Jamie Schneider
mbg Beauty & Wellness Editor By Jamie Schneider
mbg Beauty & Wellness Editor
Jamie Schneider is the Beauty & Wellness Editor at mindbodygreen, covering beauty and wellness. She has a B.A. in Organizational Studies and English from the University of Michigan, and her work has appeared in Coveteur, The Chill Times, and Wyld Skincare.
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As social distancing and working from home becomes our new normal, we at mbg are taking time to discuss how we can make the most of this experience. Whether it's reconnecting with old friends or having the time to finally jump-start that home project you've been putting off, there are some benefits of spending so much time at home. 

And on the beauty front, an at-home quarantine seems like the perfect excuse to switch up your routine and reset your skin. According to beauty experts, your skin can benefit from some social distancing. Here's how:

Test out new formulas, and see what works for your skin.

Itching to try a new skin care product but nervous about adverse reactions? Consider this time at home a low-stakes trial run. You'll be able to weather the skin-purging storm without having to cover up blemishes for impromptu social gatherings. 

Take a retinol serum, for instance: "Some people may be wary about purging or sun sensitivity when it comes to retinol. So for more sensitive skin types, this could be a great time to give retinol a go," says makeup artist Joshua Pierce, the education manager at clean beauty retailer Credo

If you tend to play your skin routine a bit safe, take this time at home to test new formulas you’d otherwise steer clear of—be it a retinol or glycolic or salicylic acid.

Although you don't want to overload the newness. According to board-certified dermatologist Ellen Marmur, M.D., if you're going to test out new products, it's best to incorporate them one at a time. "You should ease them into your routine to make sure you don't have a reaction," she tells mbg. "Incorporating them one at a time can also help you see if the product claims are working well for your skin." If you have an arsenal of products to try, you might want to test two or three of them, spaced out over a few days. 

That said, a skin reset is totally doable. Working from home is a great opportunity to experiment with skin care (especially formulas that have a known adjustment phase), but don't pile on the new products—a less-is-more mentality can help you see whether that serum you snagged yields glowing results or a harsh reaction. 

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Don't forget about body care.

A skin reset could also be a great opportunity to hop on the natural deodorant bandwagon. After all, "The face only makes up a small percentage of your skin," says Pierce, so focusing on body care is also worth your while. And if there's one body-care product that may require an isolation period, it's that natural deo.

We know going aluminum-free is ideal, but many of us can't seem to get over the 28-day detoxification period, scurrying back to our controversial, yet trusty drugstore stick. With social distancing, you won't expose the world to how you might smell—so feel free to apply (and reapply, and reapply) your natural deo and enjoy the waiting game. 

Get adventurous with bold shades.

This time of social distancing is also an opportunity to play with makeup. While some people might revel in the freedom of a bare face (there may never be a better time to go makeup-free), sometimes going about your normal morning routine can help you feel motivated for the day. That said, applying makeup can be therapeutic—be it a full face or just a few swipes of mascara. 

Testing new shades and formulas can also help keep your creative juices flowing. "It's fine to test more than one makeup product at once," Marmur says. "And testing out new colors and palettes at home can also keep your spirits up." Consider it your at-home art project, if you will. 

The only thing to be mindful of, according to Pierce, is how many times you're removing product to start with a fresh face. "Your face can become 'raw' from repetitive removal," he says. "So it's best to incorporate a gentle but super-effective oil-based makeup remover."  

With a gentle makeup remover on hand, feel free to play with all the bold shades your shadow palette has to offer. Test out that neon liner; work that red lip. No one will see—unless, of course, you're on a video conference call.

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