In a world full of the unnecessary– getting back to the basics feels revolutionary. We're a far cry away from feeling that food, clothing, and shelter are our primary needs.
The truth is, our needs do evolve. While on one hand it seems absurd to list something like a smart phone as a necessary needs to function, on the other hand there are many positives that have come from it.
I mention this example because we are constantly asked to take inventory of the things that matter and truly benefit our lives. And if we don't take that inventory, we risk a build up of the unnecessary. And yes, I am speaking of physical clutter, mental clutter, relationships that no longer serve, and any number of things that get in the way of flow.
Ironically, our bathrooms and "self care" processes can be one of the first sources of stagnation. A room in the house that should technically make us feel good can often be filled with clutter, half empty bottles, items that reinforce insecurities, dust, mildew and all of the sudden... woah... this is no place to feel good about yourself! It's actually the opposite. All of this build up can quite literally effect you on multiple levels.
So let's start here...
I always look at things holistically. The energetic component of the things we surround ourselves with is not some hippie ideal, it is the simple reality of how we function in this world. You don't have to be a remotely tuned in to know that some things make you feel good, and other things don't. If your feeling off, something as simple as a bathroom declutter can actually make you feel really good. When we clean out our drawers, closets, and cabinets, we physically open space and this can have a big impact on how we feel. I truly believe that clutter in the space breeds clutter in the mind– and then you can feel stuck. You've got to move it to open it up.
I'm of course not the only person saying this. We now have Marie Kondo in the world to remind us to only keep things around that "spark joy" in our lives, and I couldn't agree more.
So how does that relate to skincare?
Single use is a problem. Whether it be single use plastics, or products– this world does not need more things that serve a single use function. While awareness has grown in regards to waste in the environment, we still live in a very disposable culture. That mentality is pervasive. To fight back on excessive consumption is to take a stand for the environment and to stand against the cycle of excess. Yes– recycling is important, post consumer recycled plastics are better– but it still doesn't address the issue of bringing products into the market that are unnecessarily limited. The beauty industry is one of the worst offenders, designed to drain our wallets and make a mess of our minds. How many things can you possibly need to make yourself feel or look good? If it were up to the mainstream narrative, there would be an endless amount of consumption needed. This is by design. The more it builds up, the worse you feel.
When developing products, our goal is to always make sure they are multi-purpose. This isn't always good for business but it's an important part of our ethos. More uses equals less waste, less clutter, and less money down the drain. Having only a few products that you love and that work, and you will spend less time cleaning out your bathroom cupboards and more time feeling good. It isn't a perfect solution, but it is a start.
When we shift our perspective on the utility of the items we have in our lives, it makes you reconsider everything. Nothing unnecessary. None of this is about perfection. To fully break the cycle of excessive consumption can feel virtually impossible if you are living in the modern world. Start with awareness and then follow with baby steps.
Here are five of my favorite ways to clear space, and get down to basics:
1 - More breeds more. For some reason the more we have, the more we need. This goes back to the energetics of it all. Try to resist the temptation to buy something until you've donated something in its place or made the space for it. This can be anything from food or clothing, to bigger items in your home.
2 - Kitchens often have the most turnover so I think it's really important to start here. Buying in bulk at many stores has been put on hold during these times, so you might have to get creative. There are many online stores for bulk rices, beans, nuts, olive oils, etc. You can also get SO much better quality this way. As always, a farmers market or CSA box is a great way to get package free produce. And don't be afraid to take it all out, before you put it all in. A consistent cycle of organization in the kitchen is a great place to start.
3 - Don't get overwhelmed with organization. We can all have the tendency to procrastinate, and when it comes to cleaning things out– I've noticed that there is this perpetual mental buildup. Start small. If you're feeling antsy, start by organizing a top drawer in your kitchen or bathroom. Make yourself stop there. If that feels good go for the next drawer. The next thing you know, you'll be rocking a podcast and enjoying every minute of it– I swear!
4 - Try not to impulse purchase. If you really want something, wait 24 hours then see how you feel. You will easily weed things out this way!
5 - Clean your bathroom drawers out monthly. If you do this you will start to see what you do and don't use. You will be less inclined to buy more because the waste (both physical and financial) will be very obvious.
6 - And last, try to have at least one day a week where you don't purchase anything.
These are habits that will eventually become subconscious. The little things do add up to have a meaningful and positive impact, and they'll also help you feel much happier, lighter and more clear!