I’d like to think of myself as a self-care advocate. I love nothing more than to practice self-love and to promote it to those around me.
Now, although “self-care” goes a lot deeper than the surface-level face masks and manicures, these types of DIY spa days are not to be overlooked! Sometimes, giving your physical body that little bit of extra love can be just the thing you need in order to get yourself in a better mindset for the day.
That is why I decided to compile a list of my all-time favorite, summer self-care staples that I’ve incorporated into my day to day routine.
Better yet, for all of you college students struggling financially, don’t stop reading! Self-care does not have to be expensive. In fact, most of these products can be found at your local Walmart or drug store.
So, let’s get to it!
I wrote about my love for my jade roller on one of my latest Instagram posts– and boy, I am sticking to that. Originally purchasing one in hopes of toning down the redness in my cheeks, I was pleasantly surprised to find out these bad boys do so much more than just that. After a quick roll, my skin is no longer stiff and puffy in the morning, and leaving the roller in my fridge overnight helps to keep my face feeling cool and rejuvenated.
If you’re interested in getting a facial roller, do some research to see which type of stone will benefit you most!
And, don’t feel pressured into buying an expensive, fancy brand. I bought mine on Amazon for around $7 and have found no complaints after months of daily use.
Blue Light Glasses
You may be wondering why I am including blue light glasses as a self-care item, let alone one that is pretty high up on my list. Alas, let me enlighten you on how these simple, yet trendy, glasses have noticeably improved my day to day functioning.
Due to the current state of the world, everything has turned virtual: classes, most jobs, sources of entertainment, and even many of our chats with friends and family. Thus, inevitably, we are spending a major portion of our days staring at screens. For me, this had taken a detectable toll on my overall well-being. My eyes would become extremely heavy and strained by mid-afternoon, and I was having trouble falling asleep at night. However, after trying out a pair of Zenni Optical Blue Light Glasses (this isn’t even an ad, I promise) these minor nuisances vanished. Not only did I find a pair that makes me feel fashionable while wearing them, but they also have truly helped to lessen the stress on my eyes and put my sleep schedule back on track. Even if this has been an entire placebo effect, I can’t even say that I mind! I feel cute and confident in my blue light glasses, and it no longer seems as if my head is swimming in a cloud. Overall, my focus has definitely improved and I am able to wake up everyday feeling refreshed!
e.l.f Cosmetics Gentle Peeling Exfoliant
My roommate first introduced me to this gem, and after my first test run with it, I had to go buy some for myself. This exfoliant “cream” from e.l.f. is super gentle on your skin, while still COMPLETELY removing all of the stubborn bumps and rough patches you thought were there to stay. I use this close to three times a week, and paired with a little moisturizer afterwards, my skin has never (and I mean never) felt smoother.
Burt’s Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream
Whether you’re at the nail salon every week, love doing your own at-home manicures, or never even touch your nails, this product is fabulous for anyone. I’ve been trying to let my nails breathe without any polish on them lately, but I absolutely hate the way my naked nails look. However, after a few weeks of rubbing this cream on my cuticles almost every night before I go to sleep, they have now been looking healthier than ever. This cuticle cream keeps your nails looking fresh, with polish on or not!
This specific self-care item is an underestimated beauty. My friend would always carry her small tub of vaseline with her wherever we went, for whenever her lips got dry, and I never understood the appeal until I tried it for myself. Now, after years of using this Cocoa Butter Vaseline on my lips, I have yet to find something as smoothing and long-lasting. Not only are dry, cracked lips no longer a problem come winter time, but this cocoa butter also gives you a subtle, yet effective, glossy shine. (I couldn’t snap a photo of this product– I take mine literally everywhere I go, so the label has completely worn off! Just go to your nearest drug store to pick yourself up a tub.)
This one is a no-brainer. A close friend of mine gave me my makeup eraser for my birthday last year, and it still works like magic even after many, many machine washes later. Coming home after a party at 1 a.m., with a face full of makeup, is no longer something to dread dealing with. All it takes is a splash of warm water on your makeup eraser, and that caked-on foundation and waterproof mascara will come off with complete ease. These are decently cheap in the first place and last so much longer than your average pack of disposable makeup wipes that you have to keep purchasing again and again. So, most importantly, you’re saving the environment and your wallet while using this!
(Another tough item to take a flattering photo of– but you can find these almost anywhere!)
Silicone Facial Cleansing Pads
Last, but certainly not least, these beauties are simple, but effective. My aunt bought me a pack of two from Walmart for under $5, and they have lasted through daily usage for years. I use them every morning and night with my face wash, to gently scrub away all of my minor bumps. Not only do they do a fabulous job of lightly exfoliating your skin, but they’re insanely easy to wash. I’ll admit, I’ve even thrown mine in the dishwasher before (oops!) and it came out absolutely fine!
So, if you’re looking for ways to treat yourself while still on budget, try out some of these items and I promise you, your body will thank you for the simple pampering.