It’s officially 2020, so it’s time for the resolutions to begin. I typically don’t like to make resolutions for the new year because they tend to feel like promises I’ll break to myself around month three or four.
But in light of it being a new year and a new decade, I thought it made sense to set some goals for the health of my skin, hair, and nails. So I’m starting off the 2020’s with these 15 resolutions in a concerted effort to do better when it comes to my beauty habits. And this time I plan to make it through the entire year.
Wash my face twice daily. Celebrities like Ciara and La La Anthony pressed how necessary it is to wash your face in the morning and night. And based on the glow of their skin I would certainly take their advice. Washing at night is intuitive, but not in the morning. So I’ve built a wake up routine to keep me on track. I’m already starting to see a difference.
Trim my hair every quarter. Hair growth guru Whitney Eaddy explained that excessive trimming is actually bad for hair growth. “For my clients, I say once a quarter, for some, every three and a half months. I have a proprietary trim that I developed because cosmetologists are taught to cut for shape, but not actually retention,” she told ESSENCE. So I’m taking my cues from her and her growing hands, and only trimming four times a year, and keeping that appointment.
Learn to apply false lashes. I’m very transparent about the fact that I am awful at putting on falsies. I can apply magnetics but not lashes that require glue. That limits the different styles I can wear. Right now I have several pairs of false lashes from brands such as KISS, Sephora, Absolute New York, and more. I’m not willing to consistently pay for lash extensions so this is the year I master this.
Use hair masks. With my low porosity hair it’s always a process finding the right products. And even when I like a product I typically have to deep condition with a heat cap every time I wash with it. For that reason I’ve stayed away from extra steps, like masks. But masks can be great for hydrating thirsty strands, and even for deep conditioning. This year I’ll make sure I find the right masks, and start to reap their benefits for the sake of my strands.
Drink more water. Every year I say I’ll drink more water and every year I fail. It’s mainly because I don’t drink a lot of liquids overall. But your skin will always benefit from an abundance of clean water. It goes hand in hand with washing your face twice a day.
Drink less wine. This goes hand in hand with drinking more water. I love wine, but alcohol undoubtedly ages your skin. If I can replace some of my wine with water I’ll be on my way to truly making 40 look like the new 20.
Experiment with hair color. It’s been years since I’ve colored my hair in an attempt to get it back to its virgin state. But when I see celebs like Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B sporting brightly colored tresses I get a little nostalgic. I don’t necessarily need to dye my curls, but this year I want to explore more colored units, hair gels, and temporary color sprays.
Invest in eco-friendly brands (specifically ones who cut down on plastic use). We had significant conversations about climate change in 2019 and it shook me. I realized that I needed to do more in my daily life to combat environmental issues. Most plastics are non-recyclable and they dominate when it comes to our beauty product containers. It’ll take more work on my part to find the brands and products that use alternatives, but well worth it.
Do more natural DIY skincare. One of my face washes contained something called sodium lauroamphoacetate. When I looked it up I still didn’t understand what it was made of and why I needed it in my facial cleanser. That was one of 10 chemicals that I couldn’t pronounce in this one product. It made me yearn for the days of avocado and banana masks to keep my breakouts at bay. So in 2020 there will be more of that, and less PEG 120 methyl glucose dioleate.
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Stress leads to breakouts, and breakouts stress you out. This year I’m committing to spending less time worrying about the little daily stressors. This is a lofty goal for someone who lives in a city of more than 8 million people. More people, more problems. But I’m also not going to obsess about the occasional pimple on the cheek, gray hair sprouting at the hairline, or quickly disintegrating manicure.
Treat my edges like a newborn baby. I’m going to feed them only the best stuff. I’m going to care for them like they’re delicate. I will massage them gently, and make sure I’m doing the most to care for them daily. This year my edges will grow for me!
Be consistent with supplements. I’ve seen firsthand the benefits of supplements when I use them as directed, and consistently. It can feel like an extra thing to do in the morning but once you work it into your schedule it becomes second nature. I want enviable skin, hair, and nails for the next decade.
Ask more questions. I’m a journalist so I’m always asking lots of questions, all the time. But when I’m talking to brands about their ingredients claims I could stand to ask their reps more questions, not just my dermatologist. It’s never enough to just know what’s in your products, but it’s imperative to know exactly what they do, and if they’re worth what you’re paying.
Eat less carbs. I love my pizza, pasta, breads, and chips, but all that stuff turns to sugar and sugar gives me pimples and rough skin. While health and beauty go hand in hand in many ways this is completely for skincare purposes. What you eat can show up on your face. A sugary face might sound like a sweet dream, but it’s really an exfoliating nightmare.
Use less products overall. It’s so important to find what works for you and stick to those products. While I’m never going to stop trying products (I’m a beauty editor and a product lover), I’ll be better about not switching my main items so often. This will keep the clogged pores away for face and hair.