If you’re not a morning person, it can be hard to establish an AM routine (unless it involves scrolling through all your social media feeds from your bed to delay the inevitable). However, making the most of this prep time can have a major impact on how you look and feel throughout the day. To start off on the right foot, put down the phone and try these five rituals for radiant skin, good energy and positive vibes aplenty.
If a morning workout isn't an option for you, simple stretching is a worthy alternative. Several minutes of activity after you wake will increase blood flow throughout your body, including to the brain (which is important to encourage a productive day at work). Especially for those with desk jobs, stretching can alleviate aches and pains associated with being sedentary and improve posture over time. The combined benefits of the practice will give you that well-rested glow and set the tone for a healthy, happy day.
Drinking warm water with lemon has racked up serious buzz in recent years—celebrities from Naomi Campbell to Gwyneth Paltrow are doing it, which is good enough reason for us all. Sipping on this combo is said to help balance your body's pH levels, wake up your digestive tract and liver, and detox the body. While the claims it helps aid weight loss are dicey, at the very least it can serve as a healthy alternative to a sugary morning latte.
Taking a few minutes to set intentions in the morning and focus on your breath can make a world of difference in the pace of your day. Rather than jumping directly into a pile of e-mails, try meditating to help reduce stress and anxiety, boost creativity and improve attention and overall mental well-being. If you're not sure where to start, apps like Headspace can guide you through the practice. As Audrey Hepburn said, happy girls are the prettiest.
Body brushing exfoliates and encourages cell turnover, which results in smoother, brighter skin. It's also said to stimulate lymphatic drainage and possibly reduce the appearance of cellulite. Use a plant-bristle brush to gently buff before a hot shower, then follow with a body oil while skin is still slightly damp to seal in moisture.
Take the time to give your skin a little TLC in the morning to ensure that lit-from-within glow. Nurturing your complexion will encourage a naturally radiant look, cutting down on the need for makeup. In addition to your regular cleanse-and-moisturize routine, consider adding a brightening essence, nourishing serum or beautifying oil into the mix. Once a week, make time for a hydration-boosting sheet mask while your coffee is brewing.