A Very Venus Guide to Holiday Self Care

Venus is the goddess of love, beauty, prosperity, and victory—and each of these is a property that comes from taking care of oneself. Self care is one of the very most essential and beautiful things in life, and we stand firmly by this every single day. This is perhaps even more important to keep in mind and practice during times such as the holiday season, when our usual routines may be a bit thrown off due to celebrations, visiting family and friends, time off from work, and so forth. The holidays are a time for a celebration, and one cannot celebrate life fully unless he or she looks and feels her very best.

Without further ado, here are our tips for taking impeccable care of yourself during the holiday season.

Time is on Your Side

Even though you may have friends and family visiting for the holidays and may have more social obligations than you usually do (even if they’re virtual), make sure that you’re taking ample time to be alone with yourself. It’s essential to do so in order to rest, recharge, check in with yourself, and simply be. We recommend that you take at least a few hours of every single day to spend alone. It’ll help to keep you centered and, as a result, you’ll be a better version of yourself when you’re hanging out with loved ones.

Gift Yourself

It’s the holiday season, and it’s the time for providing those who you love with beautiful gifts. When you’re buying and making gestures of adoration for everyone on your list, don’t forget the most important person in your life—you! A few recommendations? Our gracious Florentia is a stunning home decor piece that will elevate your home and can serve as a reminder of your eternal love for yourself. The vase is placed in a golden crown with a secret rose quartz crystal, which represents love, and the long-lasting rose will fill your home with its gorgeous scent and color. We’re head over heels for our newest mini arrangement, and the newest addition to our ancient Greek architecture-inspired Maison Collection—the Le Aura Mini. This fountain-inspired arrangement is ideal for placing on your bedside table, desk, or coffee table. It’s available in pink, purple, and red—all of which represent love and warmth. It’ll make your space more sophisticated and you’ll smile every time that you look at it. Our Nue Tuberose candle is another stunning holiday gift that’ll brighten your life. Allow for the stunning scent of the rare tuberose flower to transport you to a moonlit garden of the night-blooming flower any time that you need to take a moment for mindfulness and gratitude. All of our gifts are long lasting and will elevate your life for an entire year or longer.

Other gift ideas? A warming new cashmere scarf or duster cardigan, a piece of gold jewelry with your name or initials engraved on it (why not have a friendship bracelet with yourself?) a night or weekend in a luxury hotel nearby for a solo staycation (think a spa day, sleeping in a loud-like bed, and taking yourself on a date for dinner at the bar in a luxurious hotel restaurant), a selection of delicious new sea salts and imported spices to use in your cooking, a new espresso machine and frother to make incredible morning drinks, or that handbag that you’ve had your eye on.

Self love is so important, we even have an entire section devoted to Self Gifts in our Holiday Gift Guide!

 

Set Boundaries

This one may be a bit difficult for some, but it’s essential that you create strict boundaries in order to protect your routines, sanity, and sense of calm. It’s more than ok—in fact it’s important to say “no” to anything and everything that you don’t feel like doing. It’s absolutely fine to decline social invitations in order to take time to care for yourself. If you follow a specific way of eating, it’s your right to decline holiday foods that don’t appeal to you. If you prefer to go to sleep and wake up early, it’s your right to say no to late night drinks with old friends. It’s ok to politely change the subject if a conversation is making you uncomfortable. Stand up for and protect yourself, always, in all ways. You’ll find that people respect you even more for setting boundaries, and most importantly, you’ll learn respect and trust yourself even more.

Be Mindful

This is a wonderful thing to practice every single day, and now is the ideal time to start. Be mindful and present in the moment, as often as you can be. When you’re walking, do so mindfully. Play close attention to your breath, and breathe deeply every single day. When you’re speaking with loved ones, try to really be in the moment so that you can deepen your communications. When you’re eating, take a few deep breaths, bless the food and give thanks, and eat slowly and mindfully, noticing each flavor, color, and texture. When you’re in the sun, allow for the warmth and light to really sink into your being. When you’re meditating and taking breaks, allow yourself to really experience the sensations of being calm and filling your lungs with oxygen. Mindfulness will make every experience that you have more nourishing and beautiful.

Rest, Gorgeous

During the winter, bears go into hibernation. Flowers and trees take time to rest, and then bloom again in the spring. As humans, we don’t literally need to hibernate—but we do need to rest. This is perhaps especially true during the colder months. Take ample time to relax and recharge every single day, and place an emphasis on making sure that you’re getting a lot of restful sleep every evening. Sleeping well is absolutely essential. A few tips for doing so? Limit screen time before bed, sleep in a cold room, try to stop drinking caffeine after noon, get in a bit of gentle movement every single day, and wind down for the evening by meditating and doing some deep breathing. Herbal supplements such as Valerian, magnesium, CBD, Passion Flower, and lavender can also be immensely helpful.

Nourish Yourself

It’s the holidays, but this does not mean that you need to derail your usual clean way of eating. Enjoy whatever you want in moderation—chocolate, cocktails, etc, but make sure that most of your meals are still clean, healthy, and nourishing so that you stay energetic, strong, and well during the holidays.

Our tips? Hydrate, focus on eating tons of fruits and vegetables (try to include vegetables with most of your meals), include a serving of high quality protein at every meal, and don’t go overboard with the cocktails. Limit or eliminate sugar and heavily processed foods that are full of ingredients that aren’t whole foods as much as you possibly can. Make sure that you’re eating frequent meals (three per day and a substantial snack is recommended for steady blood sugar and energy). Balance is everything, and we can guarantee you that you’ll enjoy the holidays more if you stick to your usual methods of fueling yourself. Bonus? There are tons of gorgeous, seasonal ingredients that you’ll love to experiment with and enjoy. A few of our favorite winter treasures to try? Brussel sprouts, leeks, cabbage, pomegranates, cauliflower, winter squash, mushrooms, and garlic are all in season and totally gorgeous. Try sauteeing them with rosemary and other herbs and serving with a salad and protein for a delicious, warming, and nourishing winter meal. Spices like cinnamon, ginger, and chile peppers are all incredible, and will help to keep you warm and boost your metabolism and immune system.

Winter is an amazing time for cooking, as we’re inside and home most of the time. And remember, simple preparation is always amazing when you’re using high quality ingredients. We love roasting vegetables with sea salt and herbs and making simple proteins, stir fries, soups, and salads. Nourish yourself beautifully and thoughtfully and you will have a more beautiful holiday season and life.

Connect, Even if From Afar

As human beings, we’re social creatures—and even though things are a bit different this year, our need for social connection is as essential as ever. Schedule dates with your loved ones for meals, tea, walks, and so forth (all from a distance, of course), and plan online or phone dates with your dear ones who are far away from you. If you have holiday traditions with friends and relatives who won’t physically near you this week, schedule online gatherings with each other. You can still have holiday happy hours and meals with those who you adore—they just may be slightly different this year.

Practice Gratitude

We have a boundless amount to be grateful for, and this is an especially wonderful time to focus on gratitude. Whether you keep a running list on your phone, name a few things and people that you’re grateful for before your evening meal, write down one thing that you’re grateful for every day and place it in a gratitude box, or review the roses of your day every evening before tucking into bed, remain grateful. The more that you acknowledge that which love in your life, the more the universe will respond to your positivity. You will appreciate your numerous blessings even more if you take time to honor them.

Glow Time

In the colder months, you may want to amplify your skincare routine with more hydrating products that will hydrate your skin, protect it from the elements, and keep your glowing all season long. Consider adding a facial serum, face oils, and a thicker moisturizer to your usual routine and eliminating all harsh, drying products that you may use during the warmer months.

When you’re shopping for skincare products, look for clean lines and products that contain as close to zero synthetic ingredients and chemicals as possible. Look for floral, botanical, and herbal ingredients that are derived from nature.

As for the actual cold weather skincare routine? First, wash your face with a super gentle cleanser and warm (not hot) water. Next, we recommend spraying your face with a gentle, hydrating mist—aloe and rose water are excellent for hydrating your skin and providing it with beautifying nutrients. Next, apply a facial serum and then apply moisturizer and, if desired, an eye cream. Finish the routine with a few drops of a great, nourishing facial oil and gently rub it into your skin with a cotton round. Do this in the morning and in the evening and say hello to glowing, moisturized skin—even when it’s freezing out. Remember, also, that outer beauty springs from inner beauty. Foods such as dairy, gluten, and sugar aren’t going to do your skin any favors. Stay properly hydrated and consume a diet rich in fiber, antioxidants, and minerals (we’re looking at you, vegetables) and omega-3’s (found in Spirulina, oily fish, etc), and your skin will glow.

As for makeup? We love the look of a natural, barely made up face. Because you’re probably not getting very much sun during the colder months, start with a tinted moisturizer. Apply a dusting of bronzer to your upper cheeks, with a bit on your nose, forehead, and chin—the places that the sun naturally colors your skin. Next, apply a subtle brown smokey eye using a brown eye liner, shades of gold, beige, and bronze eye shadow, and a black mascara. Apply the darkest shade of brown in the crease of your eyelids, and use gold on your eyelids upper eyes. Groom your brows and apply a bit of a lightly tinted lip balm in a soft shade of nude, peach, or pink, and you’re good to go—gorgeous as always! For special occasions, you can apply a more punchy lip color and can even play with things like facial gemstones for a sparkling holiday look.

You may also want to invest in essential oils in soothing, nourishing scents such as lavender and rose to apply to your body—these will keep your skin silky and glowing, the scents will help to calm you.

Get Outside

It may be freezing out, but spending a bit of time in nature every day—be it for a short walk or even just a few minutes to expose yourself to sunshine—will improve your mood and connect you with the natural world. When it’s cold out it can be tempting to spend all of our time inside—but we recommend that you bundle up in your coziest winter clothing and spend a bit of time experiencing nature. Even when the trees are asleep and the ground is covered in snow, the natural world is a welcoming, nurturing place. If you’re feeling especially brave, consider going for skiing, snowboarding or snowshoeing. We’re fans of wrapping ourselves in cashmere, down jackets, scarves, gloves, and hats and taking brisk walks with a warm winter drink in hand. Bonus? Spending a bit of time outside will help you to sleep better and will reduce the effects of seasonal affective disorder. Nature is a gorgeous marvel year round, and you’ll appreciate it even more if you notice the distinctive beauty that each season brings.

Meditate

If you struggle with anxiety, feel overwhelmed, or simply want to make your life as beautiful and fulfilling as possible, meditate. Meditation has been scientifically proven to lessen the effects of depression and anxiety, increase life span, improve sleep, make people more productive, increase gratitude, and increase happiness levels. Meditation is grounding and centering. It will help you to accept that which cannot be changed, allow for thoughts to pass through your mind without making you feel angry, sad, or anxious, and will help you be more in touch with yourself. It will allow you to be more connected with the beauty and good of this world. It will make you a more compassionate human being—with yourself and with those around you.

Start off slow—try doing just ten minutes of guided meditation in the morning and evening. As you keep going, you’ll find that it gets easier. Remember, meditation is not easy. The point of it is not to stop thinking, but to simply watch thoughts, without judgement, and allow for them to pass. To detach oneself from thoughts and worries and fears. To simply be and connect with your own breath.

There are tons of great guided meditation Apps that can be incredibly helpful, as silent meditation is much more challenging. There are even guided meditations that are specific to winter, and these can be beautiful ways to reflect upon and connect with the season. Take time to meditate at least once per day, and we promise the quality of your life will improve.

How are you taking care of your precious self this winter? Tell us—and show us—via shelfies, photographs of your gorgeous meals, cozy home, and beautiful self—on Instagram! We love to share your experiences and expressions of all things that Venus stands for with our community.

Here’s to a gorgeous, glowing, calm winter season.

Happy Holidays from Venus ET Fleur!