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Self-care is More Than Bubble Baths and Face Masks: Here are the Best Ways to Look After Yourself.

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Bristol chapter.

Bubble baths and face masks are great, but are they the answer to taking care of yourself? The rise of wellness influencers encouraging us to buy expensive face masks, supposedly life-changing skincare products and revolutionary bath soaps in the name of self-care has helped create a narrative that self-care is more about how we look than how we feel. It has also contributed to the idea that taking care of yourself has to involve spending money.

Whilst there is no right or wrong way to ‘do’ self-care and there is nothing wrong with face masks or bubble baths, I want to highlight that self-care goes beyond these things. Taking care of yourself is not always aesthetically pleasing and does not always look the way it might be presented online.

Here are some other ways to take care of yourself (that might be more important than face masks)

The basic self-care.

By this I mean the mundane everyday tasks we have to do to keep ourselves well, like showering, getting fresh air, eating, drinking water, getting enough sleep. They might seem like simple things, but especially for people with mental health struggles or chronic illnesses, it is good to have a starting point for difficult days.

Plan your time.

Planning your time, especially as a student, is so important. Balancing studying, socialising, part-time work, hobbies and chores can feel impossible sometimes, then add in finding time to relax and recharge and your schedule is instantly full. This is why it can help to take time each week to plan out what is going on and when, look at how much spare time you have, and then plan in time for yourself.

Help your future self.

Self-care is often about doing small things which make things easier for your future self. For example, instead of procrastinating starting your essay and causing yourself to stress the week before the deadline because you haven’t looked at it once, start planning the essay in advance to avoid this happening. Helping your future self could also involve meal prepping so you don’t have to frantically rush around in the morning, or leaving out makeup remover next to your bed so you can easily get ready for bed after a night out (we’ve all been there!).

Build healthy habits.

Healthy habits are the key to self-care. They are the little things you do every day that help you feel good. Whether it’s going on a daily walk, journaling, reading in the evening, meditating, drinking water, habits are powerful and are the small steps we can take every day to positively change our lives. If you’re struggling to stick to new habits, try using a habit tracker to log your achievements. You could even build in a reward for once you have stuck to a habit for a certain number of days.

set boundaries.

There can sometimes be a lot of social pressure to go out all the time and be constantly busy, but it’s ok to opt out of a night out if you need to and take time for yourself. Be realistic with your time and energy levels- you can’t be everything to everyone and you can’t do it all.


Never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep and a cozy evening at home. Instead of overloading yourself with work and keeping constantly busy, take some much needed time to slow down and recharge. It is more productive to rest and come back to an essay or project when you are reenergised than stay up all night working and deprive yourself of sleep.

Do things you enjoy.

One of the kindest things you can do for yourself is spending time doing something you love. It might be creating art, reading, listening to music, going for coffee, spending time with friends, going for a run, going to the gym, baking, cooking, writing, dancing, but whatever it is, make time for it.

Hopefully some of these self-care ideas resonate with you and highlight that taking care of yourself does not need to be expensive, or ‘aesthetic’, or involve a face mask!

Ruby Warner

Bristol '25

I'm Ruby, I'm a second year Sociology student and editor for the lifestyle section.