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If you are wondering what self-care is, you are not alone. Self-care is doing an activity or action that is focused entirely on yourself. 

My self-care may be different than yours or something that is out of your comfort zone. That is perfectly okay. You can use any of my methods as a template to design your rituals however would best suit you.

A few years ago, I thought self-care was pointless and a waste of time. 

I used to never understand how I could time out of my day to focus on only myself instead of doing something productive (or even counterproductive). My personality has always been to give and help others, which often led to ignoring my own issues.  

So I began going to the movies by myself, going out for lunch and window shopping, which more often than not led to actual shopping. (I’m not great with money.) Even though this was before the virus came to the states, it helped me realize that self-care turns into self-love. Call it what you will, but I was not ready to stop my self-care routines, pandemic or not.

I have been (slowly) changing my wardrobe. I have been trying to find clothes that make me feel as confident as I want to be. And my clothes are unique, to say the least. (I do own some normal clothes, but they aren’t fun.) From a teal puffy skirt to a Looney Tunes denim jacket, I have been making my clothes a part of me.

Books have always been my way of escaping the world of the mundane into one of fantasy. 

I love taking baths while reading on my Kindle. (Did I get a Kindle so that no paper books would be damaged? Yes, but that’s besides the point.) Reading Percy Jackson in the bath makes me think I am Posiedon’s daughter, maybe. 

Bath bombs are one of the best technological advancements in history. (I cannot be convinced otherwise.) The transformation of the water as the bomb explodes is so pretty. I tried a black bath bomb and it looked like a Dementor swimming in the water. There are also shower bombs which are much smaller and act like a soap.


Burst via Pexels

Sometimes the bombs themselves bubble as well as add color. But, I usually add bubbles to the bath regardless. I really want to fill my liquid bubble baths in vials to make the whole process feel more like one giant cauldron.

My baths have also been perfected by a few other things. I got a bath light so I can take a bath at night with more light than a few candles. There are a few candles that are battery operated so that I can light one candle and not mix scents. (Evergreen and Mango do not mix well.) 

Besides baths, which I know are not everyone’s cup of tea, I use hair and face masks. Lush has this oatmeal and banana face mask that I am in love with. It is great for dry skin and smells like banana bread. (So, win-win.) And for hair masks, I really like Raw Sugar’s brand because they use good ingredients and for every one of their products that you buy, they donate one bar of soap to families in need.

Especially since it has been getting colder, (as cold as California gets), I have been using scrubs and lotions more frequently; I even have a lip scrub. My hands get so dry that even taking time to use a scrub and lotion makes me happy. 

Self-care does not have to be the same amount of time, effort or money. The only thing that matters is that the end result is the same. I am going to continue to do self-care as long as my reflection smiles back. (For self-love, not a Twilight Zone situation.) So, as Halloween rolls to a close, there is a pumpkin bath bomb calling my name.

Madison Carter

UC Irvine '22

Madison is a third year student, majoring in English at UC Irvine. Her love for books and romantic comedies made her want to be a writer. She spends most of her time with friends or behind a book.
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