Health and wellness isn’t just about what you project on the outside - it’s about how you feel on the inside. Staying physically fit is crucial to sustain your overall health, but it’s important to not ignore your mental health as well.
Especially during critical times like what we are living through now, we need to constantly check in with ourselves, because if you don’t love and take care of yourself, you won’t be able to give to others. So take a moment every day and ask yourself:
Are you moving your body enough? Did you break a sweat today? Did you do something that makes you feel joyful and empowered? Do you feel inner-peace? Are you doing everything you can to improve your holistic health?
These are extremely important questions to consider, and no one understands why better than celebrity make-up artist and wellness expert Katrina Guevara. Kat spends her time traveling the world serving A-list clients and helping them become uplifted and confident through looking their best and by feeling their best.
Kat encourages her clients to understand these principles, and truly see how combination of mental and physical wellness is what makes us be the best versions of ourselves, and one is not more critical than the other. If you’re working out too hard and are constantly stressing your body out, you won’t feel at ease. Take care of your entire self, not just certain parts of yourself.
Kat has helped so many women embrace these concepts. Her clients range from the Saudi royal family, South African millionaire businesswoman Getty Gizaw, the Kardashian family’s inner circle, and a wide range of models, actors, reporters, reality stars, and more. She spoke exclusively to GLAMOUR SA and shared her advice on how you can take advantage of your time at home to learn about the benefits of wellness and take the significant steps to prioritize your mental health.
How important is wellness and self-care during quarantine?
No matter what situation you find yourself in, remember that taking care of your mental health is an important part of your overall health, which is why it's important to practice self-care during self-quarantines.
What are some things people can do at home to improve their mental health?
Always make time to unwind. Make time for projects that make you happy. Spend time reading, writing, knitting, decluttering, painting, meditating or doing yoga — whatever you enjoy. Exercise of any kind helps boost and support the immune system. It’s also a great tool for managing anxiety and stress and will help you pass time throughout the day.
How can people create an at-home spa? What will you need and how can you set that up?
We all need of a little self-care right now. You might not be able to escape to a real-life spa retreat any time soon but, armed with the right pampering kit, you can certainly transform a corner of your home into a makeshift spa. From setting the scene right, lighting a candle can help you slip into a more serene state of mind. Indulging in DIY facials, face masks and of course, all good at-home spa sessions should include a long hot-soak bath.
How can relaxing in a spa-like environment improve your overall well-being?
With regular relaxation it can help reduce the symptoms of many diseases including chronic pain, sleeping disorders, stress and anxiety. Not only does relaxation help keep your body healthy, it also improves mental health.
What are some products you recommend people invest in to feel calm and relaxed?
There are plenty of spa products you can purchase these days for a relaxing home spa experience. I am a huge skincare product lover. Skin care makes me feel like I’m somewhat in control of my own destiny. Plus, having beautiful skin is always in style.
Here is my 5 step skin care routine for home quarantine.
* At night before going to bed I usually have a pretty simple routine. I first apply @AnjaliMD Bodhi Brightening Cleanser serum into Sonic Cleanser brush and gently scrubs my face. This cleansing brush is easy to navigate with innovative 3-speed system that not only cleanses the skin of makeup and daily impurities, but also massage the face helping reduce the appearance of fine lines and discoloration. It can be used both in the morning and evening.
* After the cleansing process, keep your face over the steam for about 10 minutes.
* By steaming, you've primed your face for exfoliation and targeted treatments. Ingredients like retinol and vitamin C will absorb deeper into the skin for even better results. Not to mention, it also relieves sinus congestion, and promotes blood circulation. So, say goodbye to breakouts.
*The next step is to apply a hydrating toner. Toners typically balance the skin’s pH back to a healthy ~5.5 while imparting instant hydration. Follow up with this product and watch your skin get super hydrated, plumped up and brightens.
* Now that my skin is cleansed, toned and hydrated, I apply a sheet mask. Face masks pull impurities from your now-open pores. Using the steam and toner before your mask will allow the mask to penetrate deeper and the ingredients will seep in better.
* The final step is to apply a moisturizer to keep my face hydrated. Smooth on your favorite moisturizer like my favorite @anjaliMD Heavenly Moisturizing Cream. Beyond obsessed with this product. Revitalize, Rejuvenate and restore. The name itself describes what heavenly skin feels like. Check it out!
Many women are worried about acrylic and gel nails affecting their health and making their nails less strong in general. How can they fix this at home?
My client Getty Gizaw is an expert at nail health. She owns SOHO NYC Salon, with locations in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Gaborone and Botswana. Celebrities like Oprah, John Legend, Rihanna, and Bono are all clients of hers.
Here is Getty’s advice:
To save time during soft-gel polish remover, prep for the process by gently filing the top coat of your gel manicure. If you can see your own nail during the process, you’re doing it too hard. Use an acetone-based nail polish remover, and wet a cotton ball lightly before placing the piece on top of each of your nails. Wrap foil around each of your cotton-swaddled nails to keep the swab in place. After 10 to 15 minutes, remove the foil and dispose of all the nail removal waste in a Ziplock bag to avoid any unwanted acetone smells. You should give nails a little TLC post-removal. This is an important step for those who tend to use gel nail polish a lot, as their nails tend to be thinner because that gel also doesn’t allow nails to breathe.
At home acrylic removal is a very tough task, and if you don’t have acetone, it’s almost impossible. You should be filing nail length down as short as possible or cutting off extra acrylic close to the fingertip. To make the process easier, use a nail file to gently smooth the acrylic. Using pure acetone, and soak your fingertips as long as it takes, which can be around 30 minutes. It depends how old the acrylics are and how strong they’re attached. Afterward, gently use a cuticle pusher to slide them off or scrape them off. You must be nourishing the nails and hands with either a SOHO Vitamin EE cream and a cuticle oil. For a household remedy, you can also try warming up a small bowl of olive oil, and soak the nails for at least 10 minutes. Repeat this as often as you can to maintain and condition.
Some people are sitting in sweatpants all day, but others - like you - are putting on makeup and getting dressed like they normally would. Why is it important to do that?
It’s easy to start spending the entire day in your pajamas and feeling stuck and less connected. To me, it’s worth it to get up and get dressed and move around. The feeling of being well put-together brings me confidence and starting the day by getting dressed can play a big role in my mood, which leads to be more productive. Plus, it’s also an opportunity for me to create different makeup looks and have fun with style for my business content.
Can getting dressed and looking your best improve your state of mind and the way you feel about yourself?
Absolutely! Feeling good about yourself is very important. It directly ties to your mental health especially during our current pandemic.
When your mental health is improved, does this directly affect your physical health and your desire to be active?
Yes! The mind and the body are intrinsically linked. So when you improve your physical health, you’ll automatically experience greater mental and emotional well-being.
What can people do to stay fit and healthy indoors? What is your routine?
For the most part, I believe I have a good routine down to keep my mind and body in check during quarantine. I typically start my days off at the same time as I would If things were back to normal. I have a healthy breakfast to start my day off just right. Eating healthy in quarantine has become a huge thing for me. Meal-prepping fresh meals and freezing them can be a good way of incorporating unprocessed, healthy foods to your quarantine diet. Also staying physically active is a must for me. To get the most benefit, I aim for at least an hour and 15 minutes of exercise daily.
What are your celebrity clients doing during this time to stay sane and healthy both mentally and physically?
Along with the rest of the word, in order to cope with their anxiety and boredom, some are showing off their dance moves on TikTok, video beauty tutorial with me through FaceTime, while others are pampering themselves with face masks, hair treatments and more in order to look and feel their best while on lockdown.
Does working and planning for the future improve your energy level, and your overall health?
Yes. Working and planning for the future makes me feel good and gives me a sense of purpose, which helps protect and improve me mentally.
Does being productive - reading, cleaning, doing art, etc. - make you feel better too? How can this affect your overall state of mind?
Being in quarantine doesn’t need to be boring. I take all this free time as an opportunity to work on my crafts and business plan. I’m currently studying investing and finance management. Planning ahead of time and keeping my mind sharp makes me feel empowered to make things happen and appreciate what I’ve already accomplished.
Is there anything else people should know about the importance of maintaining wellness at home?
Obviously nobody needs to do exactly what I’m doing to cope with being in quarantine. Our beliefs and the way we are thinking affect how we feel and, thus, affect our internal state of mind. As long as you’re staying healthy in your own way and are maintaining a healthy and happy state of mind, then that’s more than enough. I hope that everyone stays safe and sane during these times.