Vanity is so often associated with other negative traits. Indeed, many people tend to pull back a bit on their daily beauty regimens in order to avoid appearing too self-absorbed. Yet, attention to your appearance can have significant benefits on your wellbeing.
In many ways, taking time each day to take a look at yourself in the mirror is a form of self-care, which has a scientific imperative for being a key part of your life. Indeed, when approached carefully and considerately, it gives you insights into various areas of your general wellbeing. The important part to note here is — as with so many other areas of your life — vanity has the most positive impact when undertaken with mindfulness.
When you take time to regularly attend to your appearance, you are, in a way, shaping yourself into how you like to be seen at least by yourself, if not by the world around you as well. As such, the efforts you make to maintain your self-image can have a direct impact on your self-esteem.
There are so many factors throughout childhood, the expectations of society, and the influence of the media that negatively affect your body image, which in turn, can lead to self-criticism, body dysmorphia, and even a disrupted mental and physical health. Allowing yourself time to undertake routines that help you feel better about your appearance can therefore be a vital tool to combat this, and help restore confidence and happiness.
However, this aspect of vanity tends to be best applied when you approach it mindfully. You have to understand its place as a constituent part of a more holistic self-esteem; relying on your appearance alone for self-esteem isn’t sustainable.
It can be useful to take the approach of understanding why the makeup you use or the clothes you wear make you feel good. It’s also essential to maintain an awareness of the accuracy (or inaccuracy) of the perceived negative aspects of your appearance, or whether this view is a result of social influence.
As with anything else, if you let vanity go too far it can certainly be detrimental. However, when you take the mindful approach, attention to detail can be utilized to make certain you are remaining healthy.
A regular beauty routine can be a powerful tool for recognizing changes to your body. Think about it this way — your skin alone can tell you all kinds of things about your physical and mental health. Breakouts around your jawline or chin can hint toward an imbalance in your hormones. Dark circles under your eyes might signal more than a lack of sleep, but also nutrient deficiency or insufficient hydration.
Having a daily ritual that involves a mirror where you can pay close attention to each element of at least your face, means that you have a better chance of spotting issues that might not have been presented before.
This is not just important for your ability to make small hydration or nutritional changes, but also to see potentially more serious issues early. Mitigating cancers through early detection and intervention is another benefit of this scrutiny. Catching abnormalities like new moles to areas of darkened, yellow, or red skin in their early stages can be essential in saving lives.
It’s important not to panic when these changes occur; rather remember that your commitment to paying attention to your body and its needs gives you the power to act. As you spend time applying makeup in the morning and removing it in the evening, take a mindful approach. Look carefully as you go about your routine, and take a mental note of changes. Your mindful vanity is a powerful tool in maintaining your long-term health.
Overall Comfort and Happiness
Mindful vanity can also help you understand what is or is not working for your lifestyle at the moment. You’re a human being, and the aspects of the world that bring you joy, satisfaction, or lack thereof may develop on your skin occasionally. As such, taking time to thoughtfully approach your physical appearance can give you the license to explore what can contribute to your happiness and comfort at each stage of your life.
Let’s face it, standing in front of the mirror can at times be a disheartening experience. However, if you find that you’re becoming frequently uncomfortable with what you see or feel, it’s important to evaluate why that is. Some of these issues might be practical in nature. For instance, a lot of people continue to wear clothes even if they no longer quite fit.
With shirts and trousers, this can simply lead to your general appearance not looking quite right. Though there can be more serious issues if you’re one of the 80% of women that wears an incorrectly sized bra. Continuing to wear the wrong size can cause immediate pain and discomfort, but also lead to skin abrasions and even premature sagging over time. As such, being aware of how all of your clothes continue to fit as your body changes can be essential in feeling comfortable and liking what you see in the mirror.
However, this also comes down to finding your personal style. There will come points in your life when your general outlook on the world and what’s important to you is no longer reflected by the way you look. This can mean something as simple as eschewing the stuffy formal wear for more casual styles.
If you find that your activities have moved toward the more hands-on and practical, matching this with your wardrobe can empower you to inhabit that fulfilling aspect of your life more. Mindful vanity isn’t just about beauty routines, it’s also about maintaining an awareness of whether the way you look is indicative of how you want to experience your life, and feeling able to change it.
Taking time to regularly pay close attention to your appearance can have enormous physical and mental health benefits. A mindful approach allows you to keep a close eye on potential health changes and gain an understanding of your self-esteem. As your body develops throughout the trials and tribulations of life, your appearance can give you insights into how you can be more comfortable and happy.
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