Insomnia is like a curse. Trust me, I know all about lying in bed with no lights or gadgets, just asking the Universe why is it all happening to me. Well, I learned one thing: if beauty sleep isn’t an option, you must not waste time. Try to reconsider it: there are so many wondrous things that can be done when you have one-on-one time to spend with your self and there is no one to distract you. As the main insomniac, I’m going to share my secrets with you: what to do and how to turn this curse into a gift. Just keep on reading.
1. Watch inspiring films
Is there any other time to do this deed without feeling like wasting your time? Nope, there isn’t. We know good movies can help us relax and recharge at the same time. Watching documentaries or movies based on real life of strong women who overcame obstacles in their lives can be stimulating. That’s why we recently posted this list.
Ps : A scary fact. If only you knew that some people spend at least a year (if not many more) over the lifetime just watching movies and TV-shows. That is a lot of time, right?
2. Read a book
It sounds like a dream to be in bed surrounded by blankets, warm tea (or bag of dorritos) and a good book. No more excuses for why you cannot find the time for reading any longer.
Not in the mood for reading a book? Okay, here's some saucy articles we can suggest to read.
You can find out about 10 New Zealand Beauty Brands that are worthy your skin (free of nasties); check SAUCE X WASO collaboration featuring artist Gabriella Bowden's minimalistic approach to beauty routine; or read my honest review (with personal insights) about a total Bobbi Brown bestseller. Enjoy!
3. Listen to podcasts
Find some inspirational audios (TED Talks kind of stuff) and listen to it in the dark. You will either fall asleep soon or get to know something new, which counts as win/win, doesn't it? Besides, you can download an audiobook and listen to it.
4. Find a free online course
It’s the perfect timing for ‘TIL’. You’ve never heard of free online courses? Or you did but never tried? Go to Future Learn or other similar websites (we recommend Skillshare too) and take the history course or learn how to edit iPhone videos and make your own film. Later, you can outsmart everyone with what you’ve learnt.
5. Re-arrange clothes in your wardrobe
I’m telling you, colour-coordinating is the new black. You will smile every time you open your closet, not even considering the fact that it makes much easier to find what you want to wear. Also, that’s a good time to reconsider your personal style and get rid of those clothes you haven’t been taking on streets. Pack them and donate them to a charity for a good cause. That can be easily done while watching a movie from our round-up, so you feel like you’ve done a lot in just one sleepless night!
6. CLEAN YOUR BEAUTY CABINET
Well, we can all be messy sometimes when there isn't enough time to put things back where they belong on our beauty shelves. And we all know how it usually happens – when you’re getting ready with a few vinos or rushing to get to an event on time.
TIP : Arrange all the cosmetics you’ve got by categories so that the next time it is much easier to keep it organised. You’ll be surprised by how many lipsticks you’ve forgotten all about have precariously reappeared!
7. TREAT YOURSELF A SPA-AT-HOME SESSION
Speaking about beauty, this is something we should do more often regardless of what time of the day it is. Start with exfoliating your whole body with an incredible home-made scrub, because it’s so easy to make. Basically, combine used coffee grounds (or sea salt/sugar if you don’t have any ground coffee) with any oil of your choice. You can also add ingredients such as cinnamon, matcha powder, turmeric, or essential oils. I promise you will feel like a newborn when you rinse it off under the hot shower. If DIY isn't your thing, I highly recommend the Mediterranean Sea Salt Scrub. Rinse off and apply a rich body balm such as Aesop Resolute Hydrating Body Balm. Then, move on to your face. Hallelujah – a clay mask! Using something like Origins Clear Improvement Mask will dissolve impurities and tighten the skin. Follow it with a hydrating mask (for e.g. Syrene Aqua Hydrating Mask) and then make it even better by applying a sheet mask—my absolute fav is Verso Deep Hydration Mask or Ganier's Skin Active Hydra Bombs! All the routine mentioned above can be done while doing something else from this list. Multi-tasking much, huh?
8. Clean your laptop (well, on the inside)
Another thing that needs to be done even though there is never a free second of your precious time to spend on it. When not cluttered anymore, your gadget will fly instead of running like a turtle. Go through all the folders named ‘SORT IT OUT’, ‘RANDOM’, or ‘JULY/AUGUST/SEPTEMBER’ (or any other month, you name it, we know that life hack to make the desktop look pretty again by putting everything in a new folder named after a previous month). When the task is completed, back everything up using an external hard drive. Your laptop’s storage will appreciate it. On top of that, you can go through your old photos from trips, retouch some, and post on Instagram. (Hey, you were once in a Cannes too. Even if it was in 2013!)
9. Create a video clip
Well, after you’ve done such a splendid job and organised everything you’ve got on your computer, download Final Cut or jump into iMovie and make a great video clip using all the short videos you’ve got from your iPhone. Keeping good memories alive is always a good idea. Share your piece of art on YouTube and send the link to all the people starring in your movie.
10. Create a wish board And a bucket list
It’s about putting lots of pictures you want your life to be in one piece, you know? Some of you might be surprised, but hell yes, it works! You can either buy a cork board and cut pictures from your favourite magazines together, creating a real mood board, or create a massive collage using Photoshop. Just do it. It works wonders. Also, you know what sounds like a good idea? The bucket list! Why not work on it if you still haven't got one? It certainly feels good to tick those boxes later.
11. Improve your cooking skills
You can surf the web for new healthy recipes and try to make some granola for the next day. Or cookies. Or raw cheesecake. But be careful not to go all out, cook it, eat it all of it on the same sleepless night. Just a nibble. Download the app Tastemade ASAP.
Don’t take a rain check anymore! Go to the gym, as there are plenty of them working 24/7. Otherwise, do some ab workout at home with Kayla Itsines’ fitness guide (or any other guide). If you feel like doing something more slow-paced, grab a mat from your closet and strike a few yoga poses.
Meditation improves sleep! If you’re not entirely there yet, try yoga nidra. It’s kind of a guided going-to-sleep meditation (makes the same impact on your body as REM sleep, although doesn’t involve sleeping), which makes you relax on a deeper level. It’s similar to what Napoleon practised to be full of energy and focused while not getting enough of sleep. Just Google and try. It will not take more than an hour, and you will be recharged for the next day.
Words | Irina Sviatskaia
Opening Image | Photographer Arthur Elgort
Ok, now it's time for bed.
SKIN FIRST? wE HEAR YOU.
Previously on staff at Allure Russia, Irina moved from Moscow city to New Zealand. So what does Irina do when she isn’t testing beauty products and writing reviews? Eating avos and nailing the perfect VSCO filters!