How does Rebecca Booth, M.D., gynaecologist and co-founder of phytoestrogen-based anti-ageing range, VENeffect, relax on a Sunday night? With a skincare cabinet that’s full to bursting and lots of time with family and friends…
The Wind Down
Sundays are precious to me as my weeks are extremely busy starting with a bang on Monday mornings with a full day of seeing up to 35 patients. I love what I do, but my patients want more than just their annual gynaecology check-up, they are looking for guidance as to how to optimise their health, their vitality and their appearance. I am passionate about my role as a wellness guide, I tend to pour my energy into my work and I really need the weekends to reset. I start my Sunday night wind down at around 5 pm. I love to make dinner plans with friends and family, and having great conversation with my loved ones relaxes me and is often something only the weekends can bring. When I was younger Sundays made me a bit homesick if I was away, but now I find Sunday nights peaceful and sentimental — they are an important time to bring closure to the weekend and allow me to focus my energy on visualising efficiency for the working week to follow. Sunday has always been a beauty “ritual” day for me. I always spend more time exercising and then extra time in the bath or shower focusing on skin prep, especially exfoliation and hydration. My goal is to reset my skin, mood and metabolism for the week ahead. All of these factors are part of my beauty regimen, and these strategies help me launch into my busy week. I love to light candles on the weekends and keep a closet full of my favourite: Diptyque Baies. I often play soft music, such as Pandora’s Buddha Bar Radio. Candlelight, amazing fragrance, combined with the calming music help me be present and mindful, building energy for the week to come.
The magic of Sundays is the added element of time to ritualise my regimen a bit more. I always try to reset my skin and as an extra I like to add a mask treatment. We have a mask in development that is just amazing; not only does it minimize pores and inspire a beautiful glow, it can be left on overnight to spot treat blemish and/or mattify shiny areas for daytime. Sunday is a day to luxuriate in a full regimen of skin care, and having our own line makes this even more satisfying. I take the time to exfoliate with my favourite skin polisher, VENeffect Micro-Exfoliant. After prepping with our Pore Minimizing Cleanser (which I use with my Foreo Luna when I have extra time) the exfoliant gently removes dead skin cells while infusing the skin benefits of phytoestrogen. If I am after a truly effective glycolic treatment, I use Revive Glycolic Renewal Kit, a brand founded by a friend and medical colleague. With this beautifully renewed skin, a clean palette I like to call it, I follow immediately with a spritz of our newest product, the Skin Calming Mist. It calms and hydrates right after cleansing and sets the skin for the treatment to follow.
Now the treatment begins starting with our Firming Phyto-Lift Serum, with an extra pump for my neck and décolleté. Sunday evening is the perfect time to then layer on our Anti-Aging Intensive Moisturizer, sealing in the phytoestrogen molecules to allow them to do their work, inspiring my skin to glow for Monday morning. I never leave out the specialty areas, lightly applying our Anti-Aging Eye Treatment to my orbital bone area above and below the eye, and smoothing our luscious Anti-Aging Lip Treatment on and around my lips. It is a truly unusual, deeply hydrating, cream lip treatment designed to sink into the skin on and importantly around the lips to prevent and reduce vertical lines whilst leaving the lips plump and moisturised. Your lip colour will go on beautifully afterward, and no more lipstick bleed! Finally, I am completely addicted to our Firming Neck and Décolleté Creme as the final step in my regimen. I smooth a generous dollop in upward motion on the skin of my neck as well as my chest and add a final touch to the earlobes – one of those areas that tends to show ageing that we often ignore.
I love either a bath or a shower…sometimes both. On Sundays I will often spend more time exercising, often combining cardio with yoga or a more calming ritual that also helps maintain posture and flexibility, and then I spend extra time with body exfoliation too; I love a great exfoliating mitt, such as Ameliorate Exfoliating Body Mitt. After a long bath I splurge a bit by mixing a bit of our Neck & Décolleté Creme into my body lotion to address those crepe-prone areas that can form on the arms and legs. Generally I prefer the satiny feel of body creams, but if I want to massage then I prefer using oils for massage and love pure coconut oil for the soles of my feet. (I love Aromatherapy Associates Relax Massage & Body Oil) if I’m using a lotion, I add Tan-Luxe The Body Illuminating Drops to my body lotion to start the week with a glow, it gives such a subtle soft glow and is so easy to apply! I’m a year-round user of self-tanning and have become an aficionado at finding the right level of glow without some of the issues of scent and skin-feel. On a recent trip to Glasgow I discovered Tan-Luxe and was immediately drawn to the fact that it was an entrepreneurial venture and it addressed my need to have a subtle colour I can blend to my own “recipe” using my own moisturisers! I will also add Tan-Luxe The Face Illuminating Drops to my moisturiser on my face before bed. It doesn’t streak and adds just the right amount of colour to my very fair skin.
Sunday evening, I may shower to wash my hair with my beloved Christophe Robin products; I love the Delicate Volumising Shampoo with Rose Extracts and the matching conditioner, but on Sundays I leave the conditioner in for a few extra minutes before rinsing, drying, and styling. I have incredible curly, but fine hair. I style with a round brush, using a few plastic mesh rollers for added body. I finish with a cool setting on the dryer and spritz on a frizz control spray. I also love IGK. I am multitasking constantly every day, but often on Sundays I slow down a bit, trying to reset and indulge in mindfulness of the process of the wind down.
On a Sunday night I aim for 10pm, or 9pm if I have a 7am start. I feel best if I have eight hours, but I can function with seven. Less than seven hours and I am running on steam by the next afternoon. I am a fairly still sleeper, but I dream in great detail. My dreams are so vivid that I can recall details that amaze my family members and I’ve been known to talk loudly in my sleep. I have a good deal of skeletal challenges from spending years on my feet in the office and the operating room, so I spend a few minutes arranging my bedding to help my spine. I use a silk pillowcase on a curved neck pillow to keep my neck extended, and I sleep on my back with soft pillows arranged to take pressure off the base of my spine. My husband and I have a new Smart TV in the bedroom and we love the history channel. My last task before lights out is to spend a few minutes meditating each night before bed. My favourite meditation technique is to bring awareness to my breath and visualize the next day exactly as I wish it to play out. This helps me drift off to sleep, and in the morning I continue the meditation after hitting the snooze button once or twice. I take magnesium 300 mg and an omega 3 capsule before bed. If I am not at all sleepy I may take a 3 mg melatonin lozenge. I keep earplugs on my bedside table in case I need them in the night, and I love a cup of chamomile tea before bed. It is much lower in calories than wine and I find it relaxes me just as much!
I set my alarm for 5:40am on a Monday morning and I hit the snooze button once or twice as I finish my visualisation meditation. I wish I could say I wake up brightly, but I love to sleep in. By the time I have hit the snooze button twice I can get up pretty easily, but I head straight for a bit of caffeine. I get my day started with a cup of coffee with MCT oil (medium chain triglycerides) and take my supplements: vitamin D, vitamin C, folic acid and biotin. Next stop is my VENeffect skin care regimen all over again. Starting and ending each day with a full cleanse/moisturise/treat is not an indulgence, but an imperative as I face my patients each day with the “inside scoop” on maintaining hormonal vitality. I definitely practice what I preach!