Makeup artist Chanelle Aldridge dishes her professional opinion on the best things you can be doing for your skin right now.


‘Self Portrait in Tub with Chinese Food’; 2009; by Lee Price

Be more like me. Well actually, be more like the ‘pretend’ me. The ‘real’ me has spent the past week of self-isolation chewing fingernails (not always my own), growing out my lady garden and using an old flannel and a splash of lukewarm water as my one-step skincare routine. But I’ll tell you what, I’m really good at thinking about how I would and should be doing things. This is what I’d do and you should do too:

Get some sleep

Whenever you can. You like to watch movies till the early hours? Sleep in. You find yourself getting really sleepy in the afternoons? Take a nap. Sleep is the cheapest treatment on the market so let your body have a taste of what a decent amount of it feels like. At the moment, I like to aim for about eight hours at night and a brazen hour somewhere during the day because there are no prizes for being double busy during lockdown.

Do something about that ‘one thing’

Your parched and ashy knees? Your macerated cuticles? That chaotic I-just-let-my-hair-air-dry hair style? Or, in my case, all of the above? Take care of it while you’re stuck at home so it doesn’t have to be a thing anymore.

Stop the 25-step routine every night

Remember your pre-lockdown life? Where self-educated gurus and the marketing departments of skincare companies had you convinced you needed to layer and layer and layer extravagant chemical compounds on your face to it looking young and fresh? When, honestly, it really only boils down to a few steps.

First of all, wash. Your. Face. With whatever cleanser you like as long as it cleans your skin and there is no dirt left. Easy. Then do something good for your skin. Pick a thing you want to work on and apply an appropriate treatment. I use a 10 per cent lactic and salicylic acid toner that does a lot of things apparently but, for me, it cleans out my pores, makes my skin look smooth and seems to lighten pigmentation. You do you.

Then you want to hydrate your skin to make it through the next five episodes of Tiger King you binge before actually going to bed. Use something lush that restores the balance to your face. I like something with hyaluronic acid in it, the heckin’ good humectant that pulls moisture particles out of the air and into your skin. Kiehl’s do some very nice ones if you want baby-ass skin.

Then, get out of bed and dream about your post-iso botox appointment that will actually make the biggest difference to your skin.

Try something new

Get that eyeshadow palette out that has all the freaky colours in it and put it on your face. Put your special-occasion lashes on and wear a middle part. Channel your inner Isamaya Ffrench and glue crafts all over your face. Literally, who cares? The dog is unlikely to care either way.

Work on your self esteem

Easy to read, hard to engineer in your own life. Change your inner dialogue to say good stuff about yourself. The way I see it, you are stuck inside for the next few weeks and, even worse, you are stuck with yourself forever, maybe even forever-and-ever-amen type lengths of time depending on what you believe in, so you may as well get friendly with yourself. Stay self deprecating and humble for sure, but pick a few things you like about yourself and remind yourself of them even now and then.

I’ll go first, I like my brown skin and my bushy eyebrows. Honestly, if you think calling yourself fat every time you look in the mirror is doing you any favours, it isn’t. Now is the time to change things.

Chanelle Aldridge

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