When it comes to planning for the big day, looking and feeling beautiful is at the front of every bride's mind. However, it can also create a lot of stress to look absolutely perfect on the special day. We'll try almost anything, spending thousands of dollars on products, the newest treatments, laser, surgery, and so forth, all in the name beauty. And trust me, I am a natural-beauty junkie and love to experiement with the latest and greatest. But the most important tool I have added to my beauty ritual is meditation.
Stress is the number one beauty killer. When we're stressed out, it shows. If you put your most stressed out friend next to another friend who is care-free and happy, you notice the difference immediately. From dark circles, puffy face and eyes, dull skin, frown lines, acne, to even weight gain, stress shows up on our faces and bodies in so many difference ways. If we don't handle the stress, it doesn't matter what we use on our skin.
Science has proven many, many benefits to meditation, such as higher levels of happiness, better sleep, lower blood pressure, and improved immune systems. The reason meditation is your greatest beauty tool is because it's your ticket to destressing, every single day, as many times a day as you want. Beauty, real beauty, is when you're able to shine from the inside out. But if you're not really feeling good about yourself — physically and/or emotionally — then that light gets quite dim. Meditation help us choose better thoughts about ourselves. All day long we engage in thoughts like "I'm not perfect, I'm not pretty enough, I'm not skinny enough, I'm not good enough," all of which put even more stress on our minds and bodies. When we add meditation into our lives, we can begin to put the more negative thoughts to rest and choose positive thoughts. More positivity brings less stress, more happiness, and in turn, infintely more radiance. Here is a simple meditation you can add into your daily routine and is the perfect meditation to take with you all the way to the big day:
The goal of this meditation is to breath one breath per minute, which means inhaling for 20 seconds, holding for 20 seconds, and exhaling for 20 seconds. However, to those who are just starting their meditation practice, start with a 5:5:5 ratio for the first few days, slowly building to 10:10:10, 15:15:15, and eventually, after a few weeks of practice, 20:20:20. Don't push yourself here. If you can't do more than 5 seconds each, you're not a failure! Most of us breath so shallowly that our diaphragms are really tight and we can't take a full breath. So when we slowly practice breathing deeper, we train the diaphragm, which is the major muscle of breathing, to help us take deeper and fuller breaths, which provide numerous benefits to our physical body.
How to do it:
Sit in a comfortable position.
Inhale for 5 seconds.
Hold the breath for 5 seconds.
Exhale for 5 seconds.
Creates a sense of calm in the body
Clears anxiety, fears, and worry's
Brings fresh oxygen to the brain
Oxygenates the lungs and purifies the blood, which also in turns helps to clear your skin
Desiree Pais, the founder of skin care company Benshen, is on a mission to spread the wisdom of the mind-body connection. After realizing that everything begins with the mind, she took her own health issues, such as auto-immune, chronic fatigue, cystic acne, and hormonal imbalance, into her own hands to heal them with Kundalini Yoga, meditation, Daoist medicine, and other healing modalities. She is currently pursuing a Master's Degree at Pacific College of Oriental Medicine and continues to study Daoist medicine with Chris Chen in New York City.