Self-Care Tactics for the Semester

What does self-care mean?


As the semester begins to charge into full speed, the need for self-care grows with every passing moment. 

Most wellness blogs and online entertainment magazines describe self-care as watching television with a face mask on while running a bath with an aesthetically-pleasing bath bomb, or going for a walk in the sunset. That definition not only lacks diversity and depth but makes self-care into an impossible ideal. 

Self-care should be whatever brings students back to a relaxed state of mind. It’s a complex topic that is different to each person but is definitely for everyone. 

Here’s how four UMass Amherst students turn self-care from a buzz word to a lifestyle:

Dylan McLaughlin, freshman, said, “Self-care helps me stay sane. When I have what seems like a million different things to do at once and feel particularly overwhelmed, I need to do something to help me deal with it. It acts as a sort of undo button that helps me to ground myself and stay level headed. I think its also important that you put value in the things that make you happy early on in life so you can learn how to allot your time to incorporate them as you go throughout life.”

Self-care items:

1. Dr. Bronner’s – Pure-Castile Bar Soap (Peppermint) 

This peppermint scented soap acts as a perfect aromatherapy for a relaxing shower. 







2. Headphones

Tuning out the world with music can provide a good break from a busy schedule. 







3. Cool Socks

Fun socks can add a little whimsical charm to an outfit that helps bring smiles to others’ faces. 








4. Fuzzy Blanket

Who doesn’t love a blanket that feels like a soft hug?









Katelan Fitzgerald, sophomore, said, “The way that I devote time to self-care now is always changing to fit best with my moods and energy levels. The practices I put into play weren’t taught to me, rather I sought out new ways to calm down and relax, or get myself motivated for more activities. Trial and error of what stood out to me from commercials, books, and stores resulted in the ways I consider self-care now.”

Self-care items:

1. Cucumber Gel Face Mask

This mask really helps Fitzgerald’s face stay soft and moisturize, especially during the dry winters.  









2. Plants 

Plants bring a fresh and natural element to a work or living space. It is important to have items that create a safe space. 








3. Salty Snacks

For Fitzgerald, finding salty snacks to eat during a movie or hanging out with friends allows a person to comfortably indulge. 










Le Tran, junior, said, “Self-care really allows you to reconnect with your mind and body. It is a time to try and realign your energy and realign yourself in general. Practice self-care before you reach your breaking point. Take care of your body and mind, they’re both so precious.”

Self-care items:

1. Hikes

Becoming immersed in nature and getting exercise can promote a healthy mind and establish a spiritual connection.







2. Apple Cider Vinegar and Clay Mask

Reading or meditating with this do-it-yourself mask mixture helps Tran rejuvenate both his mind and skin.








3. Sugared Birch Candle

A candle can fill a room with a calming scent and provide warmth for Tran. 








Ellen Aron, senior, said, “For me, self-care is about taking mental and physical care of yourself such as exercising and eating healthy or doing yoga and meditating. I believe that whatever makes you happy can also be self-care such as doing tasks that you enjoy like painting and reading. I enjoy doing my own makeup and hair so that would also be self-care for me.”

Self-care Items:

1. NYX Setting Spray

This setting spray comes highly recommended from magazines and makeup artists for about a fifth of the price as high-end setting sprays. 









2. Smashbox Studio Skin Foundation

Not only does this foundation match Aron’s skin perfectly, but she can find her favorite foundation cheaper online than in stores. Plus, online shopping can also be therapeutic. 








3. ColourPop Highlighter

ColourPop has developed a reputation in the makeup word for delivering quality without breaking the bank. When Aron saw her roommate’s highlighter from the company, she knew she needed to add it to her collection. 







Email Emilee at [email protected]

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