Are you ready to glow up this summer? We’re going to talk about how to glow up within a week with this summer self-care challenge.
I’m not talking about plucking your eyebrows and losing 5 pounds, I’m talking about making internal shifts that will improve your life long past bikini season.
Self-care sometimes needs to be deeper than just taking a bubble bath, though that’s a great way to unwind and I do recommend it in 30 ways to reduce stress with self-care.
A glow up is a “mental, physical, and an emotional transformation” (per Urban Dictionary) and we’re going to do all those things, but I really want you to focus on inner changes because those last a lifetime.
In this summer glow up challenge I’m going to recommend some self-care activities with short term benefits (if you don’t maintain them) along with other activities that I highly recommend you make part of your daily routine.
When you do this things on a consistent basis and turn them into habits your glow up will last long beyond a week!
You can get a hair cut and paint your nails but eventually your hair grows in and your nail polish chips. How much better would it be to make permanent changes to your life? We’re going to explore some of these things this week!
At the end of this post is a free printable for you to use during this challenge!
Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. Using them gives me a small commission at no additional cost to you. You can read my full disclosure here.
How To Do A Glow Up Challenge
In this self-care challenge I’m giving you seven tasks that you’re going to work on every day. If you really want to glow up then you have to show up for yourself and do the work.
Consistency is key! If you follow through and do these things everyday you’ll start to build healthy habits that will impact your life in the best way long past the summer.
You can also do this 7 day glow up challenge any time you feel like you need a little transformation.
1. Get Better Sleep
Good sleep is so important to our physical and mental well being. It gives you more energy for both the physical tasks and mental tasks we do each day. When you’re well rested you perform so much better at everything you do.
I admit, I haven’t always made good sleep a priority. Since my teenage years sleep has been a struggle for a few reasons.
Number one, I would often struggle to fall sleep because my mind was overactive. I would stay up for hours overthinking things. If I got upset during the day I would go over it again and again in my head even though I wanted my brain to just shut up so I could rest.
I learned how to quiet my mind in two ways that I go into in detail on my post about how to stop overthinking, but briefly those things were meditating while laying in bed which sometimes made me fall asleep, and learning to recognize when I was in a spiral and redirect my thoughts to something harmless like a fantasy.
The second reason I struggled to sleep is because my bed wasn’t very comfortable. I would wake up 4-5 times during the night and do a lot of tossing and turning.
This year I finally decided to change that.
I didn’t want to get a new mattress but I got this mattress topper (the 2 inch size) and a new memory foam pillow that I’m in love with. I also got a satin pillowcase (these are really affordable with tons of colors!) and I love that as well.
I’m happy to say I’m waking up less during the night and I fall asleep faster.
Your reason for poor sleep may be different, so access what isn’t working and what you need to do whether it’s go to bed earlier, meditate to quiet the mind, put on background noise like rain sounds, or make your bed more comfortable. Make a sleep plan and stick to it. It could take a few days to see a change so just stick with it.
2. Start a Daily Gratitude Practice
A real glow up requires changing on the inside.
Life is all about the attitude you choose to have each day, and I’ve found the best way to have a positive attitude is by adopting a daily gratitude practice.
Have you ever seen an angry or cynical person and thought, “man they are really glowing! How do I get that?” Nuh uh! We’re attracted to people who are generally positive and have a chill energy.
When you feel gratitude for the things you already have it’s so much easier to be optimistic about the future. Sure you might not have all the things you want, but when you “count your blessings,” as my grandma would say, then its easy to trust that more good things are on their way to you.
Everyday this week think of at least 10 things your grateful for. Close your eyes and really feel gratitude for what the good things you have in your life..
I’ve written all about how to use journal prompts for your daily gratitude practice, check it out and get the free printable.
In my personal experience, when I started appreciating what I have now and stopped feeling sorry for myself because of what I didn’t have I felt so much better, and it helped me get into a mental space where I could start attracting what I wanted instead of just sitting around waiting for it.
3. Take Care Of Your Skin
This is one of those short term self-care tasks, but it’s an important one.
Since for most of us more of our skin is exposed during the summer months it feels good to have your skin look and feel nice.
Take some time to care for your skin, from top to bottom.
Assignment Part 1:
Spend 15-30 minutes taking care of your skin in the following ways.
If you don’t already do it regularly, take the time to exfoliate and moisturize your body, including your feet.
Put on a face mask once a week and then put on a face moisturizer after. Put on moisturizer in the morning too! At night I like Drunk Elephant Lala Retro™ Whipped Moisturizer, and since I have oily skin I used the light-weight gel moisturizer CLINIQUE Moisture Surge 100-Hour Auto-Replenishing Hydrator in the morning.
And if you have dry lips, hands down the best ever lip moisturizer is the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask, which I use during the day and night. If nothing else has worked try this, it honestly changed my life.
Slather on the SPF
Even if you don’t care about wrinkles, SPF is essential for protecting you from skin cancer.
Make sure you are putting it on your face, neck, hands, and any other part of the body that is regularly exposed to the sun. If you sit inside in front of a window all day you’re still getting exposed, so apply it then too.
SPF needs to be reapplied after 2 hours. For my face I love Supergoop’s Unseen Sunscreen SPF 40, it’s a clear gel, lightweight, and wears well under make up.
Assignment Part 2:
Your task is to get out or buy some SPF and put it somewhere you will remember to use it. Maybe next to your morning moisturizer, keys, or in your purse. Just use it every single day!
If you already use SPF everyday keep it up, you’re doing amazing sweetie!
4. Clear Out Your Closet
Something about clearing away old things that don’t work for you anymore and making space feels so amazing!
Again this is a short term self-care action, but if you maintain your process you can have long lasting results and reap the benefits.
Take an hour to go through all you clothes, shoes, and accessories and donate, sell, or throw out anything that you don’t love and feel good in, along with anything that doesn’t fit or isn’t good quality anymore.
Then organize everything and put it away neatly. Maintain a tidy space for the entire week.
I think it’s important to develop a mindset of not having to immediately fill empty spaces. By this I mean you don’t have to rush to buy new things to replace the things you got rid of unless you actually need a replacement. It’s ok to get new things and refresh your wardrobe, but mindless consumerism is harmful to your bank balance and the planet.
Make intentional purchases and focus on quality and how much you’ll use it over quantity and short term trends.
I love having some empty space in my closet and dressers. It’s like making physical space in my home makes space in my head for new ideas and energy, which is the ultimate glow up!
5. Love Your Body, No Matter What It Looks Like
Speaking for myself, it’s a lot easier to feel comfortable in my body in the winter months. I don’t have to look at my bare legs or stomach much and no one else is looking either because I’m covered up.
In the summer that all changes. We start wearing tank tops, shorts, and swimsuits and all the parts you may be insecure about are exposed.
This summer make a conscious effort to love your body no matter it looks like.
And don’t compare your body to someone else. We all have flaws and struggles in different areas, you may not see them in other people but they are there.
Shift your focus from what you don’t like to what to you do love.
Everyday look in the mirror and think of a few reasons why you love the area of your body that you’ve previously felt bad about.
You don’t have to like your cellulite and stretch marks, but you can still love the parts of you that has them. I have both on my thighs and I’d get rid of them if I could, but I still love my thighs for what they do for me. They’re part of my legs which allow me to go anywhere I want, and that’s definitely something to love.
If you need some more help with this read 12 ways to cultivate self-love.
6. Start a Morning Meditation Practice
Meditation is such a powerful tool. It helps you develop an awareness of your thoughts and the inner dialog going on in your head.
When you become aware of your thoughts you can learn to stop being controlled by them. Often we get swept up in these silly stories we invent about ourselves and what’s going on around us, we don’t even realize that what we’re giving so much focus and energy to just doesn’t matter and isn’t helping us.
For example someone might say something to you that rubs you the wrong way and so you’ll come up with a whole story about why Jane doesn’t like you and how she’s so mean for judging you and oh my god what are you going to do the next time you see her, but the reality is Jane doesn’t have any issues with you and whatever she said was totally innocent and you wasted all the time and energy worrying about nothing.
Meditating helps you start to notice when your thoughts have run off in the wrong direction and then bring your focus back to what’s more important. It puts you back in the drivers seat.
As a bonus it helps with stress and calming the nervous system!
Find a meditation video on Youtube that you like and do it every morning, that way it’s done and you can’t procrastinate it later when you’re too tired. You can search for ‘5 minute meditation’ or longer if you have the time. Or try an app like Calm or Headspace which have free guided meditations for beginners.
Read a Personal Growth Book
We’ve established that a true and lasting glow up transformation starts in the mind.
The best way to achieve this inner glow up is by feeding your mind new wisdom and knowledge on a regular basis.
You’re doing this now by reading this blog and having the desire to improve yourself (high five babe!), but another fantastic way to keep learning and growing is to make reading personal development books a regular practice.
My own self-improvement journey started with a book called The Slight Edge, which is all about why some people get ahead in life while others don’t. It taught me that improving my life required small daily actions that over time add up to the results we want.
I have a list of my top 10 favorite personal growth books that you can get some more ideas from.
Choose a book to read over the next week, if it takes you longer that’s ok but just commit to reading one book that will teach you something. Reference my list above. Audiobooks are a great way to consume these books if can’t sit and read it.
That concludes the tasks for your 7 day glow up challenge! Subscribe to get the printable below and have fun doing your summer self-care glow up!
Love and light,