How To Glow Up: Most Effective Steps
The Ultimate Glow Up Guide
Find out how to glow up at any age!
Way past puberty, yet still waiting for your glow up to happen? It’s time to take matters into your own hands and give yourself the positive transformation you have always wanted. For a successful glow up make sure to take a holistic approach. Simply keep on reading for the most effective steps you can take to glow up both physically and mentally.
What does it even mean to glow up?
Collins Dictionary says that “if you say that someone glows up, you mean that they become more mature, confident, and attractive.”
The Urban Dictionary defines a glow up as “a mental, physical, and an emotional transformation for the better. Glow Ups can be both natural or planned. As well as being gradual and permanent, or fast and temporary.”
Having a glow up tends to be used in the sense of a physical transformation. However, as the definitions above state, there should be a holistic approach to a glow up.
I’m a big believer that everything is connected, our bodies, our minds, and our souls. Taking care of one part, and ignoring the rest won’t ever bring up lasting positive results. What good is glowing skin (which by the way might be hard to achieve when you neglect your mental health anyway) if you’re miserable?
Inside beauty shows on the outside and vice versa. If we take care of our physical body, we will feel better mentally as well, and vice versa.
When can you have a glow up? Are the late 20’s or early 30’s too late for a glow up?
You can have a glow up anytime during your life. It is never too late for a glow up!
A natural glow up can happen for everyone at a different stage, even though it’s most common in early adulthood when we transform from kids to adults and go through major physical, mental and emotional changes. That’s of course out of our control.
Despite that, you can always choose to have a glow up.
There are certain times in our lives, whether it’s approaching a milestone birthday like your 30’s, wanting to reinvent yourself after a broken marriage or a breakup, or before a new school year, that we especially crave a positive transformation.
No matter your age and your reason for wanting a glow up, we got you covered.
In this post, you will find out how to effectively, step by step, glow up both mentally and physically.
How long does it take to glow up?
That will depend on your “starting point”, on where in life you currently are.
You might feel completely lost and need to discover your interest, style, etc. from zero. You might not have a workout, skincare, house organization routine, and so on at all. Or you might just need certain small, yet effective changes to transform your life for the better and start shining bright again.
With that being said it can take days, weeks, or even years. Every area of our life will need a different amount of attention.
Besides, we’re meant to change and evolve all life long, so don’t confuse a glow up with being perfect or having it all figured out.
Nonetheless, there are certain steps you can take today that will show results almost immediately. Others will require a bit more commitment, but you won’t regret pushing through.
How do you have a glow up?
In order to have a glow up we need to take certain steps, make certain changes in our lives. This means we need to change our habits or form completely new ones.
We are what we repeatedly do.
Moreover, as mentioned before, for a successful glow up we need to take a holistic approach. We need to take a close look at all areas of our life and assess what we’re satisfied with, what’s lacking, what needs to change, and what we should add. From our spirituality, through our skincare and wardrobe, to our relationships and surroundings.
What are the benefits of a glow up?
- be happier and more grateful
- get to know yourself better and be in touch with your emotions as well as your body
- feel more confident
- stronger self-esteem
- be fitter, stronger, and healthier
- feel prettier
- be more focused and better organized
- have more self-discipline
- feel and actually be more attractive
- develop healthy habits
- be a better communicator, listener and you will know your boundaries
- have deeper relationships
How To Glow Up
– The Ultimate Glow Up Guide –
Spiritual Glow Up
In this how to glow up guide I will not go into details or “give advice” about your spirituality. It’s just a too complex, too individual, too personal area of your life. However, I strongly encourage you to think about that part as well as it does influence other areas of your life.
You can simply start by asking yourself questions like what are your current beliefs? Where do they stem from? Do you feel confident about your faith, your beliefs or are you rather lost and unsure? What are your current spiritual practices? Are you religious? Are there any activities, traditions you neglected that you actually want to have as part of your daily life? What are your deep-rooted values? What are some fears? Etc.
As we’ll discuss specific things you can do for a mental and specific thing you can do for a physical glow up, keep in mind that most habits will strongly affect both areas at the same time. It’s all connected and one influences the other.
Mental Glow Up
Eat a whole foods diet
A clean, whole foods diet will massively improve your appearance and overall well-being. From your energy levels, your focus, your memory to your mood.
Some scientists even call our gut our “second brain”.
Educate yourself and adjust your diet accordingly. Take supplements if necessary or recommended by your healthcare professional.
What you eat and don’t eat (as in what you’re deficient in) will show on the outside as well, but we’ll talk more about that later on in the “physical glow up” portion of this article.
Drink plenty of water
We all know how important it is to stay hydrated, yet so many of us don’t drink enough water.
Water can improve your mood, your sleep, your cognition, and, and, and. There are endless benefits, so just drink it.
Develop healthy sleep hygiene habits
Fortunately, more people are becoming aware of how important sleep and rest actually are.
We live in such a hustle, “I’m always so busy” culture, that some of us have forgotten how vital sleep actually is.
Benefits of sleep for your mental well-being (just to name a few):
- improves mood
- reduces stress
- make you more alert and focused
- improves memory
- increases productivity
Some healthy sleep hygiene tips:
- prioritize sleep
- try to stick to a bedtime and wake-up time window
- no screen time an hour before going to bed and no phone right after waking up
- invest in a good mattress and pillow
- try using lavender essential oil
- set the room to a rather cool, yet comfortable temperature
- remove any distractions from the bedroom like electronics, block out light and drown out any noise
Be still/ meditate
Pause, take deep belly breaths, be present and relax. Allow yourself to have daily moments of simply being, connecting with your body. This will help you with negative thoughts and emotions, increase your patience, it’s a great stress managing tool and a great state to be in in order to practice gratitude.
If you’re a believer, pray. Yes, this is obviously part of your spirituality, but like we’ve said many times before, all areas of our lives are intertwined and one influences the other.
Prayer will remind you of who you truly are, of your value. It will help you set goals, see life clearly, live with an open heart and have faith in yourself, your future & your dreams. It will reduce stress, inspire and motivate you.
Go to therapy
If you can afford it, get a therapist. Everyone needs one, no matter what you went through in life.
Having someone knowledgeable to talk to, someone who can objectively look at you, listen to your stories, your fears, your problems, and bring both, the best and the worst out in you AND then give you tools to cope with all that, that’s so valuable.
Therapy can help you reduce stress, develop healthy coping skills, develop healthier habits, improve your communication skills, your productivity, and improve your overall health.
Some benefits of journaling are:
- regulates emotions: reduces stress, anxiety, frustration, anger, overthinking
- better communication skills
- you will understand yourself better
- great tool for self-expression
- great goal-setting tool
Always keep learning. Keep an open mind and stay curious. Knowledge and skills will boost your confidence and your happiness.
Learning improves your brain function. It’s fun.
Whether you pick up a new hobby or practice old ones, they will help you will your glow up. For starters, having different interests and hobbies makes you a more interesting person.
Depending on the hobby, besides better physical health, it will also lower your stress levels, promote better sleep, give you an opportunity to connect with others and improve your mood.
Create a vision board
You might want to create a vision board before you even attempt a glow up! It will help you set clear goals, create a vision of your future self and motivate you to take action.
For all the main benefits of a vision board check out: 7 Benefits Of A Vision Board & Why You Need One
You might also like: The Ultimate Guide To Making A Vision Board + Free Vision Board Printables
Gratitude reduces stress, makes you feel happier and more at peace. It stops you from comparison and envy. Gratitude can actually improve your mood and increase happiness long-term.
For more exciting info about gratitude head over to Grateful Heart, Happy Life | Gratitude As Your Free Tool To A Better Life
As little as 20 minutes per day can have a positive impact on your well-being. From better sleep, better memory, less stress to more knowledge, make sure you don’t miss out on the benefits of reading and make it part of your daily life. Reading will also give you something to talk about, make you more interesting, and therefore more attractive.
Use affirmations to glow up mentally
Affirmations are simply positive statements or words of encouragement that can help you stay positive and keep you from overthinking and self-sabotaging. Affirmations can boost your confidence and your mood.
Try something new
Trying out new things will take you out of your comfort zone. It’s, first of all, super fun, but also, it will make you gain new skills, become more interesting, meet new people, gain knowledge, boost your confidence, become more open, and get to know yourself better.
Make a list of things you love about yourself
Since you’re interested in a glow up, there are certainly things you want to change about yourself. Things you might not like, haven’t learned to accept just yet, you might also have a rather low self-esteem due to various reasons.
Most of us have the tendency to focus on what’s lacking and what needs to be fixed.
Take the moment to do the opposite. Make a list of all the things you love about yourself. Write down as many as you can think of (but make it at least 5!). It doesn’t matter if it’s about your personality, skills, or looks.
Connect with nature
For the perfect glow up make sure to connect with nature. This will ground you, elevate your mood, relax you, give you energy, and therefore help you feel and look more radiant & fresh. What is more, let nature inspire you. Your makeup, your clothes, your accessories.
Do a phone detox
Before you dismiss this idea go to your phone settings and check your past week’s screen time. Shocked yet? Is it more than 3 yours, more than 5, or maybe even more than 8 hours daily? Unless all your doing on your phone is work or use it as a baby monitor, you really want to cut down on your screen time.
Just think about what you’re feeding your brain, daily, for so many hours. Feeling anxious, envious, unproductive? Well, your phone might be to blame.
A digital detox will improve both your mental and your physical health.
Set your boundaries
To live a healthy, positive, productive life you need to set boundaries. Both in your workplace and your personal life. Having healthy boundaries is crucial if you want to avoid burnout, being taken advantage of, and avoiding toxic people as well as environments.
You need to respect yourself and take care of yourself and setting healthy boundaries is a big part of that.
You need to learn to say no sometimes. This will give you more space, more time, and more energy to put effort and love into the people and things you say yes to.
Foster nourishing relationships & get rid of toxic people
You’ve heard it a million times before, but it’s true- you are who you surround yourself with.
“Motivational speaker Jim Rohn famously said that we are the average of the five people we spend the most time with.” – businessinsider.com
If you feel like you need a glow up you probably don’t feel celebrated enough. Yes, you can change for yourself, but make sure the people around you accept and celebrate you every step along the way, in all your stages of life. Don’t get a glow up to try to fit in or be wanted and accepted by certain people. They don’t deserve you! You’re already enough!
Get to know yourself by defining life for yourself
You want to feel confident, you want to feel beautiful, you want to be in love, you want to be successful. That’s great! But what do those things actually mean to YOU? Not to your parents, not your community, not your culture, your teacher, a celebrity you follow, but to YOU.
Make sure to take the time to define success, love, motherhood, beauty, etc. for yourself.
It’s time to live life on your terms. It’s time to pursue your kind of happiness.
Take care of your surrounding, of your home
Your surroundings can have a major influence on your mental well-being.
A clean, safe, cozy space will motivate you to take care of yourself as well. It will help you have a clear mind as well as be focused. Besides, you don’t want to go through a massive glow up just to then invite people over to your place and suddenly feel insecure, or embarrassed. And I’m not talking about having an expensive place, I’m talking about a space that is warm, inviting, and more or less organized.
Moreover, creating a “happy place” for yourself where you can work out, journal, practice gratitude, etc. will also help you stick to those habits.
Have “me” time
- Make time for self-care, both mental and physical. You need time to recharge.
- Take yourself out on a date.
Physical Glow Up
I’m not gonna preach about the benefits of moving your body as you’re perfectly aware of them.
If you want a glow up, if you want to feel strong, fit, healthy, and beautiful you need to work out, period.
What’s crucial in staying consistent with your workouts is choosing activities you will enjoy and be able to stick you.
Yes, try out new things, yet challenge yourself. But if you hate biking, and cardio, a spinning class might not be your path to success. Do you want to build a booty? You need to eat enough, and you need to do strength training.
Yes, some movement is better than no movement. But if you want a transformation, a true glow up, you need to first set your goals and then set up a workout routine that is designed to help you reach those specific goals.
Stretching will make you feel lighter, fresher, younger, and stronger. It will decrease the risk of injuries, reduce some pains you might have (like back pain), and improve your posture.
Get enough sleep, it is crucial for a successful glow up
We’ve already addressed healthy sleeping habits as well as the benefits of sleep for your mental well-being, not it’s time to look at the positive impact it has on your body.
Practicing a healthy sleep hygiene will boost your immunity, help you stay at a healthy weight, reduce inflammation in the body and keep your heart healthy. Getting enough sleep is obviously also reflected in the way you look.
If you want radiant, glowing skin, bright-looking eyes, and less visible under-eye bags as well as get minimize the appearance of your dark under-eye circle, you need to get enough quality sleep.
Eat clean, whole foods
From a healthy body to a beautiful appearance, food can do wonders for you and should be an essential part of your glow up!
Whether you want to see actual results after working out, have strong nails, long shiny hair, clear glowing skin, what you eat matters.
Your body is giving your signs. From white spots on your nails, cracked heels to negging thoughts. Those might all be signs of vitamin deficiencies.
Make sure to eat a clean, whole foods diet for the best mental as well as physical glow up results!
Try lymphatic drainage massage
You haven’t heard of lymphatic drainage massage yet? Well, it “aims to help the body maintain proper blood circulation, body fluid balance, and immune functions” (webmd.com)
You can perform lymphatic drainage massage on yourself at home, both on your body, as well as your face, or see a specialist.
Stomach massages became quite popular and are a trending topic on social media as many people are fascinated by the quick results. Want a flat tummy? Then it’s worth a try.
As for your face, a lymphatic drainage massage will inter alia reduce puffiness, improve circulation, drains toxins from your skin, and therefore have an anti-aging effect.
For more info check out the following video:
Lymphatic Drainage Massage by a Lymphedema Physical Therapist- Why it’s Important & How to Do it
Skin is our largest organ and up to 60% of what you put on your skin will be absorbed. Therefore, use natural products, that don’t contain inter alia aluminum, parabens, mineral oil, and something that often gets overlooked, but might be the cause of your breakouts- fragrance.
Things you can do for healthy, glowing skin:
- dry brush
- use sunscreen
When it comes to your face it’s good to develop a routine and stick to it. Skin cells take around 28 days to renew, meaning only after a month can you see if a product is working or not. So don’t change products too fast, and don’t use too many different ones at once.
Good practices to incorporate into your skincare routine:
- gently exfoliate
- double cleanse
- use sunscreen
- moisturize when skin is still slightly damp
- try using retinoids and retinol – but inform yourself first about what, how much, and when to use (not safe for pregnant & breastfeeding women!)
Try using oils and serums. If needed, see a skincare professional that will help you find the right products.
Don’t forget about your lips. You can use a lip scrub and a lip mask, but definitely use chapstick with SPF!
Do NOT: use make-up removal wipes (they do more harm than good), waste money on eye creams unless they make you feel good mentally (your undereye area is part of your face, what you can use on your face, you can use under your eyes; dermatologists call most eye creams miniature, overpriced facial moisturizers).
Do facial massages
There is more than you can do when it comes to facial massages than lymphatic drainage massage. Try out different techniques to see what works best for you.
You can try:
- face yoga
- using a jade roller and/or gua sha
- Jacquet pinching
Make sure to prep your skin properly before trying any of those techniques.
Facial massages are not only relaxing and a great self-care practice, but they will also help you:
- get glowing skin
- reduce the appearance of wrinkle and fine lines
- reduce puffiness
- release toxins
- help absorb products
- tone muscles, define your jawline, sculpt your cheekbones
Take care of your eyebrows
Eyebrows are an important feature that has a big impact on your overall look.
They frame your face, and can totally change your appearance.
Maybe you need to start plugging them regularly to achieve a more desired look, or maybe you have rather thin brows, and filling them in can be a game-changer for you. If you feel a little lost when it comes to the eyebrow game, you can see an esthetician that will help you determine the perfect shape and thickness of your brows.
Remove unwanted facial hair
Removing unwanted facial hair (with emphasis on unwanted- do what makes you feel best!) will not only boost your confidence but also make it easier to apply makeup.
Take care of your smile
- Practice good oral hygiene.
- Go to the dentist regularly.
- Consider whitening your teeth.
- Wear your retainer.
- Consider straightening your teeth.
How is your hair doing?
- Cut split ends.
- Use a soft cotton T-shirt to dry your hair instead of a regular towel.
- Get a whole new haircut if you don’t feel beautiful and confident with your current one or simply crave a more dramatic transformation.
- Dye your hair (if that’s what you usually do, but you neglected it for a while, cause life got too busy).
- Use a deep conditioner or do an overnight hair mask.
You can try using coconut oil as an overnight hair mask.
Get a manicure and a pedicure
Clean, strong nails are the goal, the rest is up to your personal preference. However, you can never go wrong with a French manicure, or choosing a soft pink, a nude color, or a classic red color.
Remove unwanted body hair
It is up to you to decide what makes you feel most confident and most beautiful. If you’re not a fan of body hair you can:
- Shave, wax or epilate, just make sure to prep your skin properly.
- Consider laser hair removal.
- Get a Brazillian wax.
Glow Up Makeup
Use makeup to bring out your best features, to make you feel and look more put together, to simply look glowing.
An ultimate glow up makeup will make you look natural, fresh, radiant, sophisticated, and classy. It will bring life back to your face on days when you don’t feel your best and is therefore one of the glow up tools that can transform you instantly.
Things to keep in mind while putting on makeup:
- prep your skin first, make sure it’s hydrated and put your sunscreen on first
- for a natural look choose a bb or cc cream, if you do want more coverage use foundation but please make sure you have the right tone, you don’t want to look like one of the Simpsons…
- less can definitely be more
- don’t forget to curl your lashes before putting on mascara, it makes a huge difference
- a peachy blush can make you look younger, fresher, and sunkissed
- when using a soft blush or bronzer you can also put a little bit on your eyelids as well to make it all look more cohesive
- fill in your eyebrows if needed, if not just brush
- use highlighter just don’t overdo it
And last, but certainly not least- your style, your wardrobe
Obviously, clothes play a HUGE role in how you feel, how you look, and how you’re perceived by others.
- Clean out your closet. Only leave clothes that you actually love wearing, clothes that fit.
- Have a mindset of quality over quantity while shopping.
- Try monochromatic outfits to elevate your style.
- Get a professional bra fitting. The right bra will instantly make the clothes fit better plus make your breasts healthy and happy.
Accessories help display your personality and turn any ordinary outfit into a unique look.
- Remember, shoes can make or break your entire look.
- Depending on how established your personal sense of style is, you might want to see a stylist for some guidance. Or simply educate yourself, there are plenty of resources and inspirations online.
It’s your time to SHINE!