HER Self Care in Terrible Times.

The world feels terrible, my friends. It is more strained and we are more informed than many of us can remember being, and as a result more scared. It all hurts.

I’m personally in the midst of some of the most positive changes in my life, but find myself floating somewhere in between the motions in my day-to-day actions. Every womxn around me is in pain.  I’m not sure if it’s realizing our already strained lives have changed drastically since the election results, or if it’s having to deal with others who may not have seen need for change until this very, delayed movement (or even worse, dealing with others who still… don’t.. want.. to get it).  Every phone call with a friend feels like an episode of “Here’s How the News is Traumatizing Me Today”. Everything is exhausting and it’s just getting started.

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Photo: Cris Saliba

We’re learning more about the importance of self care and daily rituals to maintain personal and collective balance. I know now, more than ever it’s incredibly important to stay close to whatever brings you joy and find ways to incorporate it into your day. Daily. No argument. That’s what I’m maintaining. For me, self care has included: daily beauty rituals like wearing lipstick and applying face masks, cooking and walking. Consumption of copious amounts of chocolate (please do not sleep on the Ritter Sport Cornflakes in milk chocolate any longer) and viewings of various Beyonce visual projects in no particular order.

I touched base with the all the ladies to see if they could share some of their self care routines with you and they were generous enough to share their tips. Right now, in this moment, it’s so inspiring to me to be surrounded by womxn who are so fiercely protecting their peace and joy.

Sending you love and light. – Talya 

“It’s been a haaaaaaard month for all of us. I’ve indulged by utilizing the claw foot tub in our apartment and running a long, hot bath. Solange, lavender bath salts and a glass of wine; maybe a touch cliche but it gets the job done. My muscles are thanking me!” – Lydia Okello, West Coast Editor

“I feel like this year’s winter is a bit different for me – it’s as if I feel the cold in my bones. I’m making every effort to warm myself up from the inside out. The first step? Food. I made a massive pot of Gamjatang (Korean pork bone soup), but with beef. There are no words in the English vocabulary to best express the journey of warmth my body goes through thanks to the blend of spices in this dish. Pair it with some sticky rice on the side and…well, I can’t get enough.

With the colder and harsher winter months come dehydrated and sore skin. I am definitely a fan of overcoming this season which is the apex of all things ashy when it comes to dermal layers. I’ve taken up blending my own body oils to use in the shower (like a hair conditioner, but for my body), and whipping up my own body butters and balms once I’m out of the shower. My skin thanks me a thousand times over and I smell pretty fantastic if I do say so myself. I feel good.” – Janu Yasotharan, Digital Media Curator

“I’ve been spending as much time offline as possible right now. After the election I was reading so many articles everyday (because that’s how I make sense of things) that it felt as though it was bordering on compulsion. I’m slowly getting back to my online life but am trying to be mindful of when trying to be/stay informed brings on more anxiety than understanding.

I also brought out my old tape deck and mixtape collection and have been listening to, singing along with, and getting lost in voices/moments from my past.” Shemeena Shraya, Toronto Editor

“On a daily basis, it’s so important to make some time for myself at the end of the day to wash the day off. I love taking my makeup off with coconut oil, spraying some rosewater on my face and putting on some face oil and moisturiser. It’s so gratifying to just give my face a bit of love after a long day.” Kat Andrikopoulos, Strategy & Operations

(This last bit from Yaayaa makes my heart swell with pride and inspiration – we are very excited to have watched our girl take the pain and turn it into gain. – T)

“I have been laying low in the cut like I usually do but for a great reason. These last couple of weeks I have been job hunting and entering the new frontier of my ever evolving self. Putting the time in to me and my development. I am happy to report back that I am now a career woman. In the upcoming weeks I will reveal who it is that I work for but in the meantime just know that it is in the field of advertising and marketing. To reward myself I am going to binge watch all my favourite reality TV shows because you know I love anything that is ratchet. I’ll  eat snacks, and enjoy my week off, while preparing for my new career and being a professional lady.” Yaayaa Adams, Digital Features Curator


Talya Lee Macedo is a Publicist and Brand Strategist with over twenty years experience in creative industries and leadership. She’s currently an Account Manager and Digital Media Strategist at Langton Communications, a lifestyle PR agency. She is passionate about all things communications, style, beauty and art. A natural communicator and connecter, she graduated from Blanche Macdonald Centre with a diploma in Fashion Marketing and has worked alongside some of the industry’s most respected. Driven by fearless womxn and their individual experiences, she created HER Collective to provide a safe space for collaboration, love and support. Find her in Toronto, sipping on what she swears is her last coffee.

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