How One Writer Changes Her Beauty Routine During Ramadan

The key is moisture, moisture and more moisture

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Ramadan has begun with many Muslims participating in fasting, praying and reflection. For Manahil Zafar, a secondary school teacher and a freelance beauty writer, she also adjusts her beauty routine during the holy month. “My skin goes through a lot—from dryness, dehydration and breakouts caused by eating all the [celebratory, but] oily foods throughout the month. However, [by making some changes to my] beauty routine, my skin looks the best it ever has,” she says. Here’s a full breakdown of Zafar's beauty routine during Ramadan.

Zafar starts her skincare routine with this gentle Kate Somerville cleanser. Formulated with goat milk, jojoba oil, avocado oil and manuka honey, the cleanser washes away any makeup and residue, while nourishing her skin. “This daily face wash cleanses and soothes my skin without causing any tightness or irritation,” she adds. 

According to Zafar, “Eye creams will be your best friend during Ramadan, as the early wake ups and long days can take a toll on your dark circles.” Her number one recommendation is the Olehenriksen Banana Bright Eye Crème. Enriched with antioxidants and vitamin C, the formula works to visibly brighten dark circles. “I can’t even remember how many jars of this eye cream I have gone through over the years! It instantly color-corrects and revives my tired-looking under eyes,” she says.

This gel serum is the most important step in Zafar's routine. She shares, “I’ve been using this for years and my skin loves it! It helps lock in moisture and prevents dullness.” The Vichy serum has volcanic water to strengthen the skin barrier and hyaluronic acid to moisturize dry skin. Zafar says it also has a plumping effect on her skin and protects it against environmental aggressors.

In the evenings, a thick cream is key to locking in moisture and maintaining a nice glow come morning. This Dr. Jart pick features five ceramides, glycerin and panthenol, which “provides moisture and comfort for my dry, dull skin, while strengthening the skin’s barrier. My skin feels supple, smooth and super moisturized right away whenever I use this,” says Zafar.

During the entire month (and beyond), Zafar relies on SPF to protect her skin. “I use SPF religiously every single day,” she says. “I recently started using this [one by Fenty] and absolutely love it! My makeup wears amazingly over it without piling or separating on my skin. It also claps back at dehydration, discoloration and dark spots caused by acne.” Plus, this 2-in-1 is lightweight, oil-free and goes on clear—making it a great option for all skin tones.

A hydrating mist is a must-have throughout the day. Zafar's favorite is the Glow Recipe mist, which refreshes her skin and adds a moisturizing glow to her makeup. Formulated with watermelon, hyaluronic acid and hibiscus flower, this mist delivers ultimate hydration and improves the texture of your skin overtime. As Zafar shares, “With constant Wudhu and a lack of water in your body, I like to add an extra step to my skincare routine during Ramadan— hydrating mists. I always keep these on my desk at work, or in my handbag and spritz it on whenever I feel my skin is dry or feeling parched.”

According to Zafar, a face mask is a great way to wind down after a long day. “I love to pamper my skin more during Ramadan and I love a good sheet mask for this, because they’re super affordable and easy to use,” she shares. “I put one on before going to bed, and in five minutes, my skin feels totally rejuvenated. Not to mention, my mind also feels a lot more relaxed.” She suggests the Sephora Collection Face Mask, which has 95 percent naturally derived ingredients (like vitamin C, aloe vera and mango) to target her skin concerns.

Fasting is a crucial part of Ramadan, which includes not drinking water during the day. As a result, Zafar relies on this hydrating balm to keep her lips from drying out. Her go-to is the Summer Fridays Lip Butter Balm. Formulated with shea butter, murumuru butter and vegan waxes, it helps condition and soften her lips in seconds. “With the lack of hydration, my lips can get quite dry and crusty, so it’s important that I have a thick balm on hand to hydrate them until sehri time,” she says. “This lip balm makes my lips feel softer and provides instant moisture and shine.”

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Associate Editor, Ultimate Fangirl, Aspiring Beauty Guru

Chelsea Candelario is an Associate Editor at PureWow. She has been covering beauty, culture, fashion and entertainment for over a decade. You'll find her searching the internet...