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    The Commoditization of Wellness & How to Practice Self-Care for Free

    By Marissa Guiang   I have bought my fair share of face masks, yoga classes, massages, and healing crystals over the past year. I initially made these purchases to reduce the mental stress from work and the physical strain from marathon training, but the collateral damage was the eventual impact on my credit card bill. Self-care and wellness, especially the way social media portrays it, is certainly not cheap. As of last year, the wellness industry was estimated to be worth $4.2 trillion globally, which amounts to 5% of global economic output. “Wellness” is a broadly defined term that relates to activities that promote physical and mental well-being. The industry…

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    Soap and Tonic Interview

    [vc_row type=”in_container” full_screen_row_position=”middle” scene_position=”center” text_color=”dark” text_align=”left” overlay_strength=”0.3″ shape_divider_color=”#f4e1cd” shape_divider_position=”bottom” bg_image_animation=”none” shape_type=”speech”][vc_column column_padding=”no-extra-padding” column_padding_position=”all” background_color_opacity=”1″ background_hover_color_opacity=”1″ column_link_target=”_self” column_shadow=”none” column_border_radius=”none” width=”1/1″ tablet_width_inherit=”default” tablet_text_alignment=”default” phone_text_alignment=”default” column_border_width=”none” column_border_style=”solid” bg_image_animation=”none”][vc_column_text] Interview with Annie Lopez, founder of Soap and Tonic, by Kate Anderson-Song KATE: Hello – first off, if you could introduce yourself! ANNIE: I am Annie Lopez.  I’m the owner and creator of Soap and Tonic. With the help of my husband, we started this small business when we moved down to Mississippi.  We actually moved from DC to Mississippi because my husband is in the military – airforce.  Soap and Tonic started around summer 2018, so we’ve been open for a little bit over…

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    Beyond Bubble Baths: The Stressful Side of Self-Care

    By Heidi Osaki   It’s nearing finals season and I’m struggling to find balance, because self care always seems to drop off as a priority the busier and more stressful my schedule becomes. We all know self-care in the form of baths and face masks, and while that is certainly beneficial, I think we all also know that this form of self-care is only a sliver of the picture. For me, self-care means taking the time to do things that I know refuel me rather than drain me in the form of actions that will improve not only my present self but my future self as well. This means that…

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    A Contradictory Guide to Self-Care

    By Abigail Ileto   Self-care looks different to everyone and takes many shapes and forms. We’re told to say yes to a night out, but also no for a night in. What’s the “right” thing to do? Well, here we’ll explore opposite sides of the self-care spectrum. I present to you, a contradictory guide to self-care.     A 10-step skincare routine vs. sleeping in your makeup and worrying about the consequences later   Mmm, self-care Sunday. What better way to relax than treating your face to a meticulous 10-step skincare routine? Close the bathroom door, gather your products, and begin. Gently swipe off the makeup and daily grime. Cleanse,…

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    Deconstructing Self-Care Culture

    By Mariam Asim   More often than not, we find ourselves caught up in our own busy lives that can spiral into chaos. The never-ending to-do list or constant annoyance of having an assignment due; it can sometimes be too overwhelming for many of us to handle. It’s moments like this where we need to take a second to pause, think and most importantly breathe.    In today’s ‘woke’ society that shoves the notion of self-care through the media we digest, the true meaning seems to be lost in a tangible mix of self-expression and body positivity – the words being tossed around by influencers and celebrities with little meaning.…

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    Fighting for Yourself: Finding and Maintaining Self-Worth

    Thoughts on self care culture  By Anjalika Padmottara With more people speaking out on mental health challenges online, the question of coping mechanisms arises. This is when self-care comes in. Self-care is delicately balancing self-accountability, self-awareness and self-compassion. Humans are complex beings, yet it’s crucial to set boundaries, within yourself and those near and dear. We somehow expect people to have an in-built modicum of respect and integrity when it comes to reaching out to people, even among those who know us best. Safe to say most of us have had and/or continue to have anecdotal instances of unintentional and/or subsequent override of personal boundaries- from non-urgent phone calls in the…

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    LGBTQ+ Treatment in Asian Countries

    By: Chau Tang Same sex marriage became legal on June 26th, 2015. Happiness erupted from the LGBTQ+ community because that meant they could finally marry the one they truly love. Of course, happiness wasn’t the only thing they felt. There have been a lot of people in the U.S. that scolded or have hatred towards the community. According to FBI data, the number of crimes based on sexual orientation has rose from 2014 to 2017 and 1,130 incidents were reported. In the U.S, there are 28 states where they don’t protect LGBTQ+ individuals from discrimination such as Alaska, Alabama, Ohio and Nebraska. There are 20 states where there are full…

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    Interview with Mamata Venkat

    Interview by Rehana Paul An Ohio native, Mamata graduated from Wright State University in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies and a minor in Spanish. She worked with Global Health Corps, a non-profit global health fellowship organization based in New York City for three years, and currently supports operations and events management at Success Academy. Mamata was a TEDx speaker featured during the 2016 TEDx event in Perrysburg, Ohio, utilizing the theme of (inter)action to discuss the application of meditation to internal and external development, and how success in either does not have to come at the cost of the other. Mamata has been practicing Heartfulness meditation for nine years, and has been a…

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    The Self Care Machine: A Critical Thought Piece on Self Care Consumerism in 2019

    By: Leili Arai Tavallaei Why is everyone so obsessed with Self Care? In 2019 it’s all about counterculture and Self Care presents itself as such, but is it really effective in countering the culture? In my social circles, Self Care rose out of a need to subvert capitalism and consumerism. Capitalism negatively affects individuals by commodifying every aspect of their lives, including the individuals themselves. Capitalism demands efficiency, and asks that individuals budget their time, strength, and effort for the good of a company. This slowly wears a person down, degrading mental and physical health. Capitalism relies heavily on consumerism, using media to encourage ‘single use’ mentality, seasonal products, and…