A few weeks ago, beauty influencer and entrepreneur Huda Kattan decided to go on a digital detox. She needed a break to unplug, reset, and focus on her family. It was a hard decision to make — Kattan felt the pull of her responsibilities to her company Huda Beauty — of which she’s the CEO and founder — and the general lure of platforms like Instagram, where the beauty industry flourishes. But she committed to focusing in on the real world. She went on a trip to Korea with her family. “I felt like I could really be in the moment and experience this time with my family because my attention wasn’t being pulled in a million directions,” she says of the experience. “Unplugging is definitely something that I struggle with on a daily basis… And as much as [social media] can be really fun and really great, sometimes it can be overwhelming, so there are moments when you need to take a break and take some time for yourself.”
The beauty guru learned a lot from her experience purging her digital interactions. Here are her rules for surviving a digital detox.
Lean on your support system.
Embrace your family. They can reassure you that checking out of social media is okay — even if it’s a huge part of your job, Kattan says.
“Sometimes you just need extra person-to-person contact,” she says. “Try catching up with your friends and family in real life, instead of only through social media. Making real time connections with the people you love keeps you energized.”
Take a vacation.
Reset and physically step away from your day to day. Stress can still follow you when you’re traveling, but getting lost in a new place is fun and distracting.
Dip a toe into the detox.
If you are unable to take 48 hours off and completely unplug, ease into it. Start slowly. Find a few hours each day to devote to yourself. “I always start my day at work with me time… just cleanse my mind,” Kattan says.
Create phone-free physical spaces in your life.
“Your personal care time and bedtime routine is so important,” Kattan says. “I always leave my phone outside the bathroom before prepping for bed. My personal time is for me, and it’s important to keep it that way.
If you must have a photo shoot with your salad, leave it at that.
“I know meals can be pretty Instagram-able these days, so once I’ve gotten a good snap or two of my food, I always put my phone away,” Kattan says. It’s important to engage with the people you eat with, and to enjoy and appreciate your meal.
Remember that detoxes get better with time.
While the first few hours of your social media detox might seem the hardest, set your mind on a specific goal and try to disconnect for that duration of time,” Kattan says.
Know it’s not forever.
If you step away from your phone or laptop for a few hours, remember that photos of celebrities on beaches and your friends’ babies will be waiting for you when you come back. “It’s totally normal and super healthy to check out sometimes,” Kattan says.