February is the shortest month of the year, and thank goodness, because let's be real: It's also the most depressing one. Perhaps to combat this crushing sense of defeat, Starbucks has unofficially made February the month of unending new drink releases (not that I'm complaining; on the contrary) first launching three variations on Molten Chocolate for Valentine's Day, and now, sending two new lattes out into the world, including a citrus green tea flavor. Obviously, everyone's first thought was, "OK, but how much does a Starbucks Teavana Citrus Green Tea Latte cost?"Well, the answer is between $3.45 and $3.95, depending on where in the country you happen to be. Not bad, huh?
Now, when I think citrus, I think sun, and when I think sun, I think, "Anywhere but where I am living right now because there's a reason why its nickname is 'Chiberia.'" I personally cannot wait to grab one of these new, delightfully green drinks, which Starbucks describes as "a sweet, creamy, lemony variation of the classic green tea latte," and imagine myself on the beach in Florida. I mean, yeah, I do that most days, but now I have an additional boost.
Maybe green tea is not your thing. Maybe you need more than just a drink to imagine yourself on a beach. I wouldn't want you to feel left out in the cold (literally), so here are five other things to help you escape and pretend you are on vacation very, very far away, all for the chill price of $5 or under, so that you can keep saving for an actual trip and run away for ever.
1. LUSH Pink Bath Bomb
I am weak-willed when it comes to literally anything that LUSH makes, with their fun names and good smells and cruelty-free testing policy. The trick, for all of you LUSH fiends who may be on a budget like I am, is to scour the bath bombs section: There are several options under $5, with my personal favorite being the Pink Bath Bomb. It has a vanilla, neroli, and tonka bean scent (think: candy bath), and little pink hearts are released when it's dropped into water.
2. Relax Melodies App
The Relax Melodies app, currently iTunes' most popular sleep app, lets you customize your listening experience so you can get your mind as far away as possible from gray slush and SmartWool socks. Are there tree frogs in your rainforest sounds fantasy? Add 'em! Do you want a flute to be playing in the distance while you're laying by the ocean? You can have it!
3. OGX Nourishing Coconut Milk Hibiscus Body Wash
Yes, coconut oil is mana from the gods, but I feel like Winnie the Pooh trying to paw that stuff out of the jar. Sometimes I want an easy squeeze bottle and a million bubbles and a scent in addition to coconut, so I can pretend to be bathing in a waterfall, wearing a bikini made entirely of bubbles. That is where this Coconut Milk Hibiscus body wash comes in.
4. Trader Joe's Molten Macarons
Trader Joe's, $3.99
Available in either Chocolate or Salted Caramel, these macarons (not to be confused with macaroons) will make you feel like you're in Paris, at a cafe, looking at the Eiffel Tower, wearing one of those striped shirts and red lipstick and perfectly smudged eyeliner. Because everyone I know who goes to Paris always posts photos of macarons on IG and like, whatever, now you can do that, too.
5. Queen Helene Mint Julep Facial Masque
Amazon, on sale for $1.12
If you're me, this mask will transport you back to the age of middle school innocence; if you're you, it might transport you somewhere else. Regardless, you'll feel relaxed and your pores will look amazing.
6. Arabella Soap Company Lavender Cedarwood Beeswax Aromatherapy Candles
You are walking a forest, a warm, green, snow-free forest, and the birds are singing, and the little forest creatures are scurrying, and you are at peace. That is what you will think when you light up one of these Lavender Cedarwood aromatherapy candles. They're therapeutic. It says so in their name.