Life can be really overwhelming. Between pressures at work, other people, and just the general fast pace of modern life, it can sometimes feel like there's zero room for downtime. It's why knowing how to be good to yourself is important, as well as having the right tools on hand to properly treat yo'self.
I used to be weirdly against self-pampering. For some reason the idea of things like spa days or aromatherapy seemed super wishy-washy, and I claimed I could power through without that kind of thing because I was so "strong." It wasn't until my late 20s that I started to realize that yes, I could power through life and all its daily stressors without ever pampering myself or indulging in pointless activities that felt nice, but what was the point? Why vow to never "give in" to things that aren't technically a necessity when I could allow myself to enjoy them?
Once this realization hit me (it admittedly occurred after I had my first ever facial) I became a downright treat yo-self fanatic. I love coming home to a space that feels nice, and carving out time just for me and my mental health is now always in my weekly plans. If you're feeling the grind of life, here are 11 items you should make sure you always have on hand to better treat yourself.
1. Scented Candles
Watermelon Lemonade Candle, $22.50, bathandbodyworks.com
I've written about the power of scented candles before, but don't just take my word for it. A 2009 study published on PubMed.org found that teens who received aromatherapy were significantly less stressed than those who received a placebo, indicating that it could be a very effective treatment for stress management. They also create awesome mood lighting.
2. Cuddly Socks
Cuddle Socks Slippers, $4.99, Amerimark.com
These are pretty self-explanatory, but it's important to mention anyway! Seriously nothing feels cozier than slipping into a pair of super soft and cozy socks. I always make sure I have at least two pairs so I always have one to wear when the other's in the wash.
3. Home Mani Essentials
The things about home manicures is that they force you to take an hour or so to just focus on one thing, since if you don't you'll likely end up ruining your nails before they dry. Take this time and make the most of it — light some candles, play some music, and just focus on the task at hand. I like to lengthen the process by also including cuticle lotion, a nail file, and moisturizer for my hands.
4. A High Quality Face Mask
Much like a manicure, I find that home facials are almost less valuable in terms of what they do for my skin, and more valuable because of what they do for my mental health and overall sense of well-being. There's just something about drowning out everything else and focussing on a single task that comes as a super welcome relief when I'm feeling overwhelmed. Check out the above video from YouTuber Kaushal Beauty on how to do an awesome one for yourself.
5. Bath Salts
Aromafloria Ocean Mineral Bath Salts, $11.99, Jet.com
There's nothing like a bath to help melt the stress away. However, you can even get more decadent by investing in some scented bath salts. I seriously (like seriously) love soaking in salts because my skin feels super soft after, and you can get them at super reasonable prices at places like TJ Maxx and Marshalls.
6. Homemade Spa Water
There's just something so incredibly luxurious about drinking water infused with cucumbers and fruit, and this little detail goes a super long way in enhancing the whole treat yo' self experience. Above is a super simple detox water how-to from YouTube channel AllNatural28.
7. Linen Spray
Linen Spray, $18.00, Crabtree-evelyn.com
Linen spray is essentially perfume for your bedding, furniture, and blankets, and makes cuddling into bed each night so incredibly nice. And pro hack — sometimes when I get gifted a perfume that I'm not crazy about, or just get sick of wearing a particular scent, I'll spritz it on my bed before leaving for the day so I can come home to a deliciously scented bedroom.
According to environmental psychologist Sally Augustin on a piece for The Huffington Post, fresh flowers in a space aren't just pretty, but they're linked to our emotional well-being. She even noted that patients in hospital rooms with fresh flowers needed less post-treatment pain medication and had lower blood pressure than those who didn't. So grab a bouquet on your way home today!
9. Soothing Sounds
I personally find soothing sounds to be one of the most helpful ways to quickly relax and unwind. You can find a ton of nature sound playlists on most online music players, or you can listen to one of the thousands of relaxation videos on YouTube, like the above from Fairy Char AMSR.
10. A Head Massager
Kikkerland Copepr Head Massager, $4.99, Bloomingdales.com
I freaking love my head massager. It's the closest thing you can get to the sensation of someone playing with your hair without someone actually being there. They might look weird, but they're well worth it (not to mention — super cheap)!
11. The Comfiest Robe
Plus Flees Hooded Robe, $69, LlBean.com
Much like a comfy pair of sock, a super comfortable robe is like the clothing equivalent of a bear hug. Nothing feels better or more indulgent than slipping into a soft, plush robe, and much like everything else on the list, you absolutely don't have to break the bank to find one.
Life is stressful, which is why we need to treat ourselves! If you're feeling overwhelmed, consider picking up all of the above items stat to create the optimum at home indulgence experience.
Image: Aliaksandr Barysenka / EyeEm/EyeEm/Getty Images; YouTube (4)