The most wonderful time of the year is fast approaching. We’re talking, of course, about the holiday season. And hey, we’re the first to sing the praises of our favorite festivities, from quality time with friends and family to gifting and delicious meals. But all that celebrating also comes with a lot of planning, organizing, cooking, decorating, shopping….we’re kind of exhausted just thinking about it. Which is why this year, we’re making seasonal self-care a priority. That means carving out a little me-time to relax and recharge without spending a ton of money. (The holidays are expensive enough as it is.) Check out our favorite affordable products that’ll help keep holiday stress at bay—because you deserve a little R&R this year.
Our Favorite Affordable Self-Care Products to Help You Fend Off Holiday Stress
Soothing Bath Salts
There’s seriously nothing like a nice warm bath at the end of a long day. Our advice? Take your tub time up a notch with these mineral bath salts from Kneipp®. Not only are they made from naturally occurring salts sourced from one of the oldest mines in Europe (not like Epsom salts, which are manmade), but they also require way less product than the synthetic guys. So you’re basically getting a spa-like experience for around $2 a bath. We love the Goodbye Stress Water Mint and Rosemary Mineral Bath Salt Soak, which uses aromatherapy to clear your mind and quiet your thoughts; the Joint and Muscle Arnica Mineral Bath Salt Soak, great for sore muscles and achy joints; and the Dream Away Valerian and Hops Mineral Bath Salt Soak, which helps promote a restful night's sleep. Bonus: You can shop them at Ulta and get free shipping over $35.
Self-heating Eye Mask
A self-heating eye mask may sound strange, but just trust us. These are infused with jasmine and begin to warm on contact, reducing eye strain and relieving tiredness and tension. They’re meant to give you about 15 minutes of total relaxation, making them perfect for holiday travel, meditation, sleep, or anytime you simply need to get away from the seasonal hubbub. Consider them your “do not disturb” sign.
Lavender Linen Spray
Sure, the holiday season already has a lot of great smells (from cookies to Christmas trees), but when it comes to relaxation, lavender and chamomile are where it’s at. This versatile room spray can be used on your sheets, pillows, linens, clothes—even on your yoga mat or in the car. And since it’s made without parabens or sulfates, there’s no worries about it irritating your skin. When you’re starting to feel overwhelmed, take a sec and take a sniff.
Family dynamics driving you crazy? When your eccentric aunt brings up politics at the potluck yet again, reach for this fun balloon-shaped de-stressing ball. It’s made of slow rising polyurethane foam, so no matter how tight you squeeze it, it’ll always go back to its original shape. You can choose from other smile-inducing shapes like a croissant and a rainbow. Pro tip: Stash one at your work desk for those days when you just can’t.
Rose Quartz Face Roller
Facial rolling is the beauty trend you actually need to try. Not only does it feel like an incredible, stress-reducing massage, it also encourages lymphatic drainage, which reduces that annoying puffiness you get from one-too-many holiday party Merlots. This one in particular is made of rose quartz, a stone that’s known to bring soothing energy and comfort. Use it alongside an oil or serum to help the products absorb while rolling out any stress.
A nice cup of tea is never a bad idea. But when that holiday tension headache reaches new heights, this organic herbal blend is specially formulated to bring relief. Woman-owned and formulated by certified herbalists, this caffeine-free tea uses lavender, dandelion, peppermint and lemon balm to alleviate stress and fatigue and help you relax and unwind.
Take a break from your wintry decorative candles and light up this lemongrass verbena and sage scent. Lemongrass oil is a common ingredient in herbal teas for nausea, but studies show it may actually help treat anxiety and headaches. Plus, this one is so affordable you can buy it for yourself and everyone else on your gift list.
There’s no better time of the year than the holidays to remember everything you’re thankful for. This gratitude journal will help you do just that, focusing on celebrating life’s little wins and inviting you to write down three things you’re grateful for each day. Gift one to a family member or friend and do it together. We can practically guarantee any outside stress will disappear when you focus on all the great things in your life during the holiday season—and all year round.