A Cozy Nighttime Routine

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

I've taken relaxation to another level this week. Normally, we would be traveling up and down the East Coast between families for the holidays, but since we stayed home this year we've had plenty time to take it easy. It's been a very low-key holiday, but I've actually loved it. I am definitely a homebody and even more so this time of year. One of my favorite ways to relax is having a nighttime routine. I've probably achieved full granny status by now, but I literally look forward to bedtime so much!

Here are a few of my favorite ways to wind down from the day.

Essential oils
Numerous studies have shown that aromatherapy can have a positive effect on the brain. Lavender, in particular, is great to diffuse in the evenings because of how relaxing and calming it can be. I get most of my essential oils from a local health food shop, but you can also order them online. Here are some signs to look for to ensure you're getting high-quality essential oils. If you're looking for a diffuser, I have this one and really like it!

Face mask
There are so many face masks out there these days, but I typically stick to my tried-and-true bentonite clay. It requires a little more work and clean-up than others, so I like to do it when I have plenty of time to chill out. I always use clay as my base and mix it with either water or ACV. If you wanted to get really extravagant, you could also add certain essential oils or even activated charcoal.

Coconut oil
After a mask or shower, coconut oil is my go-to for moisturizing all over. I've even got Mark using it now! It's so hydrating and I enjoy the smell of it too. I also love that I can use it on my face without breaking out.

Magnesium has an incredible list of benefits, but most notably is its ability to help with insomnia and restless legs. I use Natural Vitality brand in both their powder and topical form. The powder form I'll stir into a glass of water and drink right before crawling into bed. Lately, though, I've been loving their topical cream for sore or stiff muscles. I'll usually rub it along my neck and shoulders before going to sleep.

Calming music
Everyone has their own definition of calming music, but for me, I love anything acoustic - especially piano. If it has words, I'm straining to listen to them or singing along, so just plain piano music playing in the background is the most relaxing to me. Spotify has some great pre-made playlists, like this peaceful piano one, that I love.

I've talked a lot about yoga on the blog lately, but my body craves it like no other workout this time of year. Regardless of the season, though, doing some gentle yoga before bed can do wonders for calming the mind and body down and ensuring a good night's sleep. Plus, when there's such a thing as cozy yoga, why wouldn't you want to do it?!

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