7 calming products the BALANCE team is loving for Stress Awareness Month
April is Stress Awareness Month, so we thought it ever so prudent to bring our monthly round-up of the things we are loving with an added sprinkle of de-stressing magic. From taking the stress out of the kitchen, to calming tricks for the bathroom and the bedroom, we’ve got products to help you breathe better, calm your soul, and even help you understand your brain better.
Take the stress out of dinner time, without the guilt factor of ordering a takeaway packed in plastic cartons (all too often wrapped in more plastic, before being put in a plastic bag – what is that about?). Mooli is here to bring you an Indian food delivery with a difference. No greasy, oily, overly creamy curries with overcooked veggies around here, the dishes in their monthly Thali Club are inspired by Ayurvedic practices, so you get a perfectly balanced meal that aids digestion. And while all that might sound terribly virtuous for your weekend curry night, it’s also ridiculously tasty, with each thali including a meat or veggie curry, a comforting dal, Indian slaw, bread and rice – and a cheeky Indian desert to round things off nicely. Mooli’s food trays are fully recyclable and the thali plates, made from naturally fallen palm leaves, are compostable. There’s also 50% off your first order. SHOP NOW
If you’re feeling anxious or have trouble falling asleep, breathing exercises are The One when it comes to stress reduction. moonbird is a nifty little compact biofeedback device that you simply hold in the palm of your hand to help you get the most benefit from your breathwork. Not only does it guide your breathing, it also connects to an app to monitor your heartbeat, so you can physically see the difference you’re making to your body’s relaxation. You can use the device with or without the app.
To begin, you simply shake the device to ‘wake it up’ and then place your thumb on the black sensor. Once your thumb is on the sensor, the moonbird ‘breathes’ at a certain pace that you can set/change in the app. It works by ‘flapping its wings’, which you’ll feel inflating and deflating in the palm of your hand – imitating the movement of your lungs. You inhale as the moonbird inflates and exhale as it deflates. It takes a few minutes to get into the rhythm. After a few breaths, you will start to feel your body relaxing. When tracking a breathing exercise through your app, you’ll see three types of biofeedback statistics: heart rhythm, heart rate variability, and heart coherence. It’s a great device to help you keep on top of your wellbeing. SHOP NOW
Home fragrance and wellness maestros Made by Zen has designed a range of rather stunning diffusers to fill your space with the smell of calming aromatherapy oils. And they even feature specially designed breathing lights to help with those breathwork exercises. Never mind those ugly plug-in diffusers of old, Made By Zen’s diffusers deserve their rightful place front and centre on the mantelpiece (they’re more stylish than our best vase, to be fair). We especially love the Arran, made from sustainably sourced hand-cut bamboo with an LED mood light, a great friend to our more mindful moments, and the rather ambient Fern Ultrasonic Aroma Diffuser in its tinted glass shade. And relax. SHOP NOW
There’s something about watching the flickering flame of a candle, combined with its billowing scent, that just soothes the soul. In fact, The Last Kingdom’s Eliza Butterworth recently told us lighting a candle was how she resisted a restless night’s sleep. (Just remember to blow out the flame before you doze off). Moo & Yoo’s new softwood and floral scent vegan candle is the perfect bedtime companion to destress from a day of work. Not only does the sustainable wooden wick create a gentle crackle to add to the ambience, but its glass tumbler and bamboo lid are reusable. Ultimate relaxation and a new pot for those kirby grips that inevitably seem to end up down the back of the sofa. What’s not to love? SHOP NOW
Lying on a bed of nails doesn’t sound like the most relaxing way we’ve ever heard of spending an evening, but stay with us here. Because Bed of Nails is the name of a brand that has produced acupressure mats and pillows covered in non-toxic and recyclable plastic nails (8,820 of them to be exact) and, here comes the science bit, they work like acupuncture needles to stimulate the body’s energy pathways (aka meridians) and encourage holistic healing, calmness and relaxation. Even J Lo and Britney are fans, so join them in quitting that Insta scroll to lie down on one with a good book before bed. Stress? What stress is that you speak of? SHOP NOW
Basically the science of the brain put into layman’s terms, this new book by solution-focused psychotherapist Gin Lalli helps us to stop our stress buckets being full to the brim. Fascinating and easily digestible, Gin’s work helps us to understand where negative feelings are coming from, and how to eliminate them for good. Her USP for explaining neuroscience to the non-science-y among us also extends to her fabulous podcast Stress Bucket Solutions. Don’t know about you, but we’re feeling all empowered. SHOP NOW
Stress can stop sleep, and sleep can stop stress, so anything we can do to get a more pleasing night of slumber and we’re all over it. Starting with our sheets. Never mind silk or Egyptian cotton, because bamboo is the fabric du jour, Not only is it luxurious, it comes from one of the most sustainable plants in the world; growing up to a metre a day, needing a third less water than cotton, not requiring chemicals to grow, oh and releasing 35% more oxygen than most hardwood trees. It’s also softer and more breathable than cotton. All About Sleep have an organic bamboo bedding set (2 pillowcases, deep fitted sheet and duvet) that is thermal regulating, thus stopping you sweating in summer and feeling icey in winter. They also have a light-blocking, noise muffling sleep mask that is just the ticket for a daylight meditation session, as well as for making you feel pleasingly cocooned of a night time. SHOP NOW