It’s a fresh month and time for some more health and beauty news and tips from ESP’s Emily Rawlinson. This time we’re talking stress, springtime beauty treats and boxing!

Back to it! Finally we can welcome some normality back into our lives with the lifting of restrictions over the UK. I’m very hopeful that things are now on a steady track and for life to return to a pre-lockdown state but with many more celebrations to make up for the last year.

What have you done first? Have you taken yourself to the salons and had a pamper day? Have you gone to the pub outside to meet with some friends? Have you gone shopping? I have personally done all of these things as I couldn’t wait to be able to see friends that I haven’t seen in over a year and support the local salons and shops.

Feeling Stressed?

Last month was Stress Awareness Month but whatever time of the year it’s always important to monitor your stress levels. However, this can sometimes be really hard and doesn’t always appear in ways you think it might. For example, when I’m stressed and have too much on my mind, my eczema will flare up and I also find myself not looking after it properly which makes it spiral and spread. Even though this has been a trigger for me for many years, I still sometimes suppress acknowledging that I am stressed and have the thought of ‘just crack on’ when really I need to slow down and deal with what is stressing me out.

ARRAN Sense of Scotland which is a bath, body and home fragrance company share their three ideas to help reduce stress. They have some lovely natural products to use too with a new brand purpose to ‘help the world make meaningful connections with nature’ to improve overall wellbeing. Find out more here:

1. Create a Bedroom Sanctuary

One of the absolute best things you can do to reduce stress is to create an area in your home that is dedicated to relaxation. Very often the bedroom is the best place to do this. Quick and affordable updates include crisp bed linens, using calming colours such as blue or green, a pillow spray and scented candles or diffusers. Sandalwood essential oil is also known to help alleviate stress.

2. Have a Ritual Bath

Hot baths are known to reduce blood pressure and it’s also thought that a good sweat from a hot bath can burn as many calories as taking a walk; a brilliant added bonus. Adding in the right products will enhance your bath time experience.

You could also take up the latest trend to sweep the nation – the ritual bath. This transforms an ordinary bath into a ceremony for clearing toxic energy and letting go of anything that isn’t serving you. You can use your bath to help set new intentions. Focus on what’s troubling you and add in fragrances that will help to deal with that – for example, grapefruit and citrus are brilliant for lifting energy levels and rejuvenation.You can also write your troubles down and burn them with a candle. This acts as a physical symbol of letting go, before getting into the bath to cleanse and rejuvenate.

3. Try Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is the use of fragrant plant extracts for therapeutic benefits and to promote health and wellbeing. It is thought to work by stimulating smell receptors to send messages through the nervous system. Some of the best fragrance to reduce stress are lavender, clary sage and spearmint.

Clary sage is a brilliant ingredient that promotes good sleep by helping to reduce the effects of stress, and spearmint is known to help improve memory and balance hormones, but one of its most beneficial properties is stress reduction.

Boxing Fit

Something that majorly helps me with my stress is exercise and especially boxing! Last week I finally went back to boxing after over a year out with my partner Declan. Previously we trained with Marcello Renda for an intense 9 months before the lockdown last year and it felt great to finally be back.

Cello is a former professional boxer who competed from 2004 to 2018 winning titles in multiple weight classes. He’s won Peterborough Sports Personality of the year and currently works as the Head Coach for charity Boxing Futures who support disadvantaged young people through using boxing as an engagement tool and are based in Peterborough, Cambridge and London. Cello also does personal training sessions.

Cello told me – “Its fantastic gyms are open again, its great for peoples physical and mental well-being. I’m sure most people during lockdown were getting frustrated, so now gyms are open its a great way to release any tension!”

Springtime Beauty…

Benefit Galifornia Blush

This is THE perfect spring blush. This golden pink colour is beautiful on all skin tones and gives you a natural looking glow from within. TIP: Apply some gently over the bridge and tip of your nose to give your skin that sun kissed look.

Zara Blossom Blush Perfume

If you’re looking for that summer scent, then look no further and head over to Zara for affordable perfumes. Most of Zara’s perfumes start from £9.99 and the quality is that of high end perfumes. Blossom Blush is by far my favourite out of the ones I have tried as it’s not too intense, not too floral, just light and sweet for the daytime.

Aloe Vera

If you’re someone who easily gets sun burnt or wants to try a natural soothing product then this aloe gel is a must. You can also buy an aloe plant to essentially get the same product however if you are like me and cannot look after plants to save your life then this is a great addition to you beauty kit. This Aloe Soothing Gel by Holika Holika is 99% aloe and instantly soothes the skin. You can also use it as a mask or add it into homemade face masks.

Emily Rawlinson