To say that the pandemic has thrown into sharp relief the very existence of what it means to be "well" would be the understatement of the year. With that in mind, a wellness-geared gift means that much more in times where we're filled with hope and optimism (and booster shots), but not quite out of the COVID woods just yet.
And while it's true, we love a bougie wellness buy just as much as anyone, the truth is that some of the most life-transformative wellness purchases I've made this year were squarely in the $20-50 range. (In other words, you can splurge on your wellness routine if you want, but it's by no means a requirement.)
As a wellness writer, I have the unique privilege of testing out a ton of stuff — both inexpensive and wildly so — and while many of them are nice, but don't really do.... anything. Having sussed out the best gems over the course of 2021, I’m here to share my findings on what’s actually worth spending on. Ahead, you'll find the most positive, grounding wellness gifts, straight from my routine to yours.
OstrichPillow Light, $45
When I tell you that this magical circular pillow is the best thing that's ever happened to my sleep routine, I mean it. For years, I've struggled with not being able to sleep anywhere that wasn't a horizontal, bed-like environment (much to my demise during my annual 12-hour flights to Tokyo); however, this lightweight, squishy cloud pillow instantly creates a tranquil environment of calm, quiet nap conditions any time, any place.
Awaken And Refresh Shower Steamers, $15
Transform your shower into an aromatherapeutic spa with these fizzy shower tablets that release a cloud of softly scented mist in your choice of eucalyptus, lavender, rose, orange & mint, or grapefruit.
Lord Jones Hemp-Derived CBD Tincture, $70
My two cents on CBD: Even if it's just a placebo effect, if the ritual of it makes you feel better, then it's still a win. I love adding this subtly minty tincture to herbal teas before bedtime for a soothing, relaxing moment of calm.
The Qi Ultimate Wellness Set,
While the price is somewhat steep (heh), you do get a beautifully-designed glass teapot and four cups to enjoy a blissful cup with company. The included nine blooming flower tea sachets are a truly magnificent sight, not to mention delicious to sip.
Halfmoon Cotton Yoga Blanket, $46
Even if you don't use it all that much, you probably have an old yoga mat (or three) lurking in some forgotten corner of your closet. Reinvigorate your practice — as I have in recent weeks — with this woven yoga blanket. In addition to helping with grip, there's something really grounding about doing Warrior II on a cloth surface. (Plus, it's roomy enough for partner poses as well, if that's your thing.)
Casper Glow Night Light, $35 for two
Yes, I am including a night light — *for grownups* — in here because Casper's version is a major game-changer. In addition to being a chic addition for any home, the backlit design softly diffuses the light so you're not blinded by a bright bulb. Plus, it's equipped with motion sensors so that it illuminates when you're walking by for a midnight bathroom break before softly dimming back to black.
Positive Affirmation Pencils, $7
Talk about the best $7 spent. These positive affirmation pencils make for the perfect stocking stuffer for the fastidious, note-taking, journaling maven on your list.
Sakara Coconut Praline Granola, $16
I'm already a major fan of Sakara. Their cookbook has transformed my home-cooking game, and I drink their chlorophyll water drops every morning without fail. Next thing I plan on carting for myself and friends: Their limited-edition holiday granola, which is jam-packed with oats, pecans, and coconut for a delicious, nutty breakfast or snack.
The Nue Co Stress + Sleep Set, $45
Many melatonin supplements I've tried either induce me into a mini coma or give me nightmares (eek!), which is why The Nue Co.'s valerian root drops have been my sleep aid of choice for years now. I won't be missing out on snapping up a full-size bottle with a miniature Functional Fragrance for a mood-boosting olfactory experience.
Cadence A Capsule A Day,
I know — $90 for a travel pill case is a lot of money. But when I tell you that this has made traveling with my vitamins and prescription medication so easy, I mean it. This has become the first thing I pack for every trip — I didn't travel without it once this year. The individual, magnetic jars make it easy to take a couple of days' worth of pills (as opposed to an entire week), and you can even fill them with your skincare products to avoid packing full-size bottles.
Olly Hello Happy Gummy Supplements, $20
I'll be totally honest here: I'm not entirely sure that these improved my mood from a neurochemical perspective, but that doesn't mean I love them any less. I looked forward to taking these delicious, vitamin D-infused gummy worms every morning, and loved even more that I could readily stock up on them at my local Target.
Theragun Mini, $199
Last year, I gifted Theragun Minis to my sister and my boyfriend — and they both love the muscle-pummeling gadget more now than ever. This new, muted rose colorway is perfect for the design-minded giftee in your life.
WTHN Ear Seed Kit, $45
Add some holiday twinkle to your season with these gold and Swarovski crystal ear seeds that provide acupressure therapy while adding a subtle hint of bling.
Bathing Culture Golden Hour Hydrosol, $20
In the Before Times, I kept this mist by my desk at the office for mid-day face spritzes. Now, it's earned a permanent spot on my WFH setup, where I mist my entire body for an instantly re-invigorated experience. Inhale clarity, exhale bad juju.
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