Top 10 Tips For Winter
It’s still fairly chilly here in New Zealand. In fact I’m writing this rugged up in about four different layers, with a hot cup of Dandelion Chai Tea (this one’s my favourite here) and platter of soaked nuts and chocolate by my side (Pana’s Raw Cacao, Mint and Nuts flavours are my top three picks at the moment, if you’d like to join me you can grab them here).
So I wanted to share with you ten of my top tips to get you through the rest of winter, while staying in tip top shape, healthy, and brimming with vitality. I had the extreme fortune of being able to spend 3 1/2 weeks in the North of Italy a few weeks back, so definitely got my fair share of mid-winter vitamin D. But more than that, getting away from your normal environment for a short time during winter can do wonders for your mental and physical health.
If you can get somewhere warm that’s great, but if not, there’s still so much you can do. Take a weekend away stay to a cheap little B&B somewhere with your partner, family or a group of friends. Or ask around in case a friend, family member or colleague has a holiday house (or campervan) which isn’t being shown much mid-winter love. Head away, turn off all social media (I know it’s a challenge, but trust me it’s 100% worth it!), and see if you can truly spend a few days completely away from the demands and routine of your everyday life. Recharging your batteries like this is so wonderful for your physical and mental wellbeing, and will likely mean you’ll come rearing back the following week with even more vigour for life, work, study, or whatever it is you’re doing. You might even have an epiphany along the way as to where you want life to take you next (I know I had a few).
While you’re cuddling up by the fire with a good book and some delicious home cooked food (maybe try out a new recipe here), here are ten more of my top tips for getting through the rest of winter with a smile.
Body Brush Those Bumpy BIts
During winter, we’re often covered up with leggings and stockings for months on end, leaving our skin underneath quite dry and flaky. Body brushing is not only a great exfoliator to give you smooth skin, but also helps to reduce ingrown hairs, eliminate toxins, increase circulation, and importantly stimulate your lymphatic system. All this helps with detoxification, and optimal internal health no matter where your health’s at.
Our beautiful Bodecare brushes are completely chemical free, cruelty free, vegan, use natural bristles from the agave plant, and are made from FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified timber. The FSC is an independent NGO that promotes responsible management of the worlds forests – which means extra much needed protection for our incredible tropical wildlife (orangutans, elephants, monkeys, rhinoceros, and bears).
Wondering how one dry body brushes? You brush your entire body when clean and dry, before your shower/bath. Stroke upwards towards your lymph nodes and heart, brushing each area a handful of times before moving up. Then after your shower, slather yourself in coconut oil – skin as soft as a baby’s bot. The whole process takes me literally about 90 seconds. I’ve had friends say it’s made a considerable difference to any rough, red or cellulite-y patches too.
To check out our body brushes, click here.
Go Brown Safely
As you know, there are significant dangers to baking for hours in the sun, especially in New Zealand and Australia where our ozone layer is thinner and less protective.
Fake tanning has become a popular and supposedly ‘safe’ alternative to sun bathing and tanning beds. However most fake tans contain some really nasty ingredients which are absorbed into your skin and bloodstream, affecting everything from our hormones to endocrine system to digestion.
My favourite brand Eco Tan contains no synthetics or toxic ingredients. Eco Tan is certified organic, cruelty-free and whenever possible uses eco-friendly natural inks and recycled paper. They use gorgeous natural and organic ingredients such as cacao (yum), herbs, flower extracts, fruit extracts and chamomile to create their beautiful colours. You can use their Invisible Tan for a quick golden tan overnight, while my favourite is their Winter Skin which builds up a slow and super natural tan over a few days, so you can control how much or little you want.
To read more about Eco Tan, click here.
Alternatively, you can make delicious powder blends like my Mexican Hot Chocolate Mix or my Velvet Beetroot Lattes, which you can just stir up with some plain plant milk and hot water for a delicious hot treat.
Reduce our landfill burden with these gorgeous reusable cups
While we’re talking about hot bevvies, it’s definitely worth mentioning these hot little reusable cup numbers. We recently got in this gorgeous range of limited edition KeepCups in glass and cork, and they’re super cute.
Did you know 500 billion disposable cups are thrown out globally every year? That’s about 75 disposable cups for every single person on the planet. While the lid of a coffee cup can be recycled (although how many people do you know who actually do this? Ok – I have been known to filter through office rubbish bins to move errant coffee cup lids to the recycling), the base of the cup is pure landfill. As the inner is lined with plastic, it can’t be separated from the paper outer for recycling.
If you’re a regular takeaway beverage drinker, there’s no excuse but to not pick yourself up one of these fine little glass cup specimens. Not only will you look super stylish, but you can be proud that you’ll be saving a little bit of the planet every morning with your daily cup of Joe.
Browse our Glass & Cork KeepCups here.
Keep your face hydrated and nourished
I’m not a big makeup wearer, but I do like to keep my skin hydrated and protected year round. My favourite daily moisturiser is Sally B’s Skin Yummies Tinted Moisturiser. It’s super lightweight, packed full of only good-for-you organic and natural ingredients, and has a subtle natural touch of colour to it. This makes it perfect to wear alone for a fresh look, or my favourite – under a few sweeps of Ere Perez’s natural bronzer (I use the My Blush tone here).
Containing only natural and organic ingredients, this tinted moisturiser is a great swap from the usual chemical-filled foundations and tinted moisturisers found at your local chemist or supermarket. Not only will it help make your skin look flawless, but it will also nourish it with wonderful ingredients such as organic aloe leaf juice and hibiscus flower extract. No harmful chemicals, and no animal testing.
Shop Sally B’s Skin Yummies Tinted Moisturiser here.
Try oiling it up this winter
If you haven’t yet tried moisturising your body or face with oils, then you really have to give it a go. While we’ve been brought up thinking that if you put oils on your skin, you’ll have oily skin, it’s quite the opposite. The skin is naturally made up of oils, and when we wash our faces and bodies (especially if you’re using harsh chemical-laden body washes or soaps), it strips it of these natural lubricants. The skin then tries to overcompensate by producing more oils, and this is what can often lead to oily skin.
Instead if you’re washing your skin regularly, you want to help replace those natural oils to rebuild your skin’s natural protective layer. I love using an oil based serum on my face in the evenings (try Sally B’s Nighttime Antioxidant Serum here, or Annmarie’s Herbal Facial Oil here), and on my body, Annmarie’s Coconut Body & Face Oil.
Oils absorb much better with a little bit of water, so when you get out of the shower, only partially dry yourself so you’re still a bit damp, then apply the oil all over your body. You’ll find it spreads a lot easier, you use a lot less, and you end up with a much better result. The small molecular structure of coconut oil allows for easy absorption through your pores, giving your skin a soft, smooth texture. It makes an ideal treatment for the relief of dry or rough skin, and it’s also great for soothing sun damaged skin.
Annmarie’s daily organic Coconut Body & Face Oil (which can also be used as a massage oil) is a unique blend of organic oils infused with nutrient rich wildcrafted herbs, to nourish and hydrate your skin. It also contains botanical essential oils that will help you stay beautifully centered and calm throughout the day.
Once you’ve tried using oils on your body and face, I promise you won’t want to return to the filler-laden creams of old!
Shop Annmarie Gianni’s Coconut Body & Face Oil here.