5 Easy Ways to De-Stress During the Holidays

 

By Nicole Kwan

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The end of the year (and everything that brings) is sneaking up on us– fast. Before you let yourself get super-overwhelmed, take stock on what you can do for your own self-care so you always have little ways to find calm. Bring these with you when you’re rushing toward that end-of-year work deadline, dealing with family travel plans, or exhausted from back-to-back holiday parties (lucky you!).

Here are a few of my favorite ways to stay sane through the holidays, and a few items on my destress wish list.

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1. Add plants to your home.

 

Bringing greenery inside can turn your place into your own little refuge, especially when nothing is flourishing outside. A study published in the Journal of Physiological Anthropology found that interacting with indoor plants can reduce physiological and psychological stress. Plus, NASA research found that houseplants can remove up to 87% of air toxins, so you’ll have cleaner air to breathe.

The Philodendron Green plant above from The Sill is good for beginner plant parents!

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  1. Curl up to a (fake) fireplace.

No, I’m not talking about the fireplace channel on your TV. I found this Wildwood Candle Co. soy candle in Portland, Oregon and the crackling wood wick and fragrance make me feel like I’m in front of a roaring fireplace. A study from the University of Alabama found that sitting by a fire reduced blood pressure, and for me, even the one candle does the trick. The Firelane I candle has notes of smoked woods, balsam, and pine, making it perfect for a city apartment wishing it was in the country.

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  1. Drink booze-free cocktails.

Drinking to de-stress is a common default, but alcohol really isn’t the best long-term solution. Non-alcoholic cocktails at bars are becoming more of a thing (Grub Street said so!), and you can do the same for yourself at home. Seedlip calls itself the “world’s first distilled non-alcoholic spirits.” Their Spice 94 is aromatic, earthy, and woodsy and their Garden 108 is herbal, grassy, and floral. Serve them with tonic or mixers.

Not convinced to go dry? A small British study found that “normal” drinkers who stopped drinking for five weeks reported better sleep and concentration.

 

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4. Indulge in a bath house visit.

Last year, I stumbled upon Aire Ancient Baths in Seville and a visit to the New York City location has been on my wishlist. Going to the candle-lit bath house is like a ritual: You move through each bath at your own pace, experiencing temperatures ranging from 102 to 50 degrees F, and taking a float in a salt water bath. The hot water relaxes muscle tension while the cold water is reinvigorating.

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  1. Hand wash your delicates.

 

Most of the time, you probably throw your bras into the laundry with your clothes, but taking the time to hand wash is worth it (and nicer to your bras!). Plus, most of the time is hands off when you leave your delicates in to soak. I use the Linden wash from Journelle, which is made from plant-derived ingredients and doesn’t have sodium lauryl sulfate, phthalates, or parabens. I love that the delicate scent lingers and reminds me to slow down.

For me, this covers de-stressing in a number of ways. First, it makes me slow down and practice a little mindfulness by paying attention to the process and noticing everything from the water temperature to the fragrance. Plus, a Princeton University study found that physical clutter increases stress, so checking laundry off my to-do list and moving clean clothes into my drawers is good for my brain.

Fore more ways to de-stress this crazy busy season check out the Hinted list here.

Why You Should Be Using CBD Products Every Damn Day

Unless you’ve been avoiding the internet for the past 5 years or so (which we’re assuming you haven’t, since you’re here right now), you’re probably aware that ganja is in. Recreational marijuana is now legal in nine states, medical pot is legal in 30 — and we’re willing to bet more states will jump on board in the coming years.

And though we don’t advocate for the abuse of a substance of any kind and adhere to Cher Horowitz rule that it’s “one thing to spark up a doobie and get laced at parties, but it is quite another to be fried all day,” it’s hard to argue with the fact that marijuana, and even more specifically CBD, has major health benefits — which is exactly why the Hinted list Must Have CBD Products got our attention.

CBD Oil Benefits: You Should Be Using These Products Every Damn Day | Hinted
CannaSmack Luxe Hydrating Cleansing Oil, $20-$60 at CannaSmack.

While it may be true that the use of marijuana has become more acceptable in recent years, and the stereotype of the skeevy, lazy stoner is starting to fade. But the stigma against people who use marijuana products is not totally gone. Which, to be honest, is a damn shame — especially since there are a lot of amazing products that don’t even have THC, the element of marijuana that causes you to get high. If alcohol can be totally mainstream, why can’t marijuana products? You can’t rub vodka on your face and expect it to be glowing and hydrated (quite the opposite, actually), unlike this CannaSmack Luxe Hydrating Cleansing Oil that is pretty much moisturizing magic for your skin.

We wanted to get the facts about CBD (and bust some myths), so we went straight to the source and asked Kate Dittloff, the author of Must Have CBD Products, about the miracle product and gained even more respect for the stuff than we even had before. Kate says she discovered a topical CBD salve on a trip to California that helped her with what she describes as “pretty severe neck issues,” which led her to try CBD Honey. The rest, as they say, was history.

Here are some reasons you should be utilizing CBD on a daily basis.

More: The Secret to Glowing Skin 

Adios to Pain

CBD Oil Benefits: You Should Be Using These Products Every Damn Day | Hinted
Shea Brand CBD Natural Pain Reliever Salve, $30; at Shea Brand.

Yes, we want you to get in on all the yummy beauty benefits of CBD (and did we mention it can light your sex life on fire?), but the greatest benefit of CBD is definitely pain mitigation. Kate swears by the stuff for her chronic pain issues.

“With my neck pain and issues, I often wake-up unable to even turn my head, it really sucks!,” she says. “First thing in the morning, right after my shower I use CBD Salve (my go-to now is Shea Brand CBD Natural Pain Reliever mentioned in my list) which loosens up my neck and helps reduce the pain within a few minutes.”

She adds the CBD Honey to her morning and evening tea and finds it helps her manage pain throughout her whole day.

“I’m also an avid surfer, and when there’s good surf here on Folly beach, I’ll be out for hours on end,” Kate adds. “Needless to say, this does not make my neck very happy and puts a ton of stress on it, but quitting surfing is not an option. On those days where I know that I’ll be out in the water, I always use the salve, take the honey, but also add CBD gummies which I’ve found are very long lasting.”

Bonus: Pets can totally get in on the CBD-for-pain-management train, too.

You’ll Sleep Better

“I can’t say enough regarding how much CBD has helped me manage my neck pain, but also has helped with my anxiety and sleep,” says Kate, who adds that drinking her CBD tea before bed not only helps pain, but helps her sleep soundly through the night without waking up several times like she used to.

More: Got the Cold Weather Blues? These Outfits Will Totally Give You a Lift

It’s a Natural Alternative

CBD Oil Benefits: You Should Be Using These Products Every Damn Day | Hinted
Inner Peace Edible Nano CBD Blend, $86.99; at Mowellens.

Are you worried about the negative impact over-the-counter medications might be having on your body? CBD to the rescue!

“I love CBD because it’s all natural and actually reduces inflammation, and because of dietary restrictions I’m unable to take ibuprofen, so when it comes to reducing that inflammation, CBD does the trick!” says Kate. “I recommend it to all of my friends and family who’ve had similar issues and have only gotten awesome feedback. Personally I prefer the all-natural solution as opposed to this that have chemicals and components that were created in a lab.”

No High Necessary

This is the major myth we wanted to bust about CBD: You can take full advantage of its benefits without getting stoned.

“I think there is a major misconception and unnecessary worry that CBD will get you high and have psychoactive affects, it absolutely does not!,” Kate revealed. “Not once when I’ve used CBD, whether it’s through a vaporizer, orally or via topical solutions, have I ever felt under the influence or high.”

If you want to incorporate CBD into your life, but aren’t really sure how, check out Kate’s full list here.

Good Vibes Only

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When a Feminist Meets a Bikini

Must-haves for summer? Kindness, confidence and a whole lotta good vibes! This according to Cameron Armstrong (above, center), founder and creator of a new line of bathing suits called Kitty and Vibe that serves up all three.

Armstrong felt that, as a feminist, no woman should feel bad when trying on clothes, bathing suits most of all. So she created Kitty and Vibe, a line of reversible, flattering suits with a custom cut feeling that come with their own upbeat playlists, each one designed to make you want to dance around the room as you try it on. Voila, a new shopping experience that is fun and enjoyable. Check out her Hinted list here.

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“Our classic cuts and revolutionary sizing make it feel like the suit was custom made for you,” she explains. Every suit comes in a reversible, limited edition print, are all the same price ($95), and are accompanied by a curated to fit different personality types.

Armstrong, who graduated from UNC, considers herself a marketer, not a designer. “I was by no means a design major. I created the concept and a sketch and then handed it over to someone who made the sketch come to life.” That was a year ago. Now the concept is a company and the company is growing — fast.

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Her suits appeal to women of shapes and personalities. Not all body issues are necessarily about weight, she explains, since for her the moment of “there’s gotta be a better way” came when she was feeling self conscious about her back — and the acne she has battled for years. “I was in a dressing room, trying on suits, and when I looked in the mirror I didn’t like how I looked. I have always had back acne. The saleswoman wanted me to come out and show her, and I didn’t want to.”

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Like every good marketing major, Armstrong looked for an opportunity that would be universal and have a broad appeal. “A swimsuit is an item of clothing everybody has: Socks, swimsuits. It’s a consumer item that’s not going away, not just a trending item.”

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So she found the pain-point and decided to solve it. “Going swimsuit shopping is something everybody hates. It’s so painful. I set out to research why is it so painful. One reason is because of the inconsistent sizing. Then when I looked into sizing, the main thing I noticed was the inconsistent cuts. I always get what I call diaper butt. My sister had not enough coverage and her butt crack showed.” So she started measuring people and truly everyone is different. Turns out the inseam matters a lot, and her sister is three inches taller that she is — so her suit needs a longer inseam. Better fit, better experience. Armstrong likes to remind people: “It’s not your body, but the cut of the suit that’s the problem. This is a problem that she wants to check off as: Solved!

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“I never want to ask women to go into a dressing room if they dread it. So I wanted to create a fun experience. I have always been a dancer and wanted to bring this piece. So I imagine trying on your suit while singing in the mirror, singing into a hairbrush, winking to yourself, totally living in the moment. I decided I would create these Vibes, and made each playlist match a personality: The Cameron the James and the Ashton.”

Stop what you’re doing, add a Kitty and Vibe suit to your Hinted list, and you could win one. Armstrong is giving away one suit (in the form of a $95 credit) to a lucky hinter.

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Dance around the room, and tell yourself one positive thing about the way you look, then try on your suit, and you’ll feel positive about it. Actually, we want you to always feel positive about your self. And use Hinted to create the life you want, one list at a time.

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Your Sign and Style to Match

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If you’re a Virgo like Beyonce, you’ll be balancing a lot of new opportunities, with a major focus on family (hello Rumi and Sir). Narrowing your range of vision to only projects that really speak to you—and that you want to work on for the long haul, will help you prioritize. November and January are full of romance, so look for love to blossom then. If you have been thinking of pulling the trigger with big changes at work, April is the time to shake things up and go in a fresh and innovative direction!  Style wise this all means feel-good pieces that make you feel like its easy to get what you want.

 

 

Not a Virgo? For style hints to match your star sign, click through to our September Zodiac list on Hintd, and to find out what Cosmopolitan’s astrologer Aurora Tower has in store for you in the coming month, read on, here.

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LIBRA: Try to pump the brake a little bit, and stay as mellow as possible this month. Treat yourself to pair of “go with the flow” earrings that you’ll wear as soon as your social life kicks up a notch on the 25th! But prioritize taking care of yourself more than saying YES to every invitation that comes along.

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PISCES: This is one of your best months of the year for romance! Once the weather cools down your love life warms up to cuddly sweater status. So make time to get out, socialize and meet new people. The annual full moon in your sign on the 6th is especially sexy so if you are looking for someone special, be clear about what you want and go for it!

 

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SAGITTARIUS: You are on a tear at work so say yes to any and all career opportunities at come up now, and wear boots that mean business. But home matters are important too, so pay attention to your intuition during the full moon on the 6th, and remember that your choices impact those you love as well.

 

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ARIES: Work, work, work—You love the crisp momentum of the fall and can power through your to-do list at maximum speed right now. Jump on a new project with a graphic top that’s cool enough for late warm days and works all fall. The 2nd is an especially powerful day to put plans into action.

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SCORPIO: You tend to be a bit stubborn, but you also know that teamwork is the key to lasting success. This month let your accessories do the same and stack a batch of knock-out bangles. Your more the merrier attitude will help you hit a major work milestone on the 9th.
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 5.25.43 PMAQUARIUS: There has been a lot of excitement and changes in your life recently, and now is the time to get yourself a pair of comfy, stylish sneakers and take long walks to reflect. Romance is hot too, especially on the 2nd, so if you’re still single- don’t spend TOO much time solo.

 

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GEMINI: You tend to be quite social, but this month you are loving the simpler things, like an easy eyelet top to wear on these last beach days. A work breakthrough around the full moon on the 6th means you should feel free to mix business with pleasure.
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 5.19.33 PMCAPRICORN: This is a great month to hit the road for a trip, or sign up for a class you have been itching to take. You are envisioning your next exciting projects and fresh ideas and inspiration will help you, especially around the 12th. Get yourself an eye-catching tote and set off on a new journey.

 

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LEO: You are still riding high from the series of exciting eclipses in your sign over the past few weeks. If there are big plans you have been wanting to put into action, do it now and put a bow on it! The 2nd is a great time to pull the trigger. Staying focused, rather than scattering your energy, will help you deliver.

 

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CANCER: You are busy, busy, busy this month- which is just the way you like it! Meeting new people is a big focus so stay open and organized with a bright new bag. Spending time with siblings is also auspicious now, especially around the 19th.

 

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TAURUS: This is a pretty darn romantic month for you, so count your lucky stars! Love, fun and playfulness are highlighted now, so try to put stress aside, and slip into a pair of extremely trendy jeans. The 19th is an especially positive day. You are also loving nesting, so invest in beautifying your pad.

Vitamin C and a Giveaway!

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We love happy skin. That’s why we’re obsessed with Vitabrid Vitamin C12 FACE Brightening Powder, the latest K-beauty product to calm and light up your skin. Francesca, our Content Director, swears by it. “It worked instantly, even after SPF-slathered beach days.”  Now you and two friends can win it! No purchase necessary. Just sign up for Hintd and use the referral link in your profile to invite two friends and when they sign up, you’ll all be entered to win kits. Then check out our citrus themed list. Think of it as your summer style spritzer.

Happy National Best Friends Day

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We’re celebrating by giving you and two friends the chance to win Glossier gift cards 🙂 Just start hinting, it’s that simple!

Win $50 gift cards to our favorite beauty brand for you + two friends by signing up for Hintd and inviting them to start their Hintd lists using your unique referral code. Once they do, you will all be eligible to win $50 gift cards to Glossier!  What’s more beautiful than that?