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Why the gift of self-care is the best you can give to others – and yourself – this festive season

Why the gift of self-care is the best you can give to others – and yourself – this festive season

There’s no denying that we are living in stressful times. With rising costs, a global health crisis, climate change, long working hours and mounting responsibilities, life can, at times, become overwhelming. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the number of people suffering from depression globally went up 20% between 2005 and 2015. And, since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG) reports that calls to their hotline initially doubled and continue to rise. This is why, now more than ever, we should be making self-care a priority.

Self-care: Why it matters

The term ‘self-care’ may seem like *yet another* buzzword. But the benefits of engaging in it on a regular basis can be profound, both in the long- and short-term.

There is a ton of research indicating that making it part of your daily routine can encourage better physical and mental wellbeing. This includes improved cardiovascular health, lower blood pressure and reduced stress and anxiety levels.

When it comes to self-care, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. But it can be any activity that you find enjoyable and keeps you in balance, whether it be indulging in a bubble bath, going for a hike or joining a yoga class. It’s important as it helps you nurture your relationship with yourself. Not only that, but it also gives you the opportunity to switch off and unplug, even if it’s just for a few minutes each day. In fact, according to recent studies, 20 minutes of daily self-care is all you need to start reaping the many, many benefits!

The power of scent

Scent is a powerful sense, with the ability to invoke memories and uplift your mood. This is the basis of holistic healing treatment, aromatherapy – something we consider when creating our scented Terres d’Afrique blends.

The olfactory system responds to certain essential oils based on their properties. Some of these, such as vetiver and myrrh, are known for their calming abilities. Others, such as cypress and peppermint, are invigorating and can provide an instant energy boost.

At Terres d’Afrique, we combine pure African essential oils with carrier oils of marula, Kalahari melon and manketti, all of which are ethically sourced. We use them because they are rich in the essential fatty acids necessary to regenerate the skin on a deeper level. Suitable for all skin types, our body oils are also able to restore the skin’s natural lipid barrier.

The result? Skin that is soft and supple as well as mental calm and clarity. Truly the best of both worlds!

The gift of self-care

Knowing the importance of self-care in promoting positive physical and mental health means that we should all be indulging in it as often as possible. Some people, however, may need a little incentive.

Gifting someone a luxury self-care product – or a full set for the complete experience – is not only thoughtful but a great way to encourage them to make ‘me-time’ more of a priority.

Maybe you need to be indulging in more rest and relaxation yourself? Turn bathtime into a soul-nourishing and heaven-scented self-care ritual by adding aromatic skincare and body oil to the mix. This is one way to unwind and restore both body and mind.

Our top self-care picks

  • Want to kick back and relax but your skincare routine beckons? Spread on the Terres d’Afrique Deep Cleansing Mask and leave it on for 20 minutes to work its magic.
  • Want to gift a guaranteed energy boost? The Terres d’Afrique Aroma Body Oil: Island Greens contains ginger and lime essential oils to boost your energy level.
  • Want to target muscle aches? The Terres d’Afrique Myrrh Body Scrub sloughs away dead skin cells while easing pain and tension.
  • Want to chase away negative thoughts? The Terres d’Afrique Aroma Body Oil: Tropical Dusk contains a mood-uplifting blend of ylang-ylang and geranium.

As American writer, feminist and civil rights leader, Audre Lorde, once said: ‘Self-care is not self-indulgence; it is self-preservation.’ This is why you should give the gift of self-care to those you care about – yourself included! – this festive season. Whether it’s a sumptuous body butter, effective natural skincare or silky body oil blends, just add a cup of tea, light some candles and enjoy the chill vibes. You deserve it!