If you had asked me this time last year if I slept well, I'd tell you that I could sleep on a washing line. Falling asleep and staying asleep used to be very easy for me whereas now things have changed and I don't get as good a nights sleep as I used to. What I've found really helps me at night is having a routine and the familiarity of that routine helps my body to subconsciously know that its bedtime and I relax a lot more easily when I'm in my routine.
If you want me to do a post on how I relax at night and my bedtime routine then let me know in the comments but for now, I am going to share with you a couple of products that have been helping me to relax and drift off to sleep at night.
The first is actually a body scrub from the Sanctuary Spa. I've used products from them in the orange packaging before that I have received in countless giftsets from Boots for YEARS. I love the smell of them as well as the great quality. This Smoothing Silk Polish however is from a Sanctuary Spa line that I hadn't heard of called Sleep and as you've probably gathered already, this range is designed to make you feel calm before you go to sleep. While I've only tried this one product I would definitely say that it works.
|Sanctuary Spa Sleep Smoothing Silk Polish*|
The Smoothing Silk Polish is a light exfoliator set in a relatively rich cream that has been enriched with essential oils that have been specifically chosen for their calming properties. There's Ylang Ylang which Is known to reduce tension and relieve stress making this the perfect scrub for use after a hard days work, Frankincense to clarify and calm the mind and Patchouli which is known to reduce anxiety before going to sleep. As someone who is easily stressed and anxious with a million and one things on her mind, this is the ideal combination of essential oils for me.
The scrub itself is made up of ground coconut shell and while it isn't the least densely packed scrub I've used, it isn't the most abrasive either making it ideal for daily use. Its exfoliating qualities sit somewhere in the middle and you can use it in different ways to get different effects from it which is good because you might not always want a really abrasive scrub before bedtime.
For a more gentle scrub, I'd suggest soaking in the bath and then polishing your skin while it is still damp and for a more abrasive exfoliation, use the Smoothing Silk Polish on dry skin before getting into the bath. I like to use the scrub in the latter way because I then soak in the bath without washing the scrub off my body and I let the essential oils in the polish infuse with the water. The result is quite aromatic and calming which is great just before you're going to sleep as it really helps to relax you.
When I have washed the Smoothing Silk Polish of my skin, my skin looks and feels smooth and soft. It contains almond oil and shea butter which really help to nourish the skin and leave it feeling moisturised. If your skin is particularly dry or scaly I would top up with a more gritty scrub such as the Elemis Lime and Ginger Salt Glow once a week to get rid of all of your dead skin cells and then use this body polish to relax with and lightly buff the skin throughout the week.
The scent of this product is what makes it great to use before bedtime. I've smelt something similar before in a perfume or cologne and I just can't remember what it is but it smells incredible all the same.
The Smoothing Silk Polish is £8 on the Sanctuary Spa website here.
Before going to bed, another part of my evening ritual is to apply a body moisturiser. I like to opt for ones with relaxing and calming scents as I find that I then associate the scent with getting into bed and going to sleep. Scent is a bit of a trigger for me, its nostalgic and it really relaxes me and takes me to that serene, comfortable place. A lot of people get that pillow sprays and its not that the spray actually does anything but the scent that the spray has is relaxing and people then begin to associate it with going to bed when they smell it.
|Sanctuary Spa Relax Cocooning Body Butter*|
The body butter that I have been using most recently is the Sanctuary Spa Cocooning Body Butter from the Relax range. Since I returned home from my honeymoon, I have been going through body moisturiser like its no ones business. I already blogged about the Argan+ Ultra-Rich Body Butter (review here) that I had been using for the first part of the month. It was fabulous at smoothing my sun drenched skin and so I'm saving the last bit in the tub to take away with me to Turkey on Thursday as I know I'll be topping up my tan then. Instead I've been using this one from the Sanctuary Spa and I honestly couldn't be more impressed.
If you've used a body butter from the Sanctuary Spa before then this will come as no surprise- it is a delight to apply. For a body butter, it is very light weight and easy to apply to the skin as it rubs in with ease and is absorbed quickly and dries after a few minutes. The texture is almost whipped, it isn't sticky or oily and it doesn't leave a residue on the skin. I like that I can apply this, pop my PJs on and get straight into bed with minimal fuss. I then pick up my book and read a little before bed each night whilst breathing in the scent of the product on my skin. I've found that since using this body butter at night I really have felt more relaxed before going to sleep and as though I can drift off in a much more settled and smooth fashion. It truly is a wonder product and I think that is down to the scent. Let me tell you- it is incredible.
The Sanctuary Spa have once again carefully selected the essential oils that are blended into this cream, ensuring that they aid relaxation and can ultimately lead to a more peaceful nights sleep. If you're a thinker, someone who gets to bed and suddenly their mind goes into overdrive, then you'll be pleased to know that there's Vetivert in here which helps to calm the mind and Cedarwood which helps to provide a sense of clarity- great for when you cant relax because you're confused and have something on your mind. There is also Labdanum which brings a gentle sense of relaxation by easing tension.
If there's a night where I'm not having a bath before bed, I'll put this body butter on when I get changed for bed regardless and again, there is just something about the scent that really relaxes and calms me. Yes, this body butter is quick and easy to apply and yes, it makes my skin feel ridiculously soft, hydrated and deeply nourished but the reason I love it is for the blend of essential oils and the effect that they have on my mind set and wellbeing. I've dabbled in using essential oils in the past by adding them to my bath water or putting a few drops onto my pillow but I've always found them to be over powering and too strongly focused on one essential oil. The Cocooning Body Butter takes all of the fuss away from choosing and using essential oils as the best for relaxation have already been selected and included in this body butter.
If you're sceptical about the power of essential oils but want to feel relaxed and calm, particularly at night then I cannot urge you enough to try this body butter. You'll have super soft skin and a clear mind, smell great and get a good nights sleep. What more could you want from a body butter?
The Cocooning Body Butter is available from the Sanctuary Spa website for £9.50 here.
You can browse the Sanctuary Spa range and shop online on their website or alternatively you can see what Boots have to offer from the Sanctuary Spa online and in store.
If you have any Sanctuary Spa recommendations then please let me know as I'd love to hear about them!