If you’re anything like me, you spend December in a whirlwind of long work hours, extra parties and obligations, traveling, and freaking out about finding just the right gift for all your friends and family members.
While I can’t help you with your extra work obligations, I hope this list will make finding that special gift just a little easier. This is a list of things I use, love, and find helpful in maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
I’ve included some green beauty suggestions for the pretty ladies (and even men), some products and services for keeping a healthy diet, my favorite apps and websites, and more.
1. Green Beauty
Conventional beauty/grooming products are loaded with weird, hard to pronounce chemicals that can build up in your cells, congest your liver, and impair your body’s natural repair mechanisms. I’ve tried a ton of green products over the years. Some have been so-so, but others are total game changers. Here are a few of my favorites.
Soapwalla Deodorant Cream. It might seem strange at first to rub a gray cream into your pits, but once you start you’ll never go back. It’s smooth, non-irritating and smells divine. Not to mention, it actually works!
Hurraw Lip Balm. Since the day I first used this stuff many (many) years ago, I’ve never used anything else. The smoothest, softest feeling balm you’ve ever used, and it comes it a tom of amazing (all natural) scents. Plus, if you order straight from them, they include a personalized note and an extra balm to try.
One Love Organics Skin Care. Made close by on St. Simon’s Island in Georgia, this company makes some great skincare. The moisture mist and Vitamin C serum are both great, but my absolute favorite product they make is the Vitamin D face cleanser. It starts off as a dry oil you rub into your face, then you can splash it clean with water and it dissolves right off. It removes all mascara and stubborn makeup, you can run it straight onto your eyelids and lashes with no irritation. It also contains natural chemical exfoliants, so your skin feels amazingly smooth after you rinse. Plus, it smells like pineapples!
RMS Beauty. Another local(ish) company based out of Charleston, RMS is makeup that’s good for your skin. Most of it comes in easy to use pots in gorgeous colors to basically finger paint your face. Their most popular product is their luminizers. These come in multiple colors, choose one that fits your skin tone and shade, then swipe it below your brow, in the inner eye corners and across the top of your cheekbones for a lit-from-within glow.
2. Healthy Eating
All of the products and services below will help anyone one your list eat (and drink) healthier. Perfect for the foodies in your life.
BKR water bottle. I take at least one of these bottles with me everywhere I go. They are glass, so water still tastes like water out of them. The thick silicone sleeve lends grip and protection to the glass, and comes in tons of great colors. And the shape and size of these guys is just perfect for toting, holding and drinking. They are so well designed that just setting one on my desk makes me want to drink a ton of water every day.
Hot Logic Mini. Bringing a warm lunch to work every day just got way easier. Hot Logic is a small bag with a hot plate in the bottom of it. Just put your food in the pyrex container that comes with it, the food goes into the bag, and when you get to work you plug it in. By the time lunch comes around you’ve got hot food ready to go.
Blue Apron. If your excuse for not eating healthy is that you don’t have enough time, you’ve got no more excuses. Blue Apron delivers fresh ingredients right to your door, with easy, step-by-step directions to make delicious dinner. There are so many great recipes to choose from, and the website is super easy to use. Just make your selections and your groceries just show up at your door.
While technology has become a barrier for wellness as of late, there are new apps and websites available to help anyone on your gift list on their wellness journey.
Headspace. This is a fantastic app that makes meditation easy. It’s free to start, but you can gift the full version with unlimited access to guided meditations. With our stressful lifestyles, meditation can be such an asset.
YogaGlo. If you don’t have time to go to the gym or a full yoga class, Yogaglo is the answer. $18 per month will get your recipient unlimited access to yoga and Pilates classes. They are searchable by duration, level, body part, style and much more.
Real Plans. A menu organizing service to make healthy eating easy. They provide recipes and grocery lists, personalized to you. You can choose from many different diets (vegetarian, whole 30, classic healthy, etc.), put in the number of people in your family, and it spits out your meals for the week.
4. Self Care
I’ve written about the importance of self-care here. What a fantastic gift!
Acupuncture/Massage Gift Certificate. We offer gift certificates for both acupuncture and massage here at our office. You can choose one or the other, or just make it for either and the recipient can choose. If you come into the office you can get a nice pretty certificate for gifting – but if you’re short on time just order it online and print out the receipt. Who wouldn’t love a massage for Christmas?
CBD. This years most popular wellness trend. But it’s more than just a trend, cannabis was used for health thousands of years ago in China. You can read all about the history and the benefits here. It’s the Wild West of cannabis right now, so it’s important to be careful where you’re getting your product. You could spend an arm and a leg on something that just doesn’t work. There are so many factors that go into the quality of a product, from the mg of CBD, to whether it’s full spectrum or isolate, to what terpenes or other ingredients are contained the product to form the “entourage effect”. Thankfully, we have done a lot of homework on this so that you don’t have to. Our office is carrying both a topical CBD oil and an internal tincture of great quality. We’ve been getting great feedback from patients on these particular products.
Any other great ideas to add? Leave them in the comments below!
Elizabeth Allen is an acupuncturist in Greenville, South Carolina, specializing in pain management, women’s health, and psycho-emotional issues. She’s passionate about helping people feel their best and sharing her wealth of knowledge with the community. Elizabeth is the owner of AcuMed Spa, on Wade Hampton Boulevard. Appointments can be made by calling 864-451-4313, or scheduled online here.