UK Lifestyle and Interiors Blog

Interiors, lifestyle, arts and culture blog by award-winning writer, Nicole Mullen

Unwinding with Nathalie Bond*

Research suggests that taking a regular warm bath can have a greater effect on mood than physical exercise. So, what better excuse than to escape to the tub? Read on for my tips on unwinding after a long day...

It’s 5:30pm, and the working day has drawn to a close. Emails have been answered, heels tossed aside, and a chilled glass of wine perches upon the windowsill. The soft glow of a scented candle throws shadows around the room; fluffy towels have been placed on heated rails, and the temperature of the water adjusted until just-so. Himalayan bath salts have been sprinkled, and a few drops of essential oil dispensed, coupled with reading material arranged atop a strategically-placed bath rack. A deep breath escapes before, finally, the body is submerged in water…

‘I am sure there are things that can’t be cured by a good bath, but I can’t think of one,’ wrote poet and novelist, Sylvia Plath and, I must say, I agree. There is something about a long soak in the tub that instantly calms the body and mind. Perhaps it’s the gentle ripple of warm water against the skin, or the comforting knowledge of a locked door? Whatever it may be, research suggests that taking a regular warm bath can have a greater effect on mood than physical exercise. So, what better excuse than to escape to the tub?

Taking a bath has been proven to uplift your mood. Here’s my mood-enhancing bath set-up…

Taking a bath has been proven to uplift your mood. Here’s my mood-enhancing bath set-up…

I have long-since whiled away the hours within the depths of a warm bath. In school, I rewarded a long day of learning with a copy of (the sadly now-defunct) LOOK Magazine, a steaming mug of tea and an abundance of Radox bubbles. At university, I substituted the tea with a glass of my favourite White Zinfandel. And, more recently, I’ve delved into the homes of strangers, complete with my well-deserved vino and a selection of goodies reserved only for my weekly spot of me-time. Though my preferences may have changed over the years, the fundamentals of this feel-good ritual have remained largely the same. Read on for my secrets to unwinding the evening away…

Light a soy wax candle

The small but significant act of lighting a candle is the perfect way to create a sense of calm and tranquility. It’s no secret that traditional paraffin wax candles are bad for your health, however, it has never been easier to source kinder, soy wax alternatives. One of my absolute favourite brands for bath-time treats is small-batch skincare brand, Nathalie Bond whose products are handmade using only sustainably-sourced, certified organic and natural ingredients. After a busy day, I tend to reach for their Unwind Candle, which has the power to whisk me away to the lavender fields of Provence. A hint of uplifting bergamot is balanced by the soothing yet earthy aroma of cedar wood, but is never tainted with pesticides, herbicides or any other nasties.

Immerse yourself in lavender, bergamot and cedar wood essential oils with Nathalie Bond’s Unwind Candle…

Immerse yourself in lavender, bergamot and cedar wood essential oils with Nathalie Bond’s Unwind Candle…

Dissolve a handful of bath salts

Re-create the serenity of the spa by sprinkling a generous handful of bath salts into your water. Opt for Himalayan pink salt, which is a natural and pure salt that was formed millions of years before any modern-day pollution. I’m an advocate of Nathalie Bond’s Bloom Bath Salts, which infuse mineral-rich Himalayan pink salts with rose geranium and patchouli essential oils - with the added benefit of coconut oil to nourish the skin. As soon as I sink into warm water infused with these vegan bath salts, I’m transported to an English rose garden on a pleasant summer’s day. Bliss.

Why not add a generous helping of Himalayan bath salts to sooth the body and mind?

Why not add a generous helping of Himalayan bath salts to sooth the body and mind?

Read away your worries

Did you know that reading for just six minutes can help reduce stress levels by up to 68%? Heck, the prospect of burying my nose in a book or magazine just became even more inviting… If, like me, you love snooping around other peoples’ homes, I’d highly recommend House Beautiful. For creative souls, Oh Comely and 91 Magazine are well worth a flick. And, for the avid bookworm, there’s The Happy Reader - it will brighten your day, I promise. For those who are more inclined to settle down with a good book, I would suggest investing in a bath rack as a means of protecting your pages. The one seen, below, is from Dunelm.

My copy of House Beautiful resting atop my £10 Dunelm bath rack

My copy of House Beautiful resting atop my £10 Dunelm bath rack

Extend your experience

Whether it’s a quick mist of room spray or a few drops of face oil massaged into the skin, the relaxation doesn’t have to end when you pull the plug. Despite my frustratingly oily skin, I have been won over by face oils - thanks to a winning case put forward by journalist, Sali Hughes in her coveted beauty bible, Pretty Honest. I’ve been trying Nathalie Bond’s Gentle Face Oil, which blends organic argan, baobab, camellia and calendula oils, and is suitable for all skin types - oily, combination and sensitive included! Where once my cheeks were tight in the morning, yet an oil slick by afternoon, my skin seems to have balanced out, which is a winning result.

Now, all that’s left to do is to envelope myself in the fluffiest of dressing gowns, curl up in my favourite Imola chair, and sip from a steaming mug of whatever takes my fancy…

Want to WIN all of the Nathalie Bond products mentioned in this blog post? (Worth over £75!) Then head over to my Instagram page to enter my Nathalie Bond giveaway! Closes midnight on Sunday 17 March. Terms and conditions apply.

* All Nathalie Bond products were gifted to me. Please note that I only accept gifts from brands that I truly love, and that I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend to friends and family. For more information, please refer to my disclaimer.