SELF CARE ISOLATION INSPIRATIONS WITH STEPHANIES

Blog by Stacey – Stephanies Group Trainer & Spa Retreat Manager  

Practising gratitude and tuning inward. Find calmness, clarity and peace in mind, body and soul daily. Be still. Find your joy. Give back to yourselves during this time for you have fought battles of your own to lead you to this very moment.  

Continue to just be...

Please pour a cup of healthy tea and enjoy reading our Stephanies Self Care tips to nurture your mind body and wellbeing.  

EAT HEALTHY MEALS & EXERCISE 

Eating, drinking water and exercising well can have an impact on how you feel on a daily basis. If you exercise in the morning, eating at least an hour before your workout can assist in fuelling your body to improve your workouts and may also allow you to work out for longer periods or at a higher intensity. 

Eating and drinking water after you exercise is just as important, to help your muscles recover. Keep in mind portion sizes for meals and with snacking well in between meals with food choices such as: Yoghurt and fruit, an energy bar, fruit smoothie, wholegrain crackers and dip, can also help in reducing naughty cravings. We are not saying do not have chocolate, but everything in moderation!
I’m not personally a big eater so my favourite is having a blended fruit or vegie smoothie in the morning before my workout and recovering with some protein and good fats such as eggs and avocado on wholegrain toast afterwards.
In between meals, I would snack on either some fruit and nuts, an energy bar, peanut butter and celery sticks or rice crackers with some tuna. 

 
We have chosen some popular exercises to do at home and Apps suggested by our spa teamfor you to reach your fitness and wellbeing goals:

Exercise                         App
Yoga                               Down Dog 

Pilates                            Pilates Anytime 

Aerobics                        Daily Cardio Workout 

HIIT                                Interval Timer 

Calisthenics                  Madbarz 

Strength Training         SWEAT 

GO ON A 24-HOUR SOCIAL MEDIA DETOX 

When was the last time you had a social media free day? Yes I know it pretty hard to do at them moment! But, having a digital detox from social media every now and then allows us to cleaour minds, become more present with ourselvesour wants and needs and spending quality time with our close ones. A digital detox doesn’t have to be permanent; you can set an end time whether it be 24 hours, a few days or a week. It just must be long enough to rewire your brain and break you from the ritual of checking your phone regularly.

Some benefits to a social media detox can be

  • Having more free time 
  • Experiencing less anxiety 
  • Having restful and undisturbed sleeps 
  • Enjoying your morning with your family or fur children
  • Practising mindfulness and being more aware of your body and mind

Let your friends and family know that you are having a detox from social media – this will help you successfully achieve your digital detox and not only will it make you more accountableit can inspire others to do the same.

Andra Chamtim has some great tips on how to social media detox the right way: https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/life/g30681374/social-media-detox-tips/ 

LIGHT A NAPALI CANDLE 

Napali Beach St Tropez Candle

Who doesn’t love a beautiful soy and coconut triple scented candle? Healthy clean candles can form a huge part of any relaxation ritual and sometimes helps switch your mind off from whatever the day has thrown at us.
Aromatherapy candles that use quality essential oils can promote relaxation, reduce anxiety and stress and induce quality sleep. 

Napali Collection is handmade in Australia, and their triple scented fragrances are absorbed into luxurious soy and coconut wax to form the perfect candle to your surroundings.
My favourite must be Mykonos – Sea Salt & Amber with fragrance notes of rockmelon, bergamot, sea spray and hibiscus. This scent really reminds me of being by the ocean and soaking up the sun and immersing myself into the sea… it is so refreshing! 

With up to 80 hours burning time, you are brought back to your relaxation haven once again…
 

If you want to try our beautiful Napali candle collection, please Shop and light a Napali candleWe have some great offers in our spa shop.
https://stephanies.com.au/product/Napali 

PRACTISE DEEP BREATHING 

Just breathe.
When was the last time you were aware of your own breath and took a deep meaningful breath? 
We breathe in and out all day without  noticing but did you know breath work is one of the biggest tools to combat stress levels, anxiety, reduce pain and high blood pressure?
We always guide our clients totake three deep breaths in, upon commencing their spa treatments to relax them into their experience and on completion of their Stephanies spa ritual.
 

Deep breathing is an intentional practice and can be incorporated into your daily routine. You can intentionally set some time aside in the mornings during yoga and meditation, during stressful situations throughout the day or while lying in bed when you’re about to drift off to sleep. 

Routine: 

>>> Breathe in calmly, through the nose, filling your abdomen and chest, for 5 seconds (or longer, not exceeding 7 seconds). Hold this breath in for 3 seconds. Slowly and gently release the breath through the mouth for 5 seconds (or more, whatever is comfortable.)  breathe out through a slightly parted lip or “O” shaped lips. Repeat this 5 times, or even better, continue for 5 minutes. <<< 

Important tips: Deep breathing should be slow and gentle. Remember to fill the abdomen, not just the chest. A simple way to make sure you are doing this is to place one hand on your stomach and one on your chest. Breathe deeply and make sure your hand on your stomach is rising. Try to be aware of your breath, heartbeat and to release tension from your body. Sometimes it’s easier to lie down or sit comfortably in a chair.  

-Urban Balance, Andrea Watkins 

LISTEN TO BEAUTIFUL MUSIC 

Music can be uniquely linked to our emotions and can be an extremely effective tool in relieving stress and encouraging more calmness and joyWe are so grateful to have beautiful relaxing music that plays throughout all our spas that aids in relaxation when spa treatments are in progress.
I regularly listen to music in the car on my way to work, in the spa itself, on my way home, while cooking dinner and even when I’m showering sometimes!
Find your preferred genre of music that relates to your current emotions or if you want to feel a certain way, set a playlist and be still. Feel your emotions and feel them change and flow. Spotify is an excellent app to discover different genres of music, artists and songs. 

My top Spotify Playlist picks for relaxation are: 

  • Evening Acoustics
  • Stress Relief 
  • Peaceful Piano
  • Yoga & Meditation 
  • Peaceful Meditation 
  • Relaxation Massage 

CALL A LOVED ONE 

Who are you thinking of lately? Be sure to pick up and call your nearest and dearest family and friends. This is a gentle reminder to reach out to them during this time, even if it is just to check on them and ask “how are you doing?”. 
I think we can all admit that we may have a handful of people that we can reach out to and now is the best time as any, to do so.
Skype, FaceTime, House Party and Zoom Apps are wonderful ways for staying in touch virtually and keeping the connection. Why not do a dinner date just to be in the same room as each other, not physically, but presently? Cook a meal together with your cameras facing each of you in the kitchen, pour a glass of wine and sit down and enjoy your meals! 

We can find very creative online ways to connect and share our lives with our loved ones to let them know we are thinking of them. 

PREPARE A BATH TIME RITUAL 

If you don’t have a bath, even a mindful warm shower will do wonders.
When you start noticing you’re beginning to tired or overwhelmed, with life or a situation, you can set yourself up with your own spa moments with a bath or spa shower time ritual to bring your emotional temperature down. This is a great self-care routine to wash away daily stresses and help us reset a bit. 

Epsom salt-based baths are good for relaxing muscle tension, along with essential oils that can help aid in different states of emotion. If you do not have a bath, find an essential oil-based shower gel to mindfully massage into your skin. Stephanites Naked bath salts contain aalchemy of Epson Salt, Celtic sea salt and beautiful quality Essential oils.

While you’re taking your bath or showerlisten to some soothing music and light a Napali candle while you explore your surroundings using all your five senses, feel, see, smell, taste and touch. 
I like to unwind by reading a book as well and sip on Stephanites iced Red Delicious tea from la Vie elixir collection which is perfect to be made chilled as it is made from organic dried apples! 

Mindful Bathing and Bath Soak blog: https://stephanies.com.au/blog/2020/03/mindful-bathing-and-bath-soaks/ 

SHOP and have a Bath with Stephanies la Vie elixir Naked Bath Soaks: https://stephanies.com.au/product/la-Vie-elixir 

SPEND TIME IN YOUR GARDEN 

Connecting with Mother Nature and the Earth can be so grounding while caring for our plants and flowers. With the practice of gardening, you can cultivate a healthy mind, regain your inner balance and immediately feel calm. There is something special about planting a seed with intention, or touching soil that is so transformative and if you’re gardening outside, you will also increase your vitamin D levels simply by being outdoors. It is a great way to boost your mood and improve mental health as it has been used as a way of therapy for depression. 

Tips for mindful gardening: 

  • Unplug your phone or leave it indoors 
  • Walk barefoot – notice the earth, feel the soil, smell the air 
  • Study a flower or a plant – notice what flowers or plants are already in bloom, look around you 
  • Pause before you begin – take slow, deep breaths and connect with the world around you 
  • Be grateful and present – notice how the soil feels, take a moment to appreciate Mother Nature 
  • Set intentions – place the seeds or plants in the ground with intention “may you grow and be healthy” 
  • Water lightly – listen to the sound of water hitting the earth and nurturing your plant. 

CUDDLE YOUR PET 

How many of us love coming home after a long day at work and being greeted by our loving, happy pets? For many of us, interacting with our loved animals is the ultimate therapy to a stressful day but many of us remain aware of the physical and mental health benefits that can also accompany the pleasure of cuddling up to our furry friends.
Studies have found that:

  • Pet owners are less likely to suffer from depression than those without pets 
  • People with pets have lower blood pressure in stressful situations 
  • Playing with a dog or cat can elevate levels of serotonin and dopamine hormones, which calm and relax 
  • Heart attack patients with pets survive longer than those without 
  • Pet owners over age 65 make 30% fewer visits to their doctors than those without pets
     

Pets can also fulfil the basic human need to touch as it has very therapeutic effects and can also ease loneliness, make you have healthier lifestyle changes, add structure and routine to your day and reduce anxiety and stress levels. 

If you wish to adopt a friendly animal who deserves a loving home, just like our founder Stephanie has with her beautiful rescue dogs Bailey, Sasha and Faith her lovely cat. 

Visit https://www.awlqld.com.au or https://www.rspcaqld.org.au/locations/brisbane 

UNWIND WITH LA VIE ELIXIR HERBAL TEA INFUSIONS 

Unwind with a bespoke collection of tea blends using only the finest tea, herbs, flowers and fruit sourced and hand-picked from around the globe. Professionally made by an artisan master tea blender and herbalist, our Signature spa tea has a focus on wellbeing and is served in all our Stephanies® Luxury Spas to our treasured guests. As always quality is of the utmost importance and only freshly milled herbs are used, harvested by hand with a sickle and shade dried, allowing butterflies and insects to fly away, preserving biodiversity. 

Prepare your la vie elixir tea: Infuse 1-2 teaspoons of loose leaf in a teapot. Allow to steep for 3-5 minutes or for desired taste.

Choose from:

Red Delicious – Apple pieces, Ascorbic Acid & Natural Acerola, Citric Acid, Natural Sweet Apple Flavour. Can be enjoyed hot or chilled. 

Just like eating a red delicious apple, this smooth tasting tea is the perfect sugar craving antidote. Great to drink at any time while providing a great boost of vitamin C. Makes a delicious apple ice tea, just add mint. 

Soul Soothe – Lemongrass, Passionflower, Skullcap, Lemon Balm & Lavender.
A soothing herbal beverage for the mind and soul. An ideal accompaniment to our modern lifestyle, especially during and after a long day as a part of your home spa ritual. 

Spa Mint – Spearmint, Alfalfa & Calendula.
Relaxes, restores and aids digestion. Refreshes the breath naturally and is delicious as a cold drink. Perfect tea blend to enjoy after any spa experience, good as an after-dinner mint refreshment too. 

French Tea Party – Black Tea, Lavender, Rose Petals, Mallow Flowers, Mango & Bergamot.
This is a beautiful, sophisticated tea bouquet that embodies true romance and style. It is great to drink any time of the day. An ideal Spa High Tea Party delight. 

Shop and pour your next cup of healthy la vie elixir herbal teas:
https://stephanies.com.au/product/la-Vie-elixir/Tea-Infusion-Large-Collection 

READ A BOOK 

One of the most effective ways to give back to ourselves is through knowledge and development. Reading a great book can help us learn, understand and makes us more knowledgeable! Not to mention the vocabulary expansion and thinking skills we develop from it as well. 

 “Reading a book, and taking the time to ruminate and make inferences and engage the imaginational processing, is more cognitively enriching, without a doubt, than the short little bits that you might get if you’re into the 30-second digital mode.” – Ken Pugh (President of Haskins Laboratories) 

 10 ways reading benefits us and why we should cultivate a good reading habit 

  • Sharpens your mind 
  • Increases your vocabulary 
  • Improves your memory and focus 
  • Enhances imagination and empathy 
  • Strengthens your writing abilities 
  • Enhances your imagination 
  • Boosts your sleep 
  • Lower levels of stress and tension relief 
  • Helps with depression and dysthymia 

FIND A QUIET SPOT TO MEDITATE 

meditation on mountaintopMeditation is a habitual process of training your mind to focus and redirect thoughts, where it can also increase awareness of your own breath and surroundings. Meditation can be performed anywhere mindfully. In most places, people like to practice in a quiet place in the comfort of their homes, during a yoga class, in an open space such as a park or even sometimes temples.
During isolation, an ideal place that we can incorporate meditation is in a quiet place of your home – find a room, balcony or veranda that has some natural light and allows for some fresh air to flow through.
How to meditate for beginners

  • Sit or lie comfortably. You may even want to invest in a meditation chair or cushion. 
  • Close your eyes. We recommend using one of our la Vie elixir Eye Pillows if lying down. 
  • Make no effort to control your breath; simply breathe naturally and feel your sensations flow through your body for a minute. 
  • Now, focus your attention on your breath and how your body moves with each inhalation and exhalation. Notice the movement of your body as you breathe. Observe your chest, shoulders, ribcage and belly. Simply focus your attention on your breath without controlling its pace or intensity. If you mind wanders, return your focus back to your breath.

Maintain this meditation practice for two to three minutes to start, and the try it for longer periods  

References: 

We hope you found this BLOG helpful. Look after your loved ones, stay at home and try to adapt your mind, body and family into this unprecedented time that our world is experiencing. Please show your appreciation and gratitude to all our wonderful front-line service provider and those very special healthcare workers. 

 

Till our next Stephanies Blog, stay well. 

 

Stacey 

Skin care for workouts, what’s on the list?

Chip Wilson (Lululemon) and Lorna Jane (Lorna Jane Fitness Wear‎) have us kitted up in the best workout gear ever so let’s not forget face and extremities. Skin is our major organ, gets lots of exposure and therefore needs some attention to.  If it’s a workout or an outdoors romp in our often harsh weather conditions there are few essential skin care products to have handy before you head for that park PT session.

We aren’t talking layers of makeup or larger than life ruby red lips (as the latest Vogue article recently pointed out is ultimately not good for our pores – see reference Five reasons why you shouldn’t wear make-up during a workout. http://www.vogue.com.au/…/what+youre+really+doing+to+your+s…) However, a good lip gloss to keep lips conditioned, sunscreen with an SPF factor, and a waterproof mascara (if this is your staple) can give your face and your confidence a little lift while working out.

As far as outside workouts go it’s essential to use an SPF.  For extra coverage a tinted moisturiser or BB Cream with SPF will keep your anti ageing regime in check.  

At Stephanies we stock a number of skin care brands and recommend the following products that are workout proof:


payot skin careFrench and ultimately fit for Australian conditions the Payot Sunsensi range is flawless, hydra rich, very SPF conscious, and is definitely worth the splurge. Sunsensi is an anti-aging suncare line, with  quadruple protection power and pumped with vitamins. These products come highly recommended as pre and post workout skincare.

Post workout you can’t go  past Payot’s post body care to moisturise, beautify and firm for a healthy body and mind. Hydra24 Corps is a hydrating, firming treatment for a youthful body. For those into firming try Celluli Ultra Performance – a corrective care for cellulite with centella asiatica extracts.

Mineral make up lovers have the choice of Jane Iredale’s range; flaunted by makeup artists and therapists as the go to mineral makeup.JI’s dry powder based mineral broad spectrum which is also  Skin Cancer Foundation recommended provides Broad Spectrum SPF 30 and UVA P+++ protection that is water resistant for up to 40 minutes. Powder-Me SPF can be used on the body, face and scalp for aUVB/UVA SPF 30 protection. It contains titanium dioxide and a natural clay dried in the sun and is completely free of contaminants and atmospheric pollutants. Available in three shades: Translucent, Tanned and New Golden.  Base powder with smattering of Jane Iredale’s pure gloss will keep  you looking mint during the toughest of workouts.

jane iredale skin care

If its Australian made and cosmeceutical look no further than Synergy Skin – Clean Science® where scientific breakthroughs combine naturally derived ingredients to protect, change & nurture. ÜberZinc and ÜberZinc Body = amazing.  ÜberZinc Essential Daily Moisturiser (50ml) is suitable for all skin types, offering broad spectrum protection in a light natural base with added pure green tea to neutralise free radicals. This new sheer Zinc Oxide sun block is termed a physical sunscreen as it physically sits on top of the skin and reflects ALL UV light – both UVA and UVB. Überzinc Body is the ultimate in protection and hydration for all body areas exposed to UV light. It combines the UV protective and healing qualities of 21% zinc oxide, with vitamin D3 to helps replenish low vitamin D levels that may be caused as a result of reduced UV exposure. Unlike traditional natural sun protectors Überzinc Body feels like a luxurious, non-greasy and deeply hydrating hand and body lotion. Überzinc Body is a physical sunscreen and will not absorb into the skin.

thalgo skin careThalgo’s BBCream is one of Stephanies best sellers and despite the fact that BB Cream might seem passe Thalgo’s perfect glow BB in three shades and a Broad Spectrum SPF 15 is an essential sport bag face lifter.

Don’t discount a good smattering of gloss or mascara if that’s your inspiration. As Michelle Bridges touts new gear can be just what you need to cure the couch potatoe in us all.  So get active grab your new gym gear, get your skin care essentials, and move, move, move.

image credit : http://www.bayse.com.au/

Drink. Move. Pamper – Stephanies® Tips for Health and Wellness

Blink, and you might miss one – fitness fads and lifestyle trends are everywhere! It seems like everywhere we look there is a new quick-fix diet, or phenomenal fitness craze guaranteed to change your life. So we decided to set the record straight, banish the fads, and share Stephanies® favourite health and wellness trends – they’ll be sure to leave you feeling rebalanced, revitalised and ready for spring!   


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Tea Detox

Packed with an array of rich vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, herbal teas are the perfect go-to for a spring detox. Endorsed by the likes of Kylie Jenner and Vanessa Hudgens, the herbal tea trend is growing in strength and popularity, providing a healthy alternative to regular tea and coffee.

The history of herbal tea dates back thousands of years, with reports of monks utilising the power of green tea to help stay focused and alert during prolonged meditation rituals. The therapeutic brews possess a range of health-boosting qualities; they are detoxifying, anti-ageing, immune boosting, fat-burning, mood boosting, and bone strengthening.

Whether you are wanting to curb your coffee cravings, or treat your body to a full detox, herbal tea is the way to go! There are a variety of herbal brews available, from the humble green tea, to exotic jasmine blends – it’s all about finding the perfect fit for your taste buds!

Inspired by the astonishing healing power of herbal tea, Stephanies® has crafted a range of french-inspired La Vie Elixir flower tea infusions. Four sophisticated, sumptuous blends are available to take home from Bulimba, Sofitel, and Cleveland spas.

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Red Delicious

INGREDIENTS: Pyrus Mali Fructus (Apple Pieces), Ascorbic Acid

& Natural Acerola (Vitamin C), Citric Acid (Natural Preservative),

Natural Sweet Apple Flavour.

Just like eating a red delicious apple, this smooth tasting

tea is the perfect sugar craving antidote. Great to drink

at any time while providing a great boost of vitamin C.

Makes a delicious apple ice tea, just add mint.

 

Soul Soothe

INGREDIENTS: Lemongrass, Passionflower, Skullcap,

Lemon Balm & Lavender.

A soothing herbal beverage for the mind and soul.

An ideal accompaniment to our modern lifestyle,

especially during and after a long day as a part of your

home spa ritual.

 

French Tea Party

INGREDIENTS: Black Tea, Lavender, Rose Petals, Mallow Flowers,

Mango & Oil of Bergamot Flavour.

This is a beautiful, sophisticated tea bouquet that

embodies true romance and style. It is great

to drink any time of the day.

An ideal Spa High Tea Party delight.

 

Spa-Mint

INGREDIENTS: Spearmint, Alfalfa & Calendula.

Spa Mint Tea relaxes, restores and aids digestion.

Refreshes the breath naturally and is delicious as a cold

drink. Perfect tea blend to enjoy after

any spa experience, good as an after dinner mint

refreshment too.

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Large is retailing at $24.95, and small $16.95.

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Meditation

In this chaotic world that we live in everyone is time-poor, and it’s often hard to find the time to reflect and rebalance. With schedules, timelines and one-hundred-and-one other things running through our heads, many of us have lost the ability to simply stop… and escape into a moment of nothingness.

Born in the heart ancient India, the art of meditation is a skill that has been practiced for thousand of years. There is an ancient zen adage – “you should sit in meditation every day for twenty minutes, unless you’re too busy. Then you should sit for an hour.” Even if you can spare five minutes a day, it’s important to take time to de-stress and re-group – the results will astound you.

Research shows regular meditation has the ability to reduce stress levels, relieve anxiety, reduce blood pressure, improve mood and behaviour, increase energy levels and improve clarity and peace-of-mind – something i’m sure most of us could use more of!  

For more meditation tips take a look at Vogue’s How To Meditate 2.0.

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Mineral Makeup

The cake face is out, and mineral makeup is IN! New trends have seen women abandoning traditional heavy foundations, and replacing them with lighter mineral blends. The all natural alternative to regular foundation has an array of skin benefits. The absence of harmful filters such as talc, binders, chemical preservatives and chemical dyes means skin is treated to an all natural coverage that won’t block pores or damage the skin. Mineral makeups also help with redness, dryness, and blemishes, and allows the skin to breathe throughout the day – and they actually have a longer shelf life too!

Beauty Tips

At Stephanies® we use the beautiful mineral makeup collection by Jane Iredale. “Her mineral powders are a foundation, powder, concealer and sunscreen all in one…every product in the line is multi-functional” (Jane Iredale). Her stunning collection is “created in various formulations to suit your needs, and in shades to flatter a wide range of skin tones, it’s like therapy for your skin” (Jane Iredale).  

 

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Spa Treatments

Now that you have detoxed, rebalanced and nourished, it’s time to pamper! In order to achieve holistic wellness, it is important to treat your body to regular rest and revitalisation – and what better way escape the stresses of everyday life, than with a trip to a luxury spa retreat. The health benefits of spa treatments aren’t just skin deep, but have lasting effects on your overall health and wellness. Research shows a trip to the day spa can help relieve muscle pains, improve joint health, improve sleeping patterns, reduce stress levels, increase blood circulation, and detoxify the body.


Driven by a desire to combine beauty therapies with peaceful places of harmony and balance, Stephanies® Luxury Spas has created a range of indulgent spa menus designed to relax, rejuvenate and rebalance. From decedent world-class treatments to the simple pleasures of the monthly maintenance manicure, Stephanies® is committed to offering indulgent, personalised spa experiences, providing guests with a treasured escape from reality.

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