Celtic Herbal Blog
The days are getting shorter and the evenings are getting darker, but that doesn't mean you should be heading under the duvet any earlier, or going out on fewer weekend adventures!
Introducing the Great British Bath Night (#GBBN) - this Sunday relax and refresh yourself for the week ahead by joining the bath night revolution. Gone are the quick, short showers of summer - it’s time to bathe in the luxurious comfort and warmth that only a Sunday night bath can bring.
Here are seven ways that baths can help improve your wellbeing, proving why you should take time to treat yourself this Sunday...There’s nothing better than a relaxing bath after a long day at work, or after a weekend filled with adventures. A good soak in warm water instantly relaxes your muscles, easing you into the evening ahead. Be careful though - if your bath temperature is too hot, it can actually be less relaxing for your body!For people with skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis, it’s key to ensure that skin is regularly moisturised and hydrated ,avoiding the use of products that can be harmful to the skin. When bathing, use an all-natural soap such as Celtic Herbal’s Honey & Oatmeal bar, specially formulated to be soft on the skin as a natural alternative to traditional petrochemical based treatments.The warmth of a bath with added magnesium bath salts can help to soothe tired muscles, relieving the pains and strains that are felt after exercising or from an injury. The bath acts in a similar way to a heat pack, improving blood circulation whilst increasing the temperature of your muscles, which in turn blocks the pain sensors. At the same time, magnesium from the bath salts are being absorbed transdermally through the skin, replacing minerals lost during exercise.A relaxing bath is the perfect way to get yourself feeling ready for bed. Use lavender bath salts and burn a natural lavender candle to soothe your senses.Because we spend more time soaking in the tub than we do when showering, the steam has more chance to open up the pores in our skin, allowing them to be deeply cleansed as the warm water flushes out dirt and toxins trapped inside.
A lot of headaches are caused when the blood vessels in the brain become narrowed - bathing in a warm bath can counteract this as the warmth of the water encourages the blood vessels to expand, allowing the blood to flow normally and alleviating the pressure which caused the headache. If you’re bathing with a headache, don’t forget to have a glass of cool water within reach to sip throughout your soak - this will stop you becoming dehydrated which could make things worse!
So whether it’s to alleviate a cold or headache or just to relax into the evening ahead, take a little time for yourself this Sunday and have a soothing soak in the tub!
Autumn’s here, can you believe it?! Don’t despair, the changing weather doesn’t have to affect your weekend adventures - just take a look at our handy tips to help you make the most of the shorter days and colder nights…
Making sure that you get plenty of quality sleep is key to helping you feel refreshed and ready for the weekend ahead! Here are a few ways to help you get the most out of your time under the duvet:
Eat ‘snooze foods’ before bed
There are lots of different foods out there which can help body and mind to switch off before bed. Food and drinks such as warm milk, marmite, almonds, bananas, honey and oatcakes all contain natural chemicals which reduce alertness allowing your brain to prepare itself for a deep slumber. Make sure that you never go to bed hungry – try having dinner in the early evening and then a sleep-inducing snack just before bedtime.
Power down in the evening
Using your electronic devices in the evening leaves the brain feeling stimulated and revved-up, rather than relaxed and sleepy. Try to power down your smartphone, tablet or laptop at least an hour before heading to bed.
Optimise your bedroom for sleeping
Use relaxing fragrances to bring a sense of calm to your bedroom. Light a natural lavender candle in your bedroom an hour before bed, or whilst you relax and read a book. Rub natural sleep balm into your pulse points to truly encourage sleepiness.
Autumn can be chilly, but it can also be pretty warm when the sun starts to shine through the falling leaves. If you’re heading out on an autumn adventure, make sure you’re prepared for whatever Mother Nature might throw at you:
Simple but effective, with chillier mornings and evenings and warmer afternoons you might find yourself wishing for something a little lighter to wear. If you’re dressed in layers, it’s easy to adjust to the changing temperatures. .
Take a raincoat
Obvious, but easy to forget on a beautifully sunny morning.
- Have spares!
Have some spare socks ready in your pocket or in the car boot - there’s nothing worse than having to put up with wet socks all day! Swapping wet socks for spares will help to keep toes warm and toasty. Give a little extra TLC to your feet by keeping some natural foot balm handy for when feet get sore and need a little extra care.
Who knows where your adventures will take you, and what you may come across! Be prepared by packing a few extra items to make your day a little easier...
- Pack a flask of soup or your favourite hot drink to keep you warm from the inside-out
- Take along your favourite lip balm to moisturise and nourish in brisk winds and cooler temperatures
- Keep a tin of our Gwdihw Propolis 1st Aid Balm handy for any accidental cuts and stings that happen along the way!
Taking time post-adventure is just as important as preparing yourself pre-adventure! Have a little me time by lighting a refreshing candle whilst you take a dip in the tub with some muscle soothing Magnesium Bath Salts with Lavender. Be sure to replenish your water levels, and eat a comforting, healthy meal to help the buzz of the adventure continue into the evening.
And once you’ve recovered, you’ll be ready to do it all over again next weekend!
It’s already been a long hot summer, and we’re not quite half way through yet. No complaints from those who enjoy a Mediterranean climate, but a bit of challenge for our English Rose complexioned number. So it’s time for some skin-loving pampering that will soothe, refresh and purify.
Natural is a big hit with celebrities these days, and we at Celtic Herbal are pleased to hear it. There is no doubt that natural products are kinder to skin and healthier all round, so it’s good to have an army of A-list ambassadors for a simpler approach to looking good and smelling delicious!
Gwen Stefani, Clueless actress Alicia Silverstone, Miranda Kerr, Josie Moran and Gwyneth Paltrow all follow natural beauty routines and are some of the growing ranks of celebrity poster-girls for keeping it lovely – as nature intended.
There is nothing as mood-lifting as a long soak, drenched in natural scents from salts or oils combined with carefully chosen herbs, fruits and other scrummy ingredients.
It’s no wonder we’re a happy bunch really is it – we get to work with these ingredients as we craft artisan soaps, bath products, massage oils, balms and natural home fragrances all day long.
We’re fans of fragrance layering. It’s the easiest way to stay smelling fresh as a daisy as your day unfolds and wraps into evening.
So start with a bar or two of our beautiful soap for quick hand-washes, add salts or oils to your bathing routine, carry a handy lip balm with you for frequent application and treat hands and feet to a little pamper every once in a while. Relax into the evening with room diffusers and soy candles with your favourite scent and there you have it.
The Celtic Kiss Boot Camp is in full swing ahead of International Kissing Day.
Our newly-launched product range – which includes a squadron of freshly uniformed Celtic Herbal lip balms and a ‘cadet crew’ of Gwdihw (pronounced ‘Goody Hoo’ - that’s Welsh for owl) balms for kids and teens – is calling time on cracked lips.
We wanted to ask you to join us in having a bit of fun with this. The bottom line is you get softer, lovelier lips and, along the way, you have a great opportunity to snap up a bargain or even bag yourself a very handy prize.
In an eight-day count-down to the big day – July 6 –our balmy army will offer treats and incentives to those who join up across our social media platforms in the shape of cracking deals for smoother lips. Take a look (Instagram - @celticherbal, Twitter - @CelticHerbal, Facebook - @CelticHerbal).
Our social media boot camp will offer hints and tips on how to achieve smooch-worthy lips and explain why kissing is good for us.
Here is the heads up on kissing – from our own lip experts:
1. A kiss causes our brain to create a chemical cocktail that can give us a natural high. So imagine what can be achieved with a really great kiss and super soft lips.
2. Most of us can recall the details of our first kiss. A kiss can be a brief peck of affection, a hello or goodbye, a ‘kiss it better’ or full on love. Don’t underestimate the power of a perfect kiss.
3. Around 90 per cent of cultures kiss – yes even Eskimos – or the Inuit to be more accurate. They kiss just like everyone else – but bitter winter temperatures mean they usually reserve the practice for indoors.
4. Some animals will approximate a kiss. The bonobo ape – and chimps - like to kiss like we do. Bonobos kiss for comfort and to socialise. Sometimes after a fight they will kiss and make up.
5. Top kisses – on the hand - very chivalrous, on the cheek – a greeting, on the forehead or top of the head – a sign of affection generally reserved for children, on the lips – keep it for your significant other.
6. But why do we kiss? Because we can learn a lot about each other from a kiss. And when we’re choosing a mate that’s important. We all have a group of genes called the MHC (major histocompatibility complex) that form part of our immune system and give us our natural scent. In a famous experiment, women overwhelmingly preferred the smell of t-shirts worn by men with different MHC genes from their own. This is because when two people with different MHC genes mate, the baby they might produce would have a selection of components from each of their immune systems. Opposites do attract and a kiss is an important indicator at a subliminal level.
7. When we kiss our brains dedicate a disproportionate amount of space to the sensation of the lips. During a kiss, this lip sensitivity lights up the pleasure centres in our brain. As a result, we experience feelings of euphoria and addictive behaviour.
So there’s a world of difference between a great kiss and a complete kiss fail, and there’s everything to play for.
Our Celtic Kiss boot camp encourages recruits to keep up the lip fitness campaign beyond the Passing (P)out Parade so that when you ‘pucker up and give your Pa a peck’ – or smooch your significant other, everything goes smoothly.
It’s worth joining the boot camp, an exclusive welcome offer for recruits gifts a third lip balm when you buy two and includes your name in the draw for a Celtic Herbal ‘lipfinity’ prize – a bundle featuring every Celtic Herbal and Gwdihw lip balm product. To take advantage of our offer, add three of your favourite lip balms to your basket and enter code ‘CelticKiss’.
To get involved simply visit Celtic Herbal’s social media platforms and follow us– then comment on the boot camp posts. If you’d like friends to be able to take advantage of the offer – or to be in with a chance of winning a prize – then invite them to take a look. If your friend wins the prize – we’ll arrange one for you too!
Celtic Herbal Lip Balms: Honey & Lemon, Vanilla or Peppermint
Gwdihw Lip Balms: Smoochy Lips Vanilla, Honey & Lemon or Peppermint
Father’s Day – its looming and there’s always that challenge. What do dads really want?
Well here’s perhaps what they don’t want. Don’t make it another tie or socks. He’s just got through Christmas laden down with woolly footwear and neck ornamentation.
It’s June, he’s more likely to be slipping on the flip flops and lounging around in a polo shirt or Tee. So back away from the default ‘Dads’ Day’ setting gifts and let’s give it some thought here.
A mug with ‘Dad’ anywhere on it should be a once-only deal. Most dads have ‘for best’ gift toiletry travel kits stashed in drawers all over the house, then there are all the manly and incredibly specialised miniaturised tool knives, torch-cum-toothbrush-cum-telescope sight type bits and pieces.
Unless he loves spying on leprechauns after dark, whittling them tiny furniture and buffing it to a shine with a cordless dental appliance, we’d recommend giving those novelty gift items a miss too.
His favourite beer/whiskey/chocolates are all great, will all be well received, but are unlikely to be a surprise.
Dads actually do enjoy being spoilt – just like mums.
If not out for dinner then his favourite dinner cooked at home with love will go far. Just like mums he may crave a bit of ‘me time’.
Well that’s easy. Go out of your way to make him feel a bit special alongside the presentation of your carefully chosen gift and a good meal.
Sparkle the bathroom, fluff up the towels, make sure the lock is in working order, put on a few favourite ‘dad tracks’ that can be heard from the tub and load up with relaxing and calming bath products.
We know we’re breaking a confidence here but truth is – men love baths, and they’re not averse to the addition of some relaxing oils or salts.
Think about it. Roman baths – they had separate baths for men and women and it was just as much an event for the men as for the women. For the men it was largely the preserve of those steaming themselves, cleansing, relaxing and de-stressing. But it was also time away from the real world in which great thinkers philosophised and big ideas were born. Now even if that is just arriving at the right spot to site the new BBQ, pure head space for clarity of thought is in short supply these days.
Those Roman guys emerged, pink, squeaky-clean and ready for anything – battles, feasting, maybe even some Olympian effort at sports - and feeling like a million dollars (even before dollars were invented).
The Great British Bath Night owes more than a passing nod to the Romans. As they advanced west in England, building the Fosse Way as they went, they crossed the River Avon.
Near there they discovered a hot water spring. It brought over one million litres of hot water to the surface every day at a temperature of about 48 degrees centigrade.
A reservoir was built to control the water flow, baths and a temple. The city of Bath quickly grew around this forerunner of the town leisure complex.
We’re just as serious about making taking a bath an event, and for that you need to clear Dad’s diary and make sure everyone else is invited to observe an exclusion zone around the bathroom door. Go on - make father’s day great.
Hygge is the Scandinavian trend that has been taken to the heart by us Brits – almost as much as our new-ish love affair with a Scandi crime novel.
But if you thought Hygge – the art of creating a living space that gives your soul a hug when you get home – is limited to winter (or Scandinavian countries) think again. And, shocker, the Scandinavian’s didn’t even invent it.
Celtic Herbal is backing Wales’ own approach to wellbeing, summed up as ‘cwtch’ (Welsh for a warm affectionate hug that gives a feeling of safe place or home) - and it was here first (1400). With this in mind, we think it should be the other way around Hygge is the Scandinavian Cwtch!
Natural materials, soft, warm, lighting, time with friends and family and a fresh and calming environment are key to Hygge – and Cwtch. We are campaigning to bring Celtic Cwtch style – and scents - to a summer of gardens, barbeques, tea on the lawn, sundowners with friends and late evening snuggles on the sofa. We will be inviting you all to bring the outdoors inside as the evenings draw on and enjoy a summer evening Cwtching with its new range of room diffusers and natural and beautifully fragranced candles.
If you’d like to start preparing for our month of Cwtch check out some products which might help you find that feeling of home, where ever you are.
NATURAL FRAGANCED CANDLES: Because Celtic Herbal candles are made with all-natural products, are kind, ethical and contain no nasties they’re perfect for bringing the beautiful fragrance of summer gardens indoors. Fragrances are created from essential oils extracted from pressed herbs and botanicals and smell just delicious. Perfect for bringing the outdoors inside our candles burn cleanly – and we even have travel candles (great for that glamping trip!). We're recommending Exotic Wood & Ylang to balance the mind, body & inner self.
REED DIFFUSERS: Like Hygge, our Celtic Herbal Cwtch is all about keeping things natural. Our reed diffusers offer an ambient fragrance that is fresh and long-lasting keeping the indoors sweet.
BATH-TIME RANGES: Feeling cleansed, fresh and fragrant is an important step toward your inner Cwtch. So, we advise checking out our Refresh, Calm, Purify and Wellbeing ranges of bath goodies for a luxe summer soak.
MUMS, BABIES, KIDS & TEENS: And don’t forget the smaller members of the family. Everyone needs a Cwtch. Our Mum and Baby range includes gentle and un-fragranced soaps and nappy rash cream and our Gwdihw (Welsh for Owl) range of balms for kids and teens are luscious, natural nourishment for lips, skin, hands and feet – and include a sleep balm and a first-aid balm.