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Wellness finds to live better, not perfectly

If a product claims it can relieve stress through scent, that’s aromatherapy. And the most authentic aromatherapy products will use essential oils from flowers, herbs, and trees, not just an artificial fragrance.

If aromatherapy sounds a little woo woo to you, it might be because there isn’t enough solid research on the topic to definitively say that it can help with conditions like stress, anxiety, and insomnia. And when we tested four stress relief lotions, none meaningfully reduced feelings of stress. The ritual of pausing to treat ourselves to some nice-smelling lotion, though, was quite nice. While the science is still out on how hard these aromas actually therapy, we can confirm anecdotally that it’s a chill little ritual that (unless you ingest them) isn’t hurting anyone.

For context, our reviewer tested each lotion across three days—during a moment of stress and before bedtime. She looked at stress-relieving qualities, how pungent the aromas were and how long the smell lasted, and how they felt on her skin.

And so, if you’re looking to inhale some natural plant extracts by way of a moisturizing lotion with the hopes that at best it’ll zen you out and at least be a chill act of self-care, we have some recommendations. Bath and Body Works Aromatherapy Stress Relief Lotion, which smells like eucalyptus, spearmint, clary oil, and cinnamal, had the best long-lasting scent. Aveda Stress Fix Body Lotion, which smells like lavender, shea butter, and clary sage, was the best all-over body lotion. And Pipette Relaxing Body Lotion, which smells like bergamot, mandarin orange, and geranium flower, was the best hand lotion. I was surprised to learn from our reviewer that Aveeno’s Stress Relief Moisturizing Body Lotion smells like lavender, chamomile, and ylang-ylang, but doesn’t actually contain any real essential oils, and so we couldn’t in good faith recommend it as part of our aromatherapy lotions.

If you want to dive deeper into our experiences with each of the tested stress relief lotions, check out our review.

Melanie, editor at Nessie Sightings

PS — Do you have an aromatherapy product you swear by? Send us your recs.

First Sightings 👀

Arey self-describes as “the wrinkle cream of haircare” and has products like Not Today, Grey supplements to make your hair less grey and thicker, and a shower duo to nourish aging hair

Period tracking app Flo now has an Anonymous Mode, which lets period-havers use the app without sharing their name, email, and other personal identifying information

Maya Feller (you’ve seen her here before!) is dropping her second cookbook Eating from Our Roots, and it’s available for preorder. You’ll find recipes like a sweet potato soup from West Africa, salted cod from Trinidad and Tobago, and a cucumber za’atar salad mezze from Lebanon. “It’s the intersection of my life experience as an Afro-Caribbean woman from a multi-cultural lesbian home and a registered dietitian who works from an anti-racist patient-centered lens.”

Jems makes vegan, gluten, and cruelty-free condoms. The brand also really cares about creating a platform for sexual health and education

Everyday Oil’s new Meridian Comb is like therapy for your scalp

As our world gets hotter and more polluted, I am all about products that clean and hydrate our air, especially if they look as nice as Vitruvi’s Cloud Humidifier

Nike’s having an up to 40% off sale on legit thousands of products, like these fleece crews (for men and women) that I essentially live in in the colder months, and these sandals that really capture the cool factor of our ugly shoe era

Outdoor Voices’ evergreen mesh shorts, lightweight ¾ leggings, and pastel oversized hoodie are all on sale

Shoutout to this week’s Scouts for their tips! Mara M. recommends Glowbar, a 30-minute facial spot. She says that while it is quick and efficient, you don’t feel rushed at all, and that she left feeling very rejuvenated.

Connie W. shared California-based CBD gumdrop company Molly J., and says that each candy box (they’re so cute) is handcrafted by a local chef. They also just dropped a limited edition Berry Big Box, which donates proceeds to Planned Parenthood.

Katy Z. with one of my favorite finds this week: A Lisa Frank portable blender

Steph Z. mentioned Girlfriend Collective’s bright new activewear collection. She likes the hot pink Paloma compressive bra

And reader Isabel T. wanted to plug a text message analytics app she uses, Left on Read, which shows your most positive conversations and things like the number of reactions within your group chat, who gets the most ‘hahahs’, and who gets the most ‘loves’. “My most positive one was with my mom, which I thought was cute.”

👀 Be one of our scouts! 👀

Did you spot a cool new (to the world or just to you!) wellness product? Are you a brand dropping something cool soon?

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In the wild 🌾

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Lymphatic health is trending

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Today I learned you can “moisture sandwich” your face

Making the case for mental health screens before your Botox appointment

A helpful breakdown on how to identify whether you have a good therapist

Men are literally breaking their legs to be a few inches taller

A deep dive on the real reasons young people are giving up alcohol

This author practiced yoga for 1,772 consecutive days

How to wear and pack your backpack to avoid back strain

A deal! 💸

Magic Spoon cereal boxes and bowls of cereal

Cereal, historically and often, is sugary sweet because it’s full of sugar. It’s not healthy, but it’s like dessert for breakfast, and it involves nearly no prep. And that’s what makes this new trend of healthy cereals so great. You get the ease and sweetness and nostalgia of your childhood breakfast but it packs some nutrients. Few are doing it as good as Magic Spoon, and our readers can still get $5 off their order with the code NESS

We write for people looking for approachable health and wellness finds and insights. All products and services are independently selected to provide recommendations you can trust. We may receive commission on purchases made from some of our links, but that’s not why we’re here. We just want to help you find good stuff.

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