High-Maintenance Beauty Treatments To Get For A Low-Maintenance Summer

Dreaming of a summer getaway where relaxation reigns supreme? Us too. And while we all want a glowing complexion and beach-ready bod, no one wants to be chained to a beauty routine on holiday. But what if we told you that instead of using up all your baggage allowance on skin creams or having to frantically google beauty salons in remote towns or villages where you stand out like a sore thumb, there’s a plethora of high maintenance beauty treatments that allow you to be low maintenance, all trip long? From laser hair removal to LED facials and lymphatic massages, Hip & Healthy reveals the five best beauty treatments that grant you the freedom to enjoy carefree confidence, all summer long. We’ll raise our piña coladas to that.

Laser Hair Removal

Nobody wants to be caught out in a bikini with a forest sprouting out or on a sporadic summer romance staycay with legs that feel like a carpet, which is why laser hair removal is one of our top high maintenance treatment picks. Not only does it allow you to ditch the razor (because, honestly, who actually enjoys shaving?) and embrace bare legs and swimsuit season in confidence, but because it also helps tackle unwanted hair at the root – meaning less ingrown hairs and irritation. Hurrah. 

Now’s the time to start, as ideally you want 6-12 sessions, spaced out over weeks or months, for optimal results. And, contrary to what you might think, it’s practically painless. Promise. “Laser hair removal has been around for a very long time and technological advances mean better results, not only with hair removal but also with the user experience. A clear objective is to make it as painless as possible!” Explains Samantha Larkin, Founder of luxury clinic NuYu London. “For instance, Soprano is on its 4th generation model so has improved significantly. It’s always had in-motion technology to make it virtually pain-free, along with the cooling tip, however, the latest machine boasts increased cooling and more wavelengths, therefore giving more comfortable results.”

Like with any spenny treatment, do your research, and go for a clinic with top reviews and top of the line equipment. It might feel like a commitment, but when you can go all summer long without picking up a shaving gel, you will be so glad you invested in it.

Cost:
Bikini line: Approx £400 for a package of six sessions
Legs: Approx £850-1000 for a package of six sessions

BIAB Nails

We are all for long-lasting mani/pedis that last weeks without a chip. But if they result in weak nails that end up breaking right before our summer girl’s trip? Not so much. That’s why we made the switch to BIAB – an innovative builder gel that strengthens your natural nails while creating a beautiful, long-lasting overlay. Unlike traditional gel polish, BIAB is more flexible, reducing the risk of breakage whilst boasting a lightweight, natural feel. Not only will your nails grow faster and stronger, but you can also just “fill in” the grown-out area instead of completely removing it and starting again. Win-win.

Cost:
Approx £60-70 for a BIAB manicure. It will last for weeks but expect to get a BIAB refill after about three weeks.

Volite

Wouldn’t it be amazing that if, instead of slathering on the serums, creams, and masks, all summer long, you could just inject your face with something that restores moisture from within? It might sound too good to be true, but that’s exactly what Volite is – an injectable moisturiser that boosts hydration from within to leave skin gorgeously glowing, plump and smooth.

“Volite is perfect if you’re looking for something that makes you look fresh and radiant,” explains Dr. Sophie Shotter, “It’s the treatment that will have people saying, “Wow, your skin looks amazing!” and you’ll see and feel makeup go on smoother. It’s a great injectable for anyone who just needs a beauty refresh.”

So, what exactly is Volite? Simply put, it’s a hyaluronic acid gel that’s injected into the face through a series of many injections. Although not painful per se, it does get uncomfortable, so a numbing cream is used beforehand. Volite can be used in the face and neck and works in just a few weeks to help plump out fine lines, smooth skin, and boost moisture for a subtle but effective refresh that lasts for up to nine months.

Cost:
Circa £400. But trust us when we say it’s a bang for its buck and will leave you glowing like a goddess throughout summer and beyond.

Lymphatic Drainage Massage

Lymphatic drainage massage offers a double whammy when it comes to benefits. Firstly, they help you de-stress and switch-off – just the ticket if you have a few hours until your flight and have yet to pack a single thing… Secondly, they work wonders at de-bloating and de-puffing, detoxifying, aiding digestion, helping to breakdown cellulite, and boosting overall blood flow for glowing skin from top to toe. 

One massage a month in the run up to a trip is a great way to boost your body and your confidence post beach session, but even if you do just one lymphatic drainage massage before your travels, you’ll feel and notice a significant difference. 

Cost:
Expect to pay anything from £150-£400 depending on where you go.

LED Facial

When it comes to facials, there’s no one size fits all treatment. We all have different skin concerns, from acne and pigmentation to redness, lines, and overall drabness, so, naturally, we all turn to different facials to help treat our problems. But there is one facial that can help everyone, and it’s amazing to try pre-travel thanks to its ability to do everything. No really, everything. Depending on the wavelengths and colours used, LED facials promote collagen and elastin production, banish breakouts and acne-causing bacteria, control oil production, boost blood flow, regulates melanin production, increases regeneration, and aids healing.

“It’s the skincare results that draw most people to LED, and for good reason, with wrinkle reduction, breakout control and skin radiance among a long list of benefits,” reveal Hannah Measures and Laura Ferguson, founders of The Light Salon. “But just as powerful for us is the sense of wellbeing we feel from that daily dose of light.”

If you can, invest in a course of six to eight LED facials prior to your summer holiday. If time is of the essence, you can indulge in two a week thanks to the healing, calming, non-skin-stressing nature of the treatments. Your mood will be boosted, and your skin will look amazing no matter where your travels take you.

Cost:
Circa £400 for a four-week LED facial treatment course

words by Frankie Rozwadowska


READ MORE: Our Beauty Editor Reveals Her “Everything” Pamper Routine

Our Beauty Editor Reveals Her “Everything” Pamper Routine

Black Bean Brownies With Avocado Chocolate Frosting

These fudgy and delicious black bean brownies with avocado chocolate frosting are an unusual twist on a classic afternoon treat, we’ll give you that, but these taste absolutely divine! 

Ingredients – Makes 8-12 Brownies (depending on how big you like them!)

1 x 400g tin of organic black beans, rinsed and drained 

3 large eggs 

3 tablespoons avocado oil 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

30g 100% cocoa powder 

120g coconut sugar or unrefined caster sugar 

1/2 teaspoon baking powder 

1/4 teaspoon salt 

100g organic chocolate chips (70% cocoa solids minimum) 

50g chopped walnuts 

25g cocoa nibs 

Frosting  

75g 70% dark chocolate chips 

1 ripe avocado 

2 tablespoons maple syrup 

Method 

In a blender puree the black beans with the eggs, vanilla and avocado oil.  

In a separate bowl combine the cacao, baking powder , sugar and salt. 

Add bean mixture and fold in gently – Do not overmix. 

Lastly, fold in the chocolate chips. Pour the batter into a parchment lined 20cm X 20 cm tin and bake for 23 minutes.Allow to fully cool.

For the frosting, melt the chocolate in a heat proof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Add the avocado and maple syrup to a food processor followed by the cooled chocolate. 

Blend until smooth and spread on top of the brownie. Garnish with walnuts and cocoa nibs.

Recipes from Healthy Chef and Model Karen Koramshai
karenkoramshai.com


H&H Reviews: Nikki Beach Resort & Spa, Santorini

Synonymous with the washed white and azure Cycladic architecture, clinging onto the dramatic caldera cliffs, Santorini reveals a new picture postcard scene around every corner. Enveloped by the glistening Aegean Sea, the Greek island paradise boasts a charming blend of natural beauty, rich history and luxurious indulgence, drawing in couples on the quest for romance each time the summer rolls around. The Greek Islands offer an extended summer season, running from as early as April to October, making them a reliable choice for glorious sunshine, exquisite cuisine and unspoiled beaches.

Beyond its breathtaking vistas, the island is home to some of the world’s most exclusive boutique hotels and resorts, where infinity pools blur into the sea and money seems to be no object. Travellers seeking total bliss out with a subtle hum of vibrant ambience wavering in the background will fall in love with Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Santorini, where the endless blue of the Aegean meets the whitewashed charm of Santorini. Associated with Champagne-popping and ‘Cafe del Mar’ beats, this Nikki Beach outpost has redefined itself to settle into the slower Santorini pace. The brand’s signature beach club spirit embraces a low-key chilled-out aura, with the addition of a spa, gym and beauty hut within the resort. 

Perched on the south-east coastline, the Nikki Beach Resort is set apart from the swarming tourist hotspots of Fira, yet reachable in just 15 minutes. As you enter, rest assured that there’s no need for you to lift a finger, everything is thoughtfully attended to, a luxury we all cherish when escaping on holiday. The design takes inspiration from the island’s signature palette, adorned with pristine white and Aegean blue hues, interspersed with a polished contemporary style, flaunting light wooden features and minimalistic decor. 

Oversized daybeds and palm trees surround the alluring pool in the hub of the beach club, featuring a swim-up bar for your afternoon cocktail/mocktail. The beach club deck gazes out onto Monolithos Beach, speckled with striking black volcanic sand, reserved solely for Nikki Beach guests. Epitomising the essence of holiday indulgence, this is where to retreat for days lazing in the sunshine with a gentle caress of the Aegean breeze, soundtracked by lofi tracks from the resident DJ.

The 62 dazzling rooms and suites are spacious, decorated with white and turquoise interiors, king-sized beds, flatscreen TVs and open-plan bathrooms, stocked with Malin + Goetz toiletries. A selection of suite categories feature private verandas, plunge pools or jacuzzis. Clustered into hidden nooks, each room has its own private entrance, giving a sense of seclusion and adding to the resort’s prestige merit.

Blessed with the Aegean Sea on its doorstep, the al fresco restaurant provides quite the spectacle for all-day dining. Fusing Nikki Beach’s signature dishes with a hint of Mediterranean and Greek culinary flair, the menu savours the freshest seafood and locally sourced ingredients. Nikki Beach is well-known for the sushi platters, artistically served in the restaurant or poolside. For a light bite, you can’t go wrong with the tuna tacos or a sharing Greek mezze platter for grazing. Entering the decadent mains, the only choice in our option is a freshly caught fish dish, both the grilled Aegean seabass fillet served with ‘Mpriam’ style vegetables and Greek olives or the grilled tuna accompanied by local tamarisk greens are sublime choices!

Switching off completely comes in no greater form than a massage at the Nikki Spa. Cradled in the basement, the spa is escapism at its finest. Blending holistic therapies and results-driven techniques, Nikki Spa partners with Grown Alchemist to enhance body treatments and massages. Driven by natural active ingredients, the nourishing skincare regenerates skin cell health and optimises skin function, whilst distilling relaxation through lulling scents. The treatment to book as the antidote to a stressful bout at work is the ‘Urban De-Stress’, incorporating a soothing massage, lymphatic stimulation, myofascial release and a pressure point massage. In the height of the summer, guests can pamper al fresco in the Outdoor Spa Cabana, housing two treatment beds on the beach shore.

If like us, you enjoy getting a sweat on, even on holiday, the Tone Gym will be your first port of call in the morning! Kept nice and cool underground, the gym has the latest Technogym equipment for both cardio and strength sessions, and even has a mini private studio for those that like to keep to themselves when training. In peak season, Pilates, Yoga and fitness classes are taught by expert trainers, available for group sessions and 1-to-1’s.

Seamlessly intertwining the island’s timeless charm with modern luxury travel, Nikki Beach has proven it is not merely a trendy beach club, reimagining itself into a chic haven with all the elements that discerning travellers seek when they yearn for a perfect escape. Every inch of the resort is immaculate, from the bougainvillaea vines that sweep the walkways to the artful landscaping featuring swaying pampas grass. Sun-soaked on the idyllic Aegean shore, Nikki Beach Resort & Spa occupies a prime position on the heavenly canvas that is Santorini…where better place to head for your next romantic getaway!

Book here: Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Santorini

words by Isabelle Shury


Maude Hirst: My Tools For Navigating Heartbreak, Rising From Set Backs & My Mental Health BFF

We sat down with Maude Hirst, actress, meditation coach and founder of meditation app EnergyRise, for an insightful exploration of her journey with meditation and the impact it’s had on her life, from personal growth, heartbreak and life’s setbacks. In this interview, Maude shares how meditation became her lifeline during difficult times, dispels common misconceptions about meditation and offers practical rituals for enhancing overall well-being. From the transformative power of movement to the role of gratitude in daily life, Maude provides valuable insights into navigating challenges, redefining success and living a life of alignment and peace.

What was it that first attracted you to the world of meditation and the wellness industry in general? 

It wasn’t so much the industry that attracted me but meditation as a practice. I was going through some very hard personal times (an awful breakup) when I discovered the power meditation could have on my mental health. It can be a seemingly simple practice of sitting in stillness from the outside but the internal experience of getting to know yourself through a regular practice is very profound and for me life-changing. Which led me to become passionate about sharing it with as many people as I could possibly reach.

From your personal experience, what benefits have you seen with regular meditation practice?

For me a regular practice has brought more calm, presence and peace into my life. It has also given me in internal confidence that I never had before. Allowing me to really get in touch with and trust my own intuition above all else.

What’s a misconception about meditation you would like people to overcome?

There are quite a few but here are my top 3. 

First misconception – meditation is about sitting with a quiet mind, so if your mind is busy you have somehow failed at meditating. The truth – meditation is a practice of being with yourself. Your mind will be busy (because it is a thinking machine) but meditation is about redirecting your mind to where you want it to go, rather than getting caught in the busy thoughts.

Second misconception – there is only 1 kind of meditation and if it doesn’t work for you first time, then meditation isn’t for you. The truth – there are many different types of meditation from breath and body awareness, mantra, movement meditation and visualisation to name just a few. If one kind of practice or one teacher doesn’t work for you, look around for one that does because you will find one.

Third misconception – to feel the positive impacts of meditation you need to practice for hours everyday. The truth – as little as 10 minutes of meditation can have a huge impact on the way that you feel. 

How has meditation and mindfulness impacted your life away from the mat? Has it helped you overcome certain challenges or difficult moments? 

Meditation has become my new best friend. I am not sure how I survived through the ups and downs of life without it. Recently I have been going through a challenging IVF journey and meditation has really helped me ride through the rollercoaster of emotions. Meditation doesn’t stop you from feeling emotions but it certainly helps you process them in more helpful ways and having a practice that has allowed me to do this has been the biggest comfort through these times. 

Can you share any mindfulness rituals or practices that you personally find impactful for enhancing overall well-being?

The most helpful and simple practices that I use are breath practices and my morning ritual. How you breathe has a direct impact on how you feel. Here are two simple but powerful practices you can use to enhance your wellbeing:

1) When you’re feeling anxious or stressed you need to slow down and calm your breath. Breathe in through the nose to a count of 4 and exhale through the mouth to a count of 6. Repeat 10 times and notice that as you calm your breath, the body will also calm. 

2) Morning ritual – before you pick up your screen in the morning, make sure you expose your eyes to natural daylight. Drink water before you drink caffeine and if you can, get out for a quick walk in nature, you will feel a huge uplift in how you feel.

What does movement mean to you and what role does it play in your day-to-day life?

Movement has a very important role in my life but for mental rather than physical reasons. I find the most rewarding movement is the kind of movement that is guided by how I am feeling rather than pushing myself to move for the sake of moving. For example, listening when my body is tired and going for a walk rather than trying to do anything more. Or if I am achy, getting on my yoga mat for a big stretch. Intuitive movement is the best way to move I believe. 

Can you share any favourite books, podcasts, or resources that have influenced your personal growth journey? 

Books that have had a huge impact on me:

The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk

The Power of Vulnerability – Brene Brown

A New Earth – Eckhart Tolle

The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Philipp Sendker

Podcasts I have listened to recently that really spoke to the way that I am feeling about connection:

Unlocking Us by Brené Brown and Esther Perel exploring AI (artificial intimacy)! 

What role does gratitude play in your daily life, and how do you cultivate it? 

I have a long-standing gratitude practice with all of the members in my Members Club for the Mind community. We share 3 daily gratitudes and it is a really lovely way to look for the little celebrations in everyday. It can be easy to focus on what isn’t working in our lives, so this practice switches the focus in the other direction. I believe that where your focus goes, your energy flows so by focusing on gratitude, you notice more lovely encounters in your day-to-day life.

How do you navigate challenges or setbacks?

By giving myself time to process them properly and also looking at setbacks as an opportunity to re-direct my focus and energy. Society often tells us a setback is some kind of failure but often when you give yourself time to sit with the emotions you feel from challenges or setbacks, you will begin to notice there is probably a lesson to be learnt from the frustration of it all. 

How do you define success in life, and how has your definition evolved over time?

Success to me is living in alignment with my own desires and striving for peace rather than validation. I used to look for external praise to define my own success but am very thankful that over the past few years that has changed to validating my own success through monitoring the way that I feel.


Sadie’s April Wellness Must-Haves

Revive, recharge, rejuvenate… This is what I am hoping spring delivers. We are entering my favourite quarter of the year and I have high hopes for it. After the wettest February on record (and although it hasn’t been announced I’m pretty sure, March too!) I need some warmth. I want to get outside in nature rather than sheltering from the rain CONSTANTLY. Today my car burst a tyre on a busy motorway and whilst I was sitting in the rain waiting for the AA to arrive I thought to myself “I am THOROUGHLY fed up with this grey, oppressive weather.’ I think we are all ready to start emerging from our winter cocoons – so this month for my wellness must-haves I wanted to share the things that are going to take me from winter to spring, with the hope that when summer arrives I shall be ready to unveil the butterfly that I am!

MUSHROOM MADNESS

Rich in antioxidants, abundant in vitamin D, good for gut health, brain health, excellent for hair and skin, a great source of B vitamins, the list goes on – there doesn’t seem to be much mushrooms can’t do…

For Skin: Pai Skincare Tri-Mushroom 10% Super-Soothing Booster

Pai Skincare’s Mushroom Skin Booster is a revolutionary addition to your skincare routine. Harnessing the potent properties of organic mushrooms, this booster is designed to nourish and revitalise your skin from within. Rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, it helps to promote a radiant complexion while also supporting skin health and resilience.

For Wellness: Catch Some Zen Raise and Replenish

This has become an evening ritual for me – Raise and Replenish’s delicious take on hot chocolate, Catch Some Zen is as healthy as it is delicious. Packed full of Magnesium, Lion’s Mane and Ashwagandha this is the perfect way to wind down after a busy day and get a good dose of mushrooms in.

For Body: Hifas Da Terra – Optimum

One of the world’s top researchers of mushrooms, Hifas Da Terra, has launched OPTIMUM, their new eco-luxury beauty and wellness supplement, which combines the power of organic medicinal mushrooms with nutritional ingredients of the Atlantic land and sea to support optimal health and radiance. From immunity to energy, great skin to great sleep – this is a truly “do-it-all” supplement that knows no bounds.

For Hair: Briogeo Colour Me Brilliant Shampoo and Conditioner

This award-winning shampoo and conditioner from the cult haircare brand Briogeo uses the power of mushrooms and bamboo to help keep hair colour vibrant.


QUOTE OF MONTH

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” 

– Albert Einstein


Earth Yourself

Lakes by Yoo

The Lakes by YOO has joined forces with Halen Strength to offer a series of transformative breathwork and cold water retreats in the heart of the Cotswolds at their beautiful lake-filled location. Led by Halen’s inspiring all ex-military team, the full-day retreats offer guests a powerful journey of self-discovery while learning more about the healing powers of breathwork and cold water therapy. 

Ground at Bulgari

Bulgari Hotel London have just announced an exciting collaboration with GROUND – the award-winning wellness brand with a mission to develop intuitive massaging rituals and sustainable aromatherapy products that honour true self care. With over 25 years of experience in the spa industry, GROUND’s founder, Pigeon Crowley, set up the brand in lockdown to address the increasing anxiety, insomnia, hormone fluctuations, burnout and gut health with sumptuous and effective body products that will quite literally feel like you are giving yourself a little hug.

Sauna Medicine + Lake Swim at The Bothy by Wildsmith, Heckfield Place

Hand yourself over to the team at The Bothy and you will not regret it. Their Sauna Medicine is a culmination of their Director of Spa’s extensive, worldwide experience which will have you scrubbed with natural orange peel in an aromatherapeutic steam room followed by carefully and locally sourced tinctures and refreshments followed by a sweat-lodge cum Latvian sauna experience that involves being caressed by birch leaves and taken through a deeply moving meditation. You’ll then go for a quick swim in their natural lake and come out feeling like a new woman. Highly recommended!

words by Sadie Reid


First In: SURRENNE Is London’s New Longevity Members Club

When Inge Theron puts her name to a new project, heads turn! Founder of the phenomena that is Facegym, as well as countless endeavours in the wellness-beauty-scape, Inge’s newest venture marks a new era of luxury wellbeing, set to be the most exclusive longevity Members’ Club in London.

SURRENNE, the wellbeing and longevity club opening this April, is the newest edition to the Maybourne Group, whose portfolio includes Claridge’s, The Connaught and The Berkeley. The space is set beneath The Berkeley and The Emory Hotel in Knightsbridge, covering nearly 2,000 square metres and 4 floors filled with state-of-the-art facilities presented in impeccable style. Envisaged with Inge’s innate eye for flawless, slick design, SURRENNE is as far from ‘clinical’ as you can get. Decked in warm oak hues and opulent marble, each floor is adorned with signature touches which illustrate the attention to detail….Monogrammed ‘S’ engraved into every dumbbell neatly stacked in the gym, bespoke robes designed in collaboration with Alice Temperley hanging in each locker, and Alo Yoga activewear stamped discreetly with SURRENNE’s logo.

Inge fuses her wealth of knowledge from building a cult brand and her former title as the “Spa Junkie” at the Financial Times to meld this otherworldly wellness emporium. Modern science anchors the ethos, layering holistic rituals and cutting-edge technology from across the globe to create the exclusive nature of SURRENNE.

SURRENNE cocoons their members in a 360 integrative health approach, delivering the most elite services that bring modern science, innovative treatments, world-class training, cutting-edge wellbeing technology and bespoke nutrition to the forefront. The concept is based on evidence-based protocols, co-created with the thought leaders in the health sector to give access to highly personalised wellness programming that sets a new paradigm in longevity and human optimisation.

The Club features a serene 22m swimming pool, fitted with a sound system for in-water meditation, an aroma-infused steam room and ice showers. Utilising AI as a tool to boost performance, the fitness suite showcases a CAROL Bike as well as all the latest fitness machinery. Just a stone’s throw from Hyde Park, a series of wild swimming sessions are on offer for those who want to brave it…or you could opt to get your cold water fix in the couple’s ice bath instead!

The spa, where Inge’s skills come into their own, has seven unique treatment rooms, including a couples’ retreat, ashiatsu massage room and an infrared sauna. Cherry-picking the stand-out rituals, treatments and therapies she’s had the pleasure of experiencing over the years as the ‘Spa Junkie’, Inge has devised a one-of-a-kind spa brochure you won’t find elsewhere. The mastery performed by the practitioners is nothing short of an art form.

Tech pioneers Virtusan head up the longevity clinic, running diagnostics backed by neuroscience to form preventative health solutions. No stone is left unturned, from hormonal analysis, VO2 max testing, metabolic assessment, to comprehensive blood work. Whether you’ve just got off a long-haul flight and are in dire need of a reset, want to sculpt out a svelte physic, looking for ways to improve your energy levels or need a nutrition plan to support your lifestyle, SURRENNE joins the dots to all aspects of your health, with interconnecting experts that liaise to create bespoke health and fitness regimes swiftly.

Housing the UK’s first Tracy Anderson studio, SURRENNE proudly presents an intimate studio, notably heated, decorated with resistance bands and fitted with a sub-floor spring mechanism to increase calorie burn. This globally renowned method, targeting every muscle fibre, will feature a schedule of classes led by TA’s proficient trainers.

Behind the scenes, the space works on a cellular level to uplift the senses. Choreographed lighting, AI soundscapes playing infinite music, emotion-evoking scents, and artwork commissioned to instil calmness come together to create a multi-sensory experience. 

This calibre of service, which blends haute living and functional science, comes with a hefty price tag, but if investing in your wellbeing is a priority, SURRENNE’s strategy for optimising longevity is unmatched in the wellness space.

Click here to learn more about SURRENNE


Editor’s Notes: What To Buy DIY & Try In Wellness Right Now

This month, I feel an overwhelming sense of optimism and positivity and I can’t help but attribute it to the delightful mild weather we’ve been experiencing or perhaps even the recent celestial event that has subtly reshaped our surroundings. Embracing the arrival of Spring, I’m finding so much joy in spending more time outdoors… I love that I don’t have to wrap up like the Michelin man whenever I want to venture out of the house! My Buy, DIY and Try wellness picks for April contain a mix of seasonal celebrations, nutrition inspiration (for both me and my pup!) and some new beauty finds that will become permanent fixtures in my routine.

A Nature-Filled Read

Lydia Millen is a creator I’ve followed for many years and I’ve loved witnessing her transformation and evolution over the years. Having started her career in beauty and high fashion, she has taken her followers on a much more holistic journey over the years to finding her true passion for all things nature and wellbeing, which I am so here for. I absolutely adore her content which mainly consists of gardening, feeding the chickens, tending to her beautiful home, embracing nature, discussing personal growth and wellbeing, travel, self-care, investing in fashion that’ll stand the test of time and of course, a little beauty thrown in too for her OG followers. Her new book, Evergreen, symbolises everything she stands for and details the power of nature, no matter what season, and how to embrace the true joy of the great outdoors. 

A New Candle For Spring

I don’t think you can beat a Trudon candle burning in the home and I’ve always gravitated towards Madurai as my go-to scent from their collection. However, I’ve stumbled across another Trudon scent that has stolen my heart. Trudon’s fragrance style is notoriously quite intense (in a good way) and many of their candles have deep notes that create rather unique scents. They can feel quite wintery (although I think Madurai is a great all-year choice) but Abd El Kader is refreshingly light for Trudon’s standards and it is designed to embody Moroccan Mint Tea. It’s still got a weightiness to it, in typical Trudon fashion, but it’s much more appropriate for summer. With base notes of Vanilla and Jasmine to provide a subtle sweetness paired with more earthy head notes of ginger, blackcurrant, clove and mint, it fills a kitchen with the most gorgeous aroma.

At-Home Manicures Made Easy 

Don’t get me wrong, I love a good manicure but I simply don’t have the commitment levels some girls possess to go every two weeks to top up their gels. However, I totally recognise that nice nails make me feel much more put together and I’ve discovered Manucurist’s Green Top Sunshine is an absolute winner for at-home, (slightly slap-dash) manis. This gel-like top coat has serious staying power and provides such a vibrant, salon-worthy gloss. It’s very robust and doesn’t chip easily… I got a solid week before small chips started to form and I think that’s pretty decent given I can’t usually last a day without noticing a chip or crack! Massive fan and I’m raving about it to all my friends. 

Salivating Over Em The Nutritionist’s Recipes

Maybe I’m late to the bandwagon on this but Emily English (aka Em The Nutritionist) is a new discovery for me and she’s absolutely nailing it with her simple, no-fuss attitude to eating well. I’ve made a few of her mouth-watering Instagram recipes lately and I’m obsessed. I wasn’t kidding when I said I salivate while scrolling through her feed! I can see how her approach to cooking and the way she talks about nutrition resonates with a lot of people… I find it very approachable and easy to connect with. Her ethos is all about celebrating simple, whole foods that, when pulled together, create recipes that are not only full of flavour but densely nutritious. Her cookbook “So Good” comes out in May and it’s definitely one I want to add to my collection.

Sorting Out My Dog’s Sensitive Tum

My dog Rosie has been suffering with a few stomach upsets over the past year and we’ve spent months trying to trouble shoot what might be going on. Now, I’m no expert when it comes to pet nutrition, but from the many hours I’ve spent researching about it, it seems the guiding principles us humans are recommended to follow, are actually very similar for our pooches too. It’s been a huge eye-opener learning about the pet food industry and, quite frankly, just how terrible it is. Even the brands that are marketed as “organic” and “wholesome” are in fact incredible processed and contain ingredients that dogs simply don’t digest well. It’s mind-boggling walking down food aisles at the pet store… an all too common denominator is cheap ingredients, tonnes of filler ingredients and processed to the max. From dried kibble to wet food, it’s all made to last an lifetime on shelves and I know from my own interest in the wellness industry, we’d never think twice about eating a solidly processed diet. So why are we not following the same advice for our pets? A resource I’ve found incredibly useful is Cam at The Dog Nutritionist. If you’re questioning your pet’s food or they are having some health issues, he has some great videos on Youtube and Instagram that’ll really open your eyes and give you some guidance on the steps you can take to better the health of your pet. As a Canine Nutrigenomics expert, he’s pretty scathing of most dog food brands but one he raves about is Different Dog. In a nutshell, they are a fresh food brand that make human-grade complete dog food from quality ingredients. No fillers, no processed crap, just whole foods that provide all the nutritional support your dog craves. They’ve got so many recipes to choose from depending on dietary requirements and allergies and it gets delivered right to your doorstep. They also have B-Corp status which is a huge achievement and I love that the packaging the food comes in is either recyclable or compostable. We’ve been on their Pork Ragu for a few months now and so far Rosie is thriving. No gut disturbances and no waking up in the night for trips to the garden!

A New Rosacea-Approved Cleanser I’m Loving

I’m a huge fan of Dr Sam’s skincare and have found Sam hearself to be an incredible source of knowledge on all things dermatology and skincare. I adore her Flawless Moisturier and Gossamer SPF Tint… they’ve truly become staples in my beauty routine. With rosacea, I’m always cautious about changing up skincare but I’ve heard so much about her Flawless Cleanser I finally caved and put my trusty Avene Extremley Gentle Cleanser to one side. The texture of Flawless Cleanser is not one I’m used to – It’s a gel-like consistency and quite thick until you work it into the skin. However the uncomplicated and simple ingredients are too good to ignore. It’s fragrance-free (an essential for sensitive or rosacea-prone skin) and utilises Aloe Vera which has calming and antibacterial properties. When I was in the maldives last year, I got very familiar with Aloe Vera and resorted to slathering it all over (face included) and found it to be quite the miracle ingredient for not only soothing pink skin (ooops) but also reducing inflammation. I thought it would break me out like mad and massively flare up my rosacea but it did the exact opposite. When I learnt Dr Sam also highly regards aloe vera, enough to make it the hero ingredient of her award-winning cleanser, I had to give it a go. It’s great for removing makeup (although I’d recommend a separate eye makeup remover) and it leaves my skin feeling clean, calm and prepped for my actives and moisturiser. 

words by Molly Jennings


From IBS To Insomnia: 3 Reasons To Try Reflexology

Reflexology is an ancient art of healing that involves stimulation to reflex points found on the feet and hands. Specialist techniques stimulate the nerve and circulatory pathways within the body to activate the body’s own innate healing processes. These reflex points correspond to different organs and systems of the body and aim to restore equilibrium in the body, mind and spirit. Reflexology can support many conditions and some of the most common that I see in my practice are IBS/digestive issues, headaches/migraines and Insomnia.

Can it help IBS/Digestive issues?
You’ve probably experienced some form of a digestive issue at one stage in your life. Stomach cramps, nausea, gurgling, bloating, constipation or diarrhoea, whatever it is, it’s unpleasant. Many people get so used to their symptoms that they are unaware that not going to the toilet for 3 days is quite an issue. More often than not there is a stress element associated with digestive issues, think of when you get ‘butterflies’ or when you feel so nervous your stomach is ‘in knots’. We don’t just feel this out of coincidence, neurons that connect the brain and the gut let the stomach know that we are stressed, or freaking out about something and so the stomach muscles become extremely sensitive. If we are left in this stressed state for a prolonged time, the symptoms of IBS begin to occur.

When treating someone with IBS, we work through the upper and lower digestive reflex points such as the stomach, liver, pancreas, gallbladder and large and small intestine reflexes. The other reflexes that can assist clients with IBS are the adrenal and solar plexus reflex as these are involved in the stress response. The aim is to keep the body as relaxed and stress-free as possible, giving the body the correct nutrients so that there is a healthy environment for the digestive system to work efficiently. Read our top tips on how to de-stress!

Can it help headaches and migraines?
Cluster headaches, sinus headaches, tension headaches – whatever kind you get, it ain’t nice! If you experience migraines, you’re probably not a stranger to a couple of days of hibernation, lying in a dark room to help you get through. We can put an end to this and reflexology is an extremely powerful way to reduce the pain. There are such varying causes for headaches; congestion in sinuses, tension in jaw or neck, eye strain or even a build-up of toxins in the body, so the treatment will depend on the person. The main reflex points to work on are the head, brain, neck, spine, eye point and solar plexus reflex. These points will really allow the head and neck to become relaxed, congestion to be reduced and for any blockages in the spine that may be causing the pain to be relieved. The solar plexus is behind the stomach and is the group of nerves that allow us to feel emotions such as nervousness and excitement, it is a wonderful reflex to work which really calms the body, mind and spirit. We may also look at working the liver to assist in the elimination of toxins in the body and the adrenals to reduce stress levels that may be causing the headache. If you suffer from headaches, hand reflexology is a great way to relieve it, focusing on the reflexes mentioned above. You can do it on the train, at your desk, or if you want to make it into a little more of ritual; light a few candles, lie down, take a few deep breaths and begin your own treatment.

Can it help insomnia?
If you have experienced insomnia, you will understand the implications that it has on your life. It doesn’t only have an effect on your concentration and energy levels but your metabolism, digestion, hormone levels and other systems can be affected too. Sleep is so important for your health as it is the time of repair and regeneration for our bodies, a time where all of our cells, systems and functions can have some quiet time to really get to work and prepare your body for what is ahead the next day. One of the most common responses that I see after a treatment for any issue is a good night’s sleep, so if you’re suffering from insomnia, reflexology is a great place to start.

What causes insomnia?
There are many causes of insomnia and they will differ from person to person. Some of them include stress, anxiety, depression, hormonal imbalances such as cortisol and melatonin (the body’s own body clock) and some not so obvious causes such as blood sugar levels, food sensitivities and inflammation. The most common cause is usually hyperarousal of the nervous system, too much time spent in “fight or flight” response. The best areas to focus on to regulate sleep cycle is the nervous system and the endocrine system which includes the hormone glands; pituitary, thyroid and adrenals. Focusing on the nervous system allows the body to enter the parasympathetic nervous state, also known as ‘rest and digest’. The pituitary gland is the master hormone gland which orchestrates all of the hormones in the body, one of its many functions is to regulate the circadian rhythm which is the 24-hour cycle in the physiological processes of living beings, one of the processes being the sleep-wake cycle. The adrenal glands respond to stress and control blood sugar and the thyroid gland regulates the body’s metabolism. Ensuring these are balanced through reflexology will support anyone experiencing and struggling with insomnia.

words by Alex Bottomley

Alex Bottomley (MAR) is a registered reflexologist based in London and Margate. Alex takes an intuitive approach to recognise your individual needs. She creates a bespoke treatment with love and intention, providing you with a safe space to receive healing, allowing your body to find balance and enhance your overall health and well being. www.eucalyptus.space


Jjimjilbang: A Deep Dive Into Korean Sauna Therapy

In the bustling metropolises of South Korea, amidst the neon lights and the ceaseless hum of city life, lies a sanctuary for the weary soul – the jjimjilbang. This uniquely Korean sauna culture offers not just a respite from the daily grind, but also a plethora of stress-relieving benefits that have been cherished for centuries.

What is Jjimjilbang?

Jjimjilbang (찜질방) is a traditional Korean sauna and spa facility that has evolved into a cultural phenomenon. It’s not merely a place for sweating out toxins, but a multifaceted oasis where Koreans come to relax, socialise, and rejuvenate. These sprawling complexes typically boast various sauna rooms, hot tubs, massage services, communal sleeping areas, and even entertainment facilities like movie theatres and game rooms.

Stress Relief Through Heat Therapy

At the heart of the jjimjilbang experience lies heat therapy, known as ‘hanjeungmak.’ These sauna rooms are meticulously crafted to offer different temperatures and herbal infusions, each tailored to target specific health benefits. The dry heat induces sweating, facilitating the release of toxins from the body while also promoting relaxation and stress reduction.

Detoxification and Cleansing

One of the most touted benefits of jjimjilbang therapy is its detoxifying effects. As the body sweats profusely in the intense heat, impurities and toxins are flushed out through the pores. Regular visits to the sauna are believed to aid in purifying the skin, improving complexion, and enhancing overall well-being.

Relaxation and Mental Wellness

In today’s fast-paced world, stress has become an unavoidable companion for many. Jjimjilbang offers a tranquil escape from the chaos, providing a serene environment where individuals can unwind and recharge both body and mind. The soothing ambiance, coupled with the therapeutic effects of heat therapy, induces a state of deep relaxation, melting away tension and fostering a sense of calm.

Improved Circulation and Muscle Relief

The intense heat of the saunas dilates blood vessels, promoting better circulation throughout the body. This increased blood flow delivers oxygen and nutrients more efficiently to the muscles, aiding in their recovery and relieving soreness. For those suffering from chronic pain or muscle stiffness, regular visits to the jjimjilbang can offer significant relief and improve overall mobility.

Social and Cultural Experience

Beyond its physical benefits, jjimjilbang also serves as a social hub where friends and families gather to bond and connect. It’s not uncommon to see multi-generational groups enjoying the facilities together, sharing stories, and strengthening familial ties. This communal aspect adds another layer of richness to the jjimjilbang experience, making it more than just a spa visit but a cherished cultural tradition.

Tips for a Fulfilling Jjimjilbang Experience

Hydration is Key: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your sauna session to stay hydrated and replenish lost fluids.

Respect the Rules: Jjimjilbangs often have specific etiquette regarding nudity, cleanliness, and noise levels. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the rules to ensure a harmonious experience for all.

Try Different Sauna Rooms: Explore the various sauna rooms available, each offering unique temperatures and herbal infusions to cater to different preferences and health needs.

Take Breaks: Listen to your body and take breaks as needed. Relax in the cool-down areas between sauna sessions to prevent overheating.

Indulge in Other Amenities: Don’t limit yourself to just the saunas. Take advantage of massage services, hot tubs, and other amenities to maximize your relaxation experience.

While London may not boast traditional Korean Spas offering the immersive Jjimjilbang experience, you can still craft a spa day that mirrors its essence and principles. Instead of rushing through your visit, savor every moment and explore all the available facilities, from heat therapy and steam rooms to saunas and invigorating cold plunges. Embrace the Korean approach by leisurely enjoying each area, allowing yourself to sweat out toxins, boost circulation, and find your inner calm. Remember to truly unwind in the chill-out zones – resist the urge to hastily shower and depart. Grab a book, linger, and fully embrace the relaxation these spaces offer!


READ MORE: High Altitude Havens: The Best Alpine Spas for Wellness Enthusiasts

The Best Alpine Spas for Wellness Enthusiasts

18 Trendy Treats and Tipples For Healthier Living

With new food and drink treats streaming into the market every month, we’re here to let you know what’s worth adding to your basket. Pimp your pancakes or toast with a drool-worthy nut-free granola butter, get your APV fix via a new lemony-minty sparkling drink and try a hormone-balancing brew that regulates blood sugar levels. In the mix this month a special mention to the chunkiest granola you can buy, RollaGranola is the closest to homemade you’ll find plus is free from refined sugar. If you’re sensitive to caffeine but still crave a morning pick-me-up, Nolo is revolutionising the scene with their refreshing low-caffeine iced coffee, perfect for the approaching warmer seasons. Additionally, we’ve included some kitchen essentials to elevate your cooking game!


Farm-to-Table Feasting: 10 Vibrant Spring Recipes To Try

As the vibrant hues of spring emerge and nature awakens from its wintry slumber, there’s no better time to indulge in the freshest flavours straight from the farm to your table. From crisp greens to succulent fruits and tender herbs, these vibrant spring recipes encapsulate the essence of springtime freshness, offering a symphony of flavours and textures that will tease your taste buds and nourish your soul.

Ricotta & Honey Vegetable Tartines

Superman Cooks

Shaved Zucchini Salad

This Healthy Table

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

Half-Baked Harvest

Nectarine & Mozzarella Salad With Basil Vinaigrette

Drizzle & Dip

Honey Ginger Baked Salmon

The Defined Dish

Parmesan Asparagus Fries

Skinny Taste

Gluten-Free Lemon Tart

Peanut Butter + Chocolate

Healthy Dill Potato Salad

Lively Table

Green Pea Soup

The Clever Meal

Super Easy Spring Green Salad

Fit Foodie Nutter


Why I Move… With Paola Di Lanzo

Paola Di Lanzo, the founder of Paola’s BodyBarre, is an OG wellness guru. If you’re not familiar with PBB, a concept way ahead of its time, it’s a unique low-impact method that fuses the best of Pilates, barre, yoga, and functional training. Founded back in 2008, Paola has come a long way in the wellness industry, with studio launches and collaborations with stellar gyms under her belt. The fundamentals of the PBB method stand the test of time, hence the consistent stream of class-goers she has in tow. Paola is brimming with infectious energy, which may be the real secret behind her success. If you attend one of her classes, you’re guaranteed to be left with a renewed sense of joy and, of course, a serious burn! As part of our ‘Why I Move’ series, we’re catching up with Paola to delve into her journey with fitness, how she stays motivated, as well as some great recommendations!

Why do you move?

The answer is simple! I “move” to feel physically strong, physically capable of moving in an efficient functional manner for everyday life! At the age of 53, I can still move and teach the way I did when I was in my 20s. The old adage applies… “use it or lose it”. 

I have had many ups and downs in my life (like most people do), and movement has always mentally balanced me. It gives me the feel-good factor EVERY time I teach or attend a class. The power of endorphins!

What are some of your earliest recollections of physical activity as a child?

I grew up in Western Australia by the beach. We were water babies from a very young age. If we were not swimming in the pool or ocean we were climbing trees. Australia has always been a sporty nation; it was the norm to get stuck into all sporting and outdoor activities. Throughout primary school, I played tennis, netball, softball, ballet classes, and gym classes and had a passion for athletics and running. As I got into my teens it was Volleyball, boogie boarding, water skiing and anything we could do on the beach!

Can you tell us the story behind Paola’s BodyBarre? How has it evolved since its inception 10 years ago?

Paola’s BodyBarre the studios started 10 years ago, but the method was being taught by myself in Harbour Club Chelsea, KX Life and studios in Fulham from as early as 2008.  

How has your approach to fitness evolved since you first became a PT?

I have been a Personal trainer since 1990. As it was the early 90’s I also taught Aerobics (in a thong leotard I might add), however, my style of training has evolved, like my fitness wear! 

After my first child was born in 2002, I realised the hard and fast approach was not working for my body. I used to lift heavy and run like a maniac for hours which was taking its toll on me. I was working in a high-end boutique studio in Knightsbridge at the time I fell pregnant. There were many celebrities and “it girls” in this particular gym chatting about Pilates and how wonderful it is for pre/post-natal training. I had never heard of it but I was curious. 

In 2003 I signed up for a teacher training course with Michael King (known back then as The Pilates Institute). I hadn’t even tried a class before and I have to admit I was in shock with the method as it was alien to me. I grew to love it and started to play around with the traditional method adding in my more dynamic approach. I started to fuse my fitness training, bits of yoga, functional training (from my courses with Paul Check) and later ballet techniques.

As an instructor, what have you noticed most about people’s relationship with exercise? Is there anything you’ve learnt over your years of teaching and working with people on their fitness journey?

As I have taught for many years, I have certainly seen a shift in the mentality towards fitness training. I would have to say the beginning of my career (1988) it was all about aesthetics! Women wanted to be trim and toned. Men wanted to be “big” bulk up and look muscular. Think Baywatch… they were the inspirational body types back in the day! 

There are also “trends” in terms of the look we adhere to. The 90s were all about the exceedingly thin waif-like look shown on the catwalks (aka Kate Moss). They went as far as calling it “heroin-chic” – it was obviously not responsible to promote such a look! Then came the Kardashians with the “implanted” and “filled” curves. Times have changed and thankfully so has our mentality and ways of educating our audience and clients. 

I’d say most people who come to PBB want to exercise to not just look great but to feel great. We know that with regular exercise comes mental clarity, stress reduction, and overall happiness. It boosts your mood when you feel low, increases energy levels and improves cognitive function. There is a lot of stress with the progression of technology and our ever-fast-paced moving lives. Fitness studios have become our hub of local communities to feel great and to connect with others! 

What do you hope people gain from attending a PBB class?

Our PBB clients gain not only strength, flexibility, tone and core strength but also postural improvements. Our clients rave about the results they achieve not only physically but also mentally! 

One of the biggest rewards of my job is hearing clients say that myself and team PBB have transformed not only their bodies but also their lives. PBB is a community! I see friendships and close bonds made through our classes. We are a welcoming community that gives so many men and women a place to flourish.

When you really don’t want to work out, where do you draw inspiration and motivation from?

Teaching my classes is physically demanding so when I go to a class it has to be in line with my mood and how my body is feeling. I love yoga when I need more mental grounding which is usually when I have run myself ragged with the business, children and teaching. When I feel I need to improve my strength a good class at KXU is my go-to as they are super motivating and London’s top trainers. For Pilates (other than PBB Pilates) it is hands down Lagree at Studio Fix and MAD on Kings Road. 

Are rest days important to you, if so, how do you spend them?

Hahha! What’s that? I am not good at resting. Jokes aside I am the type of person who has to keep on the move, which I know is not good for me as I get to the point of “crash and burn”. I do however make sure I have at least one day off teaching to rest my body physically and to stay 100 percent focused on my family time. My family are my energisers and downtime. I also go to bed super early (9 pm for 5.30 am starts). I am obsessed with getting enough sleep so that is my rest and recovery!

Nutrition plays an important supporting role for movement… how do you utilise food to fuel you throughout your long days of teaching?

In terms of my food intake, it has to be fresh produce. I try and avoid processed foods. Generally, my breakfast is eggs adding either avocados, tomatoes, spinach or beans. My studio in Fulham is attached to Nati’s Wholefoods and he does the best egg dishes with an Italian dish. Delicious and nutritious. 

If I don’t have eggs it’s Greek yoghurt, muesli and berries and ALWAYS a coffee. Lunch is protein with veg or salad. On the go, I dash for a prepped acai bowl as they are tasty and super nutritious. Dinner is whatever the “bosses” at home ask for. The bosses are my husband and 3 children. We all love cooking and love cooking a variety of healthy nutritious meals. I have a very healthy relationship with food and encourage the family to have the same passion as I do in terms of enjoying a great meal with family and friends. I do not deprive myself. If I want a treat, I will have it. I generally am not a snacker but if I feel low on energy it’s either good protein shakes or a green juice from the studio I may be in teaching in on that day. 

I am a stickler for my supplements! I do not go a day without Kollo Health which is a liquid collogen. I have 1000mg of Vitamin C a day and Multivitamins by JSHealth.

If you’ve got friends visiting London, where do you send them for the best brunch?

My favourite places for brunch are Farm Girl Notting Hill, The Wolsey, Acai Girls Fulham, Black Penny Chelsea and Granger and Co on Pavilion Road.

What are the fitness essentials you can’t be without?

I can’t live without my Apple Watch, Spotify for playlists, Nike for trainers, Alo, Belsize, Vuori and Lululemon for fitness clothing. My favourite classes (other than mine) are at KXU Chelsea, Studio Fix Kensington, MAD Kings Road, and Heartcore Fulham. I also have to carry my Bala ankle weights with me to all my PBB Sculpt classes!