Our video trailer for the "Calm Set: Self-Love Essentials for Quiet Nights In" has just been released this week, a few days before International Women's Day. I could not think of a better moment to present the local brands that are part of this curated gift set, all owned and led by inspirational women, and show you how I incorporate them into my daily mindful routine.
The idea behind Calm was to inspire women to make more time for themselves. In a city like Hong Kong where parties happen every day of the week and being too busy is a status symbol, FOMO and social pressure are real. But pausing and practicing mindfulness is very important to reduce stress, regulate your emotions and feel happier. The truth is, pulling all-nighters for work or leisure do not make me feel productive and fulfilled as it did in my early twenties: it makes me feel tired, grumpy and a coffee addict. It made me wonder why I was favouring short-term pleasures at the expense of my wellbeing. So now if I feel like staying in on a Friday night, I'm staying in (and enjoying every minute of it).
Calm is the physical result of my ideal cosy night in: a relaxing knit project, a wonderfully-scented candle burning in a corner, a warm cup of tea. It sets the mood for a luxurious and healthy pamper evening. I like to do my Calm routine at least one evening per week: it's my "recharge" night, which gives me the energy I need to face the rest of the week with more serenity and confidence.
Here are my cosy evening essentials, which you can find in the Calm Set:
1. A knit project
The Everyday Scarf Knit Kit is the absolute first timer project and comes with everything you need (including materials and super detailed instructions) to make your own scarf. Although I am not a total beginner myself, this is a project I love to do because I don't have to think too much about it and I can just switch off and relax.
2. A candle
The orange blossom aromatherapy candle by Slow Living HK is soy-based, organic, hand-poured, smells in the whole house, lasts for 40 hours... It ticks all the boxes. Founder Audrey is a graduate from Formula Botanica and Aromahead so she knows how to blend essential oils and her candles immediately create a soothing atmosphere.
3. A cup of tea
The herbal tea pack from Zippysparkles has 21 servings and also comes with their stainless-steel tea infuser. You can choose between their Radiance and Cleanse blends: both taste very unique and gentle, and most importantly, it makes you feel good. Founder Ping has discovered the healing power of plants in 2013 and through her teas, wants to encourage us to take better care of our well-being.
4. Motivational words
Because sometimes we just need a reminder that we should slow down, that we are strong and capable, that we are responsible for our own happiness. Treasure Me Creative has designed postcards for our Calm set, each with a different inspirational quote and that boho chic design so peculiar to Founder Amandine (also known as blogger @dreamsofabadie).
5. A home-cooked meal
Making your dinner from scratch is very fulfilling and satisfying, and you have full control of what you put in your body. PurelyB, a one-stop portal for all things healthy and natural, has designed a exclusive mini recipe book for our Calm set which includes seasonal ideas made with wholesome ingredients.
Left/top: Audrey, Founder of Slow Living HK.
Middle: Ping, Founder of Zippysparkles.
Right/bottom: Amandine, Founder of Treasure Me Creative.
Other self-care night essentials:
6. A face mask
Let's "face" it, we never have 20 minutes during the week to make a face mask, so doing it while knitting is the perfect occasion. And if you're lucky enough to have a bathtub in Hong Kong, make yourself a fluffy bath and enjoy the steam!
7. A good book
After such a relaxing evening, a few pages of your favourite book will make you drift off to sleep. Avoid productivity reads or exciting thrillers which will keep you awake, instead read a light fiction story or if you prefer non-fiction, maybe a biography?
Discover our Calm Set trailer:
And you, what are your "quiet night in" staples?