These 5 luxurious ideas for self-care on a budget will leave you feeling fancy and your wallet heavy. We all want to indulge from time to time, and if we can also take care of ourselves in the process... it's even better.
Self-care should be a non-negotiable daily practice in your life.
We know that when we take better care of ourselves and put our own needs first, we are better able to put our best foot forward in helping others.
What Does a Self-Care Practice on a Budget Look Like?
What exactly is self-care?
Self-care can look like many different things:
- bushing your hair
- doing a weekly face mask
- going for a walk
- yoga or some other type of movement that you enjoy
- watching your favorite show
- dinner with girlfriends
- going to bed early
- cooking yourself a nourishing meal (such as fish en papillote with fennel salad or leek greens farro risotto)
- crying (sometimes there’s nothing a good cry can’t fix)
Self-care can be as mundane or as glamorous as you want it to be, but what if you want to indulge a bit more without breaking the bank? Is it still possible?
Where there’s a will, there’s a way…always. These five ideas will help you step up your self-care game even on a budget. Any way of taking care of yourself is great, but these are for when you want a little more than the basics.
5 Fancy (But Affordable) Ideas for Self-Care on a Budget
1) Fresh Eucalyptus
Eucalyptus is an instant mood booster. Its leaves give off a very earthy, light aroma that isn’t too strong (for the sensitive nose types) but is a powerful decongestant. Fresh eucalyptus has several uses:
- Put the eucalyptus in water like you would a bouquet of flowers.
- Dry the leaves and use as a natural DIY wall decoration.
- Tie a eucalyptus bouquet to your shower head to let it naturally diffuse in the steamy water. Side note: It’s especially great in the winter time when you’re feeling a bit more congested.
- Dry the leaves and put them in a bowl with boiling water. Cover the bowl and let it steep for a few minutes. Once ready, put a towel over the back of your head with your (clean) face hovering over the bowl, forming a tent. Make sure your face is far enough away not to burn yourself and you’ll experience a very refreshing natural facial steam. You’ll be transported to a spa without even having to leave the house.
You can buy a decent size bouquet of fresh eucalyptus at Trader Joe’s for only $3 (or at any other grocery store that sells flowers).
2) Facial Gua Sha
Gua Sha works with the flow of blood, lymph, and qi (pronounced chee - also called energy flow). The movement in which the gua sha tool is gliding over the skin stimulates the lymphatic system and helps detoxify the skin.
Some gua sha benefits include
- brighter skin
- reduced blackheads
- even skin tone
- a natural lift
- minimized facial bloating and muscle tension
- reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
You’ll feel like you just went to the spa for a facial, but without the hefty price tag, and in a relatively short amount of time. And just like with anything, this is something you must practice often to really reap the benefits.
There are many different tools you can buy for facial gua sha. I started with this tool and now I use this one (pictured). All that’s needed besides the tool is a facial oil to allow the tool to glide easily over the skin.
One of my favorite ladies who teaches all about facial gua sha is Britta Plug. Her studio is located in NYC, but she shares loads of free tutorials on her Instagram handle found here, teaching you proper techniques for doing facial gua sha straight from the comfort of your own home.
Acupuncture is an alternative form of medicine that focuses on correcting the imbalances of energy in the body.
It’s a practice that’s been around for hundreds of years and is treated by inserting small thin needles into various points in the body. It's known to help with reducing stress in the body and can also help with many other health ailments.
And like anything related to health, you have to go consistently for a period of time to generally see results. It seems like we’re all dealing with some level of stress, and often that’s only part of our problems.
I’d been thinking about doing acupuncture for years before I gave it a try. Of course, I’d heard many times that it was very relaxing, but I couldn’t seem to wrap my head around how having several needles in various body parts sounded relaxing.🤔
Going to a community acupuncture center is a very affordable option since many community acupuncture centers offer their services on a sliding scale meaning you can pay what you choose. The center that I went to for a couple of years started their scale at $30 and went up to $55 per session, which is around 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Other community centers start around $20 or $25, you just have to look around a bit to find something within your budget, but I highly recommend it.
This is another healing modality that works with the subconscious mind (the place where your beliefs, emotions, habits, values, protective reactions, imagination, and intuition reside).
Grace Smith is the hypnotherapy guru. She calls hypnotherapy meditation with a goal and offers hundreds of single hypnosis recordings that cover just about every topic under the sun.
Grace Space is an app with plenty of free hypnosis sessions on a number of topics. To get more content, you can sign up for a free 7-day trial and then have options to pay a monthly or annual fee. You can listen on your own at any time, any place (except for driving).
Hypnotherapy is a practice that I’ve absolutely fallen in love with and have recommended to multiple people. I sometimes find it more enjoyable than a standard guided meditation because it has a visual component.
5) Attend a New Yoga Studio
Several yoga studios offer incentives for new members making it very affordable. These deals vary from studio to studio, but some offer $30 for 30 days of unlimited yoga, $10 for 10 consecutive days, $39 for 30 days, etc, and some studios even offer $5 community classes or free classes on specific days of the week.
Typically going to a yoga studio can get pricey, but this is a great way to have the experience of a class setting (versus doing it in your home) and trying out a new type of yoga without the high price point.
PRO TIP: If you live in a bigger city, you could bounce around from studio to studio taking advantage of the new member deals, and then once you find one you really enjoy, you could think about purchasing a membership at that studio.
Looking for an at-home yoga experience?
For yoga, Yoga with Adriene is really great. Her YouTube channel offers thousands of free yoga videos that you can do from the comfort of your own home. Plus, she has several 30-day yoga challenges to help get you started.
For more ideas and other workouts, be sure to check out the best online workouts for any budget.