21 tips for the 21-day Christmas countdown


It’s the 4th of December and that means there are only 21 days until Christmas, sorry (not sorry) 🙂

I love this time of year, but my long to-do list can leave me feeling frazzled if I don’t take care. One thing I really enjoy is helping clients, whether that’s through gift ideas, providing a pampering treatment and space to relax in the midst of all the extra responsibilities that the season brings, or getting you ready for parties galore.

Whether you’re nearly done with your Christmas preparations (or barely started) I thought I’d share some of my thoughts and feelings about this time of year, along with 21 tips to help you stay relaxed, take care of yourself, and treat your loved ones.

All the gift ideas mentioned below can be sourced at Jody’s Haven.

Massage Candle in sleek packaging
Natural Spa Factory Massage Candle

Get into the Solstice Spirit without the stress with my 21 tips for Christmas

1. Sleep well

It can be difficult to get up in the dark, but equally, you’ve been working hard all year. Maybe you do need a bit more time in bed! Consider giving yourself an extra half hour – maybe by going to bed just a little earlier. 

2. Eat well

Struggling to stay hydrated? Eat your water. Lots of fresh fruit and veg with a high water content (such as cucumber, tomato and citrus fruits) will help keep your levels up. Drink herbal teas for a warming boost of antioxidants.

3. Keep moving

If you don’t have much time to exercise, don’t fret! Play your favourite tunes and have a mad dance – even if it’s just one song long – once a day. It’s an instant mood-lifter (and it’s great for first thing in the morning).   

4. Gold isn’t just for the tree

Everything deserves a dusting of festive sparkle – even you! I’ve developed the All That Glitters Facial to help you feel indulged and nurtured – and look and feel your best during all the celebrations.  

5. Make better choices for the planet

This isn’t the easiest time of year to be eco-friendly: extra packaging, food waste and travel miles can all stack up. That’s why it’s important to choose natural, low-impact gifts where you can. 

6. Tap into the refill craze and buy as much or as little as you want

I now offer lots of lovely products – such as Natural Spa Factory’s Fig & Vanilla luxury shampoo and conditioner – that you can take away in your own containers.  

7. Buy gifts that can be refilled

I love ZAO’s magnetic palettes – new in at Jody’s Haven! Starting at around ÂŁ10, you can fill these with glitter eyeshadow, blushers, bronzers, foundation… whatever you like! They make a lovely, personal gift that your recipient can reuse and recharge for many years to come.  

8. Remember: it’s okay to rest!

Put your feet up and watch a Christmas movie every now and then – you deserve it! (I recommend Klaus on Netflix.) If you can’t get any peace and quiet at home, well, you know where I am… 

9. Remember: luxury doesn’t have to be expensive

Glittery eyeshadow palette made from bamboo
ZAO eyeshadow palette

For the price of a stocking filler, you can bring some spa luxury into your home (or give it as a gift): Natural Spa Factory’s Massage Candle is one of my favourites. Light for an amazing fragrance, blow out and use the cooled wax for a indulgent body massage. 

10. Buy gifts that can have a second life

Natural Spa Factory’s Apothecary Room Diffusers combine a sleek, blue-black glass and black reeds with luxurious, vegan-friendly fragrance. The full set is £33.50 and the refills are a very reasonable £23.50. The glass vase can easily have a second life, and the whole gift is beautifully packaged in a (reusable) black and gold foiled box.

11. Don’t deny yourself a luxury treat or treatment

At precisely the time when you’re trying to dodge the lurgy and endless chocolates in the office (or at home!) you’re also supposed to find the energy to tie up all the loose ends before the end of the year, be merry and look fabulous in photos. I may be biased, but I think this is the time for a relaxing spa ritual, scrub, polish or facial.

12. Choose gifts that don’t need to be wrapped

With lots of Natural Spa Factory gifts, you get that lovely, luxury, robust box that you don’t need to wrap, and that your recipient won’t want to throw away when the products come out. Natural Spa Factory’s large envelope gift sets are great value – and save time on wrapping, too.  

13. Get help getting ready for the office party

Give yourself a glamorous boost with one of my eyebrow and eyelash treatments or a full gel polish for your nails (I have some gorgeous new colours for winter – and glitters are at the ready!). 

14. Create a happy glow

One of the easiest ways to lift your energy is through scent – and Natural Spa Factory have developed gorgeous limited edition seasonal candles with a characteristic hint of gold decoration on the frosted glass. At just £15.50 for an 80g candle, these also make a lovely gift.

15. Tap into the waterless trend

Water is precious and so is your skin, which is why it makes sense to nourish yourself with concentrated, high quality botanical products with the minimum of fillers and maximum benefits. I love the Colombian Coffee Rush Body Scrub , which also contains antioxidant-rich green cardamom and bitter chocolate, while unrefined oils lock moisture in.

16. Reduce packaging

My new skincare and beauty ranges from ZAO and Natural Spa Factory minimise packaging – while still being packed with skin-enhancing ingredients. Both brands use minimal plastic, making them better for the planet (and not bad for the pocket!) but still luxury, and still reliable. 

Refillable bamboo makeup palette with magnetic backing

17. Chill out

While most people are complaining about the weather, the rest of us are dealing with hot flushes! Take five with a Natural Spa Factory sheet mask that you’ve put in the fridge for a couple of hours before applying to your face. 

18. Remember the mammas

Know a soon-to-be-mamma? Don’t let all the festive hubbub overshadow her good news. I’ve tailored two beautiful treatments for new mums: Mamma-to-Be Relaxing Ritual and my Christmas Golden Angel Pregnancy Ritual to make sure that mammas aren’t overlooked at Christmas. 

19. Develop a nourishing ritual for yourself that doesn’t cost a thing

There are so many excuses to spend at this time of year. But many of the things that truly nourish us can’t be bought. Why not create a replenishing ritual for yourself? It could be as simple as a long walk with the dog followed by a hot shower, a phone call with a friend, or an afternoon curled up on the sofa with a good book.

20. Laugh as much as you can

Gather your best games, silliest presents and oldest friends. Wear your daftest Christmas hat and most embarrassing jumper, and play. Because if you can’t play at Christmas, when can you?

21. Reflect and celebrate

This is a good time of year to reflect on everything you’ve achieved – despite (if you’re anything like me!) the challenges you may have faced throughout the year. This year, I’ve overhauled my entire beauty and skincare range to try to find natural products that balance amazing results with more environmentally-friendly packaging and ingredients. It wasn’t easy, but it was worth it. What have you achieved this year? Remember to raise a glass to yourself, to acknowledge all the ways you’ve grown. You deserve a very merry holiday with lots of love and laughter this Christmas. 

Still in the middle of your Christmas shopping?

Let me know!

I have ideas for lots of budgets and different recipients, but I can’t promise I won’t encourage you to treat yourself, too!