I didn’t really start incorporating self-care practices into my routine until my 30s. Before that, I was convinced that working myself to the bone was the only way I was going to successfully achieve my goals and get what I want. Who has time to sit through a one-hour therapy session, meditate for 30 minutes a day or say no to my friends and family about get-togethers when my gut is telling me I need alone time? Blame it on NYC culture or my Aries drive but I knew deep down that my Latina upbringing played a huge role in a lot of the unhealthy decisions I made in my 20s. Our culture embraces working hard and being there for literally everyone — your mama, your man, your homegirl, your prima, and your kids — but yourself. My mom and my abuela didn’t grow up in a generation where self-care was even a thing. Back then self-care was considered selfish and unnecessary. One thing I’ve realized in the whole #selfcare dialogue is none of us are talking about how to school the older generations with self-loving tools. Self-care isn’t some glamours trend, it’s crucial — especially for women of color.
This Mother’s Day instead of just showering your mom with flowers, introduce her to self-care. Talk to her about making time for herself and get her some goodies that will give her the boost and the motivation to finally do it. Trust me, she might think you’re talking that new age hippie nonsense at first but she’ll definitely thank you later. Here are a few self-care-motivating things to get your mama this holiday season!
Introduce Her to Bath Time
I don’t know about your mama, but I know for sure that mines rarely if ever makes times for baths. Shower time is straight up I-need-to-get-clean time and I know her life would change if she dedicated at least 30 minutes a week to soaking in the tub while reading her favorite book. Get her a set of soaking salts that would force her to make use of them. These natural salts are formulated with a blend of lavender, eucalyptus essential oils, Himalayan pink salts, and Cambrian blue clay to help detox your body and calm your mind. If I can get my mom to do this at least once, I did my job here.
Herbivore Soaking Salts Set, $32, herbivorebotanicals.com
Ease her anxiety
Regardless of how good our lives might be, we’re all human so we ALL deal with a degree of stress which can often lead to anxiety. Fortunately, there are natural ways to ease those feelings and CBD oil is one way. This concentrated formula is cultivated from organic flower grown outdoors and extracted in small batches. It helps reduce symptoms of anxiety and pain while reducing inflammation in the body. Tell her it’s plant-based and won’t get her high and she’ll be all for it.
Plant Alchemy CBD, $115, thealchemistkitchen.com
Get her to use overnight face masks
Not everyone’s idea of self-care is face-masking and that’s okay. I know my mom rather work out or do something else with her time but she still really cares about her skin, so an overnight mask that she doesn’t have to even think about that won’t be a mess to wash off is right now her alley. This rose-infused face-mask includes a two-step process that replenishes and locks in moisture while you sleep.
Fresh Rose Deep Hydration Sleeping Mask, $50, sephora.com
Get her a succulent plant
Let’s just admit that plants have a way of instantly lifting our spirits but not all of us have the patience to care for one. A succulent is a plant that requires very little commitment and dedication still giving you all those airy and positive feelings inside. This one comes wrapped in a sleeve designed exclusively for Mother’s Day. Seriously, how perfect is that?
Lula’s Mother’s Day Bliss Garden, $28, lulasgarden.com
Get her a nice body scrub
I’m all about the body exfoliators during show-your-legs season. They make you look AND feel great and this one smells like dessert. It’s made with sugar granules and exfoliating beads that gently but effectively slough skin while making skin appear smoother and toner. It’s also mild enough to use daily.
Laura Mercier Almond Coconut Milk Sugar Scrub, $55, lauramercier.com
Get your Bruja mom some fancier sage and palo santo
She introduced you to sage, Palo Santo and all the healthy spiritual practices you embrace now. The least you can do is hook her up with some for Mother’s Day. I love these spray versions. They’re cleaner, easier to use but still effectively purify your space and restore your energy. If this doesn’t impress her, I don’t know what will.
Annie The Alchemist Sage & Palo Santo Gift Set, $45, anniethealchemist.com
Hook her up with that Agua de Florida
If you got a Bruja mami, chances are you grew up always seeing aqua de Florida — a.k.a Florida water — in the house. She probably still buys some at her corner bodega. Save her the money and the trip with this adorable kit that comes complete with Florida water cologne, soap, and perfume. It’s the perfect gift to help her do her spiritual baños y limpiezas.
Agua de Florida Kit, $25, etsy.com
Encourage her to get into herbalism.
The botanica is her favorite shop and she has a remedy or herbal concoction for every sickness or problem you could think of. That doesn’t mean she’s not willing to learn new ones. This book includes simple, safe, and effective herbal remedies for women of all ages that have been passed down for centuries. How can she not like this?
Herbal Healing For Women by Rosemary Gladstar, $14, barnesandnobles.com
Help her clean her beauty routine
The younger generations are all about clean beauty and not using products with harmful and toxic ingredients but why aren’t we talking about this with our moms? Introduce her to a clean beauty line that’s relatively affordable so she won’t feel like she has to break the bank. The Nyakio line is one of my faves, as it includes all natural ingredients that have been used in indigenous beauty remedies for centuries. This eye cream is made with quinoa and helps with puffy eyes and dark circles. Get her this for Mother’s Day and she’ll be ordering it every time she runs out — I guarantee it!
Nyakio Quinoa De-Puffing & Firming Eye Cream, $40, ultabeauty.com
Show her how to make her beauty ritual a sacred ritual
Her beauty ritual could be a great opportunity for her to make time for self-care. Get her a rose quartz roller that she can incorporate into her skincare routine that will also promote spiritual healing and love. It’s also a great way to start talking to her about the healing benefits of crystals.
Snow Fox Skincare Rose Quartz Facial Roller, $24, snowfoxskincare.com
Help her to love her curls
You’re never too old to do away with the Eurocentric beauty standards that have been pushed on us for centuries. If your mama is a curly haired girl who has been straightening her rizos for years but is finally considering embracing them, get her this dope “Pelo Malo Where?” fanny-pack designed by Dominican stylist and founder of Hause of Curls Sherly Tavarez. She’ll get the reference and dig this more than you realize. It’s revolutionary work in the form of fashion.
“Pelo Malo Where?” Fanny Pack, $28, hauseofcurls.com