Many of us spending more time in our homes than ever – whether it’s thanks to hybrid working, or a hangover from the lockdown days.
And with self-care becoming ever more important, turning one’s home, or at least a part of it, into a wellness sanctuary is a growing trend. After all, our homes need to be a safe space where we can escape from the day’s stresses.
But it doesn’t have to mean an expensive reno or design overhaul – there are easy ways to give your home a wellbeing-focused makeover.
But first, what is a wellness sanctuary?
According to interior designer Kellie Richardson, a wellness sanctuary “is a space in the home where you can relax, unwind and indulge in activities you enjoy that help you disconnect from the stress and busyness of life.”
An environment like this can be incredibly beneficial for our health as it allows us to decompress, relax and recharge.
“Creating a specific area in your home solely for the purpose of being a wellness sanctuary is growing in popularity as people look for ways to unwind and destress,” says Kellie. “It is important to ensure that you keep work, study and other stressful activities out of your sanctuary.”
“Relaxing is good for our immune system because it floods your body with feel-good hormones like dopamine and serotonin, while reducing the impact of the stress hormone cortisol.”
How to create a wellness sanctuary
Anyone can create a wellness sanctuary.
“Find a location in the home where you can control noise and light if possible,” says Kellie. “Your personal wellness sanctuary can we anywhere; the patio, a spare bedroom, a corner of your office, or even the garage. If you need to, use screens to create privacy.”
Once you have picked a location, declutter the space.
“Remove anything that does not contribute to the feeling of being a sanctuary,” says Kellie. “Untidy and cluttered spaces make it difficult to relax and let go of stress.”
Then it’s time to decorate the space to inform calmness and relaxation. Here’s how.
“Opt for calming colours,” says Kellie. “By bringing in blues, greens and earthly colours into a wellness space, you can create a de-stressed, harmonious environment that diffuses anxiety.”
“Having artworks that contain nature give our bodies a sense of peace and tranquillity, allowing our bodies to relate to the images and grounding us to nature,” she says.
“Playing gentle music or nature sounds allows our mind and body to unwind, relax and creates inner peace,” explains the interior designer.
“Add décor that provides a feeling of luxury,” says Kellie, suggesting a relaxing chair and cushions, a soft rug and throws, and a lamp with a low volt bulb.
“If you would like to undertake some sewing or craft activity, include a small desk and chair as well,” she adds. “If you are a reader, include a book shelf.
“Add pops of colour through vases, mugs, note pads and pillows to keep your mood positive and happy.”
“Plants are calming,” says Kellie. “They are said to have restorative and healing qualities. Add a few pots around your space to add greenery.”
“Add a few storage boxes to your wellness space so you can easily access equipment such as craft activities and low impact gym gear,” says Kellie.
“This will also keep your area neat and tidy when the equipment is not in use.”
Gym space and meditation
“Exercise is an excellent way to promote positive mental health by improving mood and reducing stress,” explains Kellie, suggesting to add some exercise equipment that can be packed away when not in use.
“This is a great way to encourage movement in your sanctuary space. Floor mats are also great for meditation.”
Craft activities and mini library
“If craft or reading is something you enjoy, create a mini library or a craft corner,” suggests the interior designer.
“Again, items can be stored in containers when not in use. When reading, try and read paperback books. The idea of a wellness sanctuary is to get away from screens and calm the mind.”
Aroma, lights and music
“It is important to ensure that your wellness area is peaceful and soothing,” implores Kellie, suggesting the addition of humidifiers, oil diffusers and fairy lights.
“Candles are also a nice way to add a feeling of charm and comfort,” she adds. “Scented candles are ideal. A stylish floor lamp also helps to add a feeling of luxury and adds to the ambience of the space.
The interior designer continues: “Don’t forget to add music. Calm, soothing music with sounds of the ocean, is a must especially when you are undertaking yoga. When you listen to music while doing yoga, you get more oxygen because you are breathing in rhythm.”