A simple embrace does a body good — here’s how to reap the mind, body and emotional benefits that come from a good squeeze.
As far as self-care trends go, here’s a remarkably simple and yet so often overlooked one: The simple power of hugging. Human contact is so vital for the body that infants fail to grow and thrive without regular touch. Studies show that hugging releases the feel-good hormone oxytocin, lowers stress-related cortisol levels and can even boost your immune system: A study from Carnegie Mellon found that people who experienced hugs frequently were less likely to get sick and that even if they did, their symptoms were less intense.
Sadly, in today’s “connected” world, humans are often incredibly disconnected from physical contact. An emoji can’t take the place of a good, long, lean-deeply-into-it embrace. But, even with escalating rates of anxiety, it’s comforting to know that a 20-second hug from a partner can lower your heart rate and put you in a more relaxed state of mind, according to researchers.
There’s no better time to wrap your arms around your friend, sister, partner or co-worker you would walk through fire for. Here are four ways to make that squeeze even more enjoyable — and aromatic.
*For those times when others nuzzle their noses into your hair, what could be better than catching a whiff of this delicious, citrus fragrance that’s made with natural ingredients you can mist in your mane? 1809 Collection Surf Fragrance
*For the softest cheeks that anyone will press their face up against, this moisturizing serum is pure heaven. Le Dew Baby Smooth Serum
*For hugs that come with a kiss, too, this deeply hydrated but non-sticky lip balm will make every mwah that much better. Sahajan Lip Karma
*For end-of-the-day (or super energetic!) embraces, this natural lavender and sage deodorant lets you smell like you, only a little fresher. Hugs all around! Salt + Stone Natural Deodorant