Wellness

The erotic stories we’re loving + more news

Including why the bathroom has become our sanctuary, damaged hair remedies, the surprising connection between mental health and heartburn, and post-pandemic optimism
Erotica on the rise
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Erotica on the rise

Is it just us or are things getting hot in here? No surprise, really, with nearly half of women admitting they’ve read more erotic literature over the past year: top stories include Fifty Shades of Grey, The Intimate Adventures of a London Call Girl and Sally Rooney’s Normal People. A fifth would opt for sexy lit over a film, according to insights agency Perspectus Global, while one in 10 reads with their partner. Keen to heat up your bedtime material? Check out platforms such as Ferly and Dipsea for sex-positive audio erotica. Also, explore Boots’ sexual pleasure and wellbeing section or toys, protection and more. You’re welcome!

Ode to the bathroom
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Ode to the bathroom

Aah bathroom, how we heart you! Given that it houses our fluffy robe/skincare prods and helps us showcase our shower karaoke, it’s no surprise a quarter of us see the bathroom as our at-home sanctuary. A Soap & Glory survey also revealed that 68% of Brits say the space has a positive impact on their mood and 39% find it helps them to unwind after a hectic day. Want to up the self-care ante in yours? We love Aroma Active Laboratories Muscle Recovery Soak for its blend of tension-easing essential oils; Rituals The Ritual of Sakura Scented Candle to set the (zen) mood with its luxurious cherry blossom scent; and the skin-softening power of luxe Clarins Relax Treatment Oil. Total bliss.

#BleachedHairProblems
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#BleachedHairProblems

Are your coloured locks crying out some TLC? Thought so. In a Pantene poll, 86% of women with bleached hair describe it as ‘stressed out’, ‘thin’, ‘split’ or ‘dry’, while 40% blame bleach for damaging their strands. Oh dear. The good news: there are ways to remedy the problem. Add these to your tress toolkit:

Shrub Prepare & Protect Hair Primer: This nourishing formula is designed to shield hair from damage. Apply before you blow-dry, style or use any sort of heat.

L’Oréal Paris Elvive Wonder Water 8 Second Hair Treatment: A revolutionary, rinse-out liquid conditioner that moisturises, smooths, adds shine and revives ‘meh’ hair in a flash.

Umberto Giannini Banana Superfood Vitamin Oil: Taking care of the skin on your scalp is just as important as looking after the rest of your body. Plus, a healthy scalp = healthier hair. With its yummy scent, this lightweight gem is packed with natural oils to moisturise. (Find more scalp-loving superheroes here.)

Surprising heartburn struggles
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Surprising heartburn struggles

Anyone familiar with heartburn knows how painful and distressing it can be – and this can take a mental toll, too. A recent study found 41% of people with chronic heartburn (known as gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, or GORD, also had depression, while 34% had anxiety. Mental health issues were significantly higher if symptoms included chest pain. So, what to do? Lifestyle remedies (such as these NHS ones) can help with heartburn, but it’s also worth chatting to your Boots pharmacist or GP about medications, especially if symptoms persist.

A dose of optimism
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A dose of optimism

Things are looking up! More than half of us feel more optimistic now than at any other time over the past year, according to Hyundai research. In fact, 47% are confident we’re over the worst of the pandemic and think that things can only get better. Meanwhile, a quarter of Brits want to adopt a more positive mindset and 46% are determined not to take the small things for granted anymore (we’re all about seeing those spring flowers right now). Whether you’re feeling sunnier or otherwise, it’s always OK not to feel OK, so chat to a loved one, your GP or an organisation such as Mind, if you need support. And read our intriguing report on the world of toxic positivity.