While you're taking care of the little one in your womb, you have every reason to treat yourself to some pregnancy pampering. Of course, your growing bump comes with a whole list of rules telling you what you can and can't do, especially when it comes to lifestyle, food and drink choices (goodbye cheese and wine evenings).
That's why we've put together a list of pregnancy pampering activities that will help to soothe those pregnancy aches and pains and give you a bit of well-earned 'me-time' without breaking any of the rules.
relax with a massage
When you're carrying an extra tiny person around with you, it's no wonder that your back begins to ache and you feel a bit tired. Having a massage, either as a one-off or regularly, helps to improve your circulation and disperse the tension building up in your back and leg muscles – the perfect bit of pregnancy pampering for your aches and pains. Find a spa that specialises in pre-natal therapies and talk through your needs with the massage therapist.
treat yourself to a pedicure
You may not be able to see your toes right now, but they'll probably let you know they're still there with a little ache or two. Soaking and elevating your feet and ankles can help relieve the swelling a bit, while a foot massage (provided by a professional or your partner) can help relax your muscles. For further pregnancy pampering, have a touch of polish added to your nails or even go for a full mani-pedi – just make sure the spa's well ventilated from fumes and odours.
take a nap
If the baby is keeping you up at night with kicks and wriggles, or you're finding it hard to sleep with your bump, you might be falling behind on your shut-eye. Now's the time to take every opportunity you get – no matter the time of day – to catch up on your forty winks, since baby will probably have different ideas once they arrive.
revitalise your hair
When it comes to pregnancy pampering, it's important not to forget to do those little things that make you feel confident and human, such as having your hair done. It's a good idea to stay away from all-over bleach or dye during the first few months, but a few highlights later on in your pregnancy are usually fine.
create your own home pregnancy pampering kit
On those days when you don’t have the time (or energy) to head out for some salon treatment, all is not lost. You can still indulge yourself from the comfort of your own home with a pregnancy pampering kit. All you need is some pregnancy-safe essential oils for a heavenly bath, a moisturising facemask made from milk and honey, and a pair of soft cotton gloves to wrap up your hands once they’ve been treated to a relaxing cocoa butter massage.
Once you find a combination that helps you to thoroughly unwind, why not share it with your fellow mums-in-the making who could do with a bit of TLC. These kits make perfect pregnancy pampering gifts for birthdays, Christmas presents or just a surprise treat for your closet friends. Perhaps this calls for a girls night in!
unwind with yoga
After a bit of pregnancy pampering at home, your revitalised body will benefit from some exercise and pregnancy yoga is ideal for helping you relax. What's more, these classes help you pick up breathing techniques ready for labour, as well as muscle strength that's helpful for post-natal recovery. Make sure the teacher is certified to teach pregnant women and talk through any concerns you may have with them before starting the class.
With your body changing by the day, you probably won't want to buy too many clothes right now. Equally, as much as your bump is currently the centre of attention, not all shopping trips should be about buying things for baby. Treat yourself to a couple of accessories, such as statement jewellery or a handbag, that you can use now and after your pregnancy. Once the shopping's done, it's time to sit down for lunch and a catch up with friends.