Turn the volume down on your inner chatter and unwind, with products that are specially designed for stressed-out individuals. Image Credit: Shutterstock

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Holiday season is here, but even as you pack your bags and plan your itinerary, is your mind refusing to relax?

Transitioning into vacation mode can be difficult, even impossible, for some people (read: workaholics). A 2022 survey conducted by the American Psychological Association found that over 38 percent of those surveyed felt increased levels of stress, depression, and anxiety during the holiday season. With drastic schedule changes, the stress of travelling to foreign countries, and ensuring children are well cared for and entertained, it’s no wonder so many people are not able to find a little time and energy to care for themselves.

But it’s important to carve out a little cocoon for yourself, in the holiday whirlwind. Social trends are seemingly becoming more aware of the need to completely tune out from our daily stressors, and to re-energise ourselves during vacations. We’ve found unique products that are not gimmicks, and will actually help you with this goal, as you mindfully take a step back, slow down, soothe your senses, and finally relax this summer.

Check out our curated list below, based on trends and top-rated reviews, and pick up items that appeal to you with Amazon Prime, to get it as early as tomorrow.

1. Best for Headaches: Renpho Heated Eye Massager 


  • Five customisable modes
  • Heats, compresses and vibrates
  • Includes Bluetooth music
  • Adjustable headband


  • Slightly noisy

An excellent gadget to keep on hand after long days at work, or during long flights, Renpho’s eye massager offers relief from headaches and migraines. Its built-in heating pads can be set at a temperature between 40℃ to 42℃: they work like a hot compress, helping reduce dry eyes, eye strain and puffiness. There are five modes, which include compression, heat and vibration (and combinations of these modes). Reviewers love the addition of integrated speakers, which they connect via Bluetooth to gain access to their favourite playlists. The headband is easily adjustable and it folds into a small, portable pack that you can carry around in your purse or backpack. This device has garnered over 27,000 4.3-star reviews for its effectiveness in helping people relax. The only downside is that it seems to be slightly noisy when the heating function is on.

2. Best Alarm Clock: Hatch Restore 2 Sunrise Alarm Clock 


  • Stylish design
  • Easy set-up
  • Smartphone app offers convenient customisation
  • Big library of sounds, bonus content


  • Paid subscription required for some services

The worst way to start the day is by being jarred awake by an unpleasant sounding alarm on your phone. Switch to Hatch Restore 2, which makes sleep an important part of your self-care routine. The alarm clock stimulates the gradual brightening of dawn to gently wake you up with light. It doesn’t just wake you up, it helps you drift off to sleep, too, by doubling as a noise machine and drowning out external sounds. You can select from a variety of relaxing sounds that will play as you sleep, like gentle rainfall or steady white noise. Reviewers say the best part is that everything is customisable via a convenient app on their phone – they can adjust the brightness levels, sunrise hues, and different sounds. In order to access Hatch’s sleep stories, guided meditation and relaxation exercises, however, you’ll need to pay for an optional Hatch+ subscription.

Bonus: Buy with 0% installments and pay Dh100.50 for 12 months with select banks.

3. Best Pillow: Bearaby Knot Pillow 

This is no ordinary pillow. Gently weighted, Bearaby’s pillow is designed innovatively, in a knot shape, to offer stress-relieving pressure therapy. If you generally deal with anxiety, you can use this pillow to squash, hug or squeeze away any tension – the plant-based Melofoam material used to craft this pillow is responsive, soft and supportive. Reviewers say they love the sensory experience of pushing their hands into the gaps in the knotted design – it helps them feel snug and warm, and reduces feelings of anxiety. Some, however, find it hard to justify the high price point.

Bonus: Buy with 0% installments and pay Dh45.08 for 12 months with select banks.

4. Best Bath Accessory: Body Restore Shower Steamers (Pack of 15) 

A hot shower can clear your mind, no matter how stressed you’re feeling. But you can elevate the feeling with a shower steamer: it transforms your shower into an aromatherapy session! Just place one of Body Restore’s tea tree oil tablets in your bathtub (it doesn’t need to be fully submerged). As it dissolves, it releases essential oils that immediately help you relax. Reviewers say they leave the shower feeling energised, and their bathroom smells great afterwards.

5. Best Skincare: Aveeno Stress Relief Moisturising Body Lotion 

Specially formulated with stress relief in mind, Aveeno’s body lotion combines potent ingredients that are all known for their soothing properties. The calming scent of lavender blends with essential chamomile and ylang-ylang oils. Natural oatmeal ties it all together by offering long-lasting hydration. Reviewers say the lotion makes them more mindful about self-care, and leaves their skin feeling soft and nourished.

6. Best for Work: Speks Blots Silicone Stress Ball 

Touted as the world’s most satisfying stress ball, Speks Blots can be squeezed, slammed, scrunched and squished to relieve tension. They’re an excellent source of escape for fidgety fingers, and can help you refocus your attention when you’re feeling stressed. The balls are crafted from soft, silky silicone and have an ergonomic shape. Reviewers say they can spend hours holding and playing with this stress ball, and some mention that it’s durable and easy to clean.

7. Best Art Therapy: Buddha Board Art Set 

Inspired by the Zen idea of living in the moment, this water board painting set includes a bamboo brush, a stand with a reservoir for water, and a painting board. Free your mind by drawing whatever your heart desires, and don’t fret about the finished picture, because the art fades away as the water dries. Truly teaching you the art of letting go, the painting board returns to a blank slate, ready for your next art therapy session. It’s a wonderfully eco-friendly set, involving no ink, paint or chemicals. Over 7,000 reviewers have rated it 4.7 stars, with many giving it as a gift to loved ones on special occasions.

Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission, as we are part of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.