Want to sleep better? Want your children to sleep how babies – according to the legend – are supposed to sleep. I might just have found out how…
DISCLAIMER: we can’t promise you’ll wake up looking like a supermodel (unless of course you are one).
Now, up front (because you know that’s how we like to do things) Bloom & Blossom was co-founded by a dear friend of mine, the brilliant, inspiring Julia Yule (one of the most remarkable women I have ever met – I am sure all her friends say the same) and she gave me the products to try. And I really wanted them to be the goods so I could recommend them as highly as I recommend the rest of the Bloom & Blossom range. (Personal favourite products: Nip & Lip balm for me and the Baby Balm for my little ones (it’s the only thing which works on their dry skin.)
Fortunately, they were. We are now devoted to both the Sleep range and the Baby Sleep. And, in the interests of a fair test (how those words take me back to GCSE science), I asked my friend Claire to test the Bedtime Bath Milk and Massage Oil on her eight-week-old baby.
The Sleep Edit
1. Baby Sleep Bedtime Pillow Spray, £15
2. Baby Sleep Bedtime Baby Wash, £9.50
3. A good book, The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry
4. Neom Tranquility candle, £30
Here’s what my evenings often look like: bath and bed for the small ones. Run around tidying detritus of day (what is it with Duplo/Lego/small cars? Why do they love hiding and then deliberately inveigling themselves underfoot?). Cook. Possibly have a fleeting conversation with my husband whilst eating. Tidy up. Work. Crash into bed. Lie awake, fretting. Sound familiar? Come on, woman… Making the time to slow down and relax before bed isn’t a luxury, it’s an essential.
Granted, I don’t do this every single night, but I do manage it a couple of times a week. I have a bath (Sleep Night-Time Bath Oil), I slater myself with the Dry Body Oil, I go to bed with a book, and I liberally spritz my pillow with the Pillow Spray. (I read and spritz every single night.) Often, this gentle routine works as effectively for me as it does for my children. It’s soothing; compels me to switch off and wind down; prepares my body and my mind for sleep – and have I mentioned that it smells like actual heaven? I don’t know what they put into this stuff (okay, I do. Ingredients include: frankincense, chamomile flower, rose water, linden blossom, aloe vera, frankincense, honey murtle and rose geranium) but it might just be addictive. Imagine all of the above with a lingering top note of baby when they are tiny and snuggly and new.
At six, my little girl is becoming aware that the world can be big and scary and that there be monsters. There are nightmares and spurious excuses for a post-bedtime chat. But now? Now we have the ‘Dream Spray’ aka Baby Sleep Bedtime Pillow Spray, which I am told gives you “such sweet sleep”. (So sweet she slept through her alarm. I have heard reports of children who had to be woken after 9.30 on a Saturday. Tell me you’re not tempted…) Now we can allay bad dreams with a spritz of the good stuff. Monsters begone.
What we really needed, though, was a baby. Step forward delicious eight-week-old Rory, who tried the Bath Milk and Massage Oil. “Wrapping Rory up in a towel after a Bloom & Blossom Bedtime bath is like picking him up from a baby spa,” relays his mother, Claire. “He’s all snuggly and yummy smelling. We’ve been using the Baby Sleep Bedtime Bath Milk. It’s supposed to be soothing for your baby – and after a loooong day with a newborn and a two-year-old, it seems to work on me, too. I’m not really into baby massage – because I don’t have time – but I’ve been using the Bedtime Massage Oil quickly once he’s dry for another hit of the same delicious scent. Does Rory sleep better as a result? Who knows, but when I’m given the chance, I definitely do.”
Lay in supplies, people.
Image: Steven Meisel for Vogue Italia