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Bringing the outdoors inside is trending. From fresh farmers market bouquets to succulents galore, Pinterest-worthy plants are all the rage. But, it’s not just about beautifying your space– there are some unbe-leaf-able benefits for your well-being when you go green. Fresher air. Fewer toxins. Good vibes—it’s a win-win.
If you’re looking to create a mini-urban jungle but are afraid your busy schedule, non-existent green thumb, or notorious plant killing history has you doomed, don’t fret! We’ve got four low maintenance, indoor plants + care tips to spruce up your place. Earth Day will be every day in your home with this effortless greenery (no prior plant experience required).
There are more than 650 types of air plants (Tillandsia). Yep, you read that right. 650 varieties that can grow (and successfully live) without soil—perfect for all of us who are can’t keep plants alive (*raises hand*). With air plants coming in all shapes and sizes, it’s easy to find one in-store or online to fit your color scheme and personality! And with hundreds of fresh ways to decorate with air plants, it’s easier than ever to spruce up even the smallest space. Consider air plants your little fun (and funky!) friend.
Care Tips: No perfect lighting needed. Air plants don’t ask for much, which works for even the busiest schedule. Besides gently misting your air plant with water every few days, it is essential your Tillandsia gets a “bath” every two weeks. That means submerging your air plant(s) in water and letting the plant sit there for about 1 to 3 hours, depending on how dry your air is. Too much dampness can kill an air plant, so after soaking shake off the access water and let the air plant dry in a bright spot for at least 4 hours.
Prickly, resilient and perfect for the most inexperienced green thumb, cacti are an easy and efficient way to add plant life to your home. Not to be mistaken with succulents, cacti are your healthiest relationship! Not only will they tolerate you, but they will also stay alive by your side for years to come. Consider your cacti a make-your-home-better investment.
Care Tips: No surprise here—cacti need direct sunlight and sandy-type soil that drains well. While watering routines depend on the type of cacti you choose, a little (occasional) water goes a long way. Think desert. Personal favorite cacti? Gymnocalycium. Not only does it have a deep green color with quintessential spines (yep, for this New York girl, cacti must have spikes), you get a bright flower bloom!
A relative to the sturdy cacti, succulents are the perfect first plant. Easy to maintain in most home environments, succulents come in all fun shapes and are totally hip thanks to social media. They also make a great desk ornament at work. With funky pots (animal head planters, anyone?), succulents will step up your decorating game and thrive if you give them a little love—just not too much light because they can get sunburned.
Care Tips: If planting at home, you’ll get a leg up on the competition by using succulent potting soil. On the hunt for a hanging basket succulent? String of Pearls is the way to go. This succer is a stunner and will grow fast. Another favorite? Zebra Haworthia. Great for any tabletop (or desk) and non-toxic to dog and cats, this little green wonder has such a cool texture.
There’s a good chance you remember this plant from your mom or grandma’s house. With an impossible-to-kill reputation, spider plants are back with a vengeance—as long as you don’t overwater them. A flowering perennial, spider plants will make any space feel like a jungle oasis. Oh, and they propagate like crazy and are perfect for that macrame hanging planter you’ve been eyeing at Urban Outfitters.
Care Tips: Spider plants thrive in indirect sunlight. They also love humidity. If your spider plant ends start to brown, that might mean they need more water (or a little fertilizer). Also, once a spider plant flowers, it will produce “babies” (called “spiderettes”). If you’ve got a friend eyeing your spider plant, clip off a spiderette and have them place it in water. Once roots grow, they will have a spider plant of their own!
When you think of self-love what do you think of? Bubble baths, walks on the beach, facemasks, or what? Self-love can mean so many different things but when we think about self-love, we have to acknowledge loving ourselves both on the outside and on the inside. The way that we show ourselves love is one of the most important things we will ever do.
How do we treat ourselves? How do we talk to ourselves? What foods are we putting into our bodies? How are we thinking about our overall well-being when practicing self-love?
As self-love defines and redefined itself for you over the years, here are a few foundational tips to think about when easing into your self-love journey.
Don’t we love this one? Loving ourselves has a lot to do with the boundaries that we have for ourselves, with others, and for others. Take time to think about your own emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual needs when setting boundaries that reflect your personal needs. Boundaries don’t have to be big and scary; they are here to remind us that you get to have your lived experience and still have expectations about how you’d like to be treated and what you’d like to feel.
When thinking about your boundaries, ask yourself:
In a world where perfectionism and curated existences have been rewarded, begin to cultivate compassion for yourself. You are a soul having a human experience and it’s totally okay if things are not perfect.
Mindfulness exercises such as Breathwork, self-care activities, and self-compassion, all help train the mind, emotions, and even the body’s stress chemicals to be able to deal with undesired situations. Self-compassion means, can you be nice to yourself? Can you find empathy and kindness for yourself in the middle of what feels chaotic, stressful, or unwanted? Self-compassion means that we get to make mistakes, have our plans not work out the way that we wanted, and we still get to celebrate that we are doing the best that we can and it is enough.
When thinking about self-compassion, ask yourself:
In every sense of the word “nourishment”, begin to learn what nourishes you and what depletes you. Nourishment doesn’t just mean food for yourself; it means that whatever you are consuming whether it be media, podcasts, people, energy, information, etc. all impact the way that we think, feel, and experience life.
Nourishing yourself definitely goes right along the lines of having your boundaries intact and practicing self-compassion.
When thinking about nourishment, ask yourself:
That’s it. Those are the foundational steps to cultivating a self-love practice that you can ease into your daily routine. Come back to these questions often, because like anything else, self-love is a practice and it takes effort, time, and intention to maintain.