If you have followed me and my journey through my first year of motherhood then you will know that Eric is a baby who constantly fights his sleep. It has gotten better as time has gone on, with now only a few naps being a battle and bedtimes being a war of willpower but when things were really bad, we were willing to try anything to try and get a bedtime routine in place that would actually work.
Last year it seemed like everyone was talking about the Lush Sleepy Body Lotion. After reading nothing but good things, I knew the next time I was in the city centre I needed to pop into Lush and do a little investigating of my own. After talking to one of the sales assistants to ensure the lotion would be gentle enough for baby's skin I left with a tub in my hand and all my fingers crossed. This was during one of the dreaded 'sleep regression' phases and I was clinging on to the last shreds of hope I had that this would turn things around for us and save me from constantly falling asleep on the sofa before 8.30pm every night.
But before we get into how Sleepy plays its part in Eric's bedtime routine, we need to talk about the scent of the lotion. In a word it is beautiful. I am a massive, massive fan of the Luxury Lush Pud and this body lotion is a dead ringer in my eyes for it. The lavender notes really carry through, but not in an overpowering, old lady smell kind of way. They are creamy and gentle and delicious - intoxicatingy so! It lingers on the skin long after application and every time a little bit tickles your nostrils you just can't help but smile, take a deep breath, and let your troubles slip away.
The formulation of the lotion is just as lovely. It is rich but not thick, and absorbs really quickly which is so handy if you have a baby who doesn't like to keep still. It makes Eric's skin feel instantly soft and nourished and doesn't leave that tacky, sticky feeling that clings to clothes and leaves you feeling really uncomfortable (I don't think he'd thank us if we used anything on him that did that)!
Unlike some babies, Eric doesn't have a bath every night. It's just not something that is feasible for us to do. Ryan isn't always home before Eric's bedtime and I still feel a bit nervous bathing him on my own. Plus E has quite sensitive skin and we are conscious that too many baths could make it dry out. So instead we have put things in place that created that element of relaxation in other ways. And the Sleepy body lotion plays a big part in that.
5pm marks the start of what I call 'pyjama time.' Eric will have dinner, the noisy toys will go away and we will try and evoke a more calming atmosphere for him. Sometimes we will watch a film (usually Moana, Aladdin or The Gruffalo) or we will play together quietly and read books. Then it's time to put his pjs on. I'll massage the Sleepy lotion into his arms and legs, apply some to his back and chest, paying close attention to his elbows and knees, and then dab a bit under his ears and chin so that he can smell it. Lights in the living room go out and he has his final bottle and we brush his teeth before heading up to his room to have a story (we're currently reading him The Wind In The Willows) and then go to bed.
Having the Sleepy Body Lotion in our routine has become second nature now and I think Eric has started to recognise that when we put the lotion on him it's definitely his wind down time. I can't speak for Ryan but I have definitely noticed a difference since we started using it and it certainly fills the gap of having a daily bath. We do only tend to apply it at bedtime rather than after baths too just so that there is a distinction (personally bathing Eric in the morning or during the day tends to work better for us). And the scent of it? Oh. My. God. One sniff alone is enough to make me feel relaxed so I can only imagine the effect it has on little one.
Have you tried Lush's Sleepy Body Lotion? What did you think?