The Ultimate Self-Care Toolbox: My Top 10 Essentials

Ready to take your self-care game to the next level? Last week, we touched on the idea of a self-care toolbox, and today, we’re diving deep into this game-changer. Get ready for a journey into what makes a self-care toolbox a must-have and how you can create your personalized kit. Plus, I’ve got a handpicked selection of ten must-have items for your toolbox. Let’s get started!

As a note: The content of this blog is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. It is important to consult with a qualified healthcare professional before making any changes to your diet, exercise, medication, or other health-related routines.

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What is a Self-Care Toolbox?

A self-care toolbox/basket/kit is filled with items designed to support your mental, emotional, and physical well-being. It’s a personalized collection of resources that you can turn to whenever you need a boost, a moment of relaxation, or some extra TLC. Whether it’s a physical container or a digital resource, your toolbox should be easily accessible and tailored to your preferences.

Benefits of a Self-Care Toolbox

  • Promotes mindfulness and self-awareness: Having a dedicated space for self-care encourages you to tune into your needs and prioritize your well-being.
  • Increases resilience to stress: With tools at your fingertips to help you unwind and recharge, you’ll be better equipped to manage life’s inevitable stressors.
  • Enhances overall wellness: Regular self-care practices can improve your mood, boost your energy levels, and contribute to a greater sense of balance and fulfillment in life.

How to Build Your Self-Care Toolbox

  • Reflect on your self-care needs and preferences: Consider what activities or items bring you joy, relaxation, and comfort. Try to think of things that give you a variety based on time, capacity, and how you are feeling.
  • Choose a container: Select a physical container like a basket, box, or tote to store your self-care items. You can also supplement this by creating a digital toolbox using apps or online resources.
  • Gather your essentials: Fill your toolbox with a variety of self-care products and tools that align with your needs and preferences. You can also include things like a self-care menu or checklist, like this one, for ideas and self-reflection

My Top Ten Essentials

1. Journal

Writing can be a powerful tool for processing emotions, setting intentions, and practicing gratitude. Choose a journal that speaks to you, whether it’s a beautiful leather-bound notebook or a simple notepad. If you looking for something guided, there are plenty of options depending on what you’re looking for.

Lifelines Sensory Journal & Pen Diffuser Set 

This journal set is both fun and practical, incorporating sensory tools and aromatherapy. The interactive covers and embossed pages can double as fidget or sensory tools, while the pen comes with four different essential oils for you to choose from depending on the scent experience you are looking for.

I Am The Hero Of My Own Life Guided Journal

Brianna Wiest’s journal has become a personal favorite of mine. It strikes a perfect balance between well-thought-out activities, writing prompts, insightful quotes, and other meaningful notes.

2. Essential Oils

Utilize aromatherapy to promote relaxation and uplift your mood. Keep a selection of essential oils like lavender, peppermint, and eucalyptus on hand, along with a diffuser to enjoy their benefits. For a more portable option, aromatherapy roll-ons or mists are great options as well. For more on all the benefits and uses of essential oils, check out these articles!

Lifelines Sensory Immersion Set

This set comes with two essential oils, a travel-friendly diffuser and a grounding stone fidget that has an option to infuse the essential oils right into the stone. This allows for a variety of ways to experience aromatherapy while still getting its benefits.

Aura Cacia Essential Solutions Mist

Aura Cacia is my top choice for essential oils when I want high quality without breaking the bank. They have strict purity standards and are part of a co-op located in my home state of Iowa. Mists are a flexible way to enjoy aromatherapy when compared to traditional oils.

3. Affirmation Cards

Positive affirmations can help reframe negative thoughts and encourage self-love and confidence. Invest in a deck of affirmation cards that resonate with you, and pull a card anytime you need inspiration. Some decks have prompts that can be used for journaling, mediation, or any other type of reflection. 

Bold Tuesday Affirmation Cards

This deck of 52 cards is multi-use. One side of each card offers a positive affirmation, while the reverse side asks related inspirational questions that can be used for additional self-reflection or journal prompts.

Allura & Arcia 52 Stress Less & Self-Care Cards

These cards are created to inspire reflection and motivation with a range of prompts for self-care and wellness. They are perfect for individuals beginning their self-care journey or anyone seeking impactful results with minimal extra effort.

4. Herbal Tea

Sipping on a warm cup of herbal tea can be a soothing ritual to unwind and relax. Stock your toolbox with a variety of herbal teas that have medicinal benefits to match your goals

Yogi Tea Stress & Sleep Sampler Box

Yogi Tea is my favorite for bagged tea. Their quality is always top-notch and they have such a large selection of teas that taste amazing and have great wellness benefits. Their blends are well put together and perfect when you don’t have the energy or time to deal with putting together the perfect loose-leaf blend.

Tea Drops Gift Set

For an even more convenient option, Tea Drops have dissolvable teas that use real, high-quality ingredients that also taste great. They are woman-owned and have a great mission as well.

5. Cozy Blanket

Wrap yourself in comfort with a soft, cozy blanket that invites relaxation and warmth. Choose a blanket in your favorite color or texture to make it feel extra special. Travel blankets are also great as they are compact and easy to transport.

Fuzzy Throw Blanket

This throw blanket is available in a range of colors and sizes, making it the ideal budget-friendly find. The cozy micro-fleece material is guaranteed to lull you into ultimate relaxation.

BlueHills Ultra Compact Travel Blanket

This soft throw measures 70″ x 56″ but folds into a 9″ x 4.5″ carrying case that weighs less than 1lb. This makes it perfect for travel or a self-care kit and can be used as a cushion or pillow when folded up.

6. Scented Candle

Set the mood for relaxation and create a calming atmosphere with scented candles. Choose candles with scents that evoke a feeling of relaxation or joy and try to look for options that use non-toxic scents and waxes.

Hemlock Park Crackling Wood Wick Candle

These candles are made by hand using clean, eco-friendly, and sustainable ingredients. They are available in a range of beautiful smelling natural scents. These candles also have a wooden wick, providing a relaxing ASMR-like experience while burning them.

Art of the Root Healing Pure & Natural Candle

This is another handcrafted candle made with organic, clean ingredients. It contains crystals, herbs, and essential oils that are used in the candle-making process with the intention of healing in mind. They not only smell great but have a beautiful appearance as well.

7. Bath Bombs or Epsom Salt

Treat yourself to a luxurious bath experience with soothing bath bombs or Epsom salts. Indulge in a long soak to unwind and relieve tension in your muscles. If you don’t have access to a bath or prefer showers, shower steamers can also give you a spa-like experience. 

Beauty By Earth Bath Bomb Gift Set

These bath bombs are luxurious, handmade products that use different blends to create various relaxation experiences. They use clean, quality-tested organic and natural ingredients as well so you can keep your mind at ease while soaking in the tub.

Hemlock Park Coconut Milk Bath Soak

If you are looking for an even more luxurious bath experience, Hemlock Park also makes a line of bath soaks that come in the same scents as many of their woodwick candles. As stated above, all of their ingredients are natural and clean. Their bath soaks even use ingredients that are great for your skin.

Daily Rituals Luxurious Shower Steamers

For those who don’t have a bath or prefer a shower, these steamers are a perfect choice. Made with clean, natural ingredients and essential oils, they provide a spa-like aromatherapy experience for your shower.

8. Eye Mask

Block out distractions and promote relaxation with a comfortable eye mask. Whether you use it for meditation, naps, or a good night’s sleep, an eye mask can help you create a peaceful environment.

Mavogel Cotton Sleep Eye Mask

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly and easy option, you might want to give this eye mask a try. It does a great job of keeping out light and feels light, so it’s perfect for a little snooze or meditation time.

Sia Silk Sleep Mask with Eye Cups

For a more elevated experience, try this memory foam silk sleep mask from a small women-owned business in Nashville. They use clean, high-quality, hypoallergenic ingredients that are good for your skin.

9. Inspirational Books

Nurture your soul by reading books that boost your spirits and encourage you. Pick books that match what you like and what you’re aiming for, like bettering yourself, exploring your spiritual side, or getting creative. Here are some books I love for when I need a little inspiration.

101 Essays That Will Change The Way You Think

Any Brianna Wiest book is worth the read, but 101 Essays is one of my favorites. It is thought-provoking and beautifully written. I have reread this and her other books more than a couple of times as each read brings new insights.

This Was Meant to Find You: When You Needed It Most 

This is a truly life-changing book. Charlotte Freeman writes like she is your eloquently spoken friend who gives the best advice. I even tabbed and color-coded pages in this book so I always have something to turn to no matter what I need to hear.

100 Ways to Change Your Life: The Science of Leveling Up 

Love this book! As someone who is facts-driven, I admire Liz Moody’s ability to blend science with her own experiences, all while emphasizing the significance of finding balance in life. Her practical tips are clear and offer real solutions.

10. Snacks

Fuel your body with nourishing snacks that support your well-being. Keep a selection of snacks like nuts and energy bars in your toolbox to satisfy hunger and boost your energy levels. It is also okay to have your favorite type of candy or dessert as well as we know that it is all about balance. This is also a great tool to practice mindful eating with!

Thrive Market

My favorite way to stock up on snacks is through Thrive Market. They have a wide array of organic and clean products. I have my go-to’s on auto-ship and grab extras when they have specials. They also donate subscriptions to those in need and are the first online retailer to accept SNAP benefits.

Foxy Fane Snack Box

You can also pick up snacks when you do your regular groceries or through bulk purchases online. If you are looking for a snack box with a large variety, Foxy Fane has quite a few options.

Bonus: Basket

Keep all your self-care essentials organized and easily accessible. Choose a container that works with your space and adds ease to your self-care routine.

Goodpick Woven Storage Basket

This storage tote is a cute and stylish option for your self-care toolbox that you can set almost anywhere for easy access, while style looking aesthetically pleasing.

Hipiwe Wicker Shelf Basket

If you looking for something with a lid or a more structured container, this wicker basket comes in multiple sizes and shades.


Although I gave some of my top recommendations, this should be customized to you. And, if it is not in budget to purchase things right now, utilize things you already have. Grab a basket you aren’t using, put in an old notebook, a few of the snacks you have in your kitchen, cut up a few sheets of paper and write some affirmations, and write out a list of self-care tools that don’t cost money to pick from (ie. walk, call a friend, etc.). Add in anything else that brings you joy or a sense of calm and you have a basket. Self-care doesn’t have to look glamorous or be Instagram-worthy to work. It just has to resonate with you! 

A toolbox is a great starting spot, but there is so much more that can be done to seamlessly incorporate self-care into your daily routine. I have additional on this in my last blog. Two of my go-to’s are to schedule self-care and to make things unavoidable. I use a daily/weekly planner to write out not only my goals, but also the morning walks I take, my time to journal and meditate, and anything else that will help me find balance and enjoyment in my days. I also surround my sleep and work spaces with things that make self-care easy. There is a diffuser with essential oils on my desk and my bedside table. I also have affirmation decks in both locations. And, the art that I have on the walls is filled with affirmations, vision boards, and encouraging words. 


Creating a self-care toolbox is a fantastic way to kick-start your journey toward prioritizing your well-being and giving yourself the love and attention you deserve. With these ten must-have items in your toolbox, taking care of your mental, emotional, and physical health becomes a breeze. Don’t wait any longer—start putting together your toolbox today and make self-care an essential part of your everyday life. And, since we are in the month of social wellness, consider putting a self-care kit together for a friend or family member as a gift!

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    1. Thank you! And I love that! Let’s connect! Send me a message on Instagram and let’s see if there’s anywhere we can collaborate on!

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