Study of top UK mummy bloggers reveals most relaxing spa treatments according to science 1

Study of top UK mummy bloggers reveals most relaxing spa treatments according to science

Spa Wars: Busy UK mums discover that a wash, cut and blow dry is more relaxing than a deep tissue massage

An interactive study by examined the stress levels of top mummy bloggers, revealing the ‘most relaxing’ spa treatments for busy mums, according to science – and the results are surprising.

Spa Wars’ – the mummy blogger experiment

Buyagift’s research found that over half of 2,000 UK mums are stressed out by getting the kids to leave the house for school and miss having a lie in more than anything else. In response, the UK’s leading online gift experience provider launched a scientific study to determine which spa treatment had the most relaxing effect on busy mums by measuring the stress levels of 10 top UK mummy bloggers.

Having a back and shoulder massage came out on top, but surprisingly a wash, cut and blow dry came in second – beating eight other treatments. Coming in third was a deep tissue massage, followed by a steam and sauna, and a Swedish full body massage.

Spa Wars’ – the mummy blogger experiment

Spa Wars’ – the mummy blogger experiment

Ten UK mummy bloggers were each given a spa treatment and asked to measure their stress levels – or Heart Rate Variability (HRV) – once during the most stressful moment of their day and again after their spa treatment. Buyagift then compared the different readings to determine the most improved stress rates and unveil which spa treatments truly reduce stress levels the most.

Dr Daniel Plews, Physiologist and Buyagift’s stress experiment consultant comments: “The survey reveals that mums need to take more time to relax as too little sleep and too much stress can have serious long-term physical and mental health implications. As 4 in 5 families don’t know which treatment to get their mother, this experiment was designed to reveal which treatments help mums de-stress the most by analysing mums’ stress levels. We did this by measuring HRV, which is an accurate, non-invasive measurement of the variation between consecutive heart beats intervals. It reveals signs of physiological stress, as HRV is typically higher (more variation between heartbeats) during relaxing activities and decreases (less variation between heartbeats) during stressful activities.”

HRV readings were measured using HRV4Training, the first validated app able to measure heart rate and heart rate variability reliably.

Mummy bloggers self-identified the most stressful moment of their day, which included mealtimes, homework and getting out of the door. The treatments tested in the experiment were the ten favourite treatments as determined by the survey of 2000 UK mums.

2,000 UK mums have their say on Mother’s Day

Spa Wars’ – the mummy blogger experiment

Buyagift’s survey of over 2,000 UK mums also reveals interesting findings of mums’ sleeping habits, most stressful daily moments and what they think they’ll get for Mother’s Day:

  • Half of the mums stressed out by getting the kids out of the house

Half of all mums said that getting their kids to leave for school was one of the moment stressful moments of their day. 40% mums said that bedtime was the most stressful time of their day, followed supermarket shopping (2 in 5 mums), long car journeys (1 in 3 mums) and potty training (1 in 3 mums).

Spa Wars’ – the mummy blogger experiment

  • 2 in 3 mums are sleep deprived – and really miss a lie in

Parental stress could be driving sleepless nights for mums, as nearly two-thirds claim they get at least one hour less than the recommended 7 hours sleep on an average night. 1 in 10 mums gets less than 3 hours sleep on an average night, making them dangerously sleep deprived.

  • Mums miss sleeping more than anything else

Not surprisingly then, a huge 77% of mums also miss relaxation and pamper time, with sleep by far the most pinned-after relaxing moment. The next popular most-missed relaxing moments among mums are a bath or shower, followed by having the time to read a book or being able to drink a cup of tea before it gets cold.

  • Families mostly clueless on what mum wants for Mother’s Day

Sadly, 75% of mums claim to want a relaxing spa day or experience for Mother’s Day, yet 4 in 5 also think their families are likely to be put off getting them one. Most mums believe this is because their families don’t know their availability, the treatment names or because there’s too much choice.

Find out more about the mummy bloggers or take a quiz to find out how much of a stressed mum you are:


  • mightymamabear2017

    March 19 at 7:40 am

    I would love a spa day for Mother’s day! Although to be fair I’d be happy with just a lie in!

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 19 at 1:34 pm

      It would be perfect, wouldn’t it?

  • Helen

    March 19 at 9:27 am

    This is so interesting! I certainly would say that a spa day would help me relieve some ‘mummy stress’. I think the most stressful part of the day in our house is meal times, but also some of my favourite times 🙂

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 19 at 1:33 pm

      Yes meal times are my nemesis for sure but it doesn’t help that I have one child who is an extremely fussy eater x

  • lporter586

    March 19 at 3:50 pm

    I do love spa treatments, but actually love getting my hair done! Especially when they wash it for me & give me a head rub:D

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 10:22 pm

      Yes a good head rub can be very relaxing 🙂

  • Kelly-Anne Combes

    March 19 at 4:48 pm

    I would have to say that leaving for the school run in the mornings can be pretty stressful and a spa day would really help to relieve such stress.

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 10:18 pm

      Yes I often time the morning run quite stressful too, we do have good weeks but towards the end of each term things tend to get a little more stressful.

  • sonia cave

    March 19 at 6:53 pm

    Oh I would go for the massage over the hair cut any day….I am not good at chatting which you need to do at the hairdressers!! As for mothers day I got completely forgotten last year!

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 10:16 pm

      Oh no that’s really sad, I hope it will be made up for this year!! Starting with a massage 😉

  • Kaz & Ickle Pickle (@IcklePicklex)

    March 19 at 8:14 pm

    Oh how lovely would a spa day be? I can’t remember when I last had a treat like this. Kaz

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 10:15 pm

      I think it’s time you started to drop a few hins 😉

  • Miranda (Anosa)

    March 20 at 9:01 am

    What an interesting study, I prepare a deep massage than anything else when I visit a spa.

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 10:15 pm

      I totally agree a massage is always top of my list too.

  • Zoe

    March 20 at 2:05 pm

    I’ve never wanted a spa day, am I weird?! A lie in and just some free time with the kids, without worrying about meals and school would be lovely!

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 10:06 pm

      Not at all, it’s not for everyone. Although, I took my Mum for a spa treat a few years ago, on the way there she said “I don’t get why people do this” – on the way home she was all “oh it was amazing” and has loved going ever since. I hope you get that lie in and free time with your children xx

  • Annette, 3 Little Buttons

    March 20 at 8:21 pm

    I LOVE this post! Completely agree that a combination of missed sleep and too much to do (which somehow goes unnoticed by everyone else) all adds up and helps stress along nicely. Us mums definitely need more de stressing. Funnily… I have never been bought a spa gift. Should I be giving out hints do you think? 🙂

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 10:01 pm

      Absolutely, start leaving magazines open on spa pages, accidentally leave the computer on a spa web page or maybe even create a mood board of spa images and leave them on the fridge. It might just do the trick – good luck x

  • Amy – All about a Mummy

    March 20 at 9:50 pm

    I miss sleep, and massages, and blow drys and my pelvic floor muscles and did I mention sleep?

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 9:59 pm

      Haha, it does get better eventually. In the meantime, I am sure a massage will help loads xx

  • Stephanie

    March 21 at 9:57 pm

    Oh I really could do with a neck and shoulder massage right now! I can understand why that came out on top!!

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 9:56 pm

      A good neck and shoulder massage are the best, aren’t they? We hold so much stress there it’s good to unwind.

  • Elisabeth

    March 22 at 12:17 pm

    It is so nice, relaxing massage on time! I am interested in relaxing massage training. Moms do not have enough massage especially a lot. As I want my husbands to massage us more about it.

    1. IamMummyMatters

      March 25 at 9:49 pm

      Oooh that would be great, good luck. I hope you manage to find a good course.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Previous Post

Next Post