Despite how much time I (apparently) spend perusing apps on my phone, little of said time is spent perusing wellness apps. However, that doesn't mean I don't have them or use a select handful on a semi-routine basis. It's just that Instagram, texting, and navigating my way around L.A. by way of Maps and Waze will always take precedence. (Sorry, just being 100% honest!)
Historically speaking, the majority of wellness apps I've downloaded in hopes of managing my stress, lullabying myself to sleep, organizing my workouts, etc. have promptly been deleted within the day or within the week if they're lucky. Either I don't end up using them, they're not user-friendly, they're poorly designed, or they're more time-consuming and complicated than they're worth. After all, aren't apps meant to streamline and encourage accessibility and organization?
Not all wellness apps have proven instantly disposable, though, and I've actually found myself tapping into certain ones way more often than I ever thought I would. Word of mouth has proven helpful, and I would say I discovered all of the best wellness apps currently residing on my phone through friends, via interviews, or while talking to my wellness-minded colleagues. Since they've made a difference in my life (or at least as much of a difference as a mobilized computer program can make) and in honor of this month's Digitial Wellness theme, I've rounded up the seven best wellness apps I didn't immediately delete off my phone and that I tell all my friends about. Curious to see which apps made the cut? Keep scrolling!
Meditation can provide many benefits, but prioritizing and perfecting the practice can be time-consuming and frustrating—especially if you run into the daily problem (like me) of not having enough minutes in the day to complete your never-ending to-do list. Reality star turned blogger and wellness junkie Lo Bosworth actually told me about Headspace when I interviewed her a little under a year ago, and I downloaded it almost immediately.
Headspace has been around for a while (since 2010, to be exact) and offers guided meditations you can practice anytime, anywhere. You can choose how long your mediation is, what the focus or goal is, and frankly, it's helped me fall asleep with a more peaceful mindset more often than not.
2. An App for Your Gym
Now, this one may or may not be applicable, but if you belong to a somewhat famous gym or gym chain, it likely has some kind of app to help organize your workouts, check-ins, fitness goals, etc. Personally, I'm a member of Equinox, and its app is one of my most-used on my phone. I can book my favorite workout classes, and since it has a strike system if you cancel your reservation within three hours of class time, having the app has made me so much more accountable when it comes to actually making it to (and through) my workouts.
While it may seem a tad excessive to belong to a gym and ClassPass, both are worthwhile investments for someone like me who loves fitness, enjoys working out, but also gets bored easily. Plus, even though there are actually plenty of Equinox locations around L.A., sometimes having the option of a brand-new workout that I've never tried (but that's just around the corner from wherever I am) is super appealing. You've probably heard of ClassPass by now, but if you haven't, the app essentially tells you the best fitness classes near you. Simply search a class (either a specific studio or type of workout), reserve your spot, and show up! You can start with a free trial and then after a month, you'll have to pay up and select whatever level of membership you want.
Created by functional nutritionist and women's hormone expert Alisa Vitti, the MyFlo app and period tracker is a godsend for anyone with a vagina. You can track your period (so you know when it's coming, when you're fertile, etc.), track your symptoms throughout the month (the app will find patterns that can point to hormonal imbalances that might be making your period worse than it needs to be), help fix the root cause of said symptoms, notify you when you enter a new phase of your cycle, and sync your calendar with weekly activities (food, exercise, social, etc.) that work best for your body depending on the cycle you're in.
5. Food and Wellness Bloggers
Similar to watching cooking shows, there's something about regularly visiting my favorite foodies and wellness bloggers on their sites and Instagram accounts that just feels comfortable and soothing to the soul. If they happen to have an app, well, that's a full step more delightful. For example, Ella Mills of Deliciously Ella is one of my favorite people to follow (I almost feel like we're friends—it's normal), so downloading her app, which is chock-full of all of her amazing vegan recipes, was a no-brainer.
If you love being outdoors and going on hikes but have no clue how or where to find all the best trails near you, A) you're like me and all my friends, and B) you should definitely become well-acquainted with the AllTrails app. It's your ultimate outdoor guide featuring more than 63,000 trail guides all over with ratings, reviews, photos, and trail difficulty available so you can choose the right path for your mood.
7. Body by Simone
An epic collaboration between celebrity trainer and fitness expert Simone De La Rue and celebrity nutritionist Kelly LeVeque, this helpful wellness app blesses you with personalized recommended workouts based on your unique goals, fitness levels, and exercise style. The app allows you to stream live Body by Simone fitness classes from studios located in NYC, L.A. and the UK and helps you stay on track nutritionally with guidance directly from Kelly, featuring plant- or meat-based breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack recipes. It's an easy, convenient, and well-rounded answer if you want to reap the rewards of having a personal trainer and nutritionist sans the dent in your bank account.