First things, first. No shopping, buying or leaving the house. Scour the house for a few fun spa essentials and make a decadent ‘Home Spa Day’ just with what you have tucked away!
Why put off what you could be doing right now?! I suppose if you are out and about and feel so inclined to pick up special bath salts, moisturizers or essential oils… so be it. I admire your level of commitment!
– Grab your robe and slippers
– Find a soothing CD that you absolutely love
– Scented candle
– A washcloth, loofah, bath brush or a new scrubbie back there in the drawers you forgot about
– Fluffy cotton towel
– Bath salts or essential aromatic oils (if you have them)
– Your cleansers, toners and moisturizers
– Coarse sea salt
– Plenty of chilled spring water (with a splash of lime or lemon) in the fanciest glass you can find
– Steep a cup of green tea
Let go of your day… your obligations… responsibilities… stress… and strain. Toss out the barrage of thoughts streaming through your mind (even if it’s just for a moment). Trust me… they’ll still be around later for you to poke at, ponder or peruse.
Try to relax. Take yourself on a far away vacation in your head, tell yourself a “Once Upon A Time” story, remind yourself what a princess you are and remember how essential these precious moments are to your happiness and sanity!
Welcome To Your At Home Spa Vacation!
1. Take it easy and slow down your breath, your thoughts and your movements. Put on your favorite CD and start prepping a very simple shower or bath in a wonderfully slow, deliberate and unhurried way. Take time to watch the candle burn, smell the fragrance, feel the soft robe or towels, look at the sparkling drops of water and run your hands through it… take in the joyful process of an every day activity that we just fly through without a second thought!
2. Use essential oils. Not only do they smell great, but they are extremely good for your skin. The rule to applying essential oils is to never apply them directly on your face or skin. Just add about five drops to a bowl of warm water. Soak a washcloth in the water and then apply to your face and neck as a compress for five minutes. Repeat three times. Gently towel dry and finish yourself off with an anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory facial splash.
If you have a choice of essential oils to choose from, select one that suits your mood and purpose. If you are desparking the stress level this holiday, choose soothing oils (like lavender, chamomile, jasmine, sandalwood and ylang-ylang). Good revitalizing and energizing oils when you need them are peppermint, eucalyptus, rosemary, basil and juniper. The aroma can also provide psychological and physical benefits too!
Essential oils can help with physical conditions, rejuvenate the skin, eliminate waste, alleviate stress, enhance your mood, restore vitality and facilitate the regeneration of new, healthy cells.
3. Basic Body Scrub and Cleansing If you decided you only have time for an indulgent, relaxing shower… start with a basic body scrub and cleansing. I found this fabulous new product called Spongeables (www.spongeables.com). It’s a soap and a sponge all in one. It lasts for a full month of frothy fragrant showering. My favorite fragrance is fresh lavender… and they have them fragrance free too if that’s more your style.
Whatever sponge, cloth or brush you decide on… scrub mindfully and only gently brush your skin. Gentle circular motions will increase your circulation and eliminate toxins and excess water.
Another in home spa trick is to mix an ounce of ground sea salt with 10 or so drops of your favorite essential oil. Add water and make a paste so it spreads easily. Apply it to your entire body and slough off the dead skin with big circular strokes. This salt scrub will exfoliate dead skin cells, cleanse the pores and help your body get rid of any toxins.
4. Draw a bath. Add 5 to 10 drops of an essential oil to bath salts. Grab an extra pillow, put a kitchen trash bag over it to keep it dry and then put a pillow case over that. You just bought yourself 10 extra comfy minutes in the bath tub. You might as well take a book too! Follow it with a warm shower and a dry yourself off with a fluffy cotton towel. If someone in the house really loves you… get them to toss it in the dryer for 5 minutes and greet you with fluffy warmth. If you have a body toning lotion handy, apply to your body (not your face) for additional firming and toning so you’ll look even better in that little black dress.
5. Be nice to yourself. These are your precious rejuvenating moments. Take your time. Pamper yourself and try not to get caught up in the have-to’s and the should-do’s. Don’t be in a rush. Not only will you lose some of the benefits of this quality time to refresh and relax, you may start sloughing off and using rough, damaging strokes.
6. Hurrying has its risks. Without slow, mindful, attentive movements, you could cause inflammation and jeopardize that fresh, healthy, glowing complexion that will make you a bright shining super star. You can actually accelerate the aging process by being too rough! Now there’s a good enough reason in and of itself to slow down.
7. Care for your hair. It is taking a beating in these winter elements. Add ¼ ounce of lavender to sixteen ounces of shampoo. Or for oily hair, add ¼ ounce of lemongrass or rosemary to 16 ounces of shampoo. Essential oils can make invigorating scalp massages. Rosemary is awesome! If you decide not to use the oils, make sure you at least give yourself a long, sudsy scalp massage. Close your eyes, lay your head back and drift for a moment.
8. Replenish lost moisture to your skin and hair this winter by taking two tablespoons of organic flaxseed oil twice a day. You’ll get rid of the itchies and combat wrinkles and sagging skin.
9. Treat your fabulous face. All the treatments above were just for your bod. Your face is special and delicate. The skin on your face is thinner and more fragile than your body. Treat your face with extreme care and gentleness. Even though it’s cold avoid extremely hot water, harsh soaps or any drying cleansers.
Grab a new wash cloth or small sea sponge, add a few drops of your favorite cleanser (preferably an anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory liquid cleanser) and then rinse thoroughly with warm water. Apply face firming treatment then put an ice cube inside of a small plastic bag and gently rub over the face and eye area for several minutes to tone and plump up the skin.
10. Rejuvenate from the inside
Drink 8 to10 glasses of water every day.
Eat lots of whole foods, green vegetables, fresh fruits, grains, nuts and lean protein to reduce inflammation, replenish moisture and bring back a youthful glow.