As much as we love going to the spa, budgets and time constraints don’t always allow for a day of professional pampering. But that’s no reason to skimp on your much-needed TLC time – why not re-create the spa experience at home? Take a day off and hide your cellphone, tablet and laptop to ensure you don’t get caught up in responsibilities. Alternatively, send the boys out for the day and invite the girls round for a pamper session. After all, your skin and body go through a lot – it’s time to give them a break.
As cheesy as it sounds, your environment plays a big role in your overall relaxation experience. Turn the bathroom into a peaceful retreat with music (preferably slow, serene music), light a few candles (scented if you prefer) and dim the lights. You’ll feel better before you’ve even started!
An at-home face treatment is all about going through the steps you’d experience at the spa. Start off by removing all your make-up, and thoroughly cleanse your skin. Follow with your exfoliator – gently massage the product onto your skin in circular motions, focusing on the areas that become most congested. Rinse off thoroughly with warm (not hot) water and pat your skin dry with a soft towel.
Pour some hot water into a bowl and lean forward over it (not too close though), allowing the steam to penetrate your pores. After a few minutes your pores will open up, allowing you to do some extractions. This must be done with the utmost care – either wrap a tissue around your fingers and gently push on the area you want to extract, or use a double-ended blackhead remover tool.
Once completed, cleanse your skin again to ensure it’s free of any impurities and apply your favourite face mask. For it to really penetrate your skin and do its job, you need at least 15 to 20 minutes of it on your skin, so lie back and relax.
Lastly, lather up with your favourite moisturiser and enjoy the feeling of freshly cleansed skin.
For ultimate relaxation, run a bath and dissolve aromatic bath crystals, bath oil or bubble bath in the water. Once you’re in the tub, allow yourself the time to lie back and relax. You may even want to catch up on your reading. Use your loofah to gently exfoliate your body and follow up by shaving if you want / need to.
Keep your favourite body butter handy and lather up as soon as you get out the tub. You might want to try a rich body oil if your skin is dry.
If you prefer showering, you can follow the same procedure (but keep the books out the shower!). Use a body scrub and gently exfoliate your entire body, staying clear of the chest and breast areas.
Want to invite the girls round? Have a mani-pedi party instead. Everyone can bring their favourite nail polishes, and you can gather around with smoothies and cupcakes while painting your fingers and toes (or doing nail art on each other’s nails).
How often do you take a day or an afternoon off to pamper yourself?