Recreate your favourite spa in the comfort of your home
Finding it hard to get a spa appointment these days due to pandemic-related restrictions and safety guidelines? Well if you can’t go to the spa, bring the spa to you. Here are some ways to DIY your fix of bliss at home.
Roll with it
A self-massage you can do anytime? Sign me up! A foam roller or massage ball is what you’ll need. Both deliver similar benefits such as relaxing the muscles, relieving tension, and improving circulation. With the foam roller, all you need is a yoga mat or a towel and a flat surface. Lie on it and roll over different parts of the body. The massage ball is even more convenient as you can fit it into your bag and bring it anywhere. It’s like your very own pocket masseuse!
Lights off, glow on
When you shower in the evening, try this: Don’t turn on the lights but light a scented candle instead. Instantly you get that warm, soothing ambience that’s not unlike your favourite spa. Plus, you save on electricity too!
Tip: Light the candle at least 20 minutes before you step into the shower so that the scent can permeate your bathroom.
Are you getting enough magnesium? This essential mineral can help relax muscles and nerves, thereby encouraging better sleep. Here’s an enjoyable way to up your magnesium intake: Add magnesium oil or flakes into a warm foot soak. All you have to do is sink your feet in – now would be a great time to catch up on some reading! – for about 20 minutes or until the water cools. Sweet dreams…
Set the mood
Why do you feel rejuvenated after a visit to the spa? Treatment aside, the ambience plays a very important role too and it’s something you can replicate at home with soft, warm lighting; your favourite scent (via candles, diffusers or room mists); soothing instrumental music, and have a pot of herbal infusion or jug of infused water ready to rehydrate with in between.
Skin that feels brand new and smooth like a baby’s bottom – if this is high on your list, then make sure you have body and face scrubs at hand. Better yet, make your own. All you need is sugar and a good oil such as coconut or olive oil. Mix equal parts of both until a paste form. You can also add a few drops of essential oils if you like and voila! Apply onto skin and gentle massage it in – the texture of the paste will do the exfoliating, so you really don’t need to rub it in, so to speak.
Eyes, eyes baby
Our eyes are among our most hardworking organs, helping us make sense of what goes on around us from the minute we wake up all the way till bedtime. That all adds up to tired eyes so they deserve some TLC too. Cold cucumber slices, milk-soaked tea bags, and chilled spoons are among the things you can place over your peepers to soothe and perk them up. Don’t forget to exercise your eyes too.
On the bath to wellness
How good does it feel to slip into a warm bath at the end of a tiring day? To save water, you don’t even need to fill the tub all the way. Do like the ajumma and draw a ban shin yok or Korean half-bath. Just like its name, you only need half the amount of water or enough to reach your belly button when you’re seated. The contrast between the cool air enveloping your upper body and the heat of the water covering your lower half is believed to help boost blood flow. Sarangheyo!
Softly does it
So you’ve the mood right, treatment essentials ready, the bath is drawn and waiting for you … don’t forget the towel, bathrobe and bedroom slippers you will be slipping into after your home spa session is done. Invest in a set that’s thick, soft and fluffy and luxuriate in them for that perfect finishing touch.
Gua sha is a traditional Chinese practice that uses a handheld tool to scrape the skin, in order to detoxify. At the same time, it helps improve circulation and lymphatic flow while smoothing and lifting the skin. So if you can’t or don’t have time to go for a facial, this is the next best thing you can do to keep your skin supple and plump.
The gentle pitter patter of rain, the lulls of waves hitting the sand, a gurgling brook … Nature’s orchestra produces some of the most relaxing sounds and are perfect for helping you get into that state of surrender. Create your own (or download this) playlist of these sounds before embarking on your home spa session and then just let the tracks run as ambient music.