Friday, November 21, 2014

expert tips for creating a perfect at-home bath

did you know that immersing the body in water has been medically proven to be a very relaxing, therapeutic and a complement to a healthy lifestyle? you can find luxurious baths the Lapis Spa in the Fontainebleau Miami Beach where they offer water therapy in various ways and at varied temperatures; the deep muscle relaxation associated with a good hot bath helps to reduce cramps, tension headaches and improves muscle elasticity. this process is similar to a massage and beneficial for everyone, from athletes to those who sit at a desk all day. it has even been said that taking a bath takes you back to a time when you were in the womb, thus creating a comforting and relaxing environment.

with winter in the air and the stress of the holidays just around the corner, a bath is certainly something that will aid in relaxing. i admit, i don't remember the last time i took one, but since receiving the following tips i have to share with you, i'm thinking it's about time i take one soon…

many thanks to Josie Feria, director of Spa at Lapis {located at The Fontainebleau Miami Beach}, for  sharing these helpful tips to create the ultimate at-home soaking experience. take a look…

bath temperature 
a warm bath is best for relaxing the body with the ideal water temperature being 92 degrees fahrenheit. "test the water by using your wrist, not your hand, as it's a better gauge of how the water will feel once your entire body is submerged."

use scented bath oil 
Feria recommends floral scents like lavender, jasmine, iris and rose since they are associated with relaxation and can help to ease you into a relaxing state quicker. "adding oils to the tub {when the bath is halfway full} will help them disperse evenly throughout the water."

body scrub 
most people are used to being active all the time, so when they get in the tub their minds start racing and they become unable to relax. engage your mind by gently massaging your body with a sponge and body scrub; as the scrub buffs away dryness, your thoughts can move to something less stressful.

closing your eyes 
it's important to close your eyes during the bath to enter deep relaxation, so anything that forces you to keep your eyes closed is a great. "try cold cucumbers, an icy compress or eye pads which have been soaked in chilled chamomile tea."

bath salts
if you've had a tough workout, bath salts are like external muscle relaxants. soreness, pain or swelling are reduced, along with inflammation and stiffness, when using bath salts. they also help detoxify skin and increase circulation which helps to ease tension and revitalize the body.

bright bathroom lights tell your body its go-time ~ not bath time. instead, light a few candles and place them around the room and on the edge of the tub.

cold water
if you’ve set your water temp right {somewhere between steamy and very warm}, you should be feeling quite toasty in the tub. a warm bath raises your body’s core temperature, so you’ll start sweating. Josie says, "before getting into the tub, set a bowl of ice water and a washcloth next to you and use it as a cold compress on your forehead or the nape of your neck to help keep you refreshed throughout the bath time. i also grab a tall bottle of San Pellegrino and force myself to drink the whole thing to hydrate."

bath robe/nice bath sheets
 "nothing jolts you out of a zen state like going from a warm, luxe bath to a measly, threadbare robe or old dingy towel. get a plush terry cloth robe or fluffy towels that allow you to feel warm and comfortable."

make the most of your bath by using the time to also give yourself a face and hair treatment. both the skin and hair respond very favorably to the moist environment created by a steamy bath. to cleanse your face, apply a clay mask to the skin avoiding the eyes, allow to remain on the skin for 7-10 minutes then remove gently with wet washcloth. to soften and hydrate your hair, apply conditioner or hair mask to wet hair then cover in plastic cap and hot towel and allow the conditioner or mask to remain on hair for duration of bath for 15- 20 minutes. wash and rinse thoroughly.

"play relaxing music to sooth your mood and aid in the process of relaxation. visualization is also a great tool to enhance relaxation in the bath," says Josie. complimented by music, visualization exercises can transport you to your own private nirvana…caribbean beaches anyone?

relax afterwards
leave the smart phone alone for an hour or so and just enjoy time for yourself. get a glass of tea and read or listen to music. want more coziness? "heat a towel in the microwave and wrap around your neck and take a deep and well-earned nap."

 thank you again to Josie Feria for these fabulous tips!

 if ever i'm in miami…

so, tell me ~ which of these suggested tips will you, {or maybe do you already} incorporate into your bath time? any fave products you include in your ritual? share in the comments!

info and images courtesy of pr representing Josie Feria of Spa at Lapis {located at The Fontainebleau Miami Beach}

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