After a busy, grueling week, it's nice to come home to an oasis to relieve tension and feel restored. As it's not realistic, or budget friendly, to go to a spa every day, it's a great idea to create your own spa-like setting within the comforts of your home.
Besides, you'll have peace and quiet, so it'll be easier to unwind and tune into your mind and body. Here are a few tips for bringing the spa culture to your own space, so you can pamper yourself and indulge in self-care on a routine basis.
Use Essential Oils
An essential oil diffuser can create a variety of different atmospheres and appeal to the senses, to really give you that "zen" setting. "Lavender is for relaxation, [and] basil oil has an uplifting effect on the mind and promotes alertness. Peppermint oil relaxes muscles, eases tension and can help relieve sinus congestion, [and] rose oil is used to relieve anxiety and depression," says Cynthia Rowland, facial expert and founder/CEO of Facial Magic.
"Steam inhalation is a wonderful addition to an at-home spa," she says. The heat is shown to improve circulation, which can also improve the skin's appearance, naturally, she explains.
Plus, "steam loosens dead skin cells, revealing new cells and resulting in a youthful glow," she says. Inhale steam from a steam machine or let the shower run so the bathroom gets super steamy, and simply sit and relax for a few minutes.
Ed's note: Read about the facial steamer we're obsessed with right this way.
Use Dim Lighting
Low, dimmed lights help your body relax and really set the mood. "Scientific studies have proven that low lights actually allow your body to rest better as they reset your pineal gland," explains Veronica Parker, a certified Yoga Teacher, Energy Healer, and Meditation Coach.
You can also use candles for light. "Place 2-4 candles of your favorite scent around. The candle flame and the scent will enhance your state of relaxation," she says. "My favorite scents are lavender, lemon balm and sandalwood," she suggests.
Take a Bath
After a long day, come home to a warm bath to restore tired muscles. "Prepare a warm bubbly bath with epsom salts. The salts will inspire you to untangle your muscles, release inflammation and induce a deeper state of relaxation," says Parker.
Either listen to relaxing music or ocean sounds (what resembles "spa music" you typically hear when at a spa) or try a guided meditation to release stress. "Listen to a guided meditation CD while you are soaking in the bath. Focusing on your breath is key to help you let go of stress and your day's activity," says Parker. "Alternatively, you can listen to soft music to unwind," she says.