Have you ever wanted to really treat yourself, but felt like it was kind of a hassle to do so? I mean, I love a good spa day — and I know damn well I deserve one now and again — but making the time and setting up an appointment is sometimes a bit more than I’m really interested in taking on.
(I’m sure there’s a big, fat “why” behind all of that, but for now, I’m just going to accept that I have my things that I resist, and this is one of them. It’s all a process, right? Right!)
So! If I’m wanting to show myself a little (or a lot) of love without setting aside a couple of hours (or plunking down a wad of cash), I’ve got a few products and tricks I default to, all of which make me feel pampered, worthy, and very, very loved.
Awesome Ways to Treat Yourself
When I need a hot shower or bath: There are days when standing under the steady rainfall of my shower or laying back in the bathtub is exactly what I need in order to relax and reset. When I’m looking to make that a little extra special, I make a point to incorporate lots of things I love. For one thing, I crank up the tunes — I’ll pick a relaxing-but-upbeat station on Pandora (I like indie-folky type music that makes my toe tap, but hey, no judgement if you’re more into Adele or something!), and I brought home some leftover C.O. Bigelowe Lavender and Peppermint bath products from the hotel I stayed in for this trip, which I hoard for times like this. I’ll also often use this opportunity to use a deep hydrating conditioner (I like Moroccanoil Intense Hydrating Mask— the smell is so great and a tiny bit goes a long way) on my hair.
Post-shower, I’ll continue the pampering. I take the time to baby my hair, drying it with an Aquis Essentials hair towel (pat, don’t rub, and then just wrap it up — it’s crazy absorbent and totally gentle on your hair). Then, I take care of my skin, either with the Lavender and Peppermint lotion (also swiped from my hotel stay, although I will be buying more), body butter from The Body Shop, or this Home Health Lavender Almond Oil that I got at Yoga Journal Live — it’s so light and, well, I really like lavender, guys. A lot.
When I just want to lie down and close my eyes for a bit: Setting the mood isn’t just for sexy times, you know. I’m not afraid to light a scented candle, but over the years I’ve learned that you get what you pay for when it comes to candles. The cheap ones often aren’t generally great for air quality, and the scent? Well, my favorite fancy candles put all others to shame. During the early winter months, I tend to be obsessed with Thymes Frasier Fir, but the rest of the year I’m going to be sticking to my newest obsession: Archipelago Lavende, which is a soy candle with key notes of pressed sprigs of lavender, cyclamen leaves and cucumber with just the faintest hint of patchouli. I find myself actually craving it. Just try not being obsessed with it. I dare you.
In addition to the scent, I’ll heat up the neck wrap I picked up a few years ago after a particularly lovely massage — it happens to be this body wrap from DreamTime, but I’m sure plenty of others would work equally well, so long as it’s well weighted. The key is to be able to either drape it over my neck and shoulders when I’m lying face down, or roll it up a bit so that I can release my neck over it while I’m on my back. It is a tremendously luxurious feeling, let me tell you.
When I want a real massage … without the massage therapist: Get ready to meet my new boyfriend, guys: the InstaShiatsu Plus Neck and Back Massager. Wait, no — that didn’t come out quite the way I meant it! Although, I will say that my husband and I have both acknowledged that we totally understand if one of us leaves the other to run off with the InstaShiatsu. At $140, it’s not exactly an impulse purchase for most of it, but it is the most complete back and neck massage I’ve ever gotten from a device — by a lot. It digs in, changes patterns and switches direction, and all the while, you have the ability to pull it deeper into your shoulders (or back, or quads — it can really work on just about anything) for a lighter or firmer touch. My only complaint, if you can even call it that, is that it says it’s also heated, and I can’t say that I’ve noticed much heating action. I also can’t say that I care — the massage is SO GOOD. And it runs its own program, then shuts off automatically after 20 minutes, so you don’t even have to pay attention to how long it’s been going. I think I’m in love.
What are your favorite products or at-home treatments for showing yourself a little extra love? If you don’t have one yet, play around with the ideas above and treat yourself tonight! —Kristen