Bathing for Self-Care & My Bath Essentials
Y'all, I love a relaxing bath. A. Good. Long. Bath. It has been a part of my self-care routine since college. I did take a brief break, but now I can't get enough of them. It just feels so damn good to get lost and immerse in warm waters, with candles, and a soothing playlist. It is something I look forward to every week. If you are not taking baths, you should start asap!
A (Very) Brief History of Bathing
It is said that Egyptians (Romans and Greeks soon followed) were the first to understand the importance of and practice the art bathing. This dates back to 2000 BC. Egyptians were very much into cleanliness and would bathe up to 4 times a day due to the heat. They would use hot stones to warm the water and soak extended periods of time. Egyptians had baths that were public, but many of the rich had private baths in their homes. Romans and Greeks had public bath houses as well. They were used for cleansing, relaxing, and socializing.
Baths were used for healing and cosmetic purposes as well. It is said that Cleopatra bathed in milk, honey, and herbs to moisturize, exfoliate and to aide in a healthy glow. Learn more about the history of bathing here.
Bathing for Self-care
Connecting back to yourself is important and your bath time will aide in this as well as increase your physical and emotional well-being. Let it become something that is a weekly ritual and set aside an hour to soak and enjoy the waters. I like to take my baths on late Saturday (10pm or 11pm) or Sunday mornings. You should also stay hydrated during your bath. I have a little stand (I really want this cart) in my bathroom that I pull over to the bath tub to hold a glass of water.
During your bath, it is a good idea to meditate and think positive thoughts. It would also be a great time to manifest.
Be intentional with this time to yourself, unplug, and most of all be selfish!
Relaxing Bath Essentials
Water itself is sensual, transformative and comforting, but I elevate my bathing experience by using a combination of the bath essentials below. FYI: All of these items are not necessary. You can use none, a combination of a few or all.
This is essential to my baths. Create a soothing playlist or try this one on Spotify. I've even listened to tantric playlists on YouTube. They really help set the mood.
I could never take a bath without candles. I turn off the lights in my bathroom and light my candles. They provide just enough light for you to see, but also help with the vibe. You can choose scented candles or unscented. Soy or Beeswax candles would be my pick. Favorites: Bath & Body Works, Roam
I absolutely love using coconut oil in my bath. It leaves my skin feeling amazingly moisturized. I suggest using your favorite oils. Some of my favorites are Jojoba, Almond, Olive, Vitamin E, and Avocado. WARNING: The tub may be slippery afterwards. Be careful getting out.
If you are dealing with an ailment or you just want to elevate the sensual aesthetic, I would definitely consider using essential oils. My favorites are Eucalyptus, Peppermint, Lavender and Sweet Orange. I use this book on Essential Oils and Aromatherapy to learn about the different uses of Essential Oils.
Bath Salts, Bath Bombs, and Body Scrubs
This is were your bath can become really fun because there are so many options for bath salts, bath bombs, and body scrubs. Lush has the BEST bath bombs. I love Bliss for their body scrub. Bath Salts are easy to make or you can look at brands like Herbivore, The Body Shop, and Balm & Co.
Herbs and Plants
For herbs, put inside a muslin bag and add it to your water. You may want to avoid pouring the herbs right into the tub because it is messy to clean after. l also like to have plants in my bathroom too. You can have succulents, palms, etc. I especially like Eucalyptus. Prior to your bath you can tie the eucalyptus to the shower head and run the shower on hot to create steam. The smell from the eucalyptus will fill the bathroom. It is soooo good!
Duh, right?! I specifically added this to list to talk about my favorite soap ever, Dr. Bronner's Peppermint Soap! I prefer the bar soap, but it is available in liquid body wash as well. This soap can be used for almost anything. I like to use it as a body soap as well as shampoo. My hair loves it. It smells just like candy canes. It is organic, biodegradable, cruelty-free, and very soothing. Dr. Bonner's also offers additional scents.
I like to use both a washcloth and a body brush. Body brushes make me feel extra clean. Make sure the bristle are natural and not plastic. They help with circulation and can aid with removing dead skin.
Sheet and Face Masks
Why not take care of your skin as well? I use sheet masks that I pick up from either Sephora or delivered via Amazon. Dr. Jart and TonyMoly are the only brands I have tried. For face masks, I like the Origins Charcoal Mask (since I was 16), Peter Thomas Roth Sulfur Masque, and I want to try the Indian Healing Clay Mask.
To make your bath extra special, you should have a towel set that you only use for your bath. I've heard great things about Restoration Hardware towels as well as the Egyptian Cotton towels from Target.
I hope I have convinced you to ditch the shower for a relaxing bath at least once a week. Let me know how it goes!