Sentrell Design Studio

Miami Interior Design Studio + Blog

Lifestyle

Bathing for Self-Care & My Bath Essentials

LifestyleSentrellComment

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!

 Sade is so gorgeous. Even in a towel! ( Source )

Sade is so gorgeous. Even in a towel! (Source)

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. 

  • Music

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. 

  • Candles

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

  • Oils

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. 

  • Essential Oils

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!

  • Soap

Duh, right?! I specifically added this to list to talk about my favorite soap everDr. 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. 

  • Body Brush 

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

  • Towels 

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!

bathing-self-care-bath-essentials.jpg

Welcome to Sentrell.com

LifestyleSentrellComment
Sentrell Marsh Closeup Desk

These last couple of months have been busy for me. I've been working tirelessly on Sentrell.com and now she's LIVE! I'm so excited for you to see my labor of love.

I started Sentrell.com to help millennial women make their homes a priority through actionable interior decorating advice


"I believe our homes should be a reflection of our best self." 


You can get a full rundown of the purpose of Sentrell.com on my about page. I also recommend checking out:

I've got some fun stuff in the works like resource guides, home decorating challenges and even more interior decorating advice. So please stay tuned! 

If you haven't already, download my Free Room Design Guide.  If you have feedback on the Sentrell.com or my Room Design Guide, just shoot me a quick e-mail via the contact page. Your honesty is appreciated.

Lastly, please share with your family and friends if you think they will enjoy my content. The share buttons are below. 

Enjoy!

3 Best Ways to Keep a Clean Home

LifestyleSentrellComment

Hey there! It’s officially 2016 and I know everyone has their new year’s resolutions in full effect. I find that a lot of people have organization and productivity on their resolution lists. Well, guess what distracts from productivity besides email and social media?! Cleaning Up! What can help you live a more organized life? Cleaning Up! Wait, what Sentrell?

Well, if you read my 3 solutions below, not only will you be more productive, but your home will be more organized. Yes, killing two birds with one stone. I. got. you. boo. (Ha!)

Cleaning up takes up a lot of our time because we are not doing it right. It’s usually designated for an early morning Saturday or Sunday thus taking up a good chunk of your weekend. I don’t know about you, but I rather spend my weekends like this

 

and not like this

Now that I’ve got your attention, let’s get to it.

3 Best Ways to Keep a Clean Home

#1 Cleaning as You Go

This was always a rule of my mother’s kitchen and it makes perfect sense. It can help you avoid an overflowing sink of dirty dishes, sticky countertops, and a splattered cooktop. However, this solution doesn’t only apply to your kitchen. Try cleaning as you go in your bedroom and bathroom too. We’ve all had the pile of clothing on our beds after trying on multiple outfits or the make-up covered countertop.

In my first college apartment, I celebrated my freedom by rejecting this rule and my room was always a mess. I quickly learned that mom’s are usually right and started cleaning as I went again. If you clean as you go, things won’t ever get out of control. An extra five minutes of cleaning up after yourself saves you time and keeps your home in tip top shape.

#2 Cleaning Schedule

Developing a cleaning schedule will quickly improve the cleanliness of your home. The process is pretty simple. All you have to do is take on a cleaning task every day of the week. Here’s an example:

  • Monday: Kitchen, Sweep, and Mop
  • Tuesday: Bathroom(s)
  • Wednesday: Bedroom(s)
  • Thursday: Vaccum, Dust, and Clean Mirrors
  • Friday: Laundry
  • Saturday: Relax
  • Sunday: Relax

These tasks can be delegated to everyone is the household to reduce the time for each task. They should all take no more than 45 minutes each day, except for laundry. I know 45 minutes every day can seem like a lot, but if blast your favorite playlist before you know it, you will be done.  I’ve included a cleaning schedule download below for you to try this out. Use it to your liking.


#3 Hire a Cleaning Service

I’m a big fan of this solution, but it does require extra funds. This can be really affordable with the companies like TaskRabbitMerry Maids, or a local cleaning service. Bri of DesignLoveFest wrote a review on TaskRabbit here. However, I suggest you ask family and friends to assist with finding someone. Letting someone into your home is a big deal. It’s always good to go with someone who family and friends trust. If family and friends are no help, try finding a service on Yelp.

I haven’t used a cleaning service consistently, but when my boyfriend and I have had hectic weeks, we’ve hired someone to clean. It can be helpful to have a cleaning service you can call when you need them. Honestly, it is no fun having a crazy work week to come home to dirty home each night.

These simple solutions will have your home organized and boost your productivity significantly. Now that you have all this extra free time. Take up a new hobby or put in a few more hours with your side hustle. Oh, and when those unexpected guests are on their way, you can totally keep your cool because your home looks amazing!

You Need A Weekly Self-Care Routine ASAP

LifestyleSentrell6 Comments
Why You Need A Self-Care Routine

Let's talk self-care people. 

I define self-care as time by yourself, where you are a priority, and you spend time loving on yourself. 

The closer I get to 30, the more I understand how important self-care is. I'm not a teenager anymore. I'm a grown woman *cues Beyonce Grown Woman* and with being a grown woman comes adult-ing, which includes taking care of yourself to preserve your sanity and vanity. 

Let's rewind a little bit...

In college, I didn't have classes on Fridays so Thursday nights were my favorite because I could unwind and settle into my 3-day weekends. I had a Thursday night routine that included a good meal, a candle lit bath, and an r&b and soul playlist. These nights usually ended with a movie or a book. This was the start of my obsession with candles and my self-care routine. At the time, I didn't define it as self-care but now I understand why this routine was/is so important. I'll be honest, I had abandoned this routine when I graduated and have made it a priority to get back to it. 


We deal with so much daily and weekly that self-care should not be an option, but a priority.


The big question now is, how do you practice self-care? The simple answer is Do. You. Boo. *in my shameless Maya voice* This means do whatever makes you feel good. It could be cooking, dancing, yoga, a mani and pedi, reading, a massage, wine, a long bath, a shower, washing your hair, a skin care routine, etc. It can also be a combination of these things.

I know I originally defined this routine as alone time, but it doesn't have to be all the time. However, I think self-care includes learning how to enjoy your own company.


Your self-care routine should be a time to release negative energy, rebalance and replenish.


Remember how I mentioned I'm trying to make self-care routine again? Well lately, I've been focusing on a weekly beauty routine that includes the following:

This results in about 2-3 hours of time completely by myself where I love on myself. I think this definitely qualifies as self-care. I'm also thinking about starting therapy. Myleik of Curlbox has a great podcast about therapy. Just FYI,  therapy is not something to be ashamed of. I actually think more people should embrace it. 

Now, I want to hear from you guys! Do you have a self-care routine? What do you do? Why is it important to you? 

Why Interior Design is Important to Me

Interior, LifestyleSentrellComment

I pursued a career in Interior Design because of my parents divorce. Let me tell you a story...

interior-design-important

My parents divorced while I was in middle school. It was devastating. My world fell apart, but being the oldest child, I felt I had a responsibility to be "strong". I didn't really express how the divorce made me feel at home, but I do remember lashing out at school and being very angry. I even slapped a male classmate, he called me a bitch, but that wasn't normal behavior for me. I remember dreading going home because it felt lifeless. My dad had moved out, my mom was sad and it felt like all of the joy had been sucked out of our home.

Eventually, my parents decided to sell our home. My mom announced that we would be moving into a 2 bedroom townhouse. I remember being nervous the day we moved in. My sister and I went from having our own rooms, large closets and a tv room to ourselves to sharing a bedroom.  I didn't know what to expect or how our new place would look. We walked into the townhouse and to our surprise the entire place was decorated. My mom showed us the living room, the half bath, and the kitchen downstairs. Then she took us upstairs and showed us the master bedroom and the bathroom we would all share. Next, she opened the door to my sister and I's new bedroom. It was decorated too. I remember all of a sudden feeling comfortable. I felt like everything was going to be ok and that was a feeling I hadn't felt in awhile. It was a new start in a new home.

Fast forward to my college years, I would sit in my college apartment and watch show after show on HGTV. I really enjoyed the shows where they would makeover a home for a single mom or a family in need. I absolutely loved the reveals. Seeing the joy on their faces was always the best part. Those scenes always made me extra sensitive. Those scenes also reminded me of moving into that townhouse with my sister and mom. That feeling I felt when I saw all the effort my mom put into making that townhouse feel like home is what really made me rethink my career. I realized I wanted to make others feel that feeling.

I ignored it, though. I was in my junior year of college and there was no way I was going to change my major. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Public Relations. I even considered applying for law school. A couple months later, I found myself working as a marketing assistant for a small online jewelry retailer. I was miserable, y'all. It showed too. But then something really cool happened! 

We hired a new customer service representative and she just so happened to be an architecture graduate student at a local university. We got to chatting one day and she told me about the interior architecture graduate program there. I went home and looked up the program, started my application and developed an exit strategy. It felt right and I knew there was no better time than the present. I quit my job before I was accepted (Faith). I got a new job at a textile showroom with no experience by leveraging my marketing experience. 

Let. Me. Tell. You. Everyone, thought I was crazy. Quitting my job. Going from Salary to Hourly Pay. Changing my career. It didn't make sense to a lot of people, but it felt right for me. I was 24 and I knew it was now or never. A month or so later after taking the textile showroom job, I received my acceptance letter! 

Now back to that "feeling" I mentioned earlier...

In my first semester of grad school, I took a theory class where we explored environmental psychology. Environmental Psychology is a field of study that explores the interrelationships of people and their surroundings. Interior Designers use environmental psychology to solve design problems and predict human behavior within an environment. I could go on and on about environmental psychology but just know, this class blew my mind. It connected all the pieces for me. I could finally understand that feeling I felt and why I felt that feeling. I had felt a sense of place and it triggered a positive association thus changing my perspective and behavior.

We often don't realize how a sense of place and the relationship we have with a space impacts us. I love how interior design and psychology intermingle. Design allows me to not only make things look good but solve design problems (through fields like environmental psychology) to make spaces functional and relatable.

It is so crazy to know that all of this led me to this place to share this with you. I hope this inspires you to not only respect the field of interior design, but to realize why our everyday environments are so vital to our well-being.