Just recently I found out that a few hotels including The Hermitage Hotel in Nashville, America are offering “Bath Concierges”. I’m not kidding. If you want a perfect bath, they will come up to your room and run you one. They are trained in the art of a perfect bath.
This got me thinking. In our busy lifestyle, how do you find the time to take a bath? It is so much easier and faster to just jump in the shower and be done with it. But you know what? You and I MUST make the time for baths!
I only really began to appreciate baths and their value when a few years ago we moved to an apartment with only a shower. I guess the old saying of “you don’t miss it until it’s gone” applied to me. I started to crave having baths. From then on it was on top of my list whenever looking at real-estate.
The ancient civilisations certainly appreciated the value of baths. Cleopatra was known for her milk baths. The Romans built elaborate bathing houses and made it a social event. The Japanese have created elaborate bathing rituals.
So did they know something we don’t?
Oprah talks about making your bathroom your private sanctuary. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate bathroom. All you really need is a lockable door and a bathtub.
Here are a few tips on how to have the perfect baths:
Test the water temperature with your wrist. This is the most sensitive part of your body. You don’t want the water to be too hot or cold. The perfect length of a bath is 10-15 minutes. After that your skin starts to wrinkle and your water gets cold.
It is always good to have a bottle of water available since a warm or hot bath can be dehydrating. Be sure to sip water if you feel the need. Some people prefer a glass of red wine, champagne or port to help relax. Or you can have a cup of green tea or even chamomile tea to help you relax.
Lock your door, turn the lights off and light as many candles as you can. (Candles are essential as they affect your mood)
Support your head with a bath pillow or a folded up towel. Pick a nice relaxing CD, close your eyes and enjoy your peace and quiet. Also you can get quite creative with aromatherapy. Smell a lot of different essential oils, pick 3 of your favourites and mix them together. Usually 5 drops of each is enough. You can drop the oils straight in the water where they will float on top and evaporate. Or if you want to absorb them more, you can dispense them through the water by mixing them with a base carrier oil such as jojoba, sweet almond or evening primrose oil.
Some of my favourite oils are: Bergamot, Cedar wood, Chamomile, Frankincense, Juniper, Lavender, Nerolli, Patchouli, Rose, Sandalwood, Ylang-Ylang, Jasmin, Orange, Mandarin, Lemon and Grapefruit.
Of course if you really want to get decadent, you can also throw in a few handfuls of rose petals. If you don’t have rose petals handy, try one of these gorgeous soaps by Trance.
They have dried flower petals in them. I love “Roses ‘r’ Red” with ylang-ylang, rose geranium and lime oils with dried rose petals on top. Or try “All Woman” with lavender, ylang-ylang and patchouli oils topped of with ping geranium petals. If you really want a quick no fuss but still extraordinary bathing experience, try one of the ‘bathmelts’ from Lush. My two favourites are “In the Nude” with lavender, chamomile and rose oils, and “Dreamtime” with lavender, sandalwood, Jasmin, chamomile and Jasmin flowers.
When it comes to aromatherapy you are only limited by your imagination. Experiment, try new things indulge your senses with fragrances, textures and sounds. I call having a bath a ‘Wakeup call to your senses’.
Enjoy spending these 10-15 minutes by yourself to either relax or rejuvenate. I guarantee you; you will thank yourself for it.