While the weather is not quite springing just yet, there are few things as comforting as a hot bath on a dark, chilly winter evening. Coming from the cold Nordics ourselves, we know quite a few tricks how to make the best of our warming bathing rituals, achieving a SPA-like experience as often as we like to.
Most of us would probably find a bottle or two of essential oils at our home. Used for better health, soothing – or energizing – effects, and praised for their antiseptic and antibacterial properties, essential oils can make for significant improvement for your bathing rituals. We love oils, native to our region – fir needle is very helpful for relieving fatigue and alleviating breathing, while also strengthening the immune system. Chamomile essential oil is known for its calming effects, loved by those that occasionally have trouble falling asleep. It is also perfect for sensitive skin owners – even the smallest ones – as the antibacterial properties of chamomile help with irritations.
The benefits of the sweet nectar go way beyond its taste. Honey has been used for beauty since ancient times and has been known for leaving one’s skin supple and soft. It is also known for leaving one feeling rejuvenated, while the cleaning and antimicrobial properties of honey are known for slowing down the aging processes of the skin. For a honey bath, simply add a tablespoon or two of honey into a warm bath, allow to dissolve, and enjoy. You can also make yourself a nourishing honey scrub – mix it with some sugar until desired consistency, and apply on damp skin. For maximum effects, leave the scrub on for 10 minutes before rinsing. However, bath rituals with honey should be avoided by those allergic to it.
In photo: Light Grey Linen Waffle Towel
Bath salts are among the most popular ways of enhancing the bathing experience. Aside from a pleasant smell, it has some benefits for your body, too. Since salt helps to flush excess water out of your body, it is loved by those suffering from swelling. Salty baths are also known for improving circulation while reducing muscle pain and stiffness. Finally, it helps to clean skin and is even known for helping with eczema and extreme itchiness.
Just as the essential oil, herb decoctions are often reached out for when in need of a calming bath. For a healing bath, you should make a pot of strong decoction, slightly stronger than your tea. Add it to a warm bath and enjoy a calming ritual, perfect before bed. We love chamomile for its soothing effect on both the skin and the mind, but feel free to experiment with your favorites. If it’s good for drinking, it will almost surely be great for bathing.
A great bath ritual wouldn’t be complete without a fitting finishing step – a huge towel that will dry you in seconds, while also helping to retain that soothing bath effect for a little longer. Waffle towels – and bathrobes – are known for their softness, while terry weave – a mixture of linen and cotton – is slightly rougher, and is loved for its rejuvenating effect. Linen is very caring and gentle for your skin, perfect for those with skin conditions or simply wishing to wrap themselves in a cloud of softness.