Here’s how to jump on board the self-care trend

Showering is no-nonsense and efficient; the hygiene equivalent of a colour-coded to-do list and a diary of back-to-back Zoom meetings. Showers are a quick post-jog or pre-work necessity. Baths, on the other hand, are blissfully drawn out and contemplative. They’re indulging in the forgotten art of stillness. They’re remembering what it’s like to be away from your phone for 30 minutes. They’re giving yourself a pat on the back at the end of a tiring, stressful, really bloody long day.
“There must be quite a few things a hot bath won’t cure, but I don’t know many of them,” Sylvia Plath once wrote, and it’s a piece of advice we so firmly believe that we may as well have it tattooed on our foreheads.

In short, soaking in a warm bath is one of the simplest ways to be kind to yourself. And whether the current pandemic has left you concerned for loved ones, or struggling psychologically, or exhausted from home-schooling your kids, or wrought with financial or work-related worry, or even if you could just do with a bit of ‘you time’, one thing’s for sure – we could all do with being extra kind to ourselves right now.

Now is not the time for a mediocre bath. You probably don’t have time to bathe twice a day (Emma Watson) or even five times a day (Tom Ford – no, seriously). But if you’re looking forward to a nice long soak in these anxious and – to use the word de jour – unprecedented times, you deserve it to be as relaxing as possible. You want blissful vibes only. You want all the at-home spa bathroom (spathroom?) feels. You want to chill the f*** out.

We hear you. So does the whole of social media; people have been taking to Instagram, TikTok and Facebook to showcase their delightfully smug isolation baths replete with bath bombs, candles and comforting beauty buys. These are our tried-and-tested ways to perfecting the art of the lockdown bath.

First, follow these four pre-bath steps…

  1. Inform the co-habitants. If there’s one thing guaranteed to disturb the peace of your lockdown bath, it’s your flatmate/ significant other/ spawn/ parent/ dog. Deliver a house-wide pre-bath briefing. Lock the damn door.
  2. Ditch the phone. You may be tempted to use this time to respond to all those unanswered WhatsApps, or mindlessly scroll through social media, or challenge your best mate on the Scrabble app – but these are all terrible ideas. Mobile phones do not a relaxing lockdown bath make.
  3. Prep the bevs. This is no time for self-restraint or moderation. Open the good bottle of wine you were saving for celebrations and/ or emergencies (this is arguably both), or a bottle of champagne á la Johnny Depp and Kate Moss (maybe not 36 of them, though). Or go sans booze with a cup of herbal tea, a smoothie or a virgin cocktail. Whatever your tipple of choice, use the nicest glass you own.
  4. Choose the entertainment. We know phones are off limits, but decide whether you’d like your favourite podcast, a book, some music or an audiobook to accompany you in the tub. Or just soak up the suds in serene silence.

Finally, you need the right products to truly perfect the art that is the lockdown bath. Silky-soft shower gels, muscle-soothing salts, skin-smoothing oils, relaxing masks for hair and skin, fabulous foamers and of course, the very best at-home spa candles. Happy bathing.

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