This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Olay. The opinions and text are all mine.
Come wintertime, a long, hot bath filled with bubbles and luxurious oils and scents makes for the ultimate pamper session. But sometimes, depending on where we live or where we’re traveling to, we may not have access to a proper clean tub. And even when we do, getting it all prepped and fitting in a good 20-30 minute soak can get pretty time-consuming (half the time, I lose interest myself just waiting for the tub to fill up!). Fortunately, if a shower is the only option, there are few ways to make it equally luxurious and relaxing. Here are some of my favorites – try a few, or do them all for the most spa-like experience!
Prep Your Space Ahead of Time
Keep your shower squeaky clean. Only when our environment is clean and tidy can we truly relax, which brings me to the first step – scrubbing and washing away any mold or grime on the tub, tiles, and curtain. Try to keep up a regular cleaning routine so that your bathroom will always be ready for when the mood strikes.
Add some plants (preferably live, but artificial works too!). This will add a hint of color to your space and make it look more spa-like. But it doesn’t stop there – plants increase oxygen and may also help purify the air. Plus, they have the ability to naturally relax your mind and improve your sense of well-being. Choose ones that like a lot of humidity and not too much sunlight, for example, orchids, golden pothos, grape ivy, and snake plants.
Set the Stage
Dim the lights and light some candles. Candles are a spa-time essential when it comes to creating a relaxing ambience. So before your shower, turn down (or off) the bathroom lights and light as many candles as you can dig up from around your home. If you only have a few, place them nearest to a mirror to help amplify the light. And of course, always make sure to place them in safe spots like on your bathroom counter or above the toilet.
Turn on some background music. You can play any type of music you find relaxing (or even up-beat if you’re prepping for an evening out). I personally like to experiment with meditation, jazz, medieval folk and new age Celtic (my two favorites!), and sometimes just pure and simple nature sounds, like rain, streams, and forest sounds. If you’re not sure where to start, open up Pandora or Spotify and pop on one of their ‘spa’ or ‘meditation’ playlists for a continuous stream of the best zen music.
Heat up a robe and towel. To me, there’s nothing more satisfying than wrapping myself up in a warm, soft towel after the hot water turns off and just before the chilly air hits my skin. If you too agree (or have yet to experience this bliss!), then grab your biggest, fluffiest, most spa-like towel and toss it into the dryer on high heat for a few minutes to warm it up before you hop in the shower. If you have a comfy bathrobe, throw that in the dryer too!
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Relax & Indulge
Toss in a shower melt. Shower melts (aka shower bombs and shower steamers) are basically the equivalent of bath bombs, only for your shower. Simply place one by your drain and while it fizzes and melts, it will release the scent of essential oils into your space. You can very easily make them at home using some basic kitchen ingredients, or purchase them at bath & body shops.
Deep condition your hair. For a deep conditioning treatment that will leave you hair soft and silky for days, apply a rich, hydrating hair mask (I like to add a few drops of argan oil into mine too), spend 30-60 seconds gently massaging it into your scalp, then comb it through your hair. Let it soak in while you shave and cleanse so that it has the max amount of time to work its magic. At the end of your shower, do a quick cold water rinse to close the follicles, seal in moisture, and make hair extra shiny.
Treat yourself to a mini facial. The steam from a hot shower will open up your pores, making it the perfect time to apply those deeply detoxifying and/or hydrating face masks. Start off with a quick cleanse, then apply your favorite mask and let it sit/soak in. Rinse off under a stream of warm (not hot!) water towards the end of your shower for a super quick clean-up.
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Wrap yourself in a mini bubble bath. You may not be soaking in bubbles, but you can use the next best thing – a deliciously scented, deeply moisturizing body wash with a rich, foaming lather. Grab one of your favorites and massage it over your skin with a loofah pad or shower sponge. One I’ve personally been enjoying is Olay Moisture Ribbons Plus. Each bottle’s pastel ribbon pattern consists of a mix of cleansing and moisturizing ingredients. When combined, they envelope the body in a luxurious, hydrating lather that feels just as glorious as soaking in a bubble bath. Plus, with two therapeutic scents – sweet Manuka honey and soothing lavender – it makes the entire shower experience feel even more spa-like!
Olay’s Moisture Ribbons Plus also works wonders beyond the shower, especially in the colder, drier months. Here in Philadelphia, at least, we’ve already begun to experience dry, winter-like weather. And after my showers, I can feel it – my skin will be begging for lotion as soon as the water turns off. But whenever I switch up my routine and use Olay Moisture Ribbons Plus, I’ll notice an immediate difference in my skin after just one use. Thanks to the moisturizing ingredients like rich, nourishing shea butter, it leaves my skin feeling soft, smooth, hydrated, and just plain comfortable, and keeps it that way as the day goes on. I also love that their scents linger on my skin for hours afterwards. The Manuka honey-scented one is my go-to for luxurious morning showers, and the lavender one is of course my favorite for a relaxing evening wind-down! Available at Target, Walmart & Amazon
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What are some of your favorite ways to make your showers more relaxing and spa-like?