Create a Spa Retreat at Home!

In today's high-stress world, a visit to a spa can provide a much needed renewal for your mind, body and soul. If you don't have the time and/or money to head to the nearest spa or resort, consider creating your own. Experience the benefits of a day at the spa by creating a near-professional spa in your own home. Here are some ideas for transforming you bathroom into a relaxing spa retreat.

SPA TREATMENTS
Widely used in spas, bath salts or salt scrubs made with sea salts are wonderful for their detoxifying properties. The Romans, Greeks and other European cultures have long believed in the benefits of healing through bathing in hotsprings.

SPA TOOLS
If you're giving yourself a body treatment, have a body brush, loofah or sponge within easy reach. One of the best ways to revive skin is to exfoliate before you get in the shower. The ancient spas of Japan were known for their dry brushing techniques. Gently brush your body using circular motions with a soft body brush, starting at the feet and working your way up. This light brushing technique removes dead skin cells while stimulating circulation.

DRY OFF
Pamper yourself with classic and elegant spa garb ? a luxuriously thick white terrycloth robe. If you don't have a robe handy, find your fluffiest, softest towel. For an unmatched toasty treat, heat your robe or towel in the dryer before using.

MOISTURIZE
Water from the bath has a drying effect on the skin. To make the most of your skin replenishment, keep a special body lotion for spa days ? one with an aroma that you enjoy.

Chere Deshayes is the president of Bath Plantation, a company that specializes in handcrafted bath and spa products. Subscribe to her FREE newsletter at http://www.bathplantation.com/newsletter.html or visit her site at http://www.bathplantation.com.

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In a Word . . . Beauty  The Irish Times
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