Create a Day of Indulgence at Home

Pamper yourself and friends with these sensual spa strategies.

| July/August 2005

Visiting a spa provides an unmistakably luxurious and rejuvenating experience. But at $300 or more for a day of pampering, spas just aren’t in the budget for most of us. This doesn’t mean the masses have to suffer the deprivation of spa-lessness. I’ve learned to create my own spa treatments for a fraction of the cost, and you easily can do the same.

Creating a spa at home allows you to customize treatments to your schedule, needs and preferences. For a complete spa experience, set aside time for a full-body treatment, including a deep-conditioning pack for your hair, facial sauna and mask, an aromatherapy bath and special treatments for your feet and hands. You might consider getting together with your partner or a friend to share this nurturing experience. If you don’t have the time for a full spa day, choose the treatments that are most appealing to you, and indulge yourself as often as you wish.

Prepare for Your Spa Experience

To make your at-home spa day a reality, plan ahead and write your spa date on your calendar, as you would any other appointment. Schedule a couple of hours when you won’t be distracted by phone calls, family members or work-related activities. If possible, plan an entire day or a weekend for the ultimate regenerative experience. Pamper yourself from head to toe and schedule time for simple pleasures such as reading, writing or other creative projects. If you have an entire day or weekend, you also can plan long walks, a yoga class and a massage.

Gather all the ingredients for your spa experience ahead of time. Most of the recipes below call for ingredients you might already have on hand; others are readily available in natural food stores. When shopping for your spa day ingredients, include treats such as fresh flowers, candles, your favorite herbal teas and fresh seasonal fruits to make your experience special.

During your spa day, eat fresh, light and healthful foods to help you feel and look your best. Drink plenty of fluids, including pure water with slices of fresh lemons, limes or oranges and sprigs of mint or lemon balm. Make a pot of delicious herbal tea, such as peppermint, lemongrass or chamomile, to sip throughout the day.

Enjoy Shiny, Healthy Hair

A simple scalp massage with essential oils increases circulation and helps keep the scalp and hair follicles healthy. Deep-conditioning treatments restore moisture to hair and provide shine and softness.

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