“I am sure there are things that can’t be cured by a good bath, but I can’t think of one,” Sylvia Plath
While showers invigorate, baths relax. They help us to unwind and let go of tension. As baths use more water, we don't advocate a long soak every day. Instead make a winter evening bath an indulgence worth looking forward to.
Here are a few simple swaps that can elevate a quick soak in the tub to a truly restorative experience this winter.
1. Swap an overhead light for candles
Who doesn’t love being surrounded by soft flickering candlelight? We love this Saltmarsh Candle by Hole & Corner, sustainably made in WIltshire and smelling of our favourite seaside memories. Another favourite is Feldspar's Scented Candle. Made in the UK, this candle captures the joy of rambling through misty valleys. Escape from the comfort of your bathtub.
2. Don’t run it too hot
Many of us enjoy a bath that treads the fine line between pleasurable and painful. However, if the water is too hot, it’ll dry your skin out and could leave you feeling flushed and uncomfortable. The best temperature for a bath is a few degrees above your body temperature – so somewhere around 40°C to 45°C is ideal.
3. Use calming aromatherapy oils
Whether you opt for a scented candle, an oil burner, or just a few drops of essential oil added straight to your bath, aromatherapy can make a real difference to your mood. Lavender is the perfect choice for an evening bath, but if you’re treating yourself to a morning soak, try combining uplifting scents like geranium and bergamot. Feeling stressed? Add calming rose or de-stressing neroli.Image shot at Thyme
4. Skip the SLS
Sodium lauryl sulphate creates lots of lovely bubbles, but it can be quite drying, so you may want to swap your shower gel for a more skin-friendly bar of soap. The ones by Wharfedale Soaps are crafted with plant oils and butters, so they nourish skin as they cleanse. Or try a particular Navygrey favourite: Wild Sage + Co. A mother and daughter team based in Hereford, these soaps contain only natural ingredients, handmade and wrapped in plastic free packaging.
5. Treat your skin and your senses
Everyday luxuries don’t come much better than a relaxing bath oil or scoop of fragranced bath salts. Soak Sunday’s Rose Utopia Botanical Bath Soak is a little dose of heaven. Himalayan salts are mixed with a blend of essential oils (including jasmine, lavender and geranium) and a scatter of dried rose petals. Bliss.Image shot at Thyme
6. Add some oats
Tie a small handful of porridge oats into a muslin cloth. Add your oat parcel to the bath while the water is running. Not only will it turn the bath into a milky wonder that Cleopatra would be proud of, but the oat oils will also help to soften and soothe your skin.
7. Close your eyes and listen
For the ultimate relaxation, pop on your favourite tunes or take a moment to finally listen to that bookmarked podcast.
We'd opt for Fortunately with Jane Garvey and Fi Glover (it's like listening to a conversation with friends). Or if we're looking to rest our minds completely we'd choose some calming background music. Try Kesang Marstrand’s Hello Night, Soar by harpist Catrin Finch and Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita or Eva Cassidy’s Songbird.
Whatever you choose, listen to something you love and savour every second.