Make this your Healthiest Year Ever with this month’s tip from Yael Alkalay, spa anthropologist and founder of red flower.
This weekly soak isn’t for washing up. Instead, use the bath the way the Romans and Greeks did for centuries—as a cure, suggests the founder of red flower, a line of petal-topped candles and natural beauty products inspired by spa cultures around the world.
“This simple practice takes just 20 minutes, and can be a deeply pleasurable way to boost your health and reduce stress,” says Alkalay. Start by filling a bath with water as warm as you can take it (but not exceeding 110 degrees), light a slow-burning candle, and add mineral-rich salts, she says. The point is to linger.
“A bath is an extraordinary detoxing ritual,” says Alkalay, who sees it as a spiritual and physical release. “Soaking in nutrient-rich salt water helps draw out toxins, and as these impurities are released, the skin soaks up the enriching nutrients of sodium, calcium, zinc, magnesium, and potassium found in the salt,” explains Alkalay of its “push-pull” effects.
The practice also has a long track record for alleviating fatigue, an aching post-workout body, and seasonal colds: “Increased blood flow to muscles and joints helps reduce soreness and inflammation, and, for many, the salt and vapors act as a natural antihistamine, helping relieve cold symptoms,” she says.
“An added perk is gentle exfoliation, which leaves the skin smoother and softer,” Alkalay adds.
The takeaway? Hang a Do Not Disturb sign on the powder room doorknob and take your time in the tub.
For more information, visit www.redflower.com.