Post-workout, I treat myself to a warm soak to ease my sore muscles. While testing bath-friendly beauty products (tough job, right?), I stumbled across these three standouts, which have helped transform my bathroom into a spa-like sanctuary. I even use them as an incentive while working out (just one more mile until some TLC)!
Set the mood:
Bath & Body Works White Barn 3-Wick Candle in Honeysuckle ($20, bathandbodyworks.com)
Dim your lights (it’s you time!) and activate this candle. In a few minutes, the subtle blend of honeysuckle and creamy vanilla will fill the air. The best part: the sweet scent lingers for hours after the flame goes out.
Soak it up:
Lush Peaceful Lavender Bathing Under the Stars Bath Bomb in Twilight ($6, lushusa.com)
A fun alternative to bubble bath, this fizzy bath bomb will bob around the tub and dissolve, turning the water into frothy pink and purple swirls. Lavender essential oil will help you unwind—perfect for taking the edge off before bedtime.
Soften your skin:
Victoria’s Secret Seriously Soft Body Cream in Jasmine & Water Lily ($12, Victoriassecret.com)
Once you’re out of the tub, lightly pat your skin with a towel. While it’s still damp, slather on this rich cream. Hydrating coconut and sunflower oils will leave your skin feeling silky, while the tropical scent will put you in a vacation-mode mindset.
—Jessica Carter, beauty intern
Today is, well, National Bubble Bath Day. And though you don’t have to celebrate, we encourage you to use it as an excuse to pamper yourself. If your New Year’s resolution was gym-oriented or if it was simply to indulge in a bit of relaxation, a bubble bath is a foolproof way of relieving both muscle aches and stress. For most of us, the issue with this luxurious act: a bath takes much longer than a 10-minute shower. If you don’t have time during the week (we understand), set aside one hour this weekend for some “you” time and run yourself a bubble bath—maybe even slather on a face mask while you’re at it. Trust us, you’ll be glad you did.
Here, a few of our favorite bubbles depending on your mood:
An instant tension soother:
L’Occitane Lavander Foaming Bath ($34, Loccitane.com)
A fake spa escape:
Fresh Rice Sake Bath ($80, Sephora.com)
An uplifting energy boost:
Neutrogena Rainbath Revitalizing Grapefruit Shower and Bath Gel ($9, drugstores)
—Jillian Ruffo, beauty intern
Not a winter goes by that we don’t find ourselves sniffling and sneezing, so we scoured the beauty closet for head-clearing solutions. Our first find: Burt’s Bees Therapeutic Bath Crystals, bursting with eucalyptus oil. A steamy hot bath with these citrusy salts relieved our stuffy nose, but the aroma is concentrated, so sprinkle sparingly. Bonus: The eucalyptus will also help relax sore muscles.
After a soak in the tub, we slathered on our second discovery: C.O. Bigelow Lotion Mentholus NO. 002 , laced with skin-soothing oat extracts and scented with a bracing mix of peppermint and rosemary essential oils. Apply directly after your bath for the best results—the steam lingering in your bathroom will give you a final sinus-decongesting boost.
Tell us: What beauty products do you use to help relieve cold symptoms?
—By Leah Cayson, beauty intern
Can’t make it to the spa for a sports massage? “Give yourself a break from everyday stresses with stretches that target overworked or tight muscles in the body,” says Cassandra LeDonne, lead therapist at the Spa at One Ocean Resort in Atlantic Beach, Florida. “They’re simple and can be done in bed without equipment.” Her regimen:
- Lie comfortably on your back and pull your knee to your chest, stretching the hamstrings.
- Drop your knee at a right angle to the side and rest in that position to loosen the hips.
- With knees bent and feet flat, place your left foot at a right angle on top of the opposite knee, pushing the right knee into the chest.
- Extend your arm above your head and slightly out, relaxing it and adjusting to target the tight spots in your chest and shoulder.
- Repeat on both sides, breathing deeply as you go and settling into each for at least one minute. Follow with a calming sea or Epsom salt bath. “The salts help to relieve sore muscles,” she says. Our pick: Super-soothing LaNatura Feel-Well Organic Lavender Mineral Bath Salts—they come with seashells for scooping!