By Allison Berry
With stay-at-home orders still being extended in parts of the country, it makes total sense that baths and showers are becoming the latest accessible self-care trend. I mean, when your living room has become your office and your bedroom is now just another venue from which to join virtual happy hours, it’s clear how our home’s bathrooms have emerged as the last frontier of solidarity.
Lately, I’ve enjoyed embracing my daily shower routine as an opportunity to just let go. Where my mind used to wander to thoughts of a friend’s birthday party while I shampooed my hair or worries of my family dog’s health while I washed my body, now I simply use the time as a release. And when I do feel an intrusive thought coming along, I’m slowly getting better at mentally reclaiming this ritual as my own and letting the thought come to pass.
With bath time being back in a big way, I conducted an informal poll of my coworkers to find out how they are reclaiming this daily routine as a time just for themselves. From curating the perfect end-of-day playlist to indulging in some of their favorite personal care products, they have plenty of inspiration for how you, too, can take back the bath.
I've always been a huge fan of the bath soak since I was little, and now more than ever, I'm finding incredible solace in the experience. It's my weekly escape. For 20 to 30 minutes, I'm blissfully alone while bathed (literally) in calmness. I've since graduated from tubby toys and candy-scented bubbles, though. Now I prefer a smoky candle, essential-oil-infused bath bombs or salts, a meditative soundtrack, and a good book. I'm getting relaxed just writing about it.
Now that I’m spending weeks at a time in a one-bedroom apartment with my boyfriend, my end-of-day shower has become much more of a ritual than a routine. Whereas I used to be in and out of the bathroom in five minutes, flat, now I relish my alone time by taking extra care to double-cleanse my face and exfoliate my body (Dove’s Crushed Lavender & Coconut Milk Body Polish has been super nourishing for my skin). There’s something about those few extra minutes by myself that I look forward to every day.
I hung a few sprigs of eucalyptus leaves in my shower. It gives off such a fresh, relaxing aroma that fills up my whole bathroom and even reaches my bedroom. And I know it has some respiratory benefits as well, but it also just makes my shower look a little prettier — which is a nice ambiance to step into.
About once a week, I amp up my daily shower and give my skin the spa treatment. 20 minutes pre-shower I slather an AHA/BHA exfoliating mask onto my face, pour a glass of wine, and put on some zen music. Once I’m in the shower I rinse off the mask, exfoliate my body, then towel off and follow up with a sheet mask and all my serums for ultimate skin rejuvenation.
For me, taking a bath is the ultimate act of self-care. In a world where the shower is an option, choosing to take your time in a bath allows me to slow down and take a break from the world, prioritizing myself and my comfort. At least once a week I grab a fresh Dove Beauty Bar to deeply moisturize my skin, dim the lights, light some candles, and zen out while listening to my favorite playlist.
Music is crucial when trying to make my daily shower as stress-free as possible. I listen to all kinds of music throughout the week, but something about hip-hop really makes my showers feel the most like a victory lap. Before getting in, I'll usually throw a two or three song playlist on my portable speaker, which is the perfect length of time for the duration of a shower.
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This post is sponsored by Dove.