Welcome back to week four of the Surrey Mama Sunday self-care series. Over the last three weeks we have been talking about our pelvic floors, this week we move onto how to create some ‘me time’.
It’s a phrase that everyone uses, but one that is so important for all of us, so today I am really excited to invite the lovely Katie from Leaf by Katie to give us some AMAZING tips on how to create a home spa. THE DREAM in my books, so over to Katie – I’ll be in my home spa if anyone needs me 🙂
Invest in yourself, take some time out with a home spa.
Coming from a spa and beauty background I have always had a keen interest in health and wellbeing. However, once I became a mum, became very time poor and the demands of life took over I decided I needed to take action. You see becoming a mum is fantastic, yes, but it can be very difficult too. You are last in the list of importance and you become focused on surviving. Getting through the day and congratulating yourself on doing so.
As my little boy got older I recognised what had happened to me. I had switched on my survival mode, so now was the time to take action, to switch it off and begin to find who I was now in my current life as a mum. I had dreams and ambitions as well as wanting to raise my son and be there for my family. I allowed myself to retreat by giving myself a little self-care to feel nourished.
One of my goals has been to help inspire people and alter mindsets that taking time out isn’t selfish. It is necessary. You can’t keep running on empty to thrive in life and appreciate all you have. When life gets hectic we neglect ourselves rather than giving our mind and body a little looking after. Life has been a little hectic for me and at times I have neglected myself a little. Especially when I get to have very little “recreational time”. This, how to home spa, is for you if you are a mum and you often find yourself short of time, with no childcare or if you are off on maternity leave, with very little spare cash for an expensive spa trip!
So gather around, shhh, I’m going to give you a little insight into how I create my own home spa and create a little zen space in my own bathroom.
I must stress to do a patch test first to check for any allergies or reactions to the ingredients and also to research the ingredients that work for you wouldn’t go amiss. All ingredients should be checked for suitability during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.
The aim of the game is to turn your bathroom into a blissful sanctuary so think of little things that will add to your experience and bring you joy.
First up is to eliminate disruptions. Hard I know, but not impossible! For this, you need to switch your phone off and sort out a babysitter. Rope dad or grandparents in to do a little daycare.
Make sure you have everything you need for the next half an hour or so. So make a vitamin water, detox water or herbal tea. I love getting creative with my vitamin waters. One of my favourites for this time of year is apple and cinnamon sticks mmm. Don’t forget to take lovely soft towels preferably sprayed with your favourite essential oil. My best tip to complete your spa experience? A soft, comfy dressing gown and slippers. A good book and some beautiful flowers may also add to your experience.
Creating your spa environment
Create a spa environment by lighting your favourite aromatherapy candle. I love to watch the flame flicker on my candles as a lie in the bath. It is like meditation and allows you to stay focused on the moment.
Depending on your time limit there are a few different treats that you can make for yourself. I like to start with a very easy facial steam to open up my pores and to induce relaxation.
First, make sure you have cleansed your face and have removed all make up etc. I boil up to 6 cups of water on the hob and then add a handful of herbs and botanicals and a few drops of essential oil. I love to add fresh rosemary for its balancing and concentration properties it also helps to soften the skin. Eucalyptus and basil are great for oily skin. Lavender, chamomile and rose helps to soothe skin. Bay leaves can help fight free radicals. You then place the herbs into a bowl and place a towel over your head. Make sure to keep your face well above the water, approximately 18 inches above. Relax and enjoy. This is a good time to do some affirmations, to meditate or simply deep breathe. Dry skin or mature skin should only do this for 5 minutes at the most. You can stay here for up to 15 minutes.
Then turn to a facial exfoliation and face mask. Exfoliating the face is very important for cell renewal and to get rid of any dead skin cells on the face. leaving a bright and glowing complexion. You can experiment with simple everyday ingredients in the kitchen cupboards for this. Oats are a very gentle exfoliation. The lactic acid in yogurt eats away at dead skin cells leaving clear glowing skin. Honey is calming and anti bacterial on the skin. Blueberries are packed with vitamin c, antioxidants and are anti inflamatory on the skin. They are great for helping blemishes and spots. There are so many wonderful ingredients hiding in our cupboards that are amazing on our skin.
Body scrubs help cellulite, toning, glowing skin and moisturizing. My favourite is made with lemon, coconut oil, salt and rosemary. The lemon is brightening and detoxing but please be careful using this in the sun as it is phototoxic and you should not go out in direct sunlight after using otherwise you could burn. Rosemary is amazing to help clear the mind and concentration, the salt acts as the exfoliation. To make it you need:
1 cup sea salt
1 lemon juice and zest
1 tbsp fresh chopped rosemary
1 tbsp melted coconut oil
Place in a bowl and mix together. Start from the bottom of your body and work upwards.
You could place a quick and easy hair mask on. It always feels more luxurious if the towel is warm. It will also help the mask to penetrate further into the hair shaft.
Homemade Bath Soak
Then lie back in the bath with a homemade bath soak and let any remaining tension free itself from your body. To finish off my spa experience I create an aromatic herbal and magnesium bath by placing my favourite herbs or flowers like rose petals, chamomile or mint and add oats or magnesium flakes in muslin cloth tied to the tap to allow running water to flow through. Oats help to soothe and nourish dry skin. Magnesium salt is great for stress relief, muscle aches, wound healing and increasing circulation to name just a few benefits! Think about which beautiful moisturiser or body oil you will finish your experience with. Think carefully as this will be the lingering scent and sensation that will stay with you.
Then, either get into bed if you can or leave the bathroom as a refreshed human being ready to face the days challenges.
Take it easy and remember taking time out for yourself isn’t a luxury it is a necessity to a smooth running and happy family.
Please share your experiences of creating some self-care with #lookingaftermum both Sarah and I would love to see how you get on. Invest in yourself!
*This blog includes general information and should not be relied on in place of doing your own research or seeking professional advice.*