Simple Wellness Practices that Transform Your Bathing Ritual

I’ll be honest, I’ve wasted many a shower composing emails in my head, or tallying up a mental list of to-dos to check off the minute I’m dried and dressed. I think it was becoming a mother that made me realize that a routine shower (or bath) is less a task to perform on autopilot and more of a self-care ritual to be savored.

I challenge you to seize those precious bathing moments to incorporate some simple wellness practices that will help you look and feel your best— mind, body and spirit. I try to incorporate a few of these 8 practices every time I bathe, whether I’m hopping in for a quick rinse or taking time out for a long soak.

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8 Wellness Practices that Transform Your Bathing Ritual

1. Gratitude. You’ve probably already made a mental note to bring more gratitude into your life, but you may not have found the time to be consistent. So incorporate it into your bathing ritual. When I shower in the morning, it wakes up my senses and I’m instantly grateful for another sunrise, the calming feeling of warm water flowing over my body, a roof over my head, and food that will be my breakfast meal.

2. Healthy Beauty. Your bathing ritual just won’t support your body and beauty if the products you use contain hormone-disrupting or carcinogenic ingredients. Put thought into the products you choose, and remember that your dollars are well-spent on products that absorb into your body in seconds, and influence your overall health. For ideas, I’ve shared lots of my favorite natural and organic products on this site!

3. Head massage. You know how drool-inducing a head massage can be at a salon, now slow down and bring those techniques into your regular routine. The benefits are way more than just pleasurable: gently massaging your scalp encourages the flow and drainage of lymph from your brain that keeps your brain and waste-removing lymphatic system in top form.

4. Deep, steamy breaths. If you’re showering, take a few moments to deeply breathe in steam that rises from the stream of water. You’ll calm your body, open up your airways, and help your body detox naturally.

5. Aromatherapy. In addition to steam, there are so many benefits to adding natural scents to your bathing routine; I recommend using small amounts of essential oils to avoid any synthetic fragrances. You can sprinkle a few drops of essential oils on your shower floor, make or purchase a baking soda-based aromatherapy tablet that dissolves on the floor of your shower and emits scent as you bathe, or mix essential oils with a carrier oil and/or natural salts to add to your bath. I share some of my favorite essential oils in this post.

6. Single-tasking. You’ve heard of multi-tasking, now single task— mindfully perform one task at a  time. I see this as kind of a mini warmup or trial run for meditation that strengthens the brain’s focus and calm in the same way. Pay attention to the details of your bathing ritual (even though I bet you could bathe in your sleep, it’s so routine) like scents, textures, and sensations, and you practice a habit that will serve you outside of your bathing ritual.

7. Dry brushing. I love dry brushing after I bathe— when my skin is clean and my circulation is already flowing. I think it’s the perfect addition to a bathing ritual, as it speeds up the flow of waste-removing lymph and brings glow and tone to your body (it can even reduce cellulite!). Get your own natural-bristle body brush and add this quick, transformative step to your routine using instructions found here or in the Eat Pretty books.

8. Skin-nourishing oils. The final wellness-boosting step I’d encourage you to adopt in your bathing routine is applying high-quality natural or organic oils to your skin. This practice gives you a chance to touch your skin, head to toe, and love your body. And plant-based oils will enhance the effects of your beauty diet from the outside-in.

What wellness practices do you love to incorporate in your own bathing ritual?

Meet the New 'Eat Pretty, Live Well' Journal!

I'm so thrilled to share the news that the Eat Pretty, Live Well guided journal is only a few days from hitting shelves—or making it into your hands! April 5th is launch day. I've been waiting a full year for you to be able to use the tools compiled within its pages (seriously, I remember writing the text on sunny spring days just like this one last year!).

Because this book is quite different from Eat Pretty, but very much complementary, I wanted to answer a few FAQs that I thought you might have. To preorder the journal so it lands on your doorstep on April 5, you can visit Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com.

What's a 'guided journal?'

Eat Pretty, Live Well is a compilation of essential beauty nutrition info, new strategies, trackers, self-assessments, and time-tested tools that I use one-on-one with my clients—all with a focus on food and mindfulness for beauty and health. It's a companion to Eat Pretty that also stands on its own as an interactive book to help jumpstart a new lifestyle, set, track, and meet beauty goals, or reset when you're feeling out of balance.  Reading and writing in it helps you tune into your body, track habits and foods, and build more moments of beauty into your everyday life.

What can I use it for?

I'll let this little excerpt from the journal intro give you some ideas...

What will I be writing about in the journal?

You'll be able to pick and choose which pages are most helpful to you, or follow the journal from page 1 to page 156. Some tools you may want to start with: the Beauty Profile and the Food Relationship and Self-Love Q&As, or the Seasonal Challenge pages for the current season you're in. The latter portion of the book provides Daily Food Diary pages that help you record daily intentions, check off nutrition and self-care musts for beauty, and record your meals and the way they make you feel. You can use these pages daily, or return to them whenever you need a reset.

Do I have to own, or have read, Eat Pretty in order to use Eat Pretty, Live Well?

Definitely not, although if you have read Eat Pretty, you'll see right away just how the two books work together. Eat Pretty, Live Well puts the info in Eat Pretty into practice, and it builds on it, with new information, action plans, grocery lists, and visuals (like the Eat Pretty Plate illustration, below). Whether or not you've read Eat Pretty, you can pick up the journal and explore the concept of beauty nutrition with tools that can be used to jumpstart beautifying habits immediately.

I can't wait to see all of the ways you use this journal in your beautiful life! For even more info, visit my Eat Pretty, Live Well page. If you have more questions, please leave them in the comments and I'll be sure to address them.

Thank you for your support and, above all, your constant inspiration!

In beauty and health,

Jolene