Commercial Break Beauty
Have A Mini Spa Moment While You Watch TV
Any time we can do two of our favorite things simultaneously — like watch television and pamper ourselves — we're very happy. These little at-home spa treatments fit perfectly into the commercial breaks of a one-hour show. —Glo
By Petra Guglielmetti for Woman's Day
Ordinarily, we'd never dream of getting between you and your beloved DVR, but here's one reason to put it on pause for a night: You can treat yourself to a mini–spa day in the span of your favorite one-hour TV show. Simply follow our step-by-step plan during the commercial breaks (which, believe it or not, tally up to nearly 25 minutes) and you'll be feeling much more Zen — and likely glowing — by the time the credits roll.
Right Before the Show Starts
To make your couch area a bit more spa-like, light a candle in a scent that's soothing and refreshing, like Banana Republic's spicy, citrus-scented Golden Orchard Candle, $24, or the new soy Lemon Verbena Candle from Mrs. Meyer's, $10. Next, put a small saucepan of water on the stove to boil and get out a large glass bowl, a small bowl and a few clean towels.
Commercial Break 1
Turn the burner off and carefully pour the boiling water into the large bowl so you can use it to steam your face (and while you're at it, fill your smaller bowl about halfway, too). “This way, the steam will rise over a large area and be able to come into contact with the entire face,” says Elena Arboleda, head aesthetician for Mario Badescu Skin Care Salon in New York City. Hold your face about 12 inches from the steam for five minutes. While your face is still damp, apply a Bioré Ultra Deep Cleansing Pore Strips, $8, to your nose — it's still one of the best ways to unclog and minimize those problematic pores. As your show comes back on, bring your large and small bowls of water over to the couch with you. Place the bigger one on a towel on the floor and dunk your feet in (but first make sure the temperature is comfortable; you can cool it a bit with ice cubes if you want). The smaller one is for soaking your fingertips; keep soaking your hands and feet until the next commercial.
Commercial Break 2
Remove your hands and feet from the water and pat dry. Push back dead cuticles, using the towel for gentle pressure. Then massage in a rich cream, focusing on dry nail edges, and hand and foot calluses. Try H&M's new organic Raspberry & Melon Lotion, $5, which contains sunflower oil and apple juice for deep hydration. To really get a spa-like experience, pull on a pair of heat-activated gloves or socks, which help moisturizer penetrate the skin much more deeply and are the next best thing to a massage. Try Earth Therapeutics Moisturizing Hand Gloves, $8, or Aloe Socks, $8. Leave them on until the next commercial break.
Commercial Break 3
Remove the gloves, if you used them, and take off your nose strip. Rinse your face clean and apply your favorite face mask. A great mask for brightening up a dull, tired complexion is Mario Badescu's Enzyme Revitalizing Mask, $20, which contains exfoliating alpha-hydroxy acids derived from papaya and grapefruit. (For a DIY option, you could whip up an all-natural mask in the kitchen using the recipe at the end of this article, provided by the lead aesthetician at Bliss Hollywood.) Once you're cozily back on the couch, swipe your nails with astringent or rubbing alcohol to remove any lotion residue; then paint them with clear polish and let dry until the next commercial.
Commercial Break 4
Use a soft, natural-bristled bath brush, like the Bamboo Bristle Bath Brush from EcoTools, $6, to gently massage the skin on your body in a circular motion, concentrating on very dry zones like your calves, forearms and elbows. This technique, called “dry brushing,” is often used in spas to efficiently remove dead, dull skin flakes and boost circulation. “Dry brushing is also believed to aid in detoxification and boost immune function,” Arboleda adds. After, massage your skin with some scented body moisturizer and let it soak in. Sit back and relax until the next commercial.
Commercial Break 5
Rinse off your face mask and apply an overnight moisturizer. Then treat your tresses to similar nighttime nourishment, working in a hair treatment such as Redken's Real Control Overnight Treat Hair Recovery Treatment, $13. When you wash it out with your morning shower, your hair will be smoother, shinier and more manageable.
A Quick Mix-It-Yourself Face Mask
This face mask uses two common kitchen ingredients and is beneficial for all skin types, says Kenneth, the lead aesthetician at Bliss Hollywood. “The enzymes and minerals in bananas exfoliate and ‘feed' the skin; the natural fat in whole milk hydrates,” he adds. What you need:
1. 1 large ripe banana (or a cooked sweet potato)
2. 1 Tbsp whole milk (oily skin types can skip this)
3. A food processor or small blender
Gently blend the ingredients to a thickness similar to molasses, being careful not to over blend. Apply the mask to your skin and leave it on for up to 15 minutes; then rinse. Feel free to eat any leftovers!
What are your favorite ways to pamper yourself at home? Tell us here.
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