How to create an at-home spa

Eight ways to turn your bedroom or bathroom into a blissful sanctuary

1 Light a scented candle

The entrance of a spa always smells delicious – not overwhelming (if they've done it correctly) but just enough scent in the air to trigger a feeling of calm. 

At home, lighting a candle (or spritzing a room spray) is the quickest way to help you slip into a more serene state of mind. Pick one from a brand with roots in aromatherapy, and you’re sure to find success. If you’re feeling emotional, opt for centering notes of cedarwood or sandalwood to help restore balance. 

2. Set the mood with music 

Background music is important. Silence can invite your brain to fill itself with cluttered thoughts – but you don't want anything too overpowering. Finding the perfect spa playlist needn’t be laborious, however: simply head to Spotifyor Youtube, where you’ll find plenty of ready-made lists to tune out to.

3. Quieten your mind

To keep the room you're in as peaceful as possible, it's best to begin unwinding with a herbal tea – or even glass of fizz – in a different room before you start. Sit for half an hour, or however long you feel you need, without your phone and just begin to release and relax. You could even give a meditation app (we love Headspace) a go. Once you feel calmer, enter your designated spa area.

4. Upgrade your bath

Of course, all good at-home spa sessions should involve a long, hot soak – whether you choose to dive into a good book or simply lie still and submerged for a while.

When it comes to taking your bath from everyday to exceptional, options abound. Epsom-based bath salts, rich in magnesium, are ideal for treating sore muscles and setting you up for a great night’s sleep, while a fragrant bubble bath offers both pampering appeal and calming benefits. For skin that feels softer and more supple after your soak, choose a luxurious bath oil, and for rough heels and scaly elbows, a body scrub. Don’t have a bath? You needn’t miss out. Try placing a few drops of essential oil into the base of your shower cubicle before you step in: the steam will send the aroma into the air.

5. Indulge in a facial

A proper at-home facial will likely form the centrepiece of your spa session, and today’s best skincare treats offer pampering and performance in one. 

A fragrant balm cleanser will melt away stresses as well as it will oil and grime, while a gentle exfoliator will ensure your skin is squeaky-clean and prepped for the main event: your face mask

For dry skin, opt for a creamy face mask rich in hydrating extracts, be it classic shea butter, natural plant oils or moisture-magnet hyaluronic acid.

6. Master facial massage 

If you’re looking to tackle a specific skin concern, it might be time to explore the wealth of at-home facial tools and skin-tech gadgets currently lining the (virtual) shelves. A jade roller feels heavenly when rolled over your face oil of choice. For serious facialist points, invest in an LED-powered face device. Previously only available in salons, these clever tools use shades of light – red light to increase collagen production, blue to kill bacteria – to tackle specific concerns. They're undoubtedly an investment, but the results really are remarkable.

7. Treat your hair

It's safe to say we're all dreaming of the day we'll be reunited with our hairdressers right now. While we can't cover those roots or trim those splitting ends (please, step away from the kitchen scissors), a deep-conditioning mask will make your hair feel in top condition until the salon doors finally reopen. Slather it on while you’re waiting for your face mask to work, or leave it to sink in overnight for maximum swish the next morning.

8. Moisturise properly

Finally, all good spa sessions should end with phenomenally soft and hydrated skin.