I went for a walk with my dog to an isolated part of the coast this week and found seaweed-covered steps leading to the beach. I had a flash of spa-inspired genius and, as there was no-one else around, wondered if I could have a mini-treatment right there...
The seaweed was like a green velvet throw. So, after carefully checking again (definitely no-one around!), I whipped off my dress and stretched out on the steps*. I gave myself about ten minutes either side and then rinsed off the fronds of greeny seaweed with sea water and was delighted to be rewarded with seriously silky skin.
Inspired by this, I wondered whether it would be possible to create the same effect in the privacy of your own bathroom. So, here's a couple of options for fellow wannabe-mermaids.
Thalgo, a Good Spa Guide favourite, harvest their algae off the coast of Brittany, and say that as we all "...originally lived in the sea, we have a natural affinity with it. Therefore the sea's nutrients and minerals are particularly good for us." Thalgo have some excellent in-spa treatments, particularly wraps, but for the spa-at-home option, try the Deep Sea Scrub, which is made with volcanic sand and algae. Satisfyingly creamy and just scrubby enough, this scrub smells of the ocean mixed with citrus-y tones. Great for mornings.
[ comfort zone ] have some brilliant bath cubes which are made from atomised sea-water with a high mineral content. Pop these in the bath and the little cube packs a powerful fizz! Inner-C turned the water azure blue, made my bathroom smell like a salty sea-breeze and made my skin feel soft, too. Ideal for keeping that holiday feeling going.
ESPA, another Good Spa Guide favourite, have a legendary detoxifying Seaweed Bath designed to "rebalance, replenish, smooth and firm your skin" packed with laminaria digitata (devil's apron) from France. The product produces not an awfully exciting bath: you just swish in a couple of capfuls of murky liquid, but it will give good results and you should at least feel smooth and firm, if not rebalanced and replenished.
Voya, who harvest their seaweed from the Irish coast, have one of the most authentic seaweed-at-home products. Lazy Days is made purely from hand-cut, organic Irish seaweed and sea salt. Just pop into a bath and let the seaweed rehydrate and release its soothing properties! I loved this seaweed! My boyfriend was appalled. Yes, it IS a bit strange, but I rather loved sploshing around in an authentically seaweed-y tub! Best of all, you can re-use it a couple of times.
Feeling inspired? Learn more about marvellous marine treatments. Or visit the Scarlet Spa for an authentic outdoor seaweed hot-tub experience overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
* In case you were wondering... Yes, seaweed washes out of your bra.
7th March 2014
Instant results; jasmine and frangipani scents; hot steam rooms; a good selection of magazines; modernist decor.
Whale noises (on CD, not in the pool hopefully); hard massage beds; tiny toilet cubicles; being spoken to like a child; lukewarm pools.
Behind the scenes