In preparation for a big event, I always love to perform a tailored, at- home beauty routine. Although it is done in the casual comfort of my own home, it always feels as luxurious as it would if I did hit up a fancy spa. There are also many advantages to the at-home fun. Price is no comparison. We all know that a day at the spa is never enjoyed without breaking the bank. I can personally never justify spending all that hard earned dough on half ass treatments. Another huge difference is the ingredients we come into contact with. At home, we hold the reigns when it comes to what we put on our skin, and in our mouths. Treatments done elsewhere usually contain the harshest of chemicals and in the end is detrimental to our health as opposed to beneficial. The cherry on top is the level of comfort that we experience. There is no place like home. Spa days within our own walls can be done in those hideous and ratty pyjamas or hell, even naked if we really want.
The following all-natural routine is the secret to my flat as can be stomach, glowing complexion, blemish-free face, and bright smile for special occasions. Before weddings, presentations, holiday parties, birthdays, and vacations are a few examples of when I take the time to show myself a little extra love. I always both look and feel as fabulous as can be.
A couple of these organic treatments are meant to be performed the day before the event and some the morning of, if possible. Should the day of the event leave you absolutely no time to pamper yourself-do it all at a relaxing pace all the day prior.
Dry Brush or Body Scrub
If you have a dry brush, definitely take advantage of its benefits at this time. Dry brushing is great for our physical appearance as it is exfoliating and reduces the appearance of cellulite. Other several added benefits to dry brushing are that it helps increase circulation, relieves stress, encourages ideal digestion, and leaves us feeling uplifted and energetic.
Should you not own a dry brush, go the body scrub route. Don’t have a scrub at home? No worries, there are tons of easy scrubs you can prepare within seconds with the simplest of ingredients.
Basic Scrub Recipe
- 2 cups of salt (Himalayan or Epsom) or sugar (organic cane, coconut palm, brown, or regular granulated)
- ¾ cup-1 cup carrier oil (coconut, extra virgin olive oil, grape seed, almond, jojoba)
- Optional: your favourite essential oil
Mix the salt or sugar in a bowl with small amounts of your chosen carrier oil. Stir and stop adding oil once you have achieved a smooth mixture. Add a few drops of essential oil, if using. You can store any leftovers in a glass jar to use at another time.
Once your scrub is made, grab a generous handful and start massaging it upwards against dry skin. Start at your feet and work your way up to your head. Be gentle and extra cautious when it comes to your face.
When to perform: this depends on whether or not your legs need to be shaved. Ideally, you want to dry brush or use a scrub before shaving your legs to avoid skin irritation. I tend to perform this treatment the day before the event and save the shaving for the following morning. If you must cram everything in one day, brush or scrub away in the morning and shave later on that same evening.
Years ago, I learned that if we apply a face mask the day before a special occasion, our make-up goes on better and stays on longer. The mask creates a clean canvas for some hard-core facial artistry. Masks tend to diminish and rid of any blemishes and acne prone areas while providing a rejuvenated and moisturized glow. My simple go-to mask is one I just created this past fall with three simple ingredients. I can’t get over the excellent condition in which it leaves my skin.
Pumpkin Oatmeal Face Mask
- 2 Tbsp. organic canned or fresh pumpkin puree
- 1.5 Tbsp. ground oats
- 1 Tsp. Raw honey
Mix all the ingredients together thoroughly and spread the thick mixture on your face using the back of a small spoon. Pack it down if needed. Leave the mask on for 15 minutes and using the curve of your spoon, scrape the mask off gently. Discard the mixture. Using a facecloth, wipe away any remaining residue.
When to perform: As I mentioned, for the sake of the make-up-face masks are best done the day before getting all glitz and glammed up.
Sipping on a fresh pressed green juice is not something that comes to mind when we think of a spa day now is it? Let me explain why this is part of my routine. Juices are the best way to get a surge of essential, health building nutrients into our cells. The immediate boost to the immune system not only makes us healthier on the inside but it also makes us glow on the outside. Green juices fight illness and support detoxification by supporting digestion. Emptying our intestines in a gentle and natural fashion before a big day can make us feel like dancing more than you could ever imagine. My most favourite green juice is my Bloat Antidote recipe.
Bloat Antidote Green Juice
- 4 kale leaves
- 1 cucumber (peeled if not organic)
- Half of a small pineapple (I have used 2 apples here interchangeably)
- 3 large celery stalks
- 10 mint leaves
- 1 thumb sized piece of ginger root
- Half of a lemon
Run all ingredients through your juicer and enjoy right away or store in a glass mason jar in the fridge for up to 3 days.
When to drink: One juice the day before and one on the morning of would be ideal. If only one juice will be consumed, I would recommend it be the day before as it gives you the opportunity to fully detoxify.
I am not going to lie, ever since I switched to all-natural toothpaste, my teeth have not been as white and bright. The sacrifice is worth it as I rest better knowing that I am using a gentle, organic and cruelty free paste that is overall better for my health. However, as a girl who loves her fruit, berry filled smoothies, and of course, coffee-I definitely need to perform this treatment every so often.
- Baking soda
- Apple cider vinegar
First, I place my regular amount of toothpaste on my brush. I then, dip the toothpaste in a small bowl of baking soda and proceed to brushing my teeth. As a top up after brushing, I run additional baking soda along my teeth and rub it in with my finger for a couple of minutes. I then, take a swig of apple cider vinegar and swish it all around in my mouth and discard the explosion into the sink. As we learned in grade school, baking soda and vinegar react aggressively. You need only a tiny amount of vinegar here. It is a strong sensation but it is worth it.
When to perform: I do find that it is temporary so I tend to take the extra time the morning of a big day so my smile stays on point when it matters most.
We have been told time and time again that water is crucial for our health. The amount of water we drink also holds responsibility for the condition of our skin. Lemon water is hella hydrating, detoxifying, energizing, and cleansing among many other benefits. I start off every morning with a glass of warm water with the juice of half of a lemon. Warm or room temperature water is ideal for helping to kick start digestion and helps us to better digest our food at mealtimes as well. If you cannot sip on anything but ice cold water, go for it. After all, any water is better than none at all. You can also try cucumber water or water infused with fresh mint and berries for other spa like beverages.
- 1 gallon pitcher or mason jar
- 1 lemon
Fill the pitcher up with water and squeeze the lemon juice out from a whole lemon. For visual appeal, slice up the lemon and add the wedges as well. Keep stored either at room temperature or in your fridge to enjoy throughout the day.
When to drink: All day, every day. Water is life and around special events we need it more than ever. Stay hydrated and remember to keep up with your intake between all of those specialty (and usually dehydrating) beverages.
And there you have it. My 5 essentials of prepping for an important event. Of course, other enjoyable aspects can also be incorporated but these are my main must-do’s. I love choosing a great playlist to listen to as I go through my spa day. Should time allow, I also aim to paint the nails, try a new eye shadow application, and fit in a quick workout.
Self-pampering goes way beyond how you look and feel for one special day. It forces us to slow down, take care of ourselves, and re-charge our batteries. It is time where we focus on our health, both inside and outside. We need to treat our goddess selves more often and what better way to do just that. This routine will leave you feeling like a million bucks (and all without spending a dime).