Is there anything more relaxing than a nice, long, hot shower? Nope! As much as I love baths, they do involve a lot of prep work – filling the tub, picking a bath bomb/bath salt, pouring a glass of wine (very important to the process!), finding a good magazine to read while soaking… But with a shower, you just hop in and enjoy. And lately, due to my recent gym activity, I've been showering even more than usual, so it's even more important that I find products to help me unwind and shake off the day when I finally step under that heavy spray. Here are some product pairs that are making me very happy right now.
After running a few miles, there is nothing that makes my body happier than Bliss' Super Minty Soap 'n Scrub. Its super, super minty scent is genius for after a workout, but it also wakes me up immediately when I use it on my sleepy self in the morning. The formula is packed with jojoba beads that cool and exfoliate when you use it on your body and it has both peppermint oil and menthol in it, hence the super minty fragrance that stays with you long after hopping out of the shower. As clean as I feel when I use a good shower gel, an exfoliator just helps take it that extra step and gets rid of all your dry skin, leaving your body ready for a great lotion. My moisturizer of choice at the moment is St. Ives' Naturally Soothing Oatmeal & Shea Butter Body Lotion. There's so many things to love about this one. It has a light, fresh scent, its texture is thick, but not too thick, it's highly moisturizing, but not greasy at all, and best of all, you can find it at any drugstore for between $5-$7 for a generous 21 ounce size. It's a total bargain! (And just think – if you save money here, you can buy even more tubes of the Super Minty Soap 'n Scrub to pair it with!)
Nine times out of ten, if you asked me whether I would prefer a bar soap or a shower gel, I would say shower gel, but Fresh's SugarBath Lemon Soap is a big exception for me. I just can't get enough of it. The scent is amazing, a mixture of lemon and bergamot infused with a sweet hint of sugar, and for a bar soap, it doesn't dry out my skin at all. (My main problem with bar cleansers is that they inevitably leave my skin feeling tight, but not this one). It has shea butter, vitamin E and real brown sugar in it to make it extra gentle on your skin and it pairs perfectly with their fragrance in the same scent, which I've been wearing for years. (Layering is a great tool to make your scents last longer). Because it's so moisturizing, I've been pairing this with Neutrogena's Body Clear Body Spray. When I first started running again, I noticed that I was breaking out a little on my body on areas that were getting sweaty at the gym (thanks, workout!) Since this had never really happened to me before, I chanced trying this spray from Neutrogena, which is basically a toner for your body. I use it once a day and spray it on the areas I want to make sure stay clear and almost like magic, they do. Plus, it has this really cool nozzle on it that lets you easily reach anywhere on your body, so that's a huge bonus. It's definitely drying though, so make sure to pair it with a lotion afterwards or you'll definitely regret it once your skin starts flaking off!
If you do inadvertently dry your skin out (or you just live in a part of the country where winter does it naturally for you) and need a body butter even more nurturing than just your regular, run of the mill lotion, my latest obsession is Josie Maran's Whipped Argan Oil Ultra-Hydrating Body Butter. It's a long name, but learning it is definitely worth it. Argan Oil is my new favorite "discovery" (I put that in quotes because apparently, I'm way late to this party). It's one of the most hydrating butters I've ever used. It's meant for your body, but my hands are really dry lately, so I've also been using it on them and it's made a fabulous difference. Since I live in Los Angeles, it never gets so cold that my entire body dries out, but if it did, this is the moisturizer I would turn to. (It's also great to use on any areas you've used the Body Clear Body Spray on to ensure that you won't dry those spots out).
Okay, now that you have some great products to test out, hop in the shower and get to it!