How To Create A Sunday Spa Day

Making a trip to the spa is a great treat, but most of us can’t afford to splurge once a week. I’ve recently started giving myself spa days and they’re the greatest in the world. I chose Sundays because they’re the quietest in my house. You can select any day that works for you, but have one. Putting together a spa day isn’t as hard as you think. All you need are a few things you can find in your local drugstore.

Spa Day Set

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I’ve dreamed of spending a day at a real spa. I had a chance when I scheduled a facial and a massage in the same day. Turns out, for all the money that I spent, it wasn’t worth the trouble. It could have been that I had bad people working on me, but I actually had a headache when I left the spa because there was so much going on. How can someone relax with so many people on top of them all the time?

So I’ve started doing my own spa days since the beginning of fall and they’ve been going well for me.

Preparation:

Before your special day:

1. Choose a day that’s quiet and relaxing for you. If you have the house to yourself, great! If you can’t swing it, choose a room that’s all yours for a few hours. Usually, this would be the bathroom or your bedroom. If’s there’s another room where you can find your “zen”, have at it.
2. Drink lots of water. You should be doing this anyway, but make sure you’re hydrated for your special day. Make your own flavored water. Add cucumber, mint, and strawberries (a suggestion, make it to your taste) to a pitcher of ice water and refrigerate it overnight so it’ll be ready for you.

Before You Start:

3. Choose some music that’s relaxing for you. For me, it’s smooth jazz. For someone else, it may be classical. A third person may want Kid Rock. Whatever makes you feel good, put it on. And put it on at a volume you want.
4. Get cucumber slices for your eyes if you have swelling. You can also use tea bags. Soak them in boiled water for a few minutes, then cool in the refrigerator. Chamomile is good for redness and puffiness.
5. Light some scented candles.

What To Do The Day Of:

6. You have two options here:
a. Draw yourself a hot bath with some bath salts with a scented blend. I like Avon’s Perfectly Purifying with Dead Sea Minerals Bath Salts from their Planet Spa line. Buy it here. You can create your own bath blend. Try using Organix Coconut Milk Body Wash mixed with rosewater. Take your time and soak.
b. If you don’t have a bathtub, take a steamy shower. To jazz it up from your everyday morning shower, tie some Eucalyptus branches from your showerhead. You can find these in craft stores like Jo-ann Fabric and Craft or Michaels. Once the shower heats up you’ll have your own steam room. Make a body scrub (better for the shower due to messiness) out of simple ingredients. They work best on dry skin and rinsed off in the shower.
7. Apply a face mask. You can make your own, or try one from the store. I like the Avon Planet Spa Pampering Chocolate Face Mask. If you’re looking for something fruity, try one of the Montagne Jeunesse masks, find them in your drugstore and they’re affordable. Relax and leave on for up to 10-15 minutes. Apply your cucumber or tea bags to your eyes. Wash it off with some hot towels.

Spa Products

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8. Shampoo, condition and apply your hair mask. You can choose a treatment of your choice or mix your own. Leave it on for up to 30 minutes.
9. Rinse off. Do a quick rinse off in the shower.
10. Heat your favorite scented lotion. Nuke it in the microwave for up to 30 seconds. Apply it while your skin is still damp.

You’ve got a good afternoon here. If you can, take a nap for the ultimate relaxation experience (you can’t do that in a spa). Read magazines, listen to music, watch TV. The day is all about you. For more ideas and DIY face and hair mask recipes, follow my Beauty Board on Pinterest.

 

What’s A Gel Manicure?

I’ve been seeing gel polish manicures for a while now. I’ve always been curious about them. They’ve transitioned from the nail salons into drugstores with gel nail polish. For those who are nail challenged, what’s the difference between a gel manicure and a regular manicure?

I’ll admit, I’m not too big on investing in manicures. I keep my nails cut short and shine them with a nail buffer. I used to wear acrylics in high school, but I’m such a perfectionist. Every time I found the slightest chip, my entire manicure had to be changed. I just didn’t have the time to keep up. And I wasn’t enough of a girly girl to invest in a base and top coat.

What A Gel Manicure Is, and What It Isn’t

There may be some misinformation about gel manicures. Just because something is more, doesn’t always mean it’s better. I did a little research to get some more information.

What A Gel Manicure Is:

A blended manicure method to blend acrylic nails with natural ones
A manicure that does not need touch-ups, and can be safe on your nails if removed properly
A manicure that has a look that is more natural than acrylics

What A Gel Manicure Is Not:

A gel manicure is not the same as acrylic nails
A gel manicure is not exactly easier to manage than acrylics.
It is not a manicure that can only be done at the salon. Like acrylics, you can give yourself gel nails, but you have to do it correctly.

Gel Polish 2

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Who Is A Gel Manicure For

Gel manicures have their drawbacks. They take patience but improper removal will damage your nails. While it’s best to get your gel manicure removed at a salon, you can do it at home if you have the right materials. You can use 100% acetone, but it’s best if you get a nail polish remover specifically for gel nails.

While gel nails have a faster curing process than acrylics, you need a UV light for curing gel nails. If you break a gel nail, you’ll almost always have to get it fixed at a salon. If you have the patience to give your gel nails the attention they deserve, a gel manicure may be right for you.

Gel Polish

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Some More Details

For best results, you should get a gel manicure at a salon. There are at home kits available, and they work pretty well, but you’ll get a most natural look if they’re done professionally.

The cost for a gel manicure usually starts around $25, but they can go much higher depending on where you go. Depending on your lifestyle and body chemistry, they can last you up to three weeks.

If you choose to get them done professionally, it’s best not to go too often. UV light exposure can become bad for your health. There’s no definite answer to the damage it causes, but there may be a chance it could raise your risk for cancer. Again, there’s no definite answer, but be cautious.

UV lighting is guilty for premature aging. If it’s overused, you could develop dark spots on the back of your hands and premature wrinkles on your hands. It’s similar to visiting the tanning salon too often, which also isn’t a good idea.

Also, give your nail beds a chance to breathe before getting another gel manicure. The heavy gel polish puts a lot of pressure on the skin around your nails. Giving them a break will allow your nail beds to refresh.

The Final Word

I’m not saying you should or you shouldn’t get a gel manicure. Everyone is different and knows what’s right for them. If you’re a low-maintenance girl like me, maybe a gel manicure isn’t for you. While they can last up to three weeks, you’re in trouble if one breaks because they aren’t as easily fixed as acrylics.

If you have a special occasion coming up or you’re going on a trip and want to look extra nice, look into them. They’re a nice way to jazz up your natural nails for a while. Make sure you do your research so you’ll be able to give your gel manicure the care it needs, without bringing permanent damage to your nails and cuticles.

To make things easy, give gel manicures a test go by trying one of Avon’s Gel polishes. I recommend the Gel Finish 7-in-1 Nail Enamel. This polish includes a base, gel-like finish, and top coat all in one bottle.

Shop for that and more at http://www.youravon.com/allynryce.