The Beauty Benefits of Bathing in Tea [in Australia]

Bathing in Tea

Have you ever loved a food or drink so much that you wish you could bathe in it?

I’m a huge fan of tea: the immune boost, the antioxidants, the warm fuzzy feeling of a hot mug on a cold night. I think my ultimate evening consists of curling up on the couch with a cup of tea and a box of cookies for dunking. In short, I truly do love tea so much that I could bathe in it… and last year, I did.

The time: early spring. The location: Lennox Head, Australia. I had the amazing opportunity to visit my sister at her work abroad location there and her camp was located just steps away from Lake Ainsworth, a freshwater lake made entirely out of tea.

Surrounded by tea trees, Lake Ainsworth’s waters absorb tannins from surrounding tree roots and fallen tea leaves, transforming the waters into a deep, dark brew. The locals believe that the water has healing properties and that a quick swim can do wonders for the skin. Personally, though my skin did feel a bit softer that day, it’s my mind that has never felt more at peace than while floating in a bath of tea.

Want to try it yourself?

If you can’t make the trip Down Under, don’t worry, just run yourself a hot bath, drop in several tea bags, lay back, and relax.

Feeling crafty?

You can also create your own concoction with loose tea leaves and dried flowers. Once it’s ready, wrap your personalized mixture in muslin or cheesecloth (or pantyhose — thanks, Wendy!) and you‘re ready for a long, relaxing steep.

Other Drinks to Soak In

  • Sake: A Geisha secret, pouring a cup full of sake into your tub is said to soften your skin and speed up your metabolism.
  • Milk and Honey: Milk dissolved dead skin cells to make your skin baby soft, while honey has antibacterial properties to help heal wounds. It worked wonders for Cleopatra, so why not you?
  • Red Wine: Teri Hatcher of Desperate Housewives breaks out the vino for her bath to make her skin lush and glowing…just don‘t use too much or you might stain your tub!

Sensational Seaweed and Beauty Recipes

Seaweed is one of the healthiest things out there and it can do wonders for your hair, skin, nails and body. You can often find seaweed in the exotic food section of your grocery store or seaweed products (ie. Kelp, dulse, nori, sea lettuce) at a health food store/online. The following are great DIY beauty recipes that you can prepare and use in the comfort of your own home.

seaweed

Seaweed Detox Wrap

This recipe cleanses your body of all unnecessary that build up by simply walking around. It also relieves stress, slims and is a lovely treat after a long day at work. Here’s what you need:

8 ounces powdered seaweed (kelp is easiest to find)
1 cup hot warm water
2 plastic sheets (saran wrap works well).

Before you begin, prepare your bathroom for the wrap treatment. I like to lay a blanket down in the bathtub, light a few candles and let hot water run for a while to get that steamy effect (if you run water in the bathtub, lay the blankets down afterward obviously). I’ve also heard of people putting space heaters in the bathroom to keep it warm.

Next, set your plastic sheets out (or sarah wrap) so that it’s ready to go. To prepare the seaweed past, simply pore the powdered seaweed of choice into a medium sized bowl. Next, add a little bit of a water at a time and stir. Do this until you have reached a consistency that is not too thick but still applicable and will stick to your skin.

Apply the mixture to different areas of your body, such as your stomach, arms, legs, feet. Wrap with the plastic sheet or saran wrap and sit in the bathtub under a second blanket. Listen to soothing music or sip on tea for 20 minutes. Next, remove the plastic wrap and soak in the bathtub for 10 minutes or so and rinse all the residue away. Apply lotion as desired and relax for a little while longer.

Lavender and Seaweed Bath Tea

I love this recipe because you can make it in bulk and it serves as the perfect gift. Here’s what you need:

Tea bags (or tea filters)
1/2 cup dried seaweed (kelp, seaweed flakes, nori)
1 cup dried lavender

Once you’ve gathered the ingredients, mix the seaweed and lavender until you have an even mixture. Next, divide the mixture up into the tea bags and tie (you may need to purchase string depending on the types of tea bags you purchase). Draw yourself a warm bath, light some candles and drop 2 tea bags into the water. After letting it steep for 5 minutes, hop in and enjoy!

Note: If you can’t find teabags in the tea section or your local craft store, try using pantyhose.