Welcome | Body | Face | Feet | Hands | About us | Your letters | Shopping
Spa Wisdom - Express | Bajik Spa - Long | Bajik Spa - Express | Simple shower scrub
Web www.binaryspa.com

This is quite a complicated spa treatment - we've simplified it down to four distinct stages, allowing you to do this spa treatment at home. The Bajik Spa line is inspired by the ritualised treatments you would find in a high-end Thai spa, which can easily last many hours. You can do our four stages in about an hour without feeling rushed - any less, you would really lose the experience, but any more time you can spend is no problem! If you don't have time, try the express version. With this treatment, you need a warm room, plenty of hot water, lots of soft towels, time, a willing helper and gentle music.

This treatment is one of the more costly treatments - the initial outlay will be about $80 but you will easily get 8 or more treatments out of this. However, its certainly wasted on younger children - the scents are subtle, and the clay mask contains actual leaves, which get into the "yucky" category, not to mention the time involved. Older kids might like this one more, but we really think this belongs in the adults only category.

What you will need

The Bajik Spa line is from The Body Shop, so you can get all you need either at their physical store, or online. In the future, we will be covering Body Shop parties which are a great way to get cheaper supplies. The Bajik Spa line has a number of different items including a massage oil, which would be great in a spa treatment, but we've simplified it down to four that give you the full Thai experience without the expense (or all that pesky travel).

Tropical flower bath

Subtle flowery scents from the hibiscus and passionflower make this the ideal start

Crushed rice and sugar scrub

This is basically a neutral version of the scrubs we feature in our simple shower scrub. It contains coconut, kukui and mango seed oil, and feels really good on the skin. Its a little rougher than the Body Shop's other scrubs so go gentle with this.

Clay and herb body mud

For us, this is the heart of this treatment: it just works incredibly well. Don't rush this part

Rich body cream

The Body Shop describes this one as the "secrets of the Balinese" and its a great description. It looks like your regular body cream, but it goes one so smoothly, and leaves the skin incredibly soft.

How to do it

This is a four part treatment, but you will spend most time in parts 1 and 3. The first part is a soak in the tub with the Tropical Flower Bath. There's not much we can tell you about this stage - its just a bath, right? Well, the aroma is something different for a start, and you don't want to ruin it with soap, or regular cleanser. Just lie back and enjoy this one. We've found the longer you soak, the better the next stages are - 30 minutes is a good time. On the bottle, it suggest 2 to 3 capfuls. We say 3 definitely, and add another one after about 10 minutes. Another good thing about this flower bath is if you have a jetted tub, you can have the jets on full power without it foaming up everywhere.

The next stage is the Rice and Sugar Scrub. As with all these scrubs, you are literally scrubbing the dead skin off your body, so all the better if you can get someone else to do all the work. Besides, how else would you reach that bit at the back? Hands work best here - a good trick is to use very little scrub at a time, but as it dries out, go back over that area with a little more fresh scrub and maybe a splash of water. This will loosen the dried part and there's no waste. You can do this in the bath easily, as you don't need to leave it on. After a good scrub, wash off all the scrub. At this stage, your skin will feel a little waxy from the scrub, and water will bead up on your skin. Its the oils in the scrub that cause this, and the moisture you add later on from the cream counteracts this. After a couple of minutes in the tub, jump out, but don't get dry just yet.

Stage three is the heart of this spa - the clay and herb body mud. Now you really will need some one else to do this. Have them smooth on generous amounts of the mud - there's no scrubbing or rubbing needed here, its just a matter of getting an even covering of the mud. The mud will go transparent when it mixes with the water on your body. Lie on a towel - it inevitable that you'll have a mucky towel or two at the end of this treatment - accept it and move one. Once you're covered on both sides, pop another towel on top of you to stop it drying out too quickly and lie back. You can really leave this mud on for quite a while - we've done 5, 10, 20 and 30 minutes. There's no real difference between 5 and 10 - the mud washes off easily and your skin feels great. But 20 minutes is the sweet spot for us - 30 minutes, it was getting awkward to get the mud off, and we were beginning to feel a little itchy as the mud dried. Since you are going to be lying around for a while, its a great time to do a clay based face mask too.

Once the mud has been on for the appropriate time, its back in the bath to get it all off! The basil leaves in the mud will leave the water looking pretty unappealing after this - this is one occasion where you don't want to share the bath water. The trick at this stage is to let the water soften the mud before trying to get it off - 2 minutes should loosen even the driest and most stubborn mud patch. Once its all off, jump out, pull the plug on the bath and get dry again, ready for the final stage.

The final stage is the rich body cream, which you just generously have slathered on. There's something that's just 'right' about this cream for this particular treatment. Its rather like the scrub - it doesn't really have a strong or defined aroma - they both seem quite neutral, though you can detect tropical fruits and a slight vanilla note in the cream. The Body Shop must be right when they say this one contains the secrets of the Balinese! We've had most success with the Mango body butter, but you might as well go the whole hog and get the Bajik spa cream. Give yourself five minutes or so on a clean towel, and you will be all set.

It's a complicated and relatively expensive treatment, but we think its well worth it. You wouldn't get through the door of a day spa for what you actually end up paying - we reckon you can easily get 8 treatments for the initial outlay of $80. The mud gets used up first, as you do end up using quite a bit of this. But since you buy each item seperately, there's no problem replenishing just the item you use most of.

The Body Shop Semi-Annual Sale