Information & Advice
As the nights get colder and we start the move into winter, there's definitely nothing like some at-home pampering to give you a boost. We've got all the expert tips here to help you really treat yourself from top to toe without the salon price tag.
Whether you're prone to over-styling your tresses or just want to inject a bit of life back into your locks, there's nothing better than indulging in a pampering hair mask. Matthew Curtis, TRESemmé lead stylist, believes using an intensive mask a few times a week will help replenish nutrients and moisture lost through the use of heated appliances, brushing and external factors like UV rays. "Intensive masks can help your hair get the nourishment and care it needs, giving you that salon feeling at home," says Matthew.
To get the most out of your intensive mask, Matthew recommends applying in the shower in place of your usual conditioner and leaving it to work its magic while you wash. "The heat and steam from the shower encourage the cuticles to open, allowing the intensive treatment to penetrate deep into the hair's cuticle and cortex," he explains.
Matthew's top tip: Once you leave the shower, wrap your hair in a towel and leave the mask on for an hour or so. Or, if you have the time, leave on until the morning and rinse thoroughly.
Hair mask kit
Indulging in a mini-facial is a great way to pep up a tired-looking complexion. Not sure where to start? Sanctuary senior spa therapist, Katherine Bell, talks us through the steps:
Step one: Always cleanse you skin twice before a facial to remove build-up from daily grime and make up. Next, start with a cleansing oil, massaging into skin with your fingertips using small circular movements. Concentrate on areas of congestion such as your nose and chin.
Step two: Use an exfoliator to help dislodge dead skin cells and create a clear and smooth canvas to work with.
Step three: Follow with a warming face mask to deep cleanse your skin. Once applied, add a small amount of water to the mask and enjoy the second thermal burst it brings to your skin.
Katherine's top tip: Try to use a mask after you have exfoliated and while your skin is warm. Your pores will be more relaxed, allowing the product to draw out the impurities and work more effectively. For an extra moisture boost, spread a thin layer of Sanctuary Therapist Secret Facial Oil over skin before applying your mask.
Step four: Complete the facial treat with a hydrating lotion. Apply to the skin from the centre of the face outwards, not forgetting the neck area.
Step five: If you have active blemishes, the final step to deep-cleansed skin is a spot treatment. "Ensure your hands are clean before applying and, using just your ring finger, dab directly on to the spot using the tiniest amount," says Katherine. "Be extremely gentle as the area may be sensitive and inflamed."
DIY facial kit
Regular body buffing is the easiest way to keep skin in tip-top condition. "Aside from the obvious benefits of removing dead skin cells and making the skin softer, smoother and brighter, body buffing and exfoliating aid product absorption and therefore increase the effectiveness of any products you apply afterwards," says skin therapist Louise Thomas-Minns.
Whether you're skin brushing or exfoliating, Louise recommends always using upward, circular movements towards the heart to aid blood and lymph flow. "If you're using an exfoliating product and it contains enzymes or fruit acids, massage over dry skin before you get into the bath or shower. This will give the ingredients a chance to start working. If it's an exfoliant with abrasive particles, you should always work it into a damp skin to prevent it from being too harsh," says Louise.
Body buffing kit
There's nothing better than a good foot massage at the end of a difficult day. If you've got no one at home to indulge you, Champneys beauty therapist, Jane Calderwood, has these great tips for treating your tootsies to a pampering massage:
The prep: Exfoliate feet to remove dead skin prior to massaging. Soak your feet, then dry and follow with foot butter. Sit in a comfortable position and warm the butter between your palms.
The massage: Start by enveloping the foot between both hands to spread the product evenly from ankle to toes. Use your fingertips to circle around your anklebone a few times, nice and slowly, so it feels relaxing. Use your thumb to create circular kneading movements on the sole of your foot. For deeper movements, create a fist and use your knuckles. Pull your toes one at a time to give them a good stretch and work the product around your nails. Finish with sweeping movements, coming off at the toes. Repeat on your other foot.
Foot massage kit
Copyright © The Boots Company PLC. All rights reserved. Boots.com is a trading name of Boots UK Limited. Registered office: Nottingham NG2 3AA. Registered in England: company no. 928555. Registered VAT no. 116300129. Registered pharmacy no. 1092488