J beauty ritual: Onsen for Self Care
I wanted to share a popular J-Beauty ritual that has been around for centuries in Japan.
It's something that took me a whilllle to get used to but is very popular as a weekend retreat for many Japanese to get away from the city to treat themselves to some ultimate self care... bathing in hot springs, aka ONSENS!
Onsens are literally located everywhere in Japan. They are as common as finding a nail salon to go to. However if you want to get the full experience, you can travel outside Tokyo to onsen resort towns that are usually tucked away in mountains.
While I was in Tokyo with Shiseido, we went to an onsen town, Hakone. It is about an hour long train ride away from the city and before we knew it we were at this gorgeous ryokan called Gora Kadan. I had asked my friend who lives in Japan what her all time favorite onsen to go to was, and she had mentioned this exact one so I knew I was in for a treat.
We each had a private onsen overlooking the mountain so we could bathe in the comfort of our own room. For someone that's shy to bathe naked in public this was so perfect!
The resort also has two public baths and they were outside surrounded by nature. The steam piping up made it look so picturesque and so relaxing to bathe in. The two baths are separated by gender and are switched out in the middle of the night so you can experience both during your stay.
The onsens all have a large communal showering room separate from the hot spring. Each shower station has a mini stool and a bucket with shampoo, conditioner, face wash, and body wash. Japanese people see water as a purifying ritual and will spend ample amount of time cleansing their body - scrubbing from head to toe-before they hop into the bath. The stool and bucket is there to make it easier for you to do this!
I wanted to apply what I learned about J-Beauty so I decided to double cleanse my face too. I pumped some Shiseido Refreshing Cleansing water on a cotton pad to wipe off my make up and then fully washed off with Benefiance extra creamy cleansing foam .
Besides cleansing yourself throughly first before hopping into the bath, there are other bathing etiquettes you should be aware of too!
You can bring a hand towel upon entering the public bath to cover your private areas but the towel must not touch the water. That's why you see Japanese people putting it on top of their heads while they are in the hot spring.
While I sat there in the hot spring - I took deep breaths and a moment to appreciate my surroundings. The air was so crisp and being in the middle of the greenest trees and open sky was such a beautiful experience.
After this trip to Japan, I definetly grew a new found appreciation for bathing. I've been taking more baths to unwind and relax every night.
Besides the wonderful self care aspect of bathing, warming up your body every night before bed has helped me sleep better and deeper. It improves circulation and helps clear your skin as well. I noticed that when I take a bath and then put on my Shiseido's Revitalizing Essence softener and Ultimune serum afterwards I feel and see a bigger difference in the morning. It looks dewy, moisturized and refreshed!
I hope you guys enjoyed this post and if you visit Japan, I highly recommend going to an onsen!!