For me, mornings usually begin with a bit of elementary arithmetic. If I sleep in for 15 more minutes, will I be able to fit in a run and dry my hair before I leave for the office? What if I snooze for 30 minutes, skip the run, and don’t wash my hair? That’ll buy me more time to make breakfast … and let me catch a few more zzz’s.
It’s silly, really. Because the days where I stick to my normal morning routine are usually the ones that help me feel more balanced and thoughtful throughout the day. And I think most of us would agree—taking a few moments to mindfully prepare in the morning can have seriously positive side effects on mood and anxiety when life gets stressful. But of course, sleeping in sounds a whole lot better than waking up earlier to meditate, journal, or make a wholesome breakfast.
Enter the multitasking shower. There’s a whole lot more you can do other than just lather, rinse, and repeat in there. Here are our top shower hacks that will help your day be more productive, thoughtful, and beautiful.
Make your shower an aromatherapy steam room
No, Herbal Essences shampoo does not count as aromatherapy. But diffusing real essential oils can actually boost your mood and increase your energy in the early hours of the day. Studies show that inhaling diffused essential oils can also alleviate anxiety, depression, and reduce stress.
Try using scents like lavender, peppermint, and sweet orange in the morning to wake up and get focused. If you’re feeling particularly foggy after a late night out, a eucalyptus and lemon oil blend will help revive you. There are essential oil diffusers specifically that easily attach to your shower head, or if you want a fun DIY project you can make your own aromatherapy shower bombs. All you need are a few ingredients and you’ll be good to go!
Get a mini facial
This hack is perfect for days when you know you’ll be spending a little more time in the shower (like when you actually take the time to shave your legs … accuracy is time-consuming) When you step into the shower, wet your skin and use a mild exfoliant to slough off dead facial skin. Then, apply your favorite face mask, leaving it on until you’re ready to hop out. The steam from the shower will open up pores and soften the sebum and buildup that causes breakouts, allowing the mask to penetrate more deeply and work more effectively.
Pop your vitamins
Technically, just let them wash over you. Vitamin C-infused shower heads are growing in popularity because the antioxidant brightens skin and supports healthy hair. And when you consider the fact that the skin is your body’s largest organ, it makes sense that showering in vitamin-rich water could have a positive effect on your health. No word yet on whether vitamin C showers can prevent the common cold, but this innovative showerhead does reduce water consumption by about 25 percent.
Skip the soap
It goes against everything you’ve ever been told, but using harsh chemical-based soap isn’t great for your skin. Many of the detergents found in soap can throw off the pH levels of skin, in turn encouraging bacteria to grow. Plus, chemical soaps can be irritating and dehydrating for those with sensitive skin. Instead of lathering your loofa with a shower gel, give your body a quick scrub with an exfoliating towel or loofa to get rid of dead and dry skin. Then, while in the shower, massage body oils into skin. Coconut, jojoba, and sweet almond oil all work well, and you can add a few drops of essential oils into the carrier oil for a little scent.
Coconut, jojoba, and sweet almond oil all work well, and you can add a few drops of essential oils into the carrier oil for a little scent. Body oils moisture and tone the skin, which is so important during the cooler winter months and during the summer when skin is parched from the sun.