When I was a child, I typically spent my weekends at Grandma’s house, so my initial personal bathing ritual started Saturday nights in Grandma’s tub. I took my Saturday night baths very seriously, covering myself with my “Magic” cream (I would rub the bar of soap with the bubbles (usually from dishwashing liquid) until it became a thick lather. I would carefully apply it to my little arms and legs, and as I rinsed it off, I would pretend my skin became magically soft and beautiful. Grandma would come in at some point and scrub my head with Prell shampoo, and since we hadn’t discovered conditioner or blow dryers yet, my hair would frizz with delight. Another highlight of Saturday night baths involved Grandma’s Avon products. My Aunt Marie was an Avon representative, and kept her shelves well stocked. I was free to use her perfumed lotion and dusting powder. I remember slathering and poofing till I was white and the room was cloudy. Cleopatra had nothing over me (well, except for those servants…but I pretended I had those too – good enough.) I would slip into a fresh clean nightgown and settle in for Lawrence Welk, a dance along with Bobby and Sissy, and the Saturday Night movie. Ah, the luxury of it all.
Through my teen years, a bath always preceded a special event. I had now graduated to real bubble bath, Herbal Essence shampoo AND conditioner, and a razor. It was also about this time that my sister, Cindy, introduced me to egg white facials. These made my face look and feel spectacular. Sadie Hawkins dances, special parties, a few random dates always followed a “luxurious” cleansing. On occasion, a bath would also follow a bad experience. A lot of sadness, hurt, disappointment, and anger went down the drain of my tub.
The Saturday morning of my wedding found me in the tub while my sister prepared my favorite breakfast of fried eggs, sausage and toast. Of course I would prepare myself for my groom with my favorite ritual, along with the egg white facial.The Avon products were now replaced with Halston perfume and lotion.
The bathtub took on an even more significant meaning when I had children. Now, with the addition of scented candles, it became a respite. I joined the ranks of women who discovered that Calgon really could “take me away”. This is when I also discovered bath oil…quenching the thirst of my increasingly drying skin.
Another turning point came when we built the new house, complete with a corner tub and two giant windows overlooking the garden and the pond. With the children’s college education paid for, I now had the resources to invest in some luxury bath products, face masks, and hair treatments. Half hour baths now became hour-long baths, typically on a late Saturday afternoon. It was about this same time I began hauling my CD player into the bathroom to provide the perfect background music for reminiscing, contemplating, and dreaming as I soaked in splendor.
This brings us to the present. The latest additions have been the world’s best foot scrubber, Cherry Merlot soap, and Pandora. (Side note-you will NOT get electrocuted if your blue tooth speaker falls into the tub). I probably do more reminiscing than dreaming. There’s an extra layer of moisturizer, Dead Sea mineral face masks and self-tanner now. And I still believe in the magic. I have no idea where my baths will take me in the future. I just hope there are plenty more. What I DO know is that despite all the changes, one thing remains constant:
…I still love to slip into a fresh clean nightgown and settle in for a Saturday night movie. Sorry Bobby and Sissy, my dance card is full, but I will take another slice of pizza.
Leave a comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have bath product suggestions or questions!