Give Your Bathroom the Spa Treatment

Turn your bathroom into a spa-like retreat with simple, chic accessories.


Glass canisters from The Container Store are great for spa storage.

By: Jennifer Oneil and Kitty Oneil

A spa bathroom lets you pamper yourself with little indulgences for a fraction of what you'd spend at the spa. To create your own spa bathroom, just think "relaxing" with calming candlelight, soothing scents and big, fluffy towels. Then add a few personal touches to create your own retreat in the middle of a bustling household.

Decorating Scents

The spa experience always starts with the aroma when you walk through the doors, the calming scents help you transition from traffic-mode to tranquil. Get the same effect in your own home with personal aromatherapy blends. Add aromatic essential oils to drugstore Epsom salts for a professional mineral bath that is a treat for the senses. To refresh and revitalize, try scents like tea tree and eucalyptus. Ylang ylang and neroli are perfect before bedtime. For a relaxing mini-facial for puffy eyes, use Victorian Trading Company's Eyes Tea, filled with fennel, chamomile and rose petals.

Calming Sanctuary


Create a sanctuary with aromatherapy and a calming drink.

To get a refined spa look, clear your counters by stashing less attractive products in linen-lined baskets. Then dress your counter with elegant glass jars like The Container Store's Vibe Containers. Fill them with lovely bath products like Organic Bath Company's flower-shaped Bath Petals. They not only please the eye, the lavender vanilla scent soothes the soul. Personalize the containers with scrapbooking tags tied with twine. Then add a glass vase of blooming lavender to your countertop, nature's own aromatherapy.

Glowing Candles


Create a glow with soybean candles from the Victorian Trading Company.

A spa should make you feel good and look good, so do like the spas do and lower your lighting. Turn off the overhead and place small jar candles on the counter and candle tins around the tub. Candlelight flatters every skin tone. Don't be afraid to mix large and small pillars with votives and tea lights; just choose a single scent to keep the aromas from clashing. Specialty candles, like Victorian Trading Company's Soybean Beauty Candle, melt into a smoothing emollient you can massage into your skin to make it velvety.

Peaceful Place

When it comes to setting a spa mood, don't forget the acoustic music and soothing sounds of nature. Spa music is designed to transport you to a place of inner peace, and you can have it for the price of a few CDs. Get a small CD player and store a selection of CDs in a tidy wooden box. Then with just the touch of a button, you can close your eyes and listen your way to inner calm.

Put Yourself on a Pedestal


Smith & Hawken's teak stool evokes a spa-like feel.

The finest spas have a serene space where guests can relax while they leave the stresses of the day behind. Create your own relaxation zone with a sleek Teak Stool from Smith & Hawken, the perfect perch for a foot soak. To make an authentic footbath, fill a large bowl with warm water and your own aromatherapy salts. Now you can give your feet a pampering pedicure without teetering on the side of the tub.

Luxurious Necessities

Nothing says "ooh la la spa" like fluffy cotton towels. When it comes to these bathroom necessities, a little splurge can make a big splash. Instead of regular bath towels, go for oversized bath sheets, like 100-percent Turkish Cotton LuxeSPA Allure Towels from Bed Bath & Beyond. At 40 inches by 70 inches, these ultra-soft towels are so big they'll warm you from head to toe — literally. To complete the spa effect, hang a natural cotton shower curtain from simple chrome hooks. Then add a matching bath rug, the plushest you can find. Your footsies will thank you.

Tray Chic


The teak tub tray from IKEA provides a perch for bath necessities.

What's the best reason to have a spa bathroom at home? You can soak in the tub whenever you want. With a wooden tub tray from IKEA, your bath essentials will always be at your fingertips. Fill your tub caddy with exfoliating oatmeal soap, a pumice stone, and a natural loofah sponge. An organized space is a relaxing space, and that's what a spa bath is all about.

Now that your bathroom has been transformed into a spa retreat, celebrate by easing yourself into a bubbling whirlpool. You don't have to replace your standard tub with a whirlpool to have the ultimate in relaxation. Conair's Dual-Jet Spa Bath fits over the side of the tub and whips your water into a hydrotherapy whirlpool. For those who prefer the effervescence of air jets, HoMedics Massaging Bubble Mat fills the water with thousands of bubbles. So put on that mud mask, close your eyes, and let your new spa bathroom give you a spa treatment.

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