Indulge in the Japanese Self-Care Bathing Ritual of Ofuro
We love a beauty ritual that offers more than surface benefits, so when we learned about the wonderful ancient Japanese bathing tradition, Ofuro, we knew that we had to share it with you.
In the West, a quick morning shower rules. Easy and invigorating – a great way to wake yourself up for the day ahead (particularly when paired with our uplifting Golden Citrus products!), but in Japan, daily washing takes on a more mindful form. Less about wash and go and more about cleansing the day away, for a peaceful evening and fresh start tomorrow.
Taking a little time for yourself to unwind, meditate and soothe the senses is something that is easily forgotten, or pushed aside in lieu of ‘getting things done’, but in our minds, there is little more important than taking care of yourself and even more so when going about it with a mindful attitude. Self care is not selfish – if your mind is clear, your body is healthy and your soul is happy your presence is all the more beneficial to those around you. This applies even more so to mothers of children, as although it might seem right to always focus on their needs rather than your own, you must remember that the inherent and cellular level connection you have with your little ones doesn’t magically break when they leave your body, so how you feel affects how they feel. Fortunately, it doesn’t take much to bring your soul back to basics – back to calm, stress-free happiness. In fact, Ofuro might be all it takes.
In Japan, nearly every one of the 127 million citizens indulge in Ofuro each and every night. For them, it’s not a luxury but a necessity and an age-old cultural tradition. Many enjoy the practice at home, with a shower first to wash and then a deep, hot bath. Plenty of others make their way to an Onsen (a natural hot spring), to soak up surrounding nature as they soak away the day. It is easy to create your own Ofuro ritual at home and we love the idea of incorporating the aromatherapy scent of our Scented Organic Hair Oil in the process, by massaging the oil into your scalp, popping your hair up and out of the way and breathing in the divine scent as you sit in the tub. Heaven!
Ready to soak up the Japanese ritual of Ofuro? Here’s how you can:
Create Your Ritual
The ritual of Ofuro is about the experience as a whole as much as the bathing itself so although there are certain steps that should be followed to get the full effect (as you will read further down), setting the scene, so to speak, can make a world of difference.
Clutter is generally not something you’ll see much of in Japan and it’s certainly not conducive to this near-spiritual cleansing so all that gubbins around the tub? That’s got to go, and not right before you step into the water. Get that bathroom clear, light candles, switch off the lights and run that bath HOT so the room gets a nice steam in the air. As you’ll discover in the next step, you do the actual washing of yourself separately in the shower, so gather your TJK hair cleanser and conditioner and your favourite organic body wash in a beautiful basket, box or bucket and set it aside in a cupboard in another room, along with your clean towel or robe, for when you’re ready. Bring this container holding only what you need into the room with you when you enter for your home onsen.
Wash the Day Away…
The actual bath is for a soothing soak only, so wash away and stresses and busy thoughts of the day in a vigorous shower. Traditionally, the Japanese do this part sitting on a wooden stool and use a wooden bucket to pour water over themselves but how you do it is up to you! Just bear in mind that this is all part of the ritual. Treat yourself to a lovely scrub, indulge in some wonderful natural fragrances – all of our products are all scented with aromatherapy blends, so these work perfectly. Once you’re clean, step into your hot bath. Keep the water pure or add detox salts and your choice of essential oil.
Submerge yourself into the water as deeply as possible. Japanese baths are much shorter and taller than our long, lying down baths so that people can sit comfortable, with their body fully under the water up to their neck. Close your eyes, breathe deeply and clear your mind. Take this time just for you and soak up every minute.