Give or receive a delicious cacao-based spa treatment this holiday season.
by Bek van Vliet.
The festive season is all about good food and good times, and one of the most indulgent holiday treats you can get is chocolate!
Being the versatile thing it is, chocolate not only tastes divine, but some of its ingredients also offer beauty benefits when applied directly to the skin. Its antioxidant properties, for instance, reduce damage by attacking free radicals in the body, which contribute to wrinkles and lines. The caffeine in chocolate, meanwhile, has the more immediate effect of invigorating and tightening the skin by stimulating blood circulation. Then there’s cacao butter, which moisturizes and soothes the skin. Finally, the theobromine in chocolate is said to help break down fat which, when combined with a body wrap or deep massage, can help reduce cellulite. Several spas in Bangkok offer facials, masks, wraps and scrubs that use chocolate and cacao as their main ingredients—here’s a small sample of what you can find this festive season.
The Detoxify treatment at Coran Spa – www.coranbangkok.com on Ekkamai soi 10 includes a 30-minute chocolate body scrub, a 30-minute chocolate body pack, and a 90-minute full body massage. You can choose from deep tissue massage or a more relaxing, gentle massage (THB 4,400).
Dahra Spa’s – www.dahra-spa.com chocolate scrub treatment (THB 900) leaves the skin supple and smooth, using premium ingredients that nourish and pamper. This 40-minute scrub exfoliates away dead skin cells, providing a gorgeous holiday glow.
Hapa Spa – www.hapaspa.com uses rich dark chocolate in this luxurious body mask, resulting in invigorated, radiant skin. Applied in gentle, soothing strokes, the treatment is as relaxing to the mind as it is rejuvenating for the skin. It’s a 40-minute treatment (THB 1,200).
The two branches of Urban Retreat (Phrom Phong BTS and Asoke BTS stations) each offer two choc-related packages. There’s the Cocoa Package A (THB 1,350) featuring a 30-minute cacao and organic shea butter scrub followed by a 90-minute macadamia oil massage, and Package B (THB 1,650), which adds Thai herbal balls to the massage.
Blend together one part chamomile oil with two parts cacao powder, and three parts shea butter. Experiment with different amounts of each ingredient until you have the consistency and creaminess you prefer. Use as a daily moisturizer or massage lotion. Store any excess in the fridge for up to a week.