Smiling Asian woman in a tub with rose petals

Imagine yourself relaxing. Isn’t the picture in your head always of you lounging lazily in a bathtub? Taking a bath is one of the simplest forms of self-love. With the unpredictable quarantine restrictions, it’s also an accessible and fast escape from life's realities. 

If you’re more of a shower person, here are some reasons soaking in a bath—at least now and then—will put you in a better mood.

It Does More for Your Physique Than You Think.

A 2018 study in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine showed that depending on the temperature, immersion bathing can relax the muscles, soften collagen in ligaments and articular capsules, and improve musculoskeletal function. It has also been proven to have pain-relieving effects. 

Hydrotherapy, which uses water for various treatments, is an ancient practice, according to the North American Journal of Medical Sciences. Japan onsens, for example, are known for improving breathing thanks to the steamy warm water. Though the methods vary depending on the situation—underwater exercises, ice-cold baths, and water-jet massages count as water therapy—tremendous scientific evidence highlights the physical benefits of water to one’s physiological health.

It Boosts Your Mood

We’re firm believers that every aspect of your is connected. For example, if you feel good physically, you’re more likely to be in a better emotional disposition. According to the Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine study, taking a bath leads to physical improvements which, in turn, causes emotional improvements. Immersing in a tub has been seen to relieve “tension-anxiety, depression-dejection, and anger-hostility”—all positive effects of bath-time refreshment and relaxation.

It Helps You Relax

This one is pretty much a given. The combination of lukewarm water with scented candles, essential oils, salts, or bath bombs will soothe your body and soul. What’s more, bathing can also help you sleep faster and better!

Research published in Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice split 617 Japanese participants into two groups: the first bathed less than seven times a week while the second bathed seven or more times a week. Numerous factors were considered, but the most striking observation was how participants in the latter group reported improved sleep quality! 

Diffusing lavender in your bathroom can be an effective sleeping aid, but a dip in the tub without fancy accouterments will likely yield the same results. A comfortably warm bath will raise your body temperature, which will quickly cool down once you leave the water. This temperature shift will stimulate the production of melatonin, the hormone responsible for managing your sleep cycle.

It Can Be Good for Dry Skin

According to the United States’ National Eczema Association, those who have eczema, atopic dermatitis, or are generally prone to dry skin can benefit from taking a bath albeit a quick one. Called the “soak and seal,” this method supposedly prevents and alleviates flare-ups.

To do this, bathe in lukewarm water. Wash up with a gentle cleanser (not soap!) and skip the scrub. After only five to 10 minutes, gently pat dry with a towel. If you’re using topical creams or ointments, apply them to the affected areas while your skin is still damp. Wait for about three minutes, then moisturize your entire body. Make sure your skin has fully absorbed your moisturizer before you put on your clothing.

If you have eczema or other pertinent skin concerns, get the all-clear from your doctor before trying this tip.

It’s the Perfect Way to Enjoy Some Me-Time

We’re social creatures, sure, but quiet me-time is such a luxury these days. Being able to chill alone in the tub is a fun and affordable version of that luxury. Numerous studies have shown the value of taking a break, citing benefits like increased productivity, a better sense of gratitude, improved creativity, and more. According to Harvard Health, even a short 30-minute respite can do wonders for your emotional and mental health.

Stretch your private time with your thoughts, emotions, and bubbles by making it a full pamper session. As you enjoy your bath, scoop up some Dove Gentle Exfoliating Body Wash with your fingers. Rub it all over your skin in gentle circular motions and rinse. Your restorative bath will put you in a glowing mood, but this fresh-smelling scrub, which sloughs off and dry skin, will help you to show it off. 

Taking a bath may not seem like much, but it can do so much for your overall health. Make time for it. It’s only a few minutes.