Steal this advice for optimizing body oils from Kim Rossi, director of the Shankara Ayurveda Spa at the Art of Living Retreat Center in North Carolina. • Massage oil into your skin before bathing. “Warm water opens your pores so oil can penetrate into deeper layers of your skin,” says Rossi. The oil acts as a barrier between your skin and the water, protecting you from any chemicals in the water.
• Create a self-care ritual. In Ayurveda, massaging yourself with warm oil is called abhyanga, and the practice is like “being anointed and saturated with love,” says Rossi, who recommends silently repeating an empowering mantra while massaging oil into your skin or sore muscles.
• Choose any organic, cold-pressed oil— it doesn’t need to be beauty-specific, says Rossi. In fact, you should use the highest quality food-grade oils—something you would eat—on your ultraabsorbent skin whenever possible, she says.