Harper's Bazaar (USA)
AT THE ONSEN Japan’s volcanic terrain boasts upwards of 3,000 onsen—mineral-rich hot-spring baths popularized by the island nation’s first Buddhist monks. And the communal baths are not only plentiful but also accessible, says Nachi Kanemaru Glick, a Miami-based, Miyazaki-born facialist: “It costs only a couple of dollars, so everyone goes once or twice a week.” At home, bathing is treated as a mini ritual to be respected. “You can’t just hop in,” says Kanemaru Glick. Instead, you wash thoroughly outside the tub with soap and an exfoliating mitt or binchotan towel first, getting “behind your ears, between your toes, and the bottom of your feet.” At home, it’s common to use mineral salts or soaks that evoke a true nature bath. “The French have lavender,” says Kanemaru Glick. “We have hinoki.” Te Plus Te Hinoki Wood Chip Sachets (1; $50 for two) add the soothing scent of Japanese forests to bathwater. Morihata Binchotan Charcoal Body Scrub Towel (2; $24) gently exfoliates the body with a tightly knit weave that leaves skin ultrasoft. To mimic the thermal waters of the onsen, Kanemaru Glick turns to magnesiumpacked salts like Chidoriya Higashiyama Bath Salt (3; $8). MyKirei by Kao Pampering Yuzu Foam Body Wash (5) is infused with yuzu, which is added to winter baths as a wellness booster.
AT THE BATHHOUSE “In Hungary, if you have eczema or arthritis, a doctor will prescribe a form of thermal-water therapy,” says lldi Pekar, an NYC-based aesthetician born and raised in Budapest. “It can be drinking the water or soaking in a bath.” That’s why the Hungarian capital’s pharmacy shelves are lined with thermal waters with varying concentrations of sulfur, magnesium, calcium, and more. But the best way to absorb them, she says, is transdermally with a trip to a bathhouse—packed every weekend with people taking the edge off a long week or late night. “You could wear the most expensive face cream, but it won’t make much difference if you’re stressed,” says Pekar of the country’s insideout beauty philosophy. At home, she soaks in a Hungarian thermal-water-infused bath for a minimum of 15 minutes. “Afterwards, I always have the best night’s sleep.” Pekar also suggests soaking in a hot bath with one or two spoonfuls of Hungarian thermal mud powder, like that found in Eminence Organic Skin Care Hungarian Herbal Mud Treatment (4; $46). For the most decadent treatment, buff your body with Omorovicza Gold Sugar Scrub (6; $93), which blends Hungarian thermal water with cane sugar and colloidal gold. HB