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Everything You Need For Your Wedding:

Refresh Your Spirit: How to Host a Spa Night at Home

Reward your bridesmaids -- and yourself -- for all that hard work by hosting a girls-only spa night at home.

Everyone says it: "We should get together more often." Well, we have the perfect occasion for you to stop talking and start doing: An at-home spa night. It's a great idea for a bridal shower, but it's also a fabulous way to get all your friends together for a girls-only night of F-U-N. You can either do an evening event, or a full-on slumber party. Whatever you do, go all out!

Pick a day when you think most of your best gal pals will be in town. Find -- or make -- pretty invitations and send them to five to ten of your closest friends (any more than ten could get too cramped, depending on the size of your home). Send the invites at least three weeks before the event. The invitations should include:

  • The date and time of the event
  • Your address and phone number
  • A list of what every person should bring (see below)
  • Optional: A list of which station each person is responsible for, and the products they need to bring (if you have all the goodies, or want to provide them yourself, just skip this)

What Your Guests Should Bring

  • Lounge wear
  • Open-toe slippers or sandals
  • A towel
  • Their overnight bags and a pillow (if you're doing the sleepover thing)
  • A candle (if your supply is limited)

What You Should Have Prepared

  • A large clear space in your living room or bedroom
  • A clean bathroom with towels and face cloths
  • Sparkling or natural spring water
  • Nice drinking glasses
  • Lemon, lime, or orange slices for the water
  • Something to snack on (you can go healthy, but we think it's more fun to be naughty!)
  • Scented candles
  • A camera (with lots of film)

The Stations

First, figure out which stations you are going to incorporate and where. Each station should be set up in its own area. The idea is that everyone moves from one station to the next, so everyone gets each treatment. Each rotation should occur at about the same time -- probably every 15 to 20 minutes (if someone finishes sooner, they can just sit back and read a magazine, get refreshments, or take pictures). Make signs for each station, and give each a number (so people can rotate in order). A few minutes before your guests are expected to arrive, set the mood by closing all the curtains, lighting the candles, and playing soft music. (No, it's not supposed to be romantic; it’s supposed to be relaxing!)

You can vary the number of stations, or add your own. (Another great station idea: Surprise your guests and hire a tarot card or palm reader, or a fortune-teller.)

Station #1 – Manicure:

What you need:
A mid-sized bowl
A table and chair
Cotton balls or pads
Cuticle (a.k.a. orange) stick
Cuticle cream
Hand cream
Nail clippers
Nail file
Nail polish: base, color, and topcoat
Nail polish remover
Paper towels
Soap
Towel
Warm water

What you do: Print out Your Nails: The At-Home Manicure and tape it to the table for an easy how-to.

Station #2 – Pedicure:

What you need:
A large bowl (or use the bathtub)
Cotton balls or tissue
Exfoliating lotion
Foot Lotion
Nail clippers
Nail file
Nail polish: base, color, and topcoat
Nail polish remover
Pumice stone
Soap
Socks
Towel
Warm water

What you do: Print out Your Nails: The At-Home Pedicure and tape it to the floor or on the wall.
(Knot Note: In the article we suggest you take an hour to do a pedicure. You should encourage your guests to speed it up for Spa night or make this a two-round station.)

Station #3 – Facial:

What you need:
Access to a sink
Makeup remover
Skin cleanser
Boiling water
Bowl
Towel
Cotton pad or balls
Toner or astringent
Facial mask
Moisturizer

What you do:
Step 1: Remove all makeup.
Step 2: Clean skin with appropriate cleanser for your skin type.
Step 3: Pour boiling hot water into a bowl. Place your face as close to the water as comfortable and place a towel over your head to keep the steam in. Stay put for 5 minutes.
Step 4: Gently pat your face dry.
Step 5: Using cotton and your toner, remove all the dirt that has been exposed from opening your pores.
Step 6: Apply your mask (follow directions on package).
Step 7: Rinse face thoroughly and pat dry.
Step 8: Apply moisturizer.

Station #4 and #5 – Massage (Back, Shoulder and Arm):

What you need:
A non-oily lotion

What you do:
This station has two numbers because you stay here for two rounds: Once as the massager, and once as the massagee. As the massager, simply ask the massagee what she likes –- some people like a gentle back rub, while others prefer a more vigorous one. As the massagee, simply tell your friend what you like, and enjoy.

Station #6 – Meditation and/or Aromatherapy:

What you need:
A quiet place in the corner of the room
A candle
A tape or CD with meditative music or guided meditation
Walkman or CD-player with ear phones
A pillow or cushion
Aromatherapeutic oils or lotions (see list below)

What you do:
Meditation can be different for everyone. This station is about creating a completely relaxed environment where a girl can clear her mind and find a few moments of inner peace.

Aromatherapy involves the use of fragrant substances in lotions and inhalants in an effort to positively affect mood and promote better health. After you've applied the aromatherapeutic oils, sit in a comfortable position on the cushion, put on your earphones, and tune out.

Station #7 – Eyebrows:

What you need:
Tweezers
A mirror
Ice cubes (optional)

What you do:
Step 1: Some may want to use ice to numb the area first.
Step 2: Clear stray hairs. Start between your brows and work your way out, following your natural brow line.
Step 3: Remember to go slowly and carefully.
Step 4: Get someone to check over your brow handiwork to ensure they are even.

Station #8 and #9 – Reflexology:

What you need:
A pillow
An eye pillow (optional)
A comfortable place to lie down
Foot lotion

What you do:
Simply put, reflexology is a foot massage. One difference, however, is that reflexology does not involve rubbing. Rather, it is about applying pressure to specific areas. Similar to the massage station, reflexology requires two people. One person gets the foot rub, while the other gives it.

Step 1: Have the recipient lie down in a comfortable position, with her eyes closed.
Step 2: Using a small amount of lotion, apply subtle pressure to all parts of the feet to get the circulation moving.
Step 3: With added pressure, try to pay attention to the following areas, one at a time: arch, heel, big toe, all toes, and the ball of the foot.

-- The Knot

See More: Prewedding Pampering