Bath Time

imageAs you'll know I'm a big advocate of baths, however I must state that this goes straight against conventional beliefs. This is for number of reasons, which I will address later.

For me bath time is the most relaxing and inspiring time that I spend. To sit in the bath for about an hour with your favourite bath ingredients is pretty much to as close bliss as I believe you can get. It's not to say that you need to add an ingredient to your bath, but I find that it really helps.

It is not something that I have just come up with, but its a tried and tested remedy. It started off with helping my muscles relax after a gruelling day at work… But, since then it has developed into a remedial assistance to my body. I've tried putting different products into my baths. These include Sea salt, essential oils, Radox Salts, Radox bubble bath, other branded products and even those that you get as a Christmas present.

The inspiration for the perfect bath ingredients came when I was referred to a store called LUSH (Trafford Centre) by my sister and I must say that I was impressed! Lush, as you may well know sell specially formulated bath ingredients and cleansing products amongst other things. Yes, it is more expensive than buying a box of Radox bath salts, but it did give me the option of picking what I wanted in my bath and how I wanted the bath to affect me.

imageMy wife and I went into the store and was deciding what to buy. We got talking to one of the staff and described where I usually felt aches and pains in my body. Based on this information, I asked which one would be the best one to go for. She spent quiet a lot of time with us and you could see she knew what she was talking about and we ended selecting one of the products

I have now used LUSH as a treat over the past four years or so and initially found that it was a great way of giving my body a treat. As you'll see from the other pages on the site I also used other things as treats, such as remedial massage.

About twelve months ago I thought it would make sense to track my baths and see which suited and helped me the most. Off course I'd keep a mental note of my favourites, but I wanted something a bit more objective. My plan was to come up with a bespoke bath that will benefit all, but especially MSers.

I decided to make a note of all the baths I had and how I felt before and afterwards. Then, I would make a note of how I felt during the bath and afterwards.

I decided to see if I could get anyone involved. I spoke to the Lush Head office who were very helpful, but said it may be worth working with my local branch. So that's what I did.

I spoke to the Trafford Centre branch manager, Katie. I told her what my idea and plan was. I made it clear that it was an experiment and I don't expect to find a cure for MS, but feel that maybe my research could help ease some of the symptoms that people with MS get.

Thankfully Katie was very interested and was keen to get on board. I said that I'd want to be able to try out a number of ingredients that I would possibly never have tried before and also use the knowledge and expertise of Katie and her staff.

Anyone who has been into a LUSH store will know that the people who work there, really know what they are talking about. I mean, you can just go in there and tell them what kind of a day you've had or how you feel and they will give you the right product. For this, Katie enlisted the help of one of her staff called Steph who was equally excited about the idea of the research and then we set about picking what would help.

Over the course of the coming months we went through a number of products, some which I purchased myself, but most were supplied by the store in order to make this research project happen. Every now and again I would give Katie and Steph feedback on how it's going and what affects I was getting from the products. Then based on this feedback, we would both suggest which products that I should try next.

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The Short List

The most difficult bit was probably doing through ingredients of all the products and cross matching to find which ingredients were the best, as you can imagine reading through hundreds of ingredients is not my idea of fun! But, with the goal in mind I did it.imageIt was great just sitting in a number of baths over a period of a few months and dictating to my wife how each product made me feel and the sensations/fragrances I experienced. This was great, as it was giving an idea of what each product did during the bath and how I felt afterwards. I would then go about collating all the info my wife had written down.

Using the LUSH newspaper (a free newspaper given out that contained information on all their products and the ingredients) and website to decipher which ingredient was in what product. I would then cross match these against how I felt and what I experienced in the bath with the individual products. I then slowly began to work out which ingredients worked best with each other too. This really was tricky and was confusing too, but worthwhile at the same time.

Findings:

The initial reaction was the products that had a strong citrus base were the ones that were making the difference, they gave an uplifting and refreshing sent while in the bath.

For those you may be interested in a point by point analysis of each product, please email me. However, here I will be giving the key highlights here.

After further research into the other products, which I did in the same way to previous research, I eventually got down to the final key ingredients that would make the "Perfect Product".

However, this "Perfect Product" did not exist and was just the result of my research. I contacted the Head Office of LUSH, where then formulate and create these products. To date, they are still considering this, but I am sure with the enough pressure from fellow MSers with the power of social media they will decide to create this perfect product.

Even though the "Perfect Product" does not exist yet, it does not mean that a number don't come close. In fact there are a couple of LUSH products that I would strongly recommend as they are the ones that had the most positive impact on me. These include:

imageBest product(s): Karma Bath & Avo Bath
Other beneficial products: Products with a high citrus content
Perfect Product: The Kaz Bar (Fizzy and still)

Thanks for reading. I hope you found it useful. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Katie and her team for their support!

Thanks for reading. I hope you found it useful. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Katie and her team for their support!

As I mentioned in the beginning, baths are not really considered the best activity for people with MS, this being primarily due to the heat. However, I also have a number of safety tips that may well be worth observing when sitting in the bath. These are listed below:

- Always make sure there is someone else at home, just in case you need help
- Take a couple bottles of drinking water in with you
- Use a bath board to help you get in and out of bath
- Have the appropriate safety handles and bars fitted to strategic parts of the bathroom to help you in and out of the bath
- Give yourself extra time to get out of bath, as its not like getting out of the shower, after a bath you will feel tired and dehydrated

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