Like many of you, I really love a good steam room. I find steaming to be an almost meditative practice, one that allows me to slow down the rapid-fire train of thoughts whirring through the Penn Station situated in my head. It also grabs the toxins sitting underneath my skin out, and allows any excess water weight and bloating to pour out of my skin. A good sweat is life-changing, a way to break through a nasty hangover or simply change your outlook on your day. If you’re not steaming, add it to your beauty routine STAT. You will look and feel better because of it.
If your eyebrow is already raised, please take a moment to re-adjust your face. I am not the only human who really digs a good steam and is emphatic about etiquette in these dark, tiled places of water worship. Steaming for health and wellness has been around since the Romans, and the baths were accessible to all walks of people. The Turkish Hammam is legendary, and if you ever have the chance to use the baths in that part of the world, DO IT. I’ll come with you. Seriously. I love to pick a hotel based on the gym and spa facilities.
As you can tell I’m a total snob about the time I get to spend steaming, and while most of my glistening, naked, nameless pals behave in the same way that I do in there (i.e. sit or lay-down on your towel silently), I’ve bore witness to some truly horrifying behavior in this most sacred of rooms. Allow me to discuss the gross behavior I’ve witnessed. You might be offended, but hey – if you’re doing this stuff, somebody has GOT to tell you to cut it out. I’m absolutely willing to be that person.
I’m serious, ladies. Why go into a quiet, dark, wet room and insist upon chatting endlessly with your pal from yoga about Bumble, your silly boss, your sister’s pregnancy, and your date from last Tuesday? Nobody in that room cares what you have to say. Nobody. Probably not even your friend. Keep the chatter to a minimum, I beg of you. Everyone is trying to like, ZEN OUT in there. They’re trying to psyche themselves up for dates of their own, not hear about yours. Even worse? If you strike up a conversation with a complete stranger. No girl, no. DO NOT PASS GO.
Shut the F**K Up. Seriously, stop talking.
Most of you are probably like HUH? after reading that, and if you fall into that camp, congratulations. You haven’t had to endure gals coming in to the steam room armed with razors, toe nail clippers, foot buffers and other weird instruments that should be used exclusively in the privacy of your own home. I’ve literally seen women shaving their pubic hair and leaving the remains behind on the tiles. I’ve found razors left behind without their owners (hello, someone could cut their bottoms on this lazily discarded piece of plastic and steel). One time a lady came in on a holiday afternoon (I know, it IS a great time to treat yourself) to give herself a full pedicure, sans polish. Yes – cutting the toenails, scraping the bottom of the feet, pushing back and removing cuticles, the works. All I want to know is – WHY? WHYYYYYYYY must you remove body parts in my most favorite of spaces? Even worse, why do you leave them there for someone else to clean up? So awful. So inconsiderate. YUGE problem. We’re all in this (in there) together. Hygiene should be on everyone’s mind.
Do Not Shave Your Legs…Or Anything Else
Yea, girl. Take it all off! Not because I’m desperate to see your lady bits, but because as a pal I’m telling you that your steaming experience will be so much better if you allow yourself to completely relax in your birthday suit. No judgment, but if you’re wearing yoga pants in there and sweating your ass off, how can you be physically comfortable? Peeling off wet pants, or a sports bra sounds like an 8/10 type of hassle. If you’re shy, bring a towel for whatever degree of modesty you’re seeking.
Get Super, Duper Naked
If your friendly neighborhood steam room has a cold shower placed in it (most do), I highly recommend dousing yourself in that chilly, illy, water every 10ish minutes or so. Not only does it prolong your session because it prevents you from feeling faint, it’s also a great exercise for your heart. The work your body has to do to go from hot to cold and hot again is a great cardiovascular work-out. You just get to enjoy the benefits while doing almost nothing. Also important, bring your water bottle in and drink up as often as you can. You’re losing a ton of water through your sweat when you’re in there, but most of what’s coming out is just funk. It’s important to replace the water you lose with clean, new H20.
Use The Cold Shower
…and that’s about it, gals. Get naked and be free. Just be quiet too, okay?