isnít the most unusual substance people have ever bathed in (case in
point: a 17th century Hungarian countess was rumored to prefer the
blood of young serving women), but it might well be the most
decadent. Itís also quite beneficial for your skin, as the presence
of cocoa butter in many skincare products attests. Full fledged
cocoa and chocolate spa treatments have taken off in the past few
years, which means that these guilt-free and swooningly fragrant
chocolate treatments can now be found in a spa near you.
Ready to give it a go? Here are some commonly asked
questions Ė and answers Ė about chocolate spa treatments.
What benefits does chocolate have for my skin?
Chocolate is the processed end product of cacao beans, which are
higher in antioxidants than green tea or red wine. Antioxidants
destroy free radicals that contribute to aging. Cacao beans also
contain cocoa butter, a potent moisturizer and skin softener.
Why else should I pay the extra money for a
chocolate spa treatment? High quality chocolate and raw cacao
are great sources of magnesium, an essential mineral many people
are deficient in. And of course, the scent of chocolate alone is
often enough to trigger feel-good endorphins.
What kind of chocolate treatment should I look
for? Chocolate is used in many different treatments, from
massages to waxing. Whichever treatment you choose, however, be
sure to ask about what goes into it. Good quality cocoa butter
and cocoa powder (or, better yet, raw cacao powder) are a must.
As a general rule, choose raw over processed and dark over milk:
Cacao that is purer and less refined contains more nutrients.
Can I eat the chocolate used in my treatments?
You probably wonít want to. Most chocolate treatments are
actually cacao or cocoa treatments and have not been sweetened
or flavored to be delicious. Without the ameliorating effects of
sugar, cacao is quite bitter. But donít despair! Many spas that
offer chocolate treatments will also offer you real chocolates
to be eaten along with your treatment, so you wonít be tempted
to lick off your masque.
Can I make my own chocolate body products?
Certainly Ė but donít start by smearing a Hershey bar over your
face. Many chocolate facials are simple concoctions of cocoa or
cacao powder, honey, powdered oatmeal, and plain yogurt or cream
and can be easily made at home.
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