Time was, you couldn’t scroll down your Instagram feed without a curated shelf of skincare looking back at you. The shelfie is so 2019. Now we’re all about bathscaping. It's the tub equivalent of tablescaping – creating the perfect Insta-friendly table setup complete with candles, serviettes and matching tableware, in the days when we could have people round.
Bathscaping is about making your tub the (Insta) perfect sanctuary – having everything you need to hand to take you to that relaxation space; think matching your candle to your bath oil and displaying them on a chic bath tray with a glass of wine, herbal tea or a well-chosen crystal , an indulgent novel, a glossy houseplant in the background and a fluffy bathmat (draped over the side and preferably folded in half for that perfect shot).
Bathing has taken off in a big way over the last year or so. Tiffany Salmon, founder of luxury bathing brand Soak Sunday saw a 900 per cent uplift in sales during the November lockdown. “Soul soothing and indulgently relaxing, a long hot soak became a little piece of escapism during the pandemic and the perfect way to rejuvenate body and mind from the comfort of our own homes,” she says.
CBD brand Kloris noticed the shift towards bathing last year too. Founder Kim Smith tells us: “Our bathing category has gone up five-fold since the March lockdown as people naturally try to find relaxation in the home rather than in the spa.”
From trays to plants, here are the bathscaping buys you need to turn your bathroom into a haven
The bath tray
Having somewhere to rest your wine and safely place your book or tablet makes bathing so much more relaxing – no more worries about soggy pages.
Complete with glass holder, tablet slot and ample room for bath salts and candles, this rustic-style bath caddy will give instant cool points to your bath scape.
With slots for tea lights, tablet and a convenient wine glass holder, you can't go wrong with this simple yet chic bath board.
For a crisp bathscaping style, opt for a white bath tray – add simple neutral candles and you're on to a winner.
Channel a minimalist bath vibe with this pared-back black bath shelf, ideal for just the essentials.
The bathscape candle
No bathscaping picture is complete without a flickering candle – the more wicks the better. It needs to be an in-jar candle, nobody wants wax dripping into the water. "Low lighting tells your mind and body to calm down," explains bathing expert Suzanne Duckett, author of Bathe: The Art of Finding Rest, Relaxation and Rejuvenation in a Busy World . "Either use low lights or turn them off and light some candles. Always opt for natural waxes to keep the air pure." Paraffin wax can cause headaches, she explains. Suzanne recently launched Onolla , a platform bestowing the benefits of wellbeing, including bathing.
Made from rapeseed wax with three pure cotton wicks, Sun.day London's candles are made in small batches and are palm oil-free. This one is scented with lavender and rose, blending together five aromatherapy oils to bring peace and tranquillity to the mind and the body. It has a 90 hour burn time.
This sensual, sultry candle is perfect for setting the mood to relax of an evening. Made with soy wax it has notes of rose, violet, ylang ylang and amberwood for a smooth, sexy scent. It has a 60 hour burn time.
A touch of pink in the bathroom never hurt anybody, especially when this natural wax pastel beauty encourages calm at first light, with a scent of iris, violent, lavender and frankincense. It has a burn time of 45 hours so will last many-a-bath.
Made with 100 per cent natural coconut and rapeseed wax, this velvety scented candle has notes of sandalwood, frankincense and vetiver with geranium, neroli, lime and sweet orange for an unexpectedly uplifting scent. This is one to light for morning baths. As well as a 40 hour burn time, it has sustainable credentials too. Once the candle has burned down you can buy refill candles , £21, to place in the pretty jar to give it longer (bath) shelf life.
MORE GLOSS: Long-lasting scented candles that are worth every penny
The Insta-friendly bath salts
No bath tray snap is complete without some photogenic bath salts.
A combination of flecks of Himalayan salt and rose petals, a sprinkling of this rose and lavender scented mixture elevates bath time.
A hybrid of bath salts (ie. they're sprinked in) and bath milk (ultra-nourishing and hydrating) the combination of coconut milk powder, Dead Sea salt, epsom salts, oat powder and cocoa butter leaves a delicate, soothing scent in the bathroom for hours after your bath.
The perfect antidote to anxiety, these mood cleansing salts help replace stress with a sense of tranquillity, thanks to grapefruit and lemongrass which invigorate the senses, banishing low mood.
The bathroom plant
A green leafy friend is the perfect finishing touch to your bath tray. "Studies have found that house plants can give you a boost of energy and many people don’t think about putting plants inside the bathroom, but the moist and warm environment is not only perfect for the health of the plant but will also do wonders for your health too," says Emma Pridding, Spa and Leisure Manager at The Spa at Carden, Cheshire. Here are three house plants that thrive in the bathroom and stay small enough to sit on your tray.