Gift Guide: Bathroom Luxuries & Relaxation

If your friend or family member enjoys nights spent relaxing in the tub, skip the spa gift certificate and gift them something a little more personal this holiday season. From bath pillows to monogrammed slippers, here are some Modern Bathroom-approved bathroom luxuries that your friend or family member is sure to love. While you’re at it, throw in a bottle of Dom Perignon champagne or a bottle of their favorite wine, because who doesn’t love to sip on some bubbly while relaxing in the tub?

Bath Pillow

If your friend or family member loves to read or meditate while in the bath, they already know there’s nothing worse than having to stop because of a crick in their neck. So instead of being forced to cut their bath time in half, why not purchase them a comfortable bath pillow? The Original GORILLA GRIP Non-Slip Bath Pillow features a powerful gripping technology, so the pillow won’t gradually slip into the water with use. Ultra-soft and sooth to the touch, the bath pillow is manufactured from more than 2” of luxurious padded foam. Designed with shoulder and neck support in mind, these non-slip bath pillows are guaranteed to fit any size bathtub.

Clarisonic

Clarisonic’s line of sonic face and skin cleansing and exfoliating brushes are the perfect gift for the men, women, or teenagers on your list. Available with customizable brush heads manufactured specifically for reducing dark spots, treating sensitive skin, cleansing deep into pores, prepping the skin for shaving, or treating acne-prone skin, there’s something for everyone on your list in Clarisonic’s line of products. Clarisonic also sells gift sets so you can gift your friend or family member everything they’ll need to get started. Plus, if you sign up for auto-delivery of replacement brush heads, you’ll receive 20% savings and complimentary shipping.

Monogrammed Slippers

If you’re looking for a truly personalized gift, you can’t go wrong with a pair of monogrammed slippers- just double check the spelling of your friend or family member’s first and last name first! (We’re looking at you, Catie spelled with a “C”!) This gift is especially perfect for a newlywed couple and can easily be paired with a matching, monogrammed robe. There are a wide variety of monogrammed slippers available for sale on Etsy, and some can even be purchased in bulk or with a matching robe. For a gift that screams “luxury” head to Nordstrom, choose a pair of premium slippers, and have them monogrammed separately by a local seamstress.

LUSH Gift Set

LUSH is a company known for their line of fresh, all-natural, and organic bath, shower, and make-up products. If the friend or family member on your list is vegan or staunchly opposes animal testing, click on over to LUSH’s website as many of their products are vegan-friendly and every single one is cruelty-free. A perennial LUSH favorite is their line of bath bombs- a ball that you toss in the bath and is exploding with essential oils, flower petals, and tons of fizzy fun. Plus, if you’re too busy (or lazy!) to wrap the gift yourself, LUSH has a huge selection of pre-wrapped gifts that come fully wrapped and ready-to-gift.

Gift Guide: Bathroom Tech & Fun

Everyone has at least one tech geek in their life, so why not surprise them with a techy Christmas present instead of the usual gift card? The gadget-obsessed spend a lot of time thinking about the living room, kitchen, and home security, but an impressive bathroom is just as important as state-of-the-art kitchen appliances. Here are some Modern Bathroom-approved bathroom gadgets and gift ideas for the techies on your Christmas list. If you’re tired of gifting American Express gift cards, surprise your friends and family with one of the hi-tech bathroom gadgets below.

Simplehuman Sensor Mirror

You’ve probably heard that natural light is the best type of light for the bathroom, but what if your friend or family member’s bathroom is sans windows or a skylight? The Simplehuman Sensor Mirror uses an innovative light system to stimulate natural sunlight so men and women alike can see their full color variation. Plus, the mirror automatically lights up when a user’s face approaches the mirror and, since the cordless mirror packs a long-lasting LED that can apparently last for up to 100 years, battery life won’t be a problem. With up to 5X magnification, the mirror will allow your friend or family member to see their entire face all at once or a specific feature in exceptional detail.

Kolibree Smart Toothbrush

Perfect for younger children on your list, the Kolibree Smart Toothbrush makes brushing teeth an enjoyable experience with games, coaching, and real-time feedback. The toothbrush syncs with free Android and iOS apps to keep kids motivated with games, collectable badges, and score levels. Plus, the app will actually teach the child how to brush their teeth properly using built-in 3D motion sensors. Weighing in at less than 2.5 ounces, the Kolibree Smart Toothbrush is compact enough to fit even the tiniest hands. Good brushing habits can limit trips to the dentist and cut back on costly dental expenses- something the child’s parents will be grateful for.

CTA Digital Pedestal Stand for iPad

We all have that one friend who takes their iPad with them everywhere- the bathroom included. To cut back on the ick factor, purchase them a CTA Digital Pedestal Stand for iPad- it’ll keep their hands free and even includes a built-in toilet paper roll holder. The elegant chrome pedestal won’t be an eye-sore in the bathroom, and is sure to seamlessly fit in with all types of décor. The Bendable 10” gooseneck tube allows for multi-directional adjustment, so your friend or family member can adjust the placement of the iPad accordingly. Note: this particular iPad holder is compatible with 2nd-4th generation iPads, and isn’t compatible with iPad Air or Mini.

Kohler Moxie Showerhead + Wireless Speaker

If your friend or family member enjoys listening to music in the shower, the Kohler Moxie Showerhead + Wireless Speaker maybe the perfect gift for them. It delivers up to 7 hours of music, news, and more by pairing wirelessly with a Bluetooth enabled device. In addition to providing great sound, the spray face features 60 angled nozzles that deliver the full-bodied spray that’s virtually expected from a Kohler showerhead. For the eco-conscious, the showerhead is available in a water-saving spray that lets you save water without sacrificing performance (or sound!) The attractive, streamlined design of the Kohler Moxie Showerhead is the most chic and useful way to listen to music while in the shower.

How to Make Your Own Soap

Making your own soap at home is easy, frugal, creative, and fulfilling. The process can be as easy or as complicated as you’d like, and is the only guaranteed way you can control what ingredients go into your soap, onto your skin, and into your body. Whether you’re looking for a more natural alternative to chemical-heavy commercial soap or are just a crafty person interested in a new creative adventure, making soap is a fun alternative to bar soap or liquid body wash.

Ingredients

The best thing about making your own soap is that you can not only control the scent, but the severity of scent as well. Whether you prefer a slight hint of rose or a strong serving of lavender in your soap, you can easily create it in your homemade soap with a bit of trial-and-error experimentation. As far as ingredients go, most can be found in your kitchen pantry:

  • 24 ounces of coconut oil
  • 38 ounces of vegetable shortening
  • 24 ounces of olive oil
  • 12 ounce sodium hydroxide, or lye
  • 32 ounces spring or distilled water
  • 4 ounces of your favorite essential oil, such as peppermint, lemon, rose, or lavender
  • Wooden or heat-resistant spoon
  • Two-cup measuring cup
  • Stainless steel pot or glass bowl
  • Kitchen scale
  • Thermometer
  • Soap mold, shoebox, or wooden box

Although the recipe calls for 4 ounces of essential oil, you can increase or decrease the amount depending on your preferences. It’s recommended that first-time soap makers follow the above recipe one time before experimenting with the severity of scents.

Note: if you’ve never used lye before, read the safety warnings that are on the back of the box. Remember to wear safety goggles at all time when handling lye and raw soap, and never let lye touch your bare skin.

Mix the Ingredients

Measure 12 ounces of lye, and pour the lye into a two-cup measuring cup. Measure 32 ounces of cold water, and pour the water into a large, non-aluminum container, such as a stainless steel pot or glass bowl. Add the lye to the water, stirring gently with a spoon until the lye is completely dissolved. Be sure to open the windows or turn on your stove’s exhaust fan, as the fumes can be overwhelming. Set the mixture aside, allowing it to cool.

While the lye and water mixture is cooling off, measure the oils: use a scale to weigh out 24 ounces of coconut oil, 38 ounces of vegetable shortening, and 24 ounces of olive oil. Combine the oils into a large stainless steel pot on the stove on low-medium heat. Once the oils are combined and dissolved, remove the pot from the heat.

Once the lye reaches 95-98 degrees Fahrenheit and the oils are the same or a lower temperature, add the lye in a slow, steady stream into the oils. Mix for about 15 minutes, or until your spoon leaves a visible trace behind it. Add 4 ounces of essential oil, mix, and pour the soap into your mold.

Pour & Cure the Soap

If you don’t own a soap mold, you can use a soapbox – just make sure it’s lined with parchment paper. Leave the soap covered, undisturbed, and out of air drafts for 24 hours. After 24 hours, uncover the soap and let it sit for another 12 hours. If you measured and mixed accurately, the soap may have a light layer of white ash-like substance on top. This is harmless and can be scraped away. If the soap has a deep oily film on top or has white or clear pockets in it, it cannot be used and should be discarded.

Once the soap-making process is complete, remove the soap from its casing and cut the soap into bars. Set the soap on top of parchment paper on a flat surface for two weeks to allow the soap to fully dry. Turn the soap over after two weeks to let it dry on the other side. Once the soap has been ‘cured’ for one month, use it in your home the way you would any store-bought soap or wrap it as a homemade present for your friends.

Christmas Gift Guide: Bathroom Tech & Gadgets

Everyone has at least one tech geek in their life, so why not surprise them with a tech-centric Christmas present? The gadget-obsessed spend a lot of time thinking about the living room and kitchen, but an impressive bathroom is just as important as a modern living room. Here’s some of the coolest gadgets and tech gift ideas for the techies on your Christmas list – if an American Express gift card just won’t cut it, surprise them with one of these hi-tech bathroom gadgets.

Withings Smart Body Analyzer Scale

Although you should think twice about the message you’re sending before giving someone a bathroom scale, this scale is perfect for that health-conscious techie in your life. The Smart Body Analyzer scale provides high-accuracy weight and body fat measurements, and allows you to track your weight and muscle mass over time from a computer, tablet, or smartphone. The scale has automatic user recognition, and can also track fat mass, heart rate, and indoor air quality. Whether they’re into running, weight loss coaching, cardio fitness, or activity or calorie tracking, the Smart Body Analyzer scale recognizes up to eight users and can sync with popular apps like My Fitness Pal and Run Keeper.

Weather Reporting Shower Mirror

If you’ve ever tried to research the weather on your phone while in the shower, you’ll understand the convenience of a mirror that delivers a current weather report while you shower. Now, whoever receives this gift won’t have to waste any time deciding what to wear – they’ll have an idea as soon as they set foot out of the shower or bath. The unit’s backlit LCD panel displays indoor/outdoor temperature, humidity levels, and a complete weather forecast. The Weather Reporting Shower Mirror includes storage space for two razors and shaving cream, and includes an alarm clock and calendar.

Squatty Potty

Although the Squatty Potty isn’t a piece of modern technology per se, this piece of equipment will redefine your gift recipient’s idea about healthy toilet posture. The product is intended to mimic the natural ‘squatting’ position which humans have used while using the restroom for millennia – until the advent of the modern toilet. In doing so, your colon is able to empty quickly and completely, without unnecessary exertion or strain. Touted by medical professionals and radio personalities alike, the Squatty Potty is one of the most health-conscious ways to use the restroom. The functional and durable product is easily hidden, affordable, and can be purchased in white or bamboo designs.

AquaNotes

Perfect for the deep-thinkers, busy moms, college students and aspiring writers in your life, the AquaNotes waterproof notepad ensures that no more great ideas go down the drain due to lack of a functional pen and paper in the shower. This convenient method of note-taking allows users to make notes during a shower or bath without having to worry about soggy paper. With AquaNotes, on-the-go families can leave notes for each other, artists can doodle while in the shower, and writers and inventors can quickly jot down any brilliant ideas that may come to them while relaxing in the tub.

Bathroom Accessories: The Best of the Best

Life’s all about the little things – crisp bed sheets, clean towels, a new bottle of your favorite shampoo, and long showers where the hot water doesn’t run out. Whether you’re looking for a chic update to your guest bath or are putting the finishing touches on a total bathroom renovation, here’s some of our favorite bathroom accessories you’re sure to fall in love with. From stylish shower curtains to aromatic candles, you’ll find it all right here.

Hancock Large Rubber Vase

Ideal for bathrooms frequented by small children and guests, these rubber vases are both stylish and practical. While the material gives the impression of fragile ceramics, these rubber vases won’t shatter to pieces when accidentally knocked over. Available in colors that include black, red, and green, this 8”x 7” vase is a foolproof way to display bouquets of flowers cut fresh from the garden.

Smooth Antique Votive

These antique votive holders are the perfect way to welcome fall into your home. The subtle ribbed texture makes for a beautiful display day or night, and can easily be cleaned with a soft, dry cloth. Available in gold and smoked and in three different sizes, these votive holders can hold more than just candles – flowers, knick-knacks, cotton balls…use your imagination!

Icon Bath Trays

Perfect for bathrooms with an antique vanity or traditional feel, these icon bath trays come in three different patterns: pig, bunny, and fox. Guaranteed to bring a bit of character to your countertops, these ceramic bath trays feature fun designs and are super functional. Whether you use them as a soap dish or place your rings on them while you wash your hands, these are the perfect accessory for your bathroom.

Apothecary Shower Curtain

Whether you’re a barber by trade or simply love the design, the apothecary-themed print of this shower curtain is perfect for a bathroom dominated by males. The curtain itself is biodegradable and made from polyethylene vinyl acetate (PEVA), so you’ll be eco-friendly and fashion-forward at the same time. So, what are you waiting for? Surprise that special man in your life with this masculine shower curtain.

Duffy’s Brew ESB Shampoo & Conditioner

Crafted from medium-bodied beer from Elysian Brewing Co., this shampoo and conditioner set is perfect for self-proclaimed beer snobs. The mineral-rich hops, malt and barley found in Duffy’s Brew ESB Shampoo and Conditioner will naturally add body and shine to your hair. The products are sulphate, paraben, and phthalate free, contain no artificial colors, and are not tested on animals.

NEST Wasabi Pear Candle

Infused with the essence of Wasabi, this candle is a Lavish Body + Home top seller and staff favorite. With Anjou pear and fresh, ozonic watery notes, this candle is made of premium, soft, cosmetic-grade wax to optimize burn and fragrance diffusion. Designed to complement the beauty of its surroundings, the glass vessel’s classic shape and modern stripe etching is sure to complement any bathroom décor.

Mr. Steam Essential Oils

What bathroom would be complete without a spa transformation? For over fifty years, Mr. Steam has been creating well-designed and durable steam products made of earth-friendly, water-based organic oils that don’t pose a hazard to you or the environment. With fragrances that include Invigorating Orange, Green Harmony, and Celestial Blue, you’re sure to find just the scent you’ve been looking for.

Father’s Day: Bathroom Gadgets for Dad

Whether your dad is technologically savvy or new to the tech game, these bathroom gadgets are guaranteed to make the perfect Father’s Day gift, no matter his experience level. Forget about embarrassing him with another funky tie or cliché Hallmark card, and really put some thought into his gift this year. Here’s some ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

Heated Shaving Cream Dispenser

With a heated shaving cream dispenser, your dad’s favorite foam or gel will be warmed for a luxurious, close shave each and every morning. The product works with virtually any brand of foam or gel, and even comes with two separate nozzles. With an attractive, chrome-like appearance, the design of this shaving cream dispenser is sure to blend in with virtually any bathroom design. Setting up the dispenser is simple: use the included tool to pop the top off any standard can, attach the proper nozzle, adjust the heating preference, and in about two minutes the heated gel or foam will be ready to dispense.

The iPad Musical Shower Curtain

If you’d like to turn your dad’s shower into a media-rich bathing event, get him this iPad shower curtain. This shower curtain comes with built-in speakers and a waterproof pocket for an iPad. The shower-facing side of the pocket is made of touch-enabled material so he can navigate through a movie, jump from song to song on his favorite playlist, or even take a call while washing his hair. The integral audio cable of this product connects an iPad, iPhone, Android phone or MP3 player to two speakers in the upper left and right hand corners of the curtain, so he’ll never be bored in the shower ever again.

Single-Handed Soap Dispenser

If your dad’s a bit of a self-proclaimed germaphobe, he’ll love the unique design of this soap dispenser that can be operated with the back of one hand. To use, your dad will just have to place his hand into the C-shaped opening and press down firmly to dispense soap onto his fingers or into the palm of his hand. The dispenser is easy to fill and clean, comes with a soap-level indicator so he’ll never have to worry about running out of soap, and is suitable for all types of liquid hand soap. Additionally, this single-handed soap dispenser will keep the top of the pump cleaner and more hygienic.

Eco-Friendly Water Pebble

For the eco-conscious dad, this palm-sized pebble will take the guesswork out of water conservation by tracking exactly how much water he’s using during his daily shower. Programming the water pebble is easy: simply click the restart button on its base and place it near the shower drain. The pebble will measure his water usage and will flash future finishing times against this benchmark, reducing suggested stop times by 5-7 seconds each time he showers. Before your dad knows it, he’ll be enjoying shorter showers and conserving water in the process.

Towel Spa Towel Warmer

For dads who live in exceptionally cold areas of the United States (or those who just prefer to stay warm after a shower), this towel warmer will produce toasty towels, robes, and small blankets in just a few minutes. Traditional towel warmers take up to twenty minutes to work, but this product will warm your dad’s towels in less than six minutes – more than enough time for him to hop in the shower and enjoy a warm towel upon completion. This towel warmer is small enough to move from room to room, and can conveniently fit on dad’s bathroom counter. Something tells us mom is going to love this one, too!

Four Spa-Inspired Gift Ideas for Mother's Day

Mother’s Day is just around the corner. For most of us, this usually means hunting down a last-minute gift and scribbling sentiments of love and appreciation in a mass-produced card. This year, do something a little different by going the extra mile and showing your mom how much she really means to you. While a luxurious day at the spa is a popular gift for mothers, help her create a spa-like atmosphere at home instead with these bath accessories perfect for any mom. Pick and choose which you think she’d prefer, or combine them all into an oversized gift basket that’s sure to make her smile.

1) Luxury Spa Robe
No spa day would be complete without a robe that exudes luxury and comfort. Offered in traditional, kimono and wrap designs, and in materials that include velour, terry cloth, and cotton, you’re sure to find a Luxury Spa Robe that will match your mom’s style and personality. No matter which design or color you choose, their robes are built to last and will evoke the same relaxing sensation she’ll get at a luxury hotel or spa. As an added bonus, ground shipping at LuxurySpaRobes.com is free on orders that exceed $100 and there’s a 30-day money back guarantee.

2) Bliss Fabulips Treatment Kit
This four-piece lip-conditioning set includes a foaming cleanser, sugar lip scrub, instant lip plumper, and softening lip balm. After just a few uses, your mom's lips will be fuller, softer, and more beautiful than ever before. Designed to lift impurities and remove dead skin, her lips will reach new levels of moisture and health. For women concerned about lines around the lips, Bliss Fabulips may help reduce the appearance of fine lines, as well. And, with a $74 value for just $45, you might just have enough cash left over to treat your mom to a beautiful Sunday brunch.

3) Flavor Infuser Water Bottle
With this flavor-infusing water bottle, anyone can be a mixologist. Whether your mom likes her water with lemon, strawberries, or mint, this sleek water bottle will infuse her water with flavor in just a few minutes. Now, mommy dearest can treat herself to a refreshing, mid-day pick-me-up after a trip to the gym, or a soothing mint and chamomile concoction while relaxing in the bath. Not only will you be giving mom a delicious treat, but you’ll be treating the environment as well – this sleek, glass bottle will reduce her dependence on plastic water bottles!

4) Crabtree & Evelyn ‘Hand Therapy’ Box Set
This beautiful box of 12 ultra-moisturizing hand lotions is guaranteed to nourish and pamper your mom’s skin. With eclectic scents that range from avocado, olive oil, and basil to pomegranate and grape seed, this box set is the perfect gift for the one you love. With ingredients that include shea butter and macadamia nut oil, her hands will be noticeably softer and smoother with each use. Not only is the Crabtree & Evelyn ‘Hand Therapy’ Paint Tin Box Set a great value, but mom can re-use the tin to store other items once she’s used all the lotions.