Ease neck aches with moist heat, says Steve Ellis, the lead massage therapist at the Four Seasons Resort and Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona. Soak a hand towel in water and wring it out, then warm the towel in the microwave for 60 seconds. To protect skin from direct heat, place a dry towel on your neck, then roll up the heated towel and lay it on top. Gently rotate your head back and to the sides as the heat works its way into your neck. You can also drape a warm, moist towel across a sore back to soothe it.
Dab on some peppermint oil for a great natural pick-me-up, says Sasha Lefort of New Orleans' Ritz-Carlton Spa, where the towels are subtly scented with peppermint and guests are offered peppermint oil to inhale after a massage if they feel congested. (You can find essential oils at health-food stores or beauty sites like TheBodyShop.com.) Dot on your temples to relieve post-carpool headache, or place a few drops in the corners of your shower and turn on the hot water to help clear your head -- and your sinuses.
De-puff your sleep-deprived eyes with cotton balls soaked in water and left in the freezer until icy cold. For an even more effective treatment, steep the cotton balls in green tea before you pop them in the freezer, as they do at the New Orleans Ritz-Carlton Spa. Caffeine in tea helps reduce water retention in the eyelids, says Lefort.
Skin that glows
Enjoy a sweet and easy body scrub: Bring a cup of sugar with you into the shower, wet your skin, then turn off the water and apply the sugar all over, gently massaging it into your skin. Turn the water back on and rinse. The sugar dissolves easily and won't leave grit on the shower or bath floor, says Kenneth Ryan, spa director at the Willow Stream Spa at Fairmont Turnberry Isle in Aventura, Florida.
Try dry body brushing to smooth rough spots, increase your circulation, and make you feel good inside and out, says Ann Brown, director of Spa Shiki at the Lodge of Four Seasons in Lake Ozark, Missouri. All you need is a body brush. Starting at your feet and working up, gently brush your body in a stroking motion toward your heart. Follow with a bath or shower and a rich moisturizer.
Make an easy, effective face mask by blending an egg white with the juice of half a lemon. Leave it on for 15 minutes before rinsing. This instantly brightens and tightens your skin, says Sasha Lefort, spa manager at the Ritz-Carlton Spa in New Orleans.
Leesa Chalk Suzman is Parenting's beauty director and the mom of two daughters, 5 and 3.