Thursday, September 30, 2010

Moroccan Hammam - DIY Procedures

A big part of Moroccan Hammam Bath is about scrubbing off all the dead skin on your body and nourishing the skin with Moroccan Black Soap (Beldi Soup).  It is a strangely invigorating experience, despite the rough scrubbing.  I have written about my experience in the following posts:
Authentic Moroccan Bath (Hammam) Experience
Marrakech - Hammam (Moroccan Bathing Experience)

I fell in love with the scrubbing, and started to DIY at home weekly after returning from Morocco.  I have also given my friends some of the items needed for the ritual, but I doubt they remember the scrubbing procedures so here's a detailed explanation:
What you need -
1. Moroccan Black Soap / "Beldi" Soup - traditionally made with Argan Oil from the Argan tree, it is highly nourishing while at the same time loosens up dead skin for exfoliation.  Sometimes Black Soap is made with olive oil.
2. Hammam globes / "Kessa" - an exfoliating glove with a rough texture.  Very important in the Hammam ritual to scrub off dead skin.
3. Pure 100% Argan Oil - while not a must, it does nourish your skin very well after the scrub.

These products are very inexpensive if you buy them in Morocco drugstores.  However, if, like me, you will not be traveling to Morocco any time soon, then you can purchase online from stores like Argan Oil Tree.

Procedures at home (note that it uses a lot of water, so it is not very environmentally friendly):
1. Wet your entire body in a hot shower for a minute or so.  Hot is the keyword.
2. Leave some hot water running (through the tap) in order to keep the shower stall steamy, while you step away from the running water and apply the black soap paste to your entire body from neck to toe, avoiding the face and the hair.
3. Let the paste stay on your body for around 5 to 10 minutes while you stay in the hot and steam shower stall.
4. Wash the paste off your body with warm or hot water.  Do NOT use soap.
5. Turn off the hot water.  Use your hand to wipe excess water off your body, then use the glove to scrub your body in small circular motion.  Feel the skin being scrubbed with your other hand: you should feel the dead skin being scrubbed off.  If not, then the glove or your body is too wet.  Keep scrubbing from neck (too rough for the face) to toe, and rinse your body as needed.
6. When done, apply Argan oil to your body to finish the procedure.  If you do not have Argan oil, you may use other nourishing body oil or moisturizer instead.  Your skin will feel soft and have a nice glow.

This procedure is ideally done weekly.  At least that's what Moroccan women do, and they have beautiful skin!  Argan oil is ultra rich in Vitamin E and essential fatty acids, increasingly known in the cosmetic world to be a highly nourishing oil for the skin.  If concerned, feel free to google and read about it.

1 comment:

  1. Amei todas as informações postadas, serão muito úteis pro meu futuro trabalho em Marrocos.
    Ana Paula M.S.Pfaffmann