• Phebean Walters

Beauty in a Moroccan Bath House

Updated: May 12

The Hammam spa is an ancient health and beauty necessity to most North African and Middle Eastern cultures. It may be referred to as another name, but like Shakespeare said "What's in a name?"

Beginning thousands of years ago, ancient bath houses were continuously linked to ancient Greeks and Romans. Though the Romans are historically archived as great lovers of male-only bath houses 😉 they may have not been the true original founders of Hammams/bath houses.

A Hammam spa is a large sauna that specializes in detoxifying the body with steam, salt/mineral scrubs, messages for the face and body, as well as low impact exercise to flex the muscles. In Morocco, workers are paid very little to scrub and detoxify customers individually.

In my experience, I was a completely naked customer in an open room filled with others of the same gender. I sat on the wet sauna floor while being scrubbed. What felt like a Brillo pad covered with soap was a traditional wash scrub made out of a natural plant that resembles hay. The wash scrub both removed dead skin cells while massaging the body. The workers used firm and sometimes intense scrubbing techniques to massage the arms, legs, and back to improve blood circulation and scrub you clean.

Despite the brutal scrubbing which left me bruised and red, I felt good and like I lost a layer of skin. I probably did. However, after leaving the Hammam I felt lighter. I felt rejuvenated but cold. Within two days, my bruises started to fade and my skin glowed. My complexion was radiant and I felt energized. The scrubbing butt-naked in front of strangers was a small price to pay for beautiful skin and resetting my overall health.

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