January 2008 Issue

Steaming Saké Soak
Long ago, when saké was entirely hand made, a monk visited a saké brewery and was astonished to discover all the saké producers had amazingly youthful, smooth soft hands and arms. This was due to the brewmasters exposure to the Saké steam and vapors while they worked. Even elderly men who would normally have has dark, leathery skin with sun and age spot damage had the hand of young boys. Soon word got out to the mama-san in charge of the Geisha houses. She ordered that the geisha women start to bathe in a hot steaming bath with added Saké. They soon started to notice how soaking in a hot bath with sake vapors made their skin soft, supple and renewed. Thus, this is how saké became a legendary beauty secret of Geisha's. Geisha's understood that to bathe in saké would keep their skin virginal, as if untouched by sun, pollution or and damage. Modern science now knows that this is due to the fact that saké contains natural, organic acids and sacharides (Malic acid, Lactic acid, Citric acid, etc.) that renew and soften the skin by gently peeling away old, dead skin cells. The vapors virtually open and deep "stream" clean the skins pores. In Japan, this is a popular end-of-the year bath that is said to help clear evil spirits and give way to a new beginning. This is my favorite Japanese bath; expensive but well worth it. Go ahead indulge, you deserve it!

Instructions for drawing your saké bath:

  1. While filling the tub with hot water, pour 1 quart saké under the running water.
  2. Immerse yourself and soak for 30-35 minutes.
  3. Using a washcloth, steam your face and limbs. (To steam your hair, wrap with a hot, steaming hand towel).
  4. Upon exiting, You will not believe the dirt and grime that this bath will draw out from your skin!
  5. Towel off and go straight to bed. The steam will warm the body and induce a sound sleep.
  6. You should awaken feeling fresh and energized with skin incredibly soft.
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