To talk about the hammam, its virtues… and the necessary advice on prudence, we met two passionate women: Anna Sindres is the founder of the Carlota Institute in Paris, renowned for years for its expert rituals; and Véronique Bonnefont, founder of the Les 100 Ciels hammam in Boulogne (and now in Paris and Strasbourg), recognized for her high standards and her passion for authenticity.
Objective relaxation first
“The first health benefit of the hammam is to breathe this eucalyptus mixed with steam, explains Anna Sindres. It does a lot of good for the body as well as the head. »Relaxation and conviviality are words that come back to all those who practice the hammam regularly.
Véronique Bonnefont adds: “ This is the big difference with the spa. The hammam is a place where you take your time. First in the lukewarm hammam, with humid heat which is the same as the body temperature, 37 degrees: you can stay there for a long time. Then we go into the hot hammam where the temperature can go up to 43 or even 44 degrees, and we therefore stay there for a shorter time. All this allows the body to detoxify, the first great health benefit of the hammam. ”
The classic route: hammam, exfoliation and massage
Let’s recap. First 45 minutes in the warm room, then 10 to 15 minutes in the hot room. The pores of the skin are completely open, “This is the moment when you pass the black soap on the skin, leave on for 5 minutes”, says Anna Sindres. Then comes the moment of exfoliation, the application of rassoul, and we rinse. The skin is then completely free of all its dead cells, it is incredibly soft.
How often should you practice this deep scrub? Maghreb women easily go there once a week. For European skin, lighter and thinner, once a month is sufficient.
The ingredients of the hammam
Eucalyptus essential oil : diffused with moist heat, it is beneficial for breathing, and it is also astringent. “Traditionally, we also put eucalyptus essential oil in black soap,” explains Véronique Bonnefont. Black soap : made from vegetable oils and olives (hence its color), it is known to deeply cleanse the skin. The rassoul is a natural clay, also used to purify the skin in depth. Rassoul can be used as a poultice, for the face or the body.
Some beauty tips
Associating a visit to the hammam with a beauty ritual is obvious. Moreover, many establishments offer a treatment card. Here are some suggestions:
- Sun tanning : going to the hammam just before going on vacation will allow the skin to tan evenly. Then, avoid going there as soon as you return from vacation, but rather wait a little while the skin begins to peel.
- Slimming : our two experts are formal, a hammam session alone cannot make you lose weight. “Of course, we sweat and if we step on the scale just after the hammam, we will have lost weight,” explains Véronique Bonnefont. But it’s just water that we are going to take back. On the other hand, it is excellent to do a slimming treatment in the wake of the hammam and the scrubbecause the whole body is much more receptive. ”
Watch out for traffic problems
First of all, a piece of common sense: in a hammam room, whether lukewarm or the hottest, you should feel good. At the slightest feeling of unease, you have to go out.
Among the contraindications to the hammam, it is necessary to cite people who suffer from severe asthma, those with heart problems, those who have a skin disease or a sexually transmitted disease, to avoid the risk of contamination by humidity.
Finally, for traffic problems, it is on a case by case basis. If they are mild and the person is satisfied with the lukewarm room, taking care to then take a cool shower to tighten the blood vessels, it may be possible. But in the case of a phlebitis, it is to be absolutely avoided.