How To Get Your Mojo Back In 24 Hours
Illustration by Mr Calum Heath
Hey there, friend. Are you suffering from a case of lost mojo? Symptoms may include low mood, depleted energy and a sad, grey man staring back at you in the mirror. The reasons could be myriad – a stressful week at work, yet another bout of Covid. And there’s nothing like heartbreak to leave your self-esteem in tatters and your personal hygiene routine in disarray.
A prolonged period of depression or ill health is best addressed by a medical professional (not a masseuse). But for those short-term slumps we all experience – or while you wait for an appointment, at least – taking the time to invest in your wellbeing can be just the thing to restart your internal engine.
So confident are we in the restorative power of self-care that we’ve compiled a guide to turning things around in just 24 hours. Block out your diary, book in for the treatments below and you’ll be back to your peachiest, perkiest self in no time.
Fight it out
45 to 60 minutes
There is a reason why medical professionals prescribe exercise as the first step in tackling low mood. Dragging yourself to the gym and getting your sweat on might be the last thing you want to do when you’re mentally, physically and spiritually drained, but just think about all those feel-good endorphins that will be coursing through your body afterwards.
Our mojo-restoring activity of choice is boxing. Not only does it promise a high-intensity full-body workout that will get your heart pumping and challenge your coordination, but it’s just a good way to release pent-up tension. “It’s great for relieving stress and frustrations and just improving overall wellbeing, productivity and focus,” says Mr Pete Liggins, founder of Box Clever Sports, which runs classes at 180 Health Club in London. Guided by former fighters turned fitness instructors, you’ll be put through your paces for 45 to 60 minutes with a range of anaerobic exercises and plyometric movements. Throw a few jabs at a punchbag after a tough few days and tell us you don’t feel a weight lift off your shoulders.
Can you handle the chill? Nothing will give you a jolt back to life quite like cryotherapy. Popular with elite athletes because of its ability to speed up muscle recovery, it’s also a surefire and speedy way to give your internal batteries a boost. “It’s a very similar feeling to cold-water swimming, if you’ve ever done it,” says Ms Sarah Benmerrah of 180 Health Club. “You’ll immediately feel buzzed and energised after treatment. And you’ll sleep like a baby in the evening.”
Post-workout, hop into the cryochamber, if you can brave it. At 180, members start out with a one-minute run at –60°C degrees to acclimatise to the cold, followed by three minutes at a positively arctic –110°C. “The thought of getting into a –110°C chamber is more jarring than the treatment,” says Benmerrah. “It feels a bit tingly at first, but then you start focusing on your breathing.” Benefits include injury relief, reduced anxiety and a much-needed energy boost, so it’s worth taking the plunge.
45 to 60 minutes
The ancient Chinese practice of acupuncture has long been used to treat pain, but it can also be harnessed for other purposes, including re-energising and delivering a mini facelift. Londoners in the know turn to Mr Ross J Barr, an acupuncturist and Eastern medicine expert with a clinic in Fitzrovia and a residency at Shoreditch House and Soho House’s countryside outposts. Acupuncture is brilliant way of “restoring a human being back to default settings”, he says.
Each patient is different, so it starts with a thorough consultation. “Nothing is irrelevant,” Barr says. “The aim is for us to piece together all the symptoms, together with a timeline of events, to really figure out what the root cause is.” Then it’s straight into being pricked (it’s painless). You can expect noticeable results even from the first session. Depending on your needs, Barr might combine a blend of traditional acupuncture and facial acupuncture, which aims to leave you “looking good as well as feeling good”. Think brighter eyes and more elastic skin, as well as a spring in your step.
Scrub away your woes
There is no better way to signify rebirth than by shedding a layer of skin. You can incorporate exfoliation into at your at-home routine, but for results that are step above, outsource it to the pros. The West Hollywood Edition hotel offers a 50-minute Renew treatment. More than a body scrub, it uses an array of techniques and skin-sloughing products to uncover a better, baby-soft version of you.
Body brushing stimulates blood circulation, skin tightening and lymphatic drainage. This is followed by a sea salt and seaweed scrub, which unclogs pores, evens skin tone and prevents ingrown hairs. Finally, you’ll be slathered in a layer of nutrient-rich algae-infused body butter, which will sink in even better, thanks to all that rigorous prep work. If you were in desperate need of self-esteem boost beforehand, emerging from the spa’s heated bed like a buffed and shined Greek statue should do the trick.
Drain your lymphatic system
60 to 90 minutes
“The lymphatic system is sometimes described as the underappreciated sibling of the circulatory system – like a network of rivers that run beneath our body,” says Ms Anna Zahn, founder of Ricari Studios, which has an outpost in NoMad London, as well as in hotels in New York and Los Angeles. “But unlike the circulatory system, there is no lymphatic ‘heart’, so without regular movement and stimulation, it’s prone to stagnancy.” If you’ve been struck down with flu, keeled over in a slump or sobbed so much your face has swollen, yours might be in a state of slumber.
An invigorating lymphatic massage, using Zahn’s buzzed-about Ricari Method, should be enough to jumpstart it. “Unlike more traditional massage techniques that focus on muscle tension, alignment or stretching, lymphatic massage is geared towards the inner mobility of fluids and blood circulation,” she says. No nodding off to whale sounds, here. Expect your face and body to be on alert mode with an Icoone lymphatic vacuum, compression therapy and laser stimulation, plus a round of infrared for good measure. An hour or so later, you’ll be rewarded with brighter skin and reduced bloating.
Get your glow back
The radiance that results from months of religious skincare can be swiftly snuffed out by stress and late nights. Booking yourself in with a skilled aesthetician can offer a shortcut to getting back on track. Not all facials are equal, but if you’re seeking maximum bang for your buck, check yourself in for a HydraFacial. Often favoured pre-events, but worth relying on whenever you need a pick-me-up, it gives your pores a thorough cleanse, drenches your skin with antioxidants and leaves you with that elusive lit-from-within sheen.
At 111 Harley St in London, which offers its own spin on the hydra-dermabrasion treatment, Aquafusion, patients can expect plenty of high-tech skin wizardry in the form of ultrasound, a cooling cryo wand and an oxygen gun. It’s customisable too, so you can throw in, say, a lactic acid peel for pigmentation or radiofrequency for anti-ageing. For optimum results, senior aesthetician Ms Rachael Myers recommends extending the glow with 111SKINs at-home products. (Its cult sheet masks are the next best thing if you can’t make it to the clinic.) Your internal health might not be 100 per cent recovered by the end of it, but your newly luminous complexion will say otherwise.