Alexi Duggins is at your mercy. So you decided to make him ‘improve’ his body tone and circulation
Clearly, the above photograph raises questions. Firstly: is that moron inside a freezer? Secondly: why is he naked? And thirdly: how come he looks like he’s dipped himself in glue and rolled around on a barber’s floor?
So, in order, here goes.
1) It’s not a freezer. It is the ‘snow paradise beauty treatment’at Shepherd Bush’s K-Spa, whose minus 15C temperature promises to ‘stimulate the body’s circulation’.
2) Given that you’re meant to take a sauna beforehand, I’m wearing swimming trunks.
3) I wish I knew.
Essentially, this is a spa recreation of the Finnish custom where you bake yourself in a sauna before chucking yourself into thenearest snowdrift. So, as I’m shown into the spa, I’m told to spend 15 minutes in a wooden box heated to ten degrees below the temperature at which water boils. And it’s… well, it’s like a sauna always is. My face drips like a sausage on a barbecue. Inhaling feels like someone’s sparked a lighter inside mynostril. And the seating slats are so scorching that I expect my bum to look like I’ve sat on a griddle pan. I last ten minutes. Then it’s time for the snow. ‘If you rub the snow on to your skin, it’s great for exfoliation,’ offers the spa manager. It’s also, it transpires, excellent for giving you an ice-cream headache if smeared on to your face. Each new handful is so agonising that I scream with the violence of a pensioner at a One Direction gig. After ten minutes, my whole body is juddering with the cold. There’s soon less feeling in my fingers than in one of George Osborne’s speeches. It’s not long before I flee, a shivering mess.
Was it worth it? Did I become toned? Was my circulation stimulated? Hard to say. When the headache goes, I feel quite relaxed.But in the following hours, I develop a curious shooting pain in my hand. ‘It’s called chilblains,’ offers one smart-ass colleague. Pretty sure it’s not. And anyway, I’ve come up with my own term for it. I call it: snow bother.
Where K-West Hotel & Spa, Shepherd’s Bush.
How much £25 hotel guests (£10, Mon-Fri from 8pm), £50 non-guests.