October 27, 2020

How many bath bombs does it take to save a relationship, create the perfect work environment, end everyday sexism, make more time for friends, and inspire a drop of daily joy in an otherwise dreary and monotonous existence?

Beth Cochrane, 28

Mr Big Bad Bathtime was written as a critique of the multi-million pound wellness industry. While self-care is an invaluable tool in supporting positive mental and physical health, it is necessary to distinguish between wellness practices/products which are useful, and those which are marketplace canon fodder. Wellness practices should never be a substitute for good living: we need a foundation of supportive relationships, a healthy work environment, and a safe home in order to promote positive mental health. A bath, no matter how bubbly, is not a substitute for good living. The global wellness industry is estimated to be worth trillions, with this value likely to rise during the Covid-19 pandemic. The journey of ‘lifestyle guru’ Gwyneth Paltrow – beginning her ‘homespun newsletter’, Goop, in 2008 to her current estimated personal wealth of £100 million – is indicative of the capitalistic issues with the industry as a whole; an industry that has no genuine stake in the health of the people it targets. Currently, the wellness trend is still enjoying its renaissance. While this is the case, I want my work to quietly prompt its readers to remember that self-care does not necessarily come with a huge price tag.

Mr Big Bad Bathtime, 2020