This deep into Winter Quarter, we’ve all been on the brink of a breakdown at some point due to stress, seasonal affective disorder or the constant onslaught of the flu on the student body. I am, by no means, an exception. That’s why I wanted to find a place to unwind and get back in touch with my needs, where I could rediscover myself and find some semblance of inner peace. Immediately, I thought of the showers at Mudd Library.

Rumor has it, they exist so that cramming students can study from dusk to dawn without having to go home to shower. Though this sounds a little depressing, few people know how incredibly fancy they are. Like, swanky slate-tiled Scandinavian spa fancy. I thought to myself, why should these showers only be used to facilitate the psychic pain of students when I could just use them for personal enjoyment? In that spirit, I decided to pay Mudd a visit and give myself a full spa treatment.

Don’t get me wrong – north campus is not my natural habitat. As a mere Medill student, I find people with carefully-defined career goals, lucrative majors and math skills incredibly intimidating. The weather outside didn’t make the trek up north any more appealing either. But I live in CRC, and the bathrooms on my floor look like the set of a horror movie. So, donning my crocs, flannel pajamas, and shower bag, I braved the cold and hiked up.

I called up my friend Isabella, and we rendezvoused in the lobby around noon. We trekked upstairs with our luxurious vestments and ample supplies and secured two comfortable chairs behind the computers. Then, I went to the shower to kick things off.

It did not disappoint. First of all, it was so big that I could’ve fit the  entire half of my dorm room in there and still had space for my roommate to leave all his things on the floor. Second, the lighting was impeccable. When I flipped the switch, it reverse-dimmed over the course of about ten seconds, as if the room was waking up after a long, invigorating nap. And the shower itself feels like magic – you can adjust the water pressure and temperature with ease. There’s even a handheld nozzle available, if you’re into that.

The next step? Facials. We got settled in at our little nook by the study carrels and got started, me with an old clay mask I found in the bottom of my closet and Isabella with a Pacifica sheet mask (a brand she highly recommends) from Target. Then we relaxed and let the rejuvenation begin.

After about fifteen minutes, I removed my mask and finished things off with a manicure—courtesy of Isabella, since I wasn’t going to court disaster like that on my own. Besides, her talent is undeniable.

After all of this much-needed pampering, I think it’s safe to say we were both feeling refreshed, renewed, and ready to seize the afternoon.

It can be easy to slip into bleak routines and forget about taking time for yourself here at Northwestern, especially right now. It’s important to let go of stress and fill your life with things you enjoy – do a yoga class at SPAC, get some custard at Andy’s before it closes or watch the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before sequel no matter how derivative it is. The whole world can be your spa. So treat yourself.