Now that the weather is getting colder, hot baths are even more enticing after a long, hard day of work. Sometimes, there’s nothing you want more than to sink into a soothing, steamy bath full of scented bath salts. Of course, those bath salts sold at most stores are usually packed with overly strong, headache-inducing artificial fragrance – not exactly what you’re going for when all you want to do is relax and wind down. But making your own bath salts scented with pure essential oils is easy and allows you to customize them to your needs.
A quick note on Dead Sea salt: it’s not the most eco-friendly choice. While salt extraction from the Dead Sea is only a small factor in the shrinking of this renowned body of water, it still has an effect – and still has to travel halfway across the world. And, technically, Dead Sea salt is really no different from regular old salt. Epsom salt – also known as hydrated magnesium sulfate – is a better choice. It also packs a muscle-relaxing wallop, since magnesium sulfate acts as a sedative for the nervous system.
All you need to make your own bath salts is a mixing bowl, a spoon, an empty jar, salt, baking soda, essential oils, and any other additives you might like to use. I like including a little club moss, used by herbal healers to relieve muscle cramping. My personal favorite blend of essential oils includes ginger, clove and vanilla.
Combine about a cup of salt with a cup of baking soda, and add in several drops of essential oil (a little goes a long way!). You can also mix in a little bit of some moisturizing oils like olive or jojoba. Allow the mixture to sit overnight in the bowl, covered with a cloth, to let it dry completely, before putting it in a jar. Otherwise, it’ll solidify and be difficult to use.
You can pick up 5 pounds of Epsom salt from Mountain Rose Herbs for just $12. They’ve also got a wide range of essential oils, herbs, flower petals and other things you can add to your homemade bath salts to make them look and smell pretty!