I have a confession to make. I love baths.
I'm not sure why, but I would chose a bath over a shower almost any day. I don't know if this stems from happy memories as a child 'being a mermaid' in Grandma's bath, or the year I spent singing in Mainland Europe where there was only a shower in our accomodation and I longed for a bath, or that a bath stirs up thoughts of luxury in my mind.
Over the years I've probably spent a small fortune on all sorts of heady smelling bath products, but they never quite measured up to my expectations. The scent disappeared quickly, my skin was regularly left quite dry, and I often failed to feel like I was experiencing the incredible luxury of Cleopatra's baths no matter how much money I spent.
Epsom Salt is named after a spring at Epsom in Surrey, England, where the natural mineral was discovered in the water. Epsom salt is not actually salt, but a naturally occurring mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate.
Epsom Salt baths have been linked to a myriad of health benefits such as detoxification, resolving magnesium deficiency, reducing bloat, improving lacklustre hair and so on. The conclusion from a study looking at the absoption of magnesium when bathing in Epsom Salt for at least 12 minutes was 'Bathing in Epsom salts is a safe and easy way to increase sulfate and magnesium levels in the body.'
There are some sceptics out there who believe that the hard scientific evidence in regard to Epsom Salt benefits are in fact pretty loose. All the same, I would much rather bathe in an Epsom Salt bath than in a chemical filled commercial 'bubble bath' (More on that another time).
I first started using Epsom Salt some time ago during a mad fitness phase I had embarked on. I'd read on some forum that soaking in the bath with Epsom Salt dissolved in the water could help reduce post workout aches - commonly known as DOMS or Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. It seemed to work, although i did miss those wonderful scents that spill from the bathroom when drawing a bath. (Epsom Salt doesn't really smell of anything). So I set out to rectify this with essential oils.
Here's another confession, I love my sleep. Even I can admit I am AWFUL when I haven't slept. Lavender and Chamomile have been used in aromatherapy to induce relaxation & sleep for years and years - plus they smell divine!
So here's how I make really easy (& quick) bedtime bath salts:
You will need:
1 cup of Epsom Salt
1/2 cup of Bicarbonate of Soda
8 drops of Lavender Essential Oil
4 drops of Chamomile Essential Oil
(Optional: 1 tbsp of dried lavender - this is smells amazing but creates a bit of a mess in the tub!)
How to Make It:
Place the Epsom salt and baking soda into a mixing bowl and combine.
Add the essential oil and combine again.
Place the mixture into an airtight glass jar.
Simply add 1/2 cup of the mixture to the bath whilst water is running (not when bath is drawn as the salt needs time to dissolve).
Lay back, relax & enjoy!
What combinations & scents do you love? I'm constantly dreaming up new ones!
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