I have written before about the benefits (and pleasures!) of using essential oils in the bath.
After all, people have been using aromatics in their baths for centuries.
Adding salts to the mix adds brings its own benefits. In fact sea bathing (bathing in salt water) was at one time prescribed as a healing remedy. People would travel to the seaside to bath in the waters and reap the health benefits. But these days we can do this in the comfort of our own home.
Making your own bath salts using essential oils adds another layer of benefit to what is already a healing practice. And can also make these as gorgeous hand-made gifts for loved ones.
Bath salts can be made using several different types of salt. Epsom salts or different grain sizes of sea salt can all be used. You can even mix two or more types together if you want to get creative!
Then you can give your creativity even more free reign by adding essential oils, clays, herbs or other botanicals to create a blend that is unique and beautiful. Tailor your blend to your own taste, or to that of the person you are making it for. For example, love Lavender? Why not use both Lavender Essential Oil AND complement this with some dried Lavender buds in your mix?
Almost any essential oil can be used to add to your bath salts. However, I do recommend looking carefully at the safety information for each essential oil and consider avoiding those which may be likely to cause skin irritation, particularly if the user has sensitive skin or allergies.
As for other ingredients, you are really only limited by your imagination (and resources!) One tip I would share is, though, is remember that when you add your mix to the bath the salt component of the mix will dissolve, but other parts, such as herbs, flowers etc, will not. So, when you are deciding what to add, consider how these ingredients will look floating on the surface of the water in the bath – some botanicals will look more attractive than others!
When choosing your essential oils, remember also that you will need some sort of dispersant to ensure that the essential oils will dissolve in the bath. If you don’t use a dispersant, the essential oils will just float of the surface of the water, which does have safety implications.
It is not uncommon to find online recipes that treat salts as a dispersant themselves, but we know that this is not correct. Yes, when you create your salt blend, the essential oils will mix through the salt. But you do need to remember that once the mix is added to a bath, the salt will dissolve in the water but the essential oils will not. It can be easy to miss seeing this, as the amount of essential oil compared to the volume of water in a bath is very small, and essential oils are mostly clear. However, trust me, they are still there! Essential oils will also float on the surface of the water, meaning that, if not correctly dispersed, they will come into direct contact with the skin of the bather as soon as they step into the water.
This problem is easily fixed by making sure that you mix your essential oils into a dispersant before adding this to the salt.
When it comes to the concentration of essential oil, I generally recommend using between 10 and 20 drops in total of Essential Oil to every 100g of salt. If making a blend for children, then reduce this to no more than 10 drops of essential oils to 100g of salt. (This is for children over the age of 2. I do not recommend these blends for babies or toddlers below this age.)
If you want to try making your own bath salts, here is a recipe to start you off.
How to Make Soothing Bath Salts
5 drops Lavender Essential Oil
4 drops Geranium Essential Oil
6 drops Mandarin Essential Oil
½ teaspoon (2.5ml) Essential Oil Dispersant
100g Epsom Salt (Magnesium sulphate)
Mix the Essential Oils and Dispersant in a glass or non-reactive bowl. (We don’t recommend plastic as this can retain the aroma of the essential oils.)
Add the salt to the bowl and mix thoroughly until the essential oil mix is dispersed through the salt.
Decant the mixture into a jar and screw on the cap.
To use – add 1-2 tablespoons to the bath and mix well to dissolve.
Tip – don’t forget to label your jar with the ingredients and the date you made it so you can reproduce your favourite blends!
If you want an easy way to get into making your own salts, check out our DIY Aromatherapy Bath Salts Kit - which includes everything you need to start making your own bath salts - just add your own selection of essential oils!
Have you tried making your own bath salts? Share your ideas, recipes or suggestions in the comments!