Somedays I feel stressed, tired and overworked, but I always include time for a bath a few nights a week. It is my sensuous retreat from the long busy day and connects me with nature’s beauty. Leaving me calm and fully centered.
If you only have 20 minutes once a month to devote to a bath, you are doing great! Light some candles, set the tone with soft music, sip on tea, bring in some healing crystals and soak in a bath of herbs, oils, and salts. Once you create your oasis you will be excited to make it a weekly ritual.
Benefits of a Bath
Bathing is an ancient healing, therapeutic, magical, and pleasurable experience. It is sometimes the perfect medicine for whatever ails you. Baths have been known to promote restful sleep, relax tense/sore muscles, open pores, help with digestion, assist in detoxification, immune support and soften skin.
Stress is extremely dehydrating and can cause inflammation and nervousness, but can also be taxing on the kidneys. When you are stressed out you are over stimulating the adrenal glands and kidneys. A bath, along with a lifestyle change that aids in managing the stress, can be very beneficial. Mix salts, oils, and herbs in the bath to help nourish the skin as well as hydrate the body.
Did you know that one of our skin’s jobs is to regulate body temperature? A good way to relax and calm the nervous system is through maintaining a constant body temperature. While you soak in a warm bath you are relieving stress because the body’s temperature remains the same while you are submerged in the water.
Plus, up to 80% of Americans are not getting enough magnesium in their diets. This has resulted in 22 medical areas that magnesium deficiency triggers or causes, all of which have been scientifically proven. Some of these areas include heart disease, depression, diabetes, migraines, etc. There are a few ways to improve your magnesium status and one of these ways is to take baths regularly with salt.
How to Create Your Herbal Bath Oasis
1. Put the kids to bed, make sure the dog doesn’t need out, and tell you partner to give you some time to relax.
2. Fill the tub with warm/hot water and add your salt blend of your choice, mixing with your hand. Salts are very beneficial to the skin because they add trace minerals that absorb into your skin. Salts also help release toxins from the body.
o Choose from one or all of the following: pink Himalayan salt, dead sea salt, Epsom, black lava salt or sea salt
3. If your herbs are ground into a powder you can add them to the bath directly. When they are ground I use a 1-2 teaspoons. If you use the dried herb (leaves, petals, roots, stems or bark) then put them in a muslin bag and let the water run over them. You can also use the bag as a washcloth to rub on your skin. The bag can usually last 2-3 baths, depending on the choice of herbs.
o Here are some herbs to choose from depending on what healing properties you are wanting to address: roses, calendula flowers, lavender flowers, peppermint leaf, chamomile flowers, oat tops, passionflower, comfrey leaf, hops, cleavers, ginger root, holy basil leaf, lemonbalm leaf, red clover blossoms, rosemary leaf, violet leaf.
4. Next mix your essential oils. I always use a carrier oil when I add essential oils to the bath to act as a binder (salts and herbs can be the binder too). I like to use my Birch Botanical Spa Bath & Body Oil.
o Here are a few great aromatherapy choices: lavender, rose, chamomile, calendula, peppermint, rosemary, geranium, grapefruit, orange, fir, cleavers, oat tops, ginger, jasmine, and ylang ylang.
5. Other ingredients you may want to add to your bath for extra skin softening benefits:
o Milk powders, magnesium flakes, clays, and baking soda
Most importantly, relax and enjoy some quiet time, even if you just draw a hot bath and nothing else!