Before I jump into today’s blog, you will notice in many of the pictures, I had a lovely assistant today; my 15 year old granddaughter Cassidy. She is homeschooling this semester due to COVID, so once her work was done the other day, she was able to help with this project. It is so much easier to take pictures when you don’t have to hold the items yourself, not to mention much more fun to do a project with someone else. Thank you, Cassidy!
Recently I posted a blog about using up some of my fresh herbs before winter sets in by making a batch of herb butter. You can read that post here if you missed it Using up Fresh Herbs…. Today, I want to share another idea to use herbs that is practical, relaxes you, but is not for the kitchen. Intrigued? Well, stay tuned!
In addition to our herb garden, we also have a small patch in our back yard that has a couple of different types of lavender plants. This time of year, they are almost past their flowering prime and dried, making this the perfect time to pick them and use them to make lavender and rosemary bath salts. They are, however, still covered with bees and butterflies as you can see in the pictures! Scented salts are easy to make and will make your bath feel and smell divine. In fact, these bath salts are so special, that they would make a nice DIY gift for the upcoming holidays. What woman wouldn’t want to get a gift that makes them feel like they are at a spa?
To make the bath salts, you will need equal parts of course kosher salt and Epsom salts, combined in a large bowl. For one of the batches today, we used Pink Himalayan salt in place of the kosher sea salt, just to make them pretty and add a different texture. Do not replace the Epsom salts with something else, however. To the salts, add dried lavender buds and fresh rosemary, both stripped from the stems. For best results, pre-chop the rosemary, then add the chopped rosemary and lavender to a small food processor until it is in small pieces. The last thing you want is to clog your drain with large chunks of herbs and flowers! If desired, a few drops of essential oils can be added to further intensify the fragrance. Eucalyptus and lavender are nice additions. Stir all ingredients until completely combined.
These scented bath salts not only smell great, but have health benefits as well. Epsom salts, or Magnesium Sulfite, has long been shown to help with relief of aches and pains, and also makes a natural skin exfoliator that leaves the skin feeling soft. The smells of lavender and other essential oils are known for their ability to relieve stress, as well as calming sleep properties. And the best part is that these ingredients are relatively inexpensive, making them great for large batches and gift giving.
The secret to longevity of these bath salts is to keep them stored in an air-tight container. Perfect styles for this purpose are clamped jars that have rubber gasket seals, or mason jars with seals and rings. It is also a great way to upcycle old pickle or jelly jars. In the case of the mason jars, they are perfect for gift giving, especially when enhanced with some fresh eucalyptus leaves placed on the inside to make the salts even more scented and beautiful. Tie a ribbon around the top, make a cute tag with instructions (1/4 cup to a running bath), add a pretty little scoop, and you have just created a lovely gift. I could see these as a nice take-home gift at a bridal or baby shower. And shhh, don’t tell anyone, but these may show up under our tree this year as gifts for family and friends.
In the midst of a pandemic, most of us have felt a little frazzled at one time or another. When is it going to end? Will it ever end?One way to counteract all of this uncertainty is with some self-care and pampering. Exercise, rest, and relaxation are all important components to keep a healthy perspective. When it comes time for your next bath, just add one or two scoops of these divine bath salts to the water, sit back, relax, and enjoy the indulgence of an aromatherapy experience. As you feel your stress levels drop, just remember…you may not only need this, you deserve this!