Making Your Own Bath Salts At Home - Health - Skin Care

Making Your Own Bath Salts At Home   by Michael Vance

in Health / Skin Care    (submitted 2011-04-28)

There are a variety of reasons why more and more people are engaging in the hobby of making their own bath products at home.

Some people do it because the all-natural products they create are better for the environment than the chemical-laden commercial products found on store shelves. Others enjoy having the ability to customize their formulas for dry or sensitive skin, and still more simply enjoy the sense of accomplishment and pride they gain from making personal care products in their own kitchen.

One product which is becoming an increasingly popular one to make at home is bath salts.

Bath salts are beneficial in a variety of ways. It was discovered by the Chinese around 2700 A.D. that bath salts can help to ease the aching of joints and muscles associated with stress, physical activity, arthritis, or a variety of other maladies.

Hippocrates himself often used them to achieve this goal. Bath salts actually work by physically changing some of the properties of the water; it helps to reduce absorption of water by skin (which results in the unsightly "pruning" effect), softens callouses and aids with exfoliating them, soften the water, and make your body feel lighter by increasing the water's density.

The salts also soak up essential or fragrance oils, and help to retain the scent in the bathwater longer. It's easy and fun to make your own bath salts at home, and they can be as simple or as complex as you want them to be.

The basic ingredient for any type of bath salt is, obviously, salt. Several varieties of salt are used in making bath salts, however; iodized salt, or table salt, is very drying to the skin, so it is best to avoid it in favor of other types of salt.

Epsom salt is usually the main ingredient, followed by baking soda, and another type of salt - sea salt or borax are often used for this purpose. A great basic recipe for bath salts is:

3 parts Epsom salt

2 parts baking soda

1 part sea salt or borax

This recipe will make a basic bath salt blend, to which you can add essential oils, colorants, dried herbs, and other additives to make a variety of products.

Two additives which make a material difference in the quality of your final product are Natrasorb and dendritic salt. Dendritic salt is very fine, and therefore has greater surface area than regular salt; this means that it will help to retain colorants and fragrances better than Epsom or sea salt. Natrasorb is a tapioca starch that is hydrophilic and absorbs oils, so it retains fragrances and colorants like dendritic salt, and helps to reduce clumping.

As it dissolves in your bath water, it gives off bursts of fragrant oils and releases absorbed nutrients into the bath.

The best way to use both substances is to mix the essential and nutritive oils and colorants with them, and then mix them with the rest of the salts.