Bath nirvana

by Heather

Lavender fields

Recently I put together a few simple elements that I thought resulted in the most relaxing bath ever–so of course I wanted to share!

It all started when I came across a magazine article about magnesium, “the relaxation mineral.” Magnesium fights stress, improves sleep, and not having a magnesium deficiency makes you only half as likely to die as other people. Sounds good to me! If you’ve noticed twitching around one or both of your eyes when you get stressed, that’s a symptom of magnesium deficiency, as are insomnia, high blood pressure, sensitivity to loud noises, and–you may have noticed others suffering from this!–irritability.

I have some magnesium malate tablets (horse pills if I’m honest) that I take occasionally. (It’s difficult to get the timing right for optimal absorption, I find.) But then the article I was reading mentioned that I could simply take a bath with epsom salts and absorb magnesium through my skin. Aha! I pulled the carton of epsom salts out of the linen closet.

Package instructions on epsom salts often say to use 2 cups in a bath. I’ve found that’s far too much for my sensitive skin. In a hot bath (I like to run a bath just shy of as hot as I can stand), I have gotten excellent results with 1/3 to 1/2 cup epsom salts + 6 pumps of Dermalogica Stress Relief Treatment Oil, which includes lavender. If you have lavender essential oil, such as Aveda’s, you can substitute about a dozen drops. The oil balances out any drying effects of the salts. I like to soak in this bath for about 30 minutes, flipping over so all of my skin can participate!

The first time I tried this, I cannot tell you how mellow I was–and the effect was quite noticeable for at least 24 hours. It also noticeably improved the quality and depth of my sleep. At this rate, it’s possible I could become more laid-back than my herb-smoking uncle. (OK, on further thought, that’s probably not possible.) Maybe the answer’s been completely legal and lurking in an obscure aisle of the health & beauty section all along …

Peace out.

This post is illustrated with my SoulCollage card Lavender fields.

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