When Contented Comfort first started, we sold bath salts and fizzy tabs along with our soap. You might notice neither of those items are available anymore.
Unfortunately, some unscrupulous folks decided to disguise the drugs they were trying to sell as packets of bath salts about a year after we opened. This led to numerous people asking, sometimes seriously and sometimes jokingly, how we were able to sell jars of bath salt at every event we attended. It didn't take long for us to get sick of explaining the difference between the drug pretending to be bath salts and actual bath salts. (I mean seriously, if you try snorting real bath salt, all you're going to do is burn your sinuses and probably end up smelling whatever fragrance they had for the next few weeks. It's chunks of salt with fragrance and sometimes skin soothing oils added. That's it.) That fatigue coupled with the steep drop in sales for the product caused us to stop making them.
However, they're a good thing to have on hand for when your muscles are aching, and they're easy to make. So why not show you how to make your own for our first bath and body DIY tutorial?
The only things you absolutely need is Epsom salt, regular table salt, a gallon sized plastic bag, a bowl, a little water, an airtight container to keep your salts in, and some kind of skin safe fragrance oil. You can get various essential oils at any health food store, and you can ask the employees about whether or not they are skin safe and can be used neat or not. Do not just go down the diffuser aisle at Walmart and grab any of the oils there! Most aren't skin safe.
"Fancier" salts such as Dead Sea salts and mineral salts can be used, but like a lot of skin safe fragrance oil blends, they can be pricy or difficult to find if you aren't a bath and body manufacturer buying in bulk. Epsom salt is made up of chunks of magnesium sulfate. Magnesium acts as a muscle relaxant, so Epsom salts work really well on their own. You'll want to add a bit of regular table salt to help prevent clumping.
Witch hazel, corn starch, and baking soda are good add ins if you want to add skin soothing elements to your bath salt.
Start by gathering all of your materials. To make an eight ounce jar of salts you will need just under one cup Epsom Salt, 1/4 cup table salt, a tablespoon or two of corn starch and/or baking soda (optional), a couple tablespoons of water, a tablespoon or two of witch hazel (optional), and a few drops of an essential oil of your choice. (Replace a tablespoon of water with warmed coconut, grape seed, or jojoba oil if your essential oil needs a carrier for safety.)
Measure out your dry ingredients and pour them into your sealable bag. Measure your wet ingredients into a separate container and mix well.
Don't go by the measurements in the photos. I was making a huge batch for the whole family to use this spring and summer when the pictures were made. This is about four to six times what you'll need for a single batch.
Pour your wet ingredients onto the sides of the bag, not directly onto the salts. Seal the bag and shake vigorously to coat the salts.
Pour your salts into the bowl and leave them uncovered to dry. Stir the salts every couple of hours, making sure to break up any clumps and turn them over, until they are completely dry.
Store your bath salts in an airtight container until ready to use.
I didn't add anything about adding color here because, once again, the materials can be pricy or difficult to come by in the amounts needed for personal use. Please don't use food coloring or other dyes. Not all are skin safe, and they'll stain.
That's all there is to making this simple luxury. Many variations are possible, but you can make a basic version with just Epsom salt, table salt, a couple teaspoons of water, and a few drops of your favorite skin safe essential oil. (Lavender and lemongrass are both wonderful.)
If you have any questions, please ask them in the comment section below, and I'll be happy to answer them. And while you're there, take a moment to tell me what other DIYs you would like to see.