If you’re anything like me, drawing a bath seems like much-needed therapy after a long day. I’m always on the constant lookout for ways to enhance the bath experience. On this quest, I discovered something I did not expect—the versatility of the simple bath salt. Bath salts come in handy for more than just exfoliating and cleansing your skin. But before we jump right in, let’s look at what exactly bath salts are and how they help your skin.



What are bath salts?
Bath salts have long been used as an easy and inexpensive way to treat mental and physical health ailments. Bath salts, which are commonly made from magnesium sulfate (Epsom salt) or sea salt, are easily dissolved in warm bath water and used for everything from stress relief to aches and pains.

Health benefits
Most of us use bath salts as a way to enhance a relaxing soak in the tub, but bath salts are believed to provide several health benefits for people with:

  • muscle pain and stiffness
  • stiff, aching joints
  • arthritis
  • circulation problems
  • headaches
  • anxiety and stress
  • skin conditions, such as eczema
  • dry and itchy skin

How to use bath salts
There are several ways to use bath salts, depending on what you want to treat.

Detox bath
A detox bath is generally made of Epsom salt. The minerals in a detox bath are believed to help remove toxins from the body to improve your health, relieve stress, treat constipation, and assist with weight loss.

Magnesium absorption is another important benefit of Epsom salt detox baths. This may be beneficial to those with a deficiency, such as people with fibromyalgia. A 2004 study of 19 participants found that 17 of them had increased levels of magnesium and sulfate in the blood following Epsom salt baths.

To make a detox bath using Epsom salt:

Use 2 cups of Epsom salt for a standard-size bathtub filled with warm water.
Pour the salt into running water to help it dissolve faster into the bath.
Soak in the tub for at least 12 minutes, or 20 minutes to treat constipation.
Adding essential oils, such as lavender or peppermint, can offer additional aromatherapy benefits, such as relaxation and improved mood.

Muscle aches
Bath salts can help with muscle aches by relaxing tense muscles and reducing inflammation.

To make bath salts for muscle pain:

Use 2 cups of Epsom salt for a standard-size bathtub of warm water.
Pour the Epsom salt into the running water to help it dissolve faster. Stirring the water with your hand will help dissolve any remaining grains.
Soak for at least 12 minutes.
Adding a few drops of diluted cinnamon bark essential oil may also help ease muscle pain. Cinnamon bark oil has a warming effect on the skin that some find soothing on sore muscles. A 2017 study also found it to be a promising anti-inflammatory agent.

Skin inflammation or irritation
Bath salts can be used to relieve skin inflammation and irritation caused by eczema, psoriasis, contact dermatitis, and athlete’s foot. The National Eczema Association recommends adding 1 cup of table salt to your bath during a flare-up to help prevent stinging when bathing. You can also use Epsom salt or sea salt to treat skin irritation and inflammation.

To make bath salts to relieve itchy and irritated skin:

Use 1 cup of Epsom salt, sea salt, or table salt for a standard-size bathtub.
Pour the salt into the warm running bath water and use your hand to stir the water to help dissolve all the grains.
Soak in the tub for at least 20 minutes.
Tea tree oil has antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties that may make it effective for treating eczema and minor skin infections. Essential oils should be diluted before use, but tea tree oil does come in many strengths, some already diluted. Adding 3 or 4 drops to your salt bath can provide additional relief of inflammation and irritation.

Dry or itchy skin
You can use bath salts to relieve dry and itchy skin, including itching caused by insect bites and poison ivy. To do this:

Use 1 to 2 cups of Epsom salt and a tablespoon of olive oil for a standard-size bathtub.
Pour the salt into the warm running water to help it dissolve faster.
Add the olive oil and stir the bath water using your hand to help combine the salt and oil.
Soak for at least 12 minutes, 2 or 3 times a week.
You can also add almond oil, oatmeal, or powdered milk to bath salts to soothe and moisturize the skin.

The Arthritis Foundation recommends soaking and stretching in a warm Epsom salt bath to help relieve stiff and aching joints and for relief of muscle soreness after exercising. To do this:

Use 2 cups of Epsom salt for a standard-size bathtub filled with warm water.
Dissolve the salt faster by pouring it into the running water.
Soak for at least 20 minutes a day as needed or after exercise.
Some essential oils, such as ginger, may have anti-inflammatory benefits. According to a 2016 study, ginger was shown to have anti-arthritic and joint-protective effects in arthritis. Adding a few drops of diluted ginger essential oil to your bath salts may offer additional benefits.

You can also target specific joints by using bath salts and ginger oil mixed with some warm water to make a paste that can be rubbed on the joint.

In the shower
You can still use bath salts and enjoy some of the benefits they provide even if you don’t have a bathtub. To do this, you simply create a shower scrub:

Use 1 cup of sea salt or Epsom salt, 1/3 cup of almond oil, olive oil, or coconut oil, and 1 tablespoon of vitamin E oil.
Mix the ingredients in a bowl, creating a thick paste.
Apply some of the scrub to your body using your hands.
Be sure to use a bowl or container with an airtight lid to store your remaining shower scrub.

You can add 12 drops of your favorite essential oil to your body scrub to enjoy some of the additional benefits listed above. Bath salt scrubs are also great for exfoliating the skin.

Foot soak
There are several benefits to using bath salts in a foot soak. Use bath salts in a foot soak to:

relieve symptoms of athlete’s foot
treat toenail fungus
relieve gout pain and inflammation
eliminate foot odor
To use bath salts in a foot soak:

Add 1/2 cup of Epsom salt to a large basin of warm water and stir to dissolve.
Soak your feet for 12 minutes, or 30 minutes for gout relief.
Dry your feet thoroughly with a towel.

Read more


Bath salts are not only incredibly affordable, they are very easy to use. Anyone can learn how to use bath salts – and there are several ways to use them. Bath salts aren’t just for bathing; you can use bath salts as scrubs, cleansers, and more.



When you use bath salts, the first step is to find the bath salt that’s right for you. You have to be careful to use bath salts that are of the highest quality possible; in their pure form, bath salts contain many beneficial minerals that can be lost if the salt is overly processed. Be sure to use 100% natural bath salts that are made from real sea salt.

Epsom salt, named for a bitter saline spring at Epsom in Surrey, England, is not actually salt but a naturally occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate. Long known as a natural remedy for a number of ailments, Epsom salt has numerous health benefits as well as many beauty, household, and gardening-related uses.

Studies have shown that magnesium and sulfate are both readily absorbed through the skin, making Epsom salt baths an easy and ideal way to enjoy the associated health benefits1. Magnesium plays a number of roles in the body including regulating the activity of over 325 enzymes, reducing inflammation, helping muscle and nerve function, and helping to prevent artery hardening. Sulfates help improve the absorption of nutrients, flush toxins, and help ease migraine headaches.

The wonders of Epsom salt have been well known for hundreds of years and, unlike other salts, has beneficial properties that can soothe the body, mind, and soul. Some of the countless health benefits include relaxing the nervous system, curing skin problems, soothing back pain and aching limbs, easing muscle strain, healing cuts, treating colds and congestion, and drawing toxins from the body. Read more


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