A luxurious bath relaxes the body and renews the spirit. Toss in a few handfuls of mineral salts or a capful of silky bubble bath or bath oil infused with aromatic essential oils, and your bath can provide a host of health benefits, too.
- If you lead an active lifestyle—and particularly if you work out regularly—then you’re no stranger to tired, aching muscles. A good, long soak in a tub with mineral-rich bath salts can help to reduce muscle soreness and joint pain. The health benefits of mineral salts are due partly to the natural salts’ ability to restore mineral balance via the skin. Epsom salts, for example, contain magnesium. Bromides in mineral salts help heal and relax muscles.
- If you’re stressed, a warm bath can help you unwind. Bathing in warm water with natural mineral salts has been shown to lower blood pressure. The magnesium in mineral salts helps the nervous system, eases stress, and can relieve water retention; potassium plays a role in nerve function, muscle control, and blood pressure.
- If you suffer from insomnia, or have a difficult time getting to sleep, choose bath salts, oils, or soaks with relaxing lavender or chamomile essential oils.
- A good soak opens up your pores, allowing minerals in bath salts to cleanse, hydrate, and detoxify your skin. Bathing with mineral salts stimulates circulation and cellular regeneration, leaving skin soft and smooth.
- If you have a cold, a hot bath can help open sinuses. Mineral salts promote a healthy immune system. And if you have a headache, the magnesium in bath salts works wonders.
How to Use Essential Oils
You can enhance your mental and physical well-being with essential oils by diluting them in almond or jojoba oil for topical use, or by adding them to your bath (try adding 7-10 drops directly to bath water), or using them in a diffuser.
The Nose Knows
The science of easing stress and tension with aromatherapy and flower essences.
The power of flower essences and aromatherapy may seem mysterious and miraculous, but science and practitioners promise that they work. Both flower essences and aromatherapy’s essential oils can help calm anxiety, ease depression, heighten focus, and more.
“Every element, every organ, every system in the body has electric circuits,” says Machaelle Wright, developer of Perelandra Essences. “And every level of being (physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual) has its own electric circuits. Perelandra Essences are water-based solutions holding electrical patterns derived from nature that balance, stabilize, and repair weakened or damaged circuits.”
According to Wright, the foundation for the body’s healing process is its electric system. Flower essences help repair damaged circuits by fusing the electrical patterns from the corresponding essences with the damaged circuits, providing the balance needed for their repair. Flower essences capture the energetic healing imprint of everything from alpine lilies to yarrow. They’re bottled in concentrate form in dropper bottles that make it easy to place one drop of a needed essence on your tongue.
Essential oils concentrate on stimulating the part of the brain that affects emotion, which can affect physical and mental well-being. “The shape of an essential oil molecule is like a key that unlocks the olfactory nerve receptors in our nostrils,” says Charlynn Avery, Aura Cacia aromatherapist. “The impression of the aroma is sent directly and immediately to the limbic system. When stimulated, this system releases chemicals that affect the central nervous system. Serotonin counteracts anxiety; endorphins reduce pain. We achieve a calmer state.”
Music helps turn any bathroom into a serene spa-like retreat. Soothing songs to download: A Lovely Place to Be by Patrick O’Hearn, and Caribbean Blue by Enya.
100% PURE COSMETICS Lavender Sea Therapy Bath Salt detoxifies the body with therapeutic sea salts and relaxes the mind with pure lavender essential oil.
AROMAFLORIA Stress Less Bubble Bath Step into the luxe bubbles and let the scent of soothing lavender ease frazzled nerves.
AURA CACIA Clearing Eucalyptus Mineral Bath This blend of eucalyptus and sweet orange pure essential oils, with mineral-rich ocean salts, refreshes body and spirit.