If you have Epsom salts and you have a tub filled with water, then you have yourself an Epsom salt soak. But the tricky thing is making sure you let yourself indulge. Draw the bath, pour in the salts, test the water with your toe and sink below the surface of the water. Feel the ripple up the back of your spine as you settle into it. Put away your phone and open a book instead. Get lost in it for a few minutes.
Every winter I forget about Epsom salts, and every winter I’m reminded. Thank goodness.
This week I hauled this empty glass jar out from under our kitchen sink, filled it up with salts and returned it to its rightful spot next to the bathtub where I can reach for it without too much trouble in the middle of a perfectly ordinary weeknight. The idea that a bath full of magnesium sulfate could replenish and restore tired muscles and a fatigued mind feels hopeful, yes, but the fact that a huge bag of Epsom salt can be found at any regular old pharmacy for just a few dollars is even better. It’s a rare wellness treatment that feels utterly unattainable. Once you commit to getting yourself in the bath, you can start to get fancy. Add rose petals and a scoop of dried calendula to a cloth bag and let the bath water run over it. In other words, make a flower tea and steep in it.
We’re heading toward the end of the February. This week we’ve had unseasonably warm weather to bask in but no doubt there are sleety storms still to come and weeks more to go before we can put our winter layers away for good. Let’s all commit to Epsom salt baths. If you have access to an herb shop or natural food store selling rose petals or calendula, consider buying a few tablespoonfuls to add to your bath.
Epsom Salt Soak with Rose Petals and Calendula
+ Mix together equal parts Epsom salts, rose petals, and dried calendula.
+ Put mixture into a simple cloth bag for steeping.
+ Run bath water over the bag and luxuriate in an herbal bath for winter-weary bones.