The mere mention of bath time often conjures up visions of relaxation and calm. Soaking in warm water with candlelight and soothing music creates a tranquil setting to unwind after a long day. Add to that the benefits and aroma of essential oils for baths, and you will create the ultimate environment for relaxation.
Essential oils have been used for centuries for their therapeutic properties. Oils made from plant extracts are used for a multitude of physical and psychological circumstances. Skin issues, inflammation, muscle aches, insomnia, and stress are but a few conditions that have been historically treated with essential oils. Bath oil made from these plant extracts can be combined and customized to your particular need.
Essential Oil Recipes for Baths
Adding essential oils directly to the bath can sometimes cause skin irritation, and may not incorporate well into the water (due to that thing about oil and water not quite mixing!). Instead, add your chosen essential bath oil to bath salts, such as Dead Sea salt or Himalayan salt. Simply combine 10 to 15 drops of essential oil and a couple teaspoons of jojoba oil with a half-cup of bath salts, and then add to the water.
If you don’t have any bath salts on hand, try adding essential oils for baths to a carrier oil, such as jojoba, coconut, or almond. Mix two ounces of carrier oil with 15 to 20 drops of essential oils in a bottle or jar. Shake well then disperse in warm bath water. This formula will help carry the essential oils so they can reach your skin easier than if they were on their own. Breathe deeply as the essential oils evaporate to obtain wonderful aromatherapy benefits.
Essential Oil Safety
As a precaution, be sure to avoid essential oils for baths that are known to cause skin irritation for some people. Oils such as cinnamon, clove, and oregano can cause sensitivities. For a more comprehensive list of oils to avoid while bathing, check out AromaWeb’s Essential Oil Safety Guide. Some essential oils are harmful to use during pregnancy, so before planning an aromatherapy bath, be sure to research the safe essential oils for baths while pregnant—and talk to your doctor.
Relaxing Essential Oils
Because relaxation and bath time go together, here are eight essential oils and their therapeutic benefits that will help soothe your body and mind. Be sure to purchase the purest essential oils by aiming for organic options.
- Lavender is a common herb that’s found in everything from body care treatments and lotions to culinary delights. When this oil is added to the bath, it’s wonderful for stress and anxiety reduction, and has historically been used for headaches and insomnia, too.
- Ylang-ylang is a lesser-known essential oil that is quite helpful for stress and anxiety. For a dreamy bath oil combination, try mixing ylang-ylang with lavender, rose, or sandalwood.
- With clary sage oil added to your bath, you’ll instantly feel your layers of tension melt away. Try it after a stressful day at the office. Clary sage pairs well with orange, lavender, geranium, and sandalwood.
- Orange essential oil is made by compressing orange peels. Some surprising uses for this well-known aroma include muscle relaxation as well as anxiety and stress reduction.
- Rose essential oil is thought to be calming for your skin and nervous system. Try combining rose oil with chamomile, sandalwood, or clary sage for a serene wash before bed.
- The scent of sandalwood is commonly known as a perfume. But stories of its healing properties span everything from coughs to indigestion to insomnia! Adding sandalwood essential oil to your bath can help reduce anxiety and stress after a long day.
- You may be familiar with the flower, but did you know as an essential oil, geranium could help reduce anxiety and lessen the effects of insomnia? This calming essential oil pairs well with lavender for double the relaxation power.
- Enjoy the relaxing effects of chamomile essential oil in your bath as it helps to soothe muscles and dissolve insomnia. With a mild aroma, it can be paired nicely with many other relaxation oils.
What is your favorite recipe for essential oils for baths? Tell us on Twitter by sharing them with @TomsofMaine!
This article was brought to you by Tom’s of Maine. The views and opinions expressed by the author do not reflect the position of Tom’s of Maine.