Humans have turned to the healing properties of water for centuries. The Ancient Egyptians used to bathe in the Nile for religious purposes and the Ancient Greeks were famous for their gorgeous, elaborate bath houses. The combination of water, warmth, and steam can alleviate joint and muscle aches, relieve headaches, open the sinuses, promote a healthy delivery for pregnant women and so much more. If you’re already taking baths, you’re a few steps ahead of many other individuals (who only stand in their baths and use the shower). If you aren’t yet taking baths, it’s time to finally clean up your bathtub so you can lie down in it. Taking regular baths could alleviate a number of ailments you’re suffering from. Once you’re in there, here are some healing things to add to your bath.
Ginger has long been used to treat stomach ailments and fight off colds and flus. Adding ginger root to your bath can provide many of the same benefits. If you suffer from bloating, gas or digestive issues, soaking in a ginger root bath could provide a lot of relief. A ginger bath also induces a heavy sweat, which helps you release toxins from your body.
While it may not be the sweetest-smelling of ingredients, seaweed is powerful stuff. That’s why you’ll pay a pretty penny for a seaweed wrap at a fancy spa. But you can save money by simply adding wrack kelp to your bath. It’s been shown to alleviate eczema and psoriasis, as well as leave your skin looking toned.
Peppermint has a cooling effect on the body, which can work wonders on tense muscles. The mere scent of it is energizing and inhaling peppermint-infused steam can alleviate congestion. If you pick up a poison ivy rash on one of your summer hikes, peppermint oil can relieve some of the itching and burning, too.
The smell alone will induce deep relaxation, but on top of that, lavender can reduce inflammation in the body. It can provide relief for those suffering from arthritis, or from tense muscles related to stress.
Don’t just drink the stuff hot or blended up in your matcha ice-blended; add it to your bath. You know that consuming it gives you a boost of antioxidants so it’s no surprise that letting your pores absorb the stuff, and letting your nostrils inhale it, is like streamlining those antioxidants throughout your body. You’ll feel increased energy, and even reap its anti-aging properties. Just adding a few green tea bags to your water and waiting for it to turn the same color as the drinking tea should do the trick.
Don’t just add it to your dog’s bath—add it to yours, too! Or get in the bath with your pup because that’s just adorable. When mixed with water, oatmeal creates a protective gel. A layer of that gel stays on your skin after the bath, helping your skin retain moisture. The saponins in oats are also a good gentle cleanser for people with sensitive skin.
You put honey scrubs on your skin so why not add a little honey to your bath? Drop about a cup of raw honey into your bath and its antibacterial properties can fight blemishes. It will also help your skin retain moisture better and give you a boost of antioxidants. Oh, and it will make you smell delicious.
Some of the most famous beauties, like Cleopatra, attributed their appearance to milk baths. When you soak in milk, your skin absorbs the protein and fat, which moisturize your skin and leave it feeling smooth. Plus, milk’s lactic acid can help remove dead skin cells and reduce the appearance of dark spots.
Red wine ingredients
Admit it; you’re already drinking wine in the bath. Why not pour a little right into the water? This is called vinotherapy and is actually offered by top spas all over the world. Okay, you won’t add actual red wine to your bath, but you’ll add some of its extracts and associated ingredients like red grape tannin powder or grape seed extract powder. These allow your body to soak up the cancer-fighting polyphenols.
Apple cider vinegar
If you’re suffering from a sunburn, a nice soak in an apple cider vinegar bath can alleviate some of that pain. Apple cider vinegar can also reduce the appearance of dark spots, dry out pimples, and—if you suffer from dandruff—dunking your head in the bath could treat that, too.
If you take magnesium supplements to alleviate muscle pain then you’ll love Epsom salt baths. Epsom salt contains magnesium and when dropped in a bath, that magnesium is rapidly absorbed by your skin. This also helps your body produce relaxing serotonin. Epsom salt baths are also used to improve circulation and prevent insulin resistance.
Once you’re done drizzling it on your veggies, add about five tablespoons of olive oil to your bath. The vitamin E in olive oil protects your skin against ultraviolet rays, and its antioxidants can help kill some blackheads. If you shave in the bathtub then you’ll love that olive oil stimulates your hair follicles, helping them stand up and helping you get a closer shave.
If you suffer from dry, rough or flaky skin, try adding cinnamon extract to your bath water. It works as a wonderful exfoliant and has a high concentration of antioxidants. Oh, and it will leave your bathroom smelling like Christmas morning.
Even if you aren’t into making muffins, buy some baking soda for your bath. This high alkaline ingredient can alleviate discomfort from things like bug bites and rashes. It also minimizes acidity in the body, which can lead to conditions like urinary tract infections and yeast infections.
You don’t need to actually soak in a tub full of sticky jello, but you should pour some gelatin into your water. The amino acids in the stuff promote collagen production, which is important for healthy skin, hair and nails. Gelatin has also been shown to balance serotonin levels and treat mood issues.