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How to Use Essential Oils in a Bath
Photo courtesy of Heidi Lee

How to Use Essential Oils in a Bath

While a bath can be used to just get you clean, it is also one of the best ways to help you relax and de-stress; to step away from the world and pamper yourself so  you can handle every day life again. While the heat of a bath is good, adding essential oils will make your bath a delicious moment of aromatherapy. The heat not only helps to quickly absorb the oils into your bloodstream, but it vaporizes the oils so you are breathing in the scent as well. Here are some ideas to help you find ways to use essential oils in your bath time experience.

Photo courtesy of Heidi Lee

Things to be mindful of

While I am giving you a few recommendations of oils to use and oils not to use, you need to always make sure you can handle the oil on your skin before trying in a bath. No matter what the oil is, always test on a small area first. So what you do is fill a bowl with warm water, add 1-3 drops of the essential oil you want to use and immerse a finger for a few minutes. You should know in about 1-5 minutes. If the oil does bother you, then wipe the area dry on a towel, put soap on, completely work the soap into the area without water, then rinse off. Or cover in a carrier oil and wipe off. You can also put the oils direct on your skin to find out if you can tolerate them well enough for a bath.

  • Possible oils to use: These are generally regarded as the best for bath. Sandalwood, Rose, Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Lavender, Geranium, Neroli, German Chamomile, Roman Chamomile, Patchouli, Cedarwood, Rosewood, Red Mandarin, Eucalyptus, Orange.
  • Oils to be careful of: These oils are ones to particularly be mindful of before using. Some people can handle them on their skin but others cannot so it is always good to test them out first. Spice oils, mint oils, Basil, Oregano, Thyme, Black Pepper, Bay Leaf

Make sure the water isn’t too hot or the oils will vaporize before you can achieve the benefits.

Ways to use them

Mix 3-10 drops of essential oil(s) of your choice to one of the following and add to your bath:

  • Milk bath: 1 cup of milk. You can also use 1/2 cup of a powdered milk. Some people use regular, others use powdered coconut. It’s personal preference. If you use powdered, you can mix in your oils into the powder first. Just stir with a fork until mixed through. The powdered milk gets a bit of a granular look to it when the oils are mixed in.

    Photo courtesy of Maya Grover

  • Salt Bath: 1/2 cup epsom salts or sea salts with your oils. Many people say to dissolve your essential oils into the salts before putting into the water.
  • Moisturizing Bath: Use 2 tablespoons of Jojoba and/or F.C.O. to help soften and hydrate skin. With this one, use a blend of oils that also involves Sandalwood because it helps to soften dry skin as well.

Recipes

Therapeutic Bath Oils

Combine 3-5 drops of any of the following with either 2 tablespoons of milk or 2 teaspoons of F.C.O. and pour mixture into your bath.

  • Deep Cleansing: Grapefruit, Juniper Berry, Lemon, Cypress, Tea Tree
  • Uplifting: Bergamot, Geranium, Melissa, Frankincense, Palmarosa, Clary Sage, Jasmine, Red Mandarin
  • Relaxing: Clary Sage, Geranium, Jasmine, Red Mandarin, Lavender, Ylang Ylang, Marjoram, Neroli, Rose
  • Stimulating: Bergamot, Cypress, Juniper Berry, Lime, Pine, Coriander, Grapefruit, Lemon, Peppermint, Rosemary (1)

Cleopatra’s Milk Bath

  • 5 ounces milk
  • 3 tablespoons powdered coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon clear honey
  • 3 drops Jasmine
  • 3 drops Ylang Ylang
  • 2 drops Lavender

Put milk, powdered coconut milk and honey into a saucepan and heat gently. Do not allow mixture to boil. Remove from heat and add essential oils. Fill bathtub with water and add milk bath liquid. Enjoy! (1)

Sensual and Relaxing Bath

  • 2 drops Cedarwood
  • 2 drops Clary Sage
  • 2 drops Lavender
  • 2 drops Orange
  • 2 tablespoons Jojoba and/or F.C.O.

Add to your bath and enjoy! (2)

Orange Bath Salts

  • 1 drop Orange oil
  • 3 drops Geranium
  • 2 tablespoons dried orange peel (orange zest)
  • 1 tablespoon orris root
  • 4 tablespoons epsom salt

Mix all ingredients together, making sure that the oils are well absorbed into the salts. Add a small handful of the mixture to your bath water, and then relax and enjoy. *You can vary the essential oils in this bath. You can use Lavender for a relaxing bath, Sandalwood to create an exotic fragrance, or Rose to soften the skin. Have some fun with it! (1)

Exotic Sweetness

  • 3 drops Sandalwood
  • 3 drops Red Mandarin
  • 1 tablespoon Jojoba
  • 1 tablespoon F.C.O.

Mix together and add to your bath for an exotic, sweet, sensual bath.

Photo courtesy of Heidi Lee

References

  1. Natural Home Spa by Sian Rees
  2. Seasons of Aromatherapy by Judith Fitzsimmons and Paula M. Bousquet
  3. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils: The Complete Guide to the Use of Oils in Aromatherapy & Herbalism by Julia Lawless
  4. Medical Aromatherapy: Healing with Essential Oils by Kurt Schnaubelt
  5. The Art of Aromatherapy: The Healing and Beautifying Properties of the Essential Oils of Flowers and Herbs by Robert B. Tisserand
  6. The Encyclopedia of Aromatherapy by Chrissie Wildwood
  7. The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood
  8. The Aromatherapy Bible: The Definitive Guide to Using Essential Oils by Gill Farrer-Halls

 

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About JC Shannon

I am a writer. I was first introduced to this world of natural health in 2005 when I was asked to write an article about using essential oils. Since I like to know what I'm writing about before I do it, I immersed myself in the essential oil and aromatherapy world and found I prefer it. I never left it. In a quest to educate myself and others in more alternative and safer ways to make our world a better place, I am always looking for good information to share.
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