Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Mercredi: The Art of Beauty

It is almost counterintuitive that bath salts actually help mend dry skin. When we think of salt we think of a drying agent and preservative. In fact there is a relatively small amount of actual salt in any given bath salt recipe and, if you make your own, you control what kind.

Today, I’d like to offer a simple base of three ingredients that can be built upon in almost any way imaginable. Once you have the base you can add oils and/or herbs to create a perfect blend either for yourself or someone else. Bath salts, after all, make a wonderful gift in particular for people who might need to take a little time for themselves now and then. Here’s the “recipe”:

3 cups of Epsom salts
1 cup baking soda
1 cup sea salt

Epsom salts are easy to find at drugstores and are soothing to the skin. They have the added bonus of helping soar joints and bruises so bath salts are a boon to athletes – and those of us who are essentially weekend warriors – when they need to feel a little better after a big day in the field, on the slopes or in the rigging. Baking soda is great for skin irritation like mild rashes, sunburn and, yes, dry winter skin and the sea salt changes the Ph of your water so that it is actually less harsh. Perfect.

Mix your three ingredients thoroughly and store in a container with a tight lid. This base can be used right away as is; a generous handful should do for an average size tub. If your skin is really dry, consider moisturizing immediately after you get out of the bath and letting your skin air dry. The infused water helps your skin absorb your moisturizer more thoroughly.

That’s all for today; I’m running unusually behind. Another topic for another time will be mixing one or more scented oils into your bath salts, or adding dried herbs either directly or as a kind of “tea”. A votre santé ~

Header: Lola Montez nee Eliza Gilbert; a famous 19th century courtesan who wrote beauty advice books and frequently recommended bathing for health and loveliness (judging by this lithograph, it worked)


Timmy! said...

I'm trying to refrain from making any comments about your being "unusually behind", Pauline... so I'll just say, I hope you get caught up soon.


Pauline said...