Like many mineral essential oils, bath salt also helps to maintain health by stimulating the immune system. Because the essential fatty acids and minerals contained in the salt stimulate the capillaries, blood vessels and lymph nodes, you feel more energetic. The minerals and natural nutrients contained in bath salt are like the composition of fine bath salts. This means they possess the same healing properties required to aid, preserve and restore body balance.
While there’s no question bath salt is a necessary part of your bath routine, there are just other things you need to know. As with any mineral content product, the concentration of the mineral elements varies from brand to brand. There are differences of opinion on how much coarse or fine the salt should be. Some people have a strong preference for coarse bath products while others swear by the finer products. The amount of sodium contained varies from brand to brand as well. While the mineral content is important, it’s probably not the most critical element when it comes to choosing an essential oil product.
Dead Sea salts are renowned for their relaxing bath soak benefits. The unique water properties of the Dead Sea salt stimulate the secretion of human growth hormone and stimulate the skin cells to grow faster. Because the Dead Sea salt has a high concentration of salt, it also creates a cooling effect upon contact with water. When added to warm bath water, these relaxing bath soak oils promote a sensation of relaxation upon your entire body.
One of the common misconceptions regarding essential oils and bath salts is that one is not capable of replacing lost nutrients after a bath or shower. Although minerals such as potassium and magnesium are not replaced by essential oils, bath salts can help replace these trace minerals in the body. Therefore, adding sea salt or Dead Sea salt to your bath water will help replenish the lost minerals from taking a bath or shower.
Aromatherapy aficionados swear by essential oils, but they add them to their bath water instead of using them directly on the skin. They claim the oils act as a natural healing agent. While many companies make organic essential oils that may have beneficial healing qualities, the practice is not mainstream medicine. To get the same healing qualities as you would from a bath salt, aromatherapy enthusiasts add the oils to their bath water. The essential oils are then added to bath salts to create natural healing compounds such as lavender, chamomile and rosemary oils.
Bath salts come in two basic types: soluble and water-soluble. Soluble salts swell and float on top of the water during a bath or shower. Water-soluble salts sink to the bottom and remain stuck to your skin. They can sometimes cause irritation if they get into the eyes, nose or mouth. Typically, bath salts dissolve quickly in water-soluble salts and do not leave a stain on the bathroom floor or carpet. These types of salts are also water-soluble, making them easy to wash out of the bathwater.
You can purchase mineral salts at any health food store, drugstore or spa specialty store. Be sure to check the mineral content lists on the packages of products to make sure there is enough magnesium, potassium or sodium to meet your needs. Often, a well-known bath and body shop will sell pre-packaged mineral salts with a matching package of organic essential oils. These pre-packaged varieties are usually cheaper and don’t have as much of a mineral content to meet the specific needs of the person buying.
The therapeutic value of magnesium and sodium chloride is still being researched. Some suggest that bathing with a bath salt for 20 minutes twice a week may improve circulation and help stimulate the nervous system. Others believe the two work together to increase the effectiveness of other alternative healing modalities, such as acupuncture.