Using essential oils in the bath can be a deeply relaxing and nurturing experience. One important point to be aware of is that essential oils must be diluted before you add them. This is because they are very potent and can irritate the skin in their undiluted form. I have heard many stories from clients who have sprinkled drops of essential oil straight into the bath and experienced anything from tingling sensations to nasty skin reactions and even left unable to use that particular oil again, due to developing sensitivity. Even though you may be adding the drops of essential oil to an entire bath full of water, the drops do not actually mix with water (because they are hydrophobic), and will stay in droplets on the surface of the water, clinging to your skin as you enter, which is just like putting undiluted essential oil onto your skin.
To dilute the oil you must mix it with a carrier oil (a fatty oil pressed from a nut, kernel, seed or fruit, for example almond, apricot, sunflower or olive). A tea spoon of olive oil would work just fine (Click here for more carrier oil options). To make it easier to prepare I often pour a tea spoon of olive oil into an egg cup add and then add the essential oils to this. I would suggest adding between 3 and 6 drops of essential oil depending on the oils you use and how strong you want the scent/blend. To start with, you could use 4 drops of lavender. You can use more than one essential oil, but keep the total number of drops used between 3 and 6. So you may like to mix 2 drops of Orange with your 2 drops of Lavender and perhaps a drop of Black Pepper (so 5 in total). This would make a relaxing, warming bath blend, great for aches and pains at the end of the day. Give the mixture a little stir so the essential oils are evenly blended in the olive oil.
Now that your blend is ready – WAIT! – wait until the bath is run, the temperature is appropriate for you and everything else is prepared, towels warmed, candles lit etc. (how ever you like to set the scene). Just before you’re ready to step in, pour the oil blend into the bath and give it a little swoosh to help it disperse, then step in, lay back and enjoy. Adding them at this moment ensures you enjoy all the wonderful benefits of the oil especially the scent. If you were to add them as you start running the water (as I would with bath bubbles) the heat and steam created would evaporate a lot of the essential oils and by the time you lay in the water there would be little left to appreciate. After bathing notice how nourished your skin feels, just a tea spoon of oil manages to envelope your whole body leaving it soft and smooth.
CAUTION: Be careful not to slip as you step out of the bath, as the olive oil can make it a little slippery.
Simple Bath Blend Recipe:
- 1 tea-spoon Olive Oil,
- 3-6 drops of Essential Oil, eg. 3 drops Lavender, 2 drops Orange, 1 drop Black pepper.
- Mix together and pour into the bath just before entering.