It should come as no surprise that I am passionate about the skin, it quite literally is what I do. I have spent years helping others achieve and maintain a beautiful, healthy complexion. We all love to look and feel beautiful and I certainly am honored to be part of that journey. However, what isn’t quite so obvious is perhaps why I care so much about skin health apart from aesthetics. Simply put, it is one of the most vital parts of our overall health and one of the most overlooked. Skin is the body’s largest organ, it is complex, it is our foremost barrier, and it often reflects what is going on inside the body. We encounter countless harmful and toxic elements daily. From microbes to harmful chemicals, our skin does a ton of heavy lifting and takes a ton of abuse. However, I have a little trick (albeit well known yet often forgotten) up my sleeve that combats all those toxins and uses the skin in a kind way while it pampers it (and you). Detox baths, my friend.
Hydrotherapy is ancient, yet so underutilized. Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, around the 5th century began to recognize the power of water and its therapeutic benefits with its varied minerals and properties. Though practiced in spas for centuries, detoxifying baths are seldom if not at all utilized in the home. So, ladies with all that is available to us in the current century, let’s take advantage, shall we? It doesn’t have to cost a ton and is just as great for the soul as well as the body.
First though, let’s start with some basics. Personally, I make my detox baths a ritual. Come Sunday night the door gets locked and everyone stays off the radar. Even my youngest knows my bathroom is off limits for the next hour or retribution comes swift in the form of an early bedtime and an out of sorts Mama. I grab my tea, diffuser, and my favorite essential oils. I like to add my EO’s straight to the bath for better dispersion throughout. Another key ingredient I am apt to use is Epsom salts. They boost the magnesium levels that so many of us lack. Magnesium is the “helper molecule” and vital to so many of our bodies biochemical reactions. Seriously, I challenge you, google “magnesium” and you will be amazed. It is easily absorbed through the skin and helps flush out toxins and heavy metals from our cells. Not to mention, it eases muscle pain, improves nerve function, relieves stress, reduces inflammation, and prevents/eases headaches and migraines.
A second gem is Apple Cider Vinegar. Okay, so I realize ACV doesn’t have an amazing smell, but the benefits make it worthwhile. Just SOME of its gifts are restored PH levels to the skin, as well as its softening ability to the skin and shine to the hair. It is a natural source of B and C vitamins and combats fungus and bacteria. Again, doing some further research on ACV will make you wonder why you waited so long in adding it to your weekly bath routine. Below, I’ve posted one of my favorite detox baths that brings together the best of both worlds. Keep in mind, the warmer the water the more effective the detox will be. The bonus here is that you will sleep like a baby. Your body temperature naturally lowers at night. The change of temperature from a warm bath to cooling when you step out will naturally relax you.
Another favorite of mine is the Oxygen Bath. Remember when hydrogen peroxide came out from under the sink when you skinned a knee or elbow as a kid? I don’t know about you, but this is when I would run. Scary stuff then, but there all sorts of benefits using this food grade hydrogen peroxide (link) now. By this I mean the 35% pure stuff instead of the 3% like most of us have at home. It oxygenates the blood and oxidizes the unhealthy cells to eliminate the bad without hurting the good cells.
Now there will be those days that you are short on time and maybe even resources. For those days or while I am traveling I like to keep pre-made bath bombs on hand. Young Living makes two mineral-rich bath bombs, Lavender Calming and a Stress Away Relaxing. You simply add it to a warm bath and you’re on your way to calmer, smother and ultra-moisturized you. And the best part is that its Young Living so it’s almost a given that it is paraben, phthalate, petrochemical, synthetic preservative, synthetic fragrance, and synthetic dye/colorant free and of course it is made with 100 percent naturally derived ingredients and pure essential oils. Win!
Finally, when choosing your EO’s look at purity. I like to choose relaxing or grounding blends for my baths and it just depends on what I need. Eucalyptus for sinus support, Lavender if I need to relax, or Frankincense for an extra little skin pampering. Begin with the basics and build from there. Most importantly, take this time for you. Yes, this is good for the body but also consider that these moments are necessary to put your mind and soul inline with what you want to bring to the world.
“Carve out and claim the time to care for yourself and kindle your own fire.” - Amy Ippoliti