Epsom salt is different from traditional salt in that it’s actually a mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate, and is technically known as magnesium sulfate. Did you know Magnesium sulfate is a mineral that many of us are lacking in, as levels have been decreasing over the last three to four decades around the world?
The lack of this important nutrient in our bodies is due to a combination of issues, including over development of agricultural land that leaches essential minerals like magnesium and other trace elements from the soil, the overuse of prescription medications, the consumption of processed and fast foods, and more. All of these things take a toll, depleting our body of magnesium, which is one of the reasons Epsom salt can be an important part of improving one’s health. It’s also a natural anti-inflammatory and exfoliant that can be used for treating muscle aches and dry skin. Soak in a warm bath with a cupful of Epsom salt, to enjoy.
For teeth: Combine one part Epsom salt with one part water. Make sure you mix well and fully integrate salt into the water. Dip toothbrush into mixture and brush well. Gargle with salty mixture and then spit. Rinse mouth with clean, cool water.
For sore feet: Fill a small bucket or personal pedicure system with warm water. Consider filling it with boiling water and then allowing it to cool until you can comfortably place feet in water. Add one to two cups of Epsom salt to the water and swish with your feet. Rub your feet along the salt grains to break it down and get it into sore or painful areas. Sit with feet in the salt bath until water cools. If you want to continue your soak, consider adding a few cups of hot water and mix.
For exfoliating skin: Combine two parts olive oil to one part Epsom salt in a small dish. If possible, heat the oil slightly so it is warm during application. Using clean hands, apply the oil scrub to your face and rub using a circular motion. Perform this step over the sink as the oil will drip off your face. Rinse with warm water and mild face soap. Pat skin dry with a clean towel.
For removing blackheads: Combine ½ cup of boiling water with 3 drops of iodine and 1 tsp. Epsom salt. Stir and allow mixture to cool to touch. You want the mixture to be warm enough to loosen stubborn blackheads without scalding or harming the skin. Dip a cotton ball into the mixture and apply to the blackhead. Gently dab on blackhead and leave overnight.
For bathing: Add a cup of Epsom salt to a warm bath and soak for up to 30 minutes or until water cools. Consider using the natural olive oil/Epsom salt scrub while you are soaking in the tub for added effect.
Some benefits of using Epsom Salts
Relax Your Body: Epsom salts dissolved in warm water – like those in an Epsom salt bath – are easily absorbed through the skin where they immediately go to work inside our bodies, relieving stress and helping to feel invigorated without causing feelings of restlessness and anxiety.
Relieve Pain and Cramping: Epsom salts absorbed through the skin also work to relieve muscle tension, pain, and inflammation in joints. Submerge yourself in a warm Epsom salt bath to alleviate tension headaches or soothe abdominal cramps. Tired and sore feet will also benefit from the therapeutic warmth of an Epsom salt soak.
Muscle and Nerve Function: Aside from relieving tension, pain, and cramping, Magnesium sulfate has several other positive effects on the human body. It aids in many enzymatic functions, helps to regulate fluid retention in cells, and facilitates the body’s use of calcium to transmit chemical signals throughout the nervous system.
For Arterial Health: Epsom salts may help to improve circulation and prevent serious cardiovascular illness by decreasing inflammation and protecting the elasticity of arteries. Healthier arteries means less risk of blood clots, plaque build-up, and damage to arterial walls. Try soaking in an Epsom salt bath three to four times per week to reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and improve your cardiovascular health.
Helps to Remove Splinters: To dislodge a stubborn splinter, simply soak the affected body part in warm water and Epsom salts for a few minutes. Magnesium sulfate will reduce the inflammation around the wound and soften up the splinter, making it much easier to remove.
Soothe Sprains and Bruises: Anti-inflammatory Epsom salts can be used to alleviate the soreness from sprains and bruises. Just add two cups of salts to your warm bath water and soak away the ache.
Keep Feet Healthy: It’s pretty common knowledge that soaking your feet in Epsom salts is good for soothing away aches and pains. But did you know that it can also help to treat athlete’s foot and toenail fungal infections? Simply add a half cup of Epsom salts to warm water and soak your feet for as long as you want (or until the water gets cold) to alleviate the itching and burning and help heal feet faster.
Exfoliate Your Skin: By rubbing a handful of Epsom salts over damp skin, you can easily remove dead cells, helping your skin to look healthier and feel softer. Use this treatment on hands, feet, and everything in between.
Natural Face Cleanser: At night before bed, mix a teaspoon of Epsom salts with your regular cleanser for an easy daily treatment or use this recipe for an exfoliating face mask.
Dislodge Blackheads: Use Epsom salts to remove dead skin and oil from your pores.
Remove Styling Product Build-up: To remove build-up of hairspray or other styling product from your hair, mix one cup each of Epsom salts and lemon juice into a gallon of water. Cover and let the concoction sit for 24 hours before using. Then simply pour over hair and leave it on for about 15 – 20 minutes. Follow up with a wash and condition as usual.
Add Volume to Hair: To add body to your hair, try mixing equal parts to your deep conditioner and Epsom salts. Warm the mixture to slightly above body temperature then work through hair. Leave in for 15 – 20 minutes then rinse.
Wash Pots and Pans: Pour a small amount of Epsom salts into those really-dirty dishes before you scrub them. The abrasive texture of the salt crystals will help to remove stuck-on food more easily without hurting your cookware.
Clean Tile and Grout: Mix equal parts Epsom salts and liquid dish detergent to create a super effective tile and grout cleaner.
As a Hand Wash: Mix equal parts Epsom salts and baby oil to create a moisturizing hand cleanser.
Removes Detergent Build-up: Over time, laundry detergent and other contaminants may build up inside machines. Use Epsom salts to remove this unwanted gunk and keep your washer running more efficiently.
In The Garden: Magnesium sulfate may be used to fertilise your plants, green up your lawn, remove unwanted insect pests, and prevent slugs among other things.