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A foot soak is the perfect way to soothe tired, achy feet. The right combination of herbs and essential oils will help relax the muscles, leaving feet feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
The therapeutic benefit of foot soaks often extends beyond the feet; relieving excess tension over the entire body. They also have the ability to calm an anxious mind.
To prepare a successful foot soak, it’s important to locate a tub or container big enough to accommodate both feet. The foot soak will be even more luxurious (and effective) if a tub large enough to fit the legs, up to the mid-calf, can be used.
There are a variety of ingredients that make wonderful foot soaks, such as: salts, herbs, essential oils, vinegar, and floral waters (like Scratch Mommy Founder Jess’s handcrafted Pronounce Skincare Rose Water). Each can be used alone or combined to create a unique foot soaking experience.
My favorite foot soak includes herbs, essential oils, and salt. I find this combination creates an extremely soothing foot soak; the scent of herbs and essential oils provides an additional treat for the senses.
To get the most benefit from an herbal foot soak, it’s important to steep the herbs prior to soaking (rather than simply adding them to the water). This allows the herbs to release more of their health-enhancing properties.
How to Steep Herbs for an Effective Foot Soak
To steep herbs for a foot soak, place approximately 2 ounces of dried herbs into a large heat-proof jar, heavy bowl, or pot. Pour “just boiling” water over the herbs until they are completely covered. Stir to ensure all herbs are immersed in the water.
Cap with a lid or cover the bowl or pot with a plate.
Leave to steep for 30 minutes to an hour. The longer the herbs steep, the stronger the infusion will be.
Once infused, herbs may be strained out and the remaining liquid poured into the soaking container/tub. Add more hot water to the container until it reaches mid-calf level.
It’s also acceptable to pour to entire contents of the jar into the container without straining. If you do so, it may be necessary to perform an extra rinse after the foot soak in order to remove any stray herbs from the feet.
The following Soothing DIY Foot Bath Recipe combines the soothing benefits of chamomile, lavender, and calendula, with the powerfully relaxing properties of sea salt. Coconut oil is also included to nourish and moisturize the skin.
- 1 oz Chamomile Flowers (organic, dried chamomile flowers)
- ½ oz Lavender Petals (organic, dried lavender petals)
- ½ oz Calendula Petals (organic, dried calendula petals)
- 10 drops Lavender Essential Oil (organic lavender essential oil)
- 1 oz Sea Salt (sustainably sourced from the Pacific Ocean on the West Coast of North America)
- 1 oz Redmond Salt (or Epsom salts)
- 1 Tbsp Coconut Oil (organic, virgin, hand-pressed coconut oil)
- Heat approximately 3 cups of water to boiling.
- Place the lavender, chamomile, and calendula into a large pot or canning jar.
- Once water has boiled, turn off and wait for one minute.
- Pour water over the herbs. Cover and let steep for 30 minutes to an hour.
- Put another pot of water on the boil. You will need enough to fill the soaking container (possibly a gallon or two, depending on the size of your container).
- While herbs are steeping, measure the salt into a large bowl. Add the coconut oil and lavender essential oil. Stir to combine. Set aside.
- Waiting for the herbs to steep is also a good time to set up the foot soaking area. Place towels underneath the soaking container to absorb any spills. Set up a chair and any reading material or music you’d like to accompany the soaking experience. You may also wish to apply a hair mask or face mask and get double (or triple) pampering!
- Place salt mixture into the soaking container.
- Once herbs have infused sufficiently, strain and pour the remaining liquid into the soaking container.
- Add more hot water to fill the container so the water level will reach the mid-calf. Be sure to leave enough room in the container to add your legs! If it’s too full, water will spill out once legs are inserted into the tub!
- Soak for at least 20 minutes.
- If soaking longer than 20 minutes, keep a pot of water simmering as you may need to add more hot water to keep it warm (you'll likely need someone to help with this).
- Once soaking is complete, dry the feet (it’s important to do this because the coconut oil can make walking around a slippery experience).
- Once feet are dry, apply a thick body butter (like this Body Butter from Scratch Mommy Founder Jess's Pronounce Skincare Line) or her Lavender-Infused Lotion.
- If you'd like to turn this into a complete foot spa experience, try exfoliating the feet before soaking. This simple peppermint foot scrub would work wonderfully, as would Pronounce Skincare Softening Skin Scrub!
Ready to soothe and relax your body, mind, and spirit…?
Love DIYing, but would rather purchase your own soothing non-toxic products, handcrafted for you? Check out Scratch Mommy Founder Jess’s online skincare shop – Pronounce Skincare!