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Sonoma Family Life Magazine

Bath Salt Bonanza

By Christina Katz

As the gift-giving time of year approaches, try making bath salts. For less than two dollars per gift, you can create thoughtful tokens of appreciation. Here’s how to do it.

Organic materials

Organic ingredient with a strong scent (fresh or dried rose petals or lavender buds)

Several drops of pure essential oil to complement organic ingredient

8 lbs. Epsom salts

1 tube sea salt (26.5 oz.)

2.2 lbs. dark pink Himalayan salt

1 box baking soda (16 oz.)

Other materials

Roasting pan or cooking pot

Paper towels

Tin foil

12 pint-size canning jars

12 labels in colors to complement bath salt colors

Marker(s) to address labels


12 yds. sheer ribbon to match color of organic ingredient

Gather or purchase organic ingredients. The more you include the stronger the scent of the salts and the prettier their appearance, so get more than you think you’ll need.

Once you’ve gathered the organic ingredients, carefully inspect them for insects. The last thing you want to do is give a gift full of bugs. Spread your clean petals or buds out in one layer on two cookie sheets and leave them in the oven overnight. (Make sure no one turns on the oven in the meantime.)

The next day, mix together the three salts and the baking soda in a large container. In a roasting pan, cooking pot, or any large non-leaching metal container (we like disposable roasting pans) alternate spreading a layer of salt mixture and then a layer of organic material.

Don’t layer the organic material too thickly as you want the salt mixture to absorb the oils from the petals or buds. Once you are finished, cover the container with a double layer of paper towels and then tin foil. Put away the container in a cool, dry place and let sit for a couple of weeks.

Assemble canning jars with caps off. Open up salt mixture and smell. There should be a fairly strong scent. If the scent is not as strong as you would like, try mashing the mixture with a potato masher. If the scent is still not as strong as you prefer, add several drops of essential oil and stir the mixture until the scent comes through.

Scoop bath salts into the jars, slightly overfilling and then shaking each jar. Cap jars and put whatever salts are leftover (between a pint and quart) in a sealable glass container.

When you are ready to package the bath salts, address labels. With hole-punch, make hole on one end of each label. Cut ribbon to arm’s length and poke through hole. Tie a bow snugly below the mouth of each jar.

Store your salts in a cool, dry place until gift-giving season rolls around. And smile, because when the holidays arrive, you will be ready!

Christina Katz does not consider herself particularly crafty, but she had a blast making bath salts with her daughter anyway.