Think of how magical you imagine the French countryside to be in the peak of summer…now triple it.
Provence in the summertime is a truly magnificent place. The warm breezes are naturally perfumed with fragrant true (also known as fine) lavender, earthy helichrysum, and sweet sage. But the scent that reminds me most of Provence is that of bitter orange.
While in Provence, I spent time studying natural fragrances at the Grasse Institute of Perfumery.
It was during this course that I feel even deeper in love with the bitter orange tree. Bitter orange groves are more commonly found in Italy, but I spent so much time smelling and formulating fragrances with Neroli, the essential oil derived from the fragrant bitter orange blossoms that this scent will always be connected to that place in time.
This bath salts recipe is based on a mixture I made while attending the “Grasse Institute of Perfumery: Scents of Provence” class just a month ago.
Since returning back to the states, I’ve recreated a few batches and immediately the recipe brings me right back to warm evenings in the French countryside; opening the windows and letting the sweet, perfumed air lull me to sleep.
Even if you don’t have a bathtub, you can still get benefits by using these salts in a simple foot bath.
This type of recipe is virtually foolproof (read: perfect for the type of person who doesn’t like to measure!). You can also use whatever type of salt you prefer.
My only advice would be to avoid adding more than 15 drops of essential oil per one cup of salt mixture. Other than that, you can experiment to your heart’s content!
In general, aromatherapy full-body baths are used to:
- Reduce stress/anxiety
- Alleviate muscular aches, pains, and tension
- Soothe mental or physical fatigue
- Stimulate circulation
- Enhance lymph circulation
- Reduce pain and stiffness
- Increase local circulation
- Improve the tone and health of skin
- Aid detoxification
For more info, see our post on The Science of Aromatherapy.
So pretty much you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by mixing up your own version of this deliciously fragrant recipe and having these bath salts on hand for a relaxing summer soak.
At a glance:
Intermediate: ingredients can be found at specialty stores or online
Great to destress and relax after a long day
Around a year
LEVEL UP BOTANERI TIP:
Add 2 tbsp of raw honey, 8 ounces (1 cup) of a hydrosol/flower water, or 8 ounces (1 cup) apple cider vinegar to your bath for some additional detoxifying benefits.
DIY "Summer in Provence Bath Salt" Soak
Makes 8 ounces (enough for 1 bath)
- 1/2 cup epsom salts
- 1/4 cup sea salts I like coarse grain pink sea salt because it’s pretty, and dead sea salts
- 1/4 cup baking soda
Essential oil blend
- 6 drops Mandarin essential oil
- 3 drops Neroli* essential oil
- 3 drops Sandalwood** essential oil
- 2 drops Lavender essential oil
- 1 teaspoon Lavender buds optional
In a bowl or beaker, add salts and baking soda. Mix well.
Add essential oils.
Add optional lavender buds.
Pour into a container to save for later or directly into the bathtub or foot bath to melt the stress of the day away.
* Neroli is pricey. If looking for a less expensive alternative try bergamot or petitgrain which also come from the bitter orange tree but have completely different aromas.
** Sandalwood is also expensive. For a less expensive alternative, try Amyris essential oil (best substitute) or frankincense or patchouli.
About the author
I’m Drew, creator of Botaneri and an artisanal skincare formulator and certified aromatherapist who is here to help take the mystery out of DIY natural beauty. I started creating my own plant-based skin and body care products at home to deal with my own skin issues.
What I love most is helping people create luxurious and effective self-care products right in their own kitchens. It’s a lot easier than you think. Trust me, if I can do it, so can you.