Homemade Lavender and Peppermint Salt Scrub

lavender and peppermint epsom salt scrub

Ah, nothing says it’s festive season time quite like peppermint. Except maybe cinnamon. Or that unique smell of pine trees. Or even woodstove fire smell! They’re all pretty awesome too and I guess that means actually a great number of things say that it’s festive time. For today, though, let’s just talk about peppermint. And lavender.

I’ve made scrubs before (oatmeal sugar scrub)  and I’ve used peppermint before (body butter, anyone?), but this is my first foray into a peppermint scrub. I’ve seen a few different scrub recipes out there, and I thought it was a lovely idea to use epsom salts (provided you can find a particle size you like) as the scrub base.

lavender and peppermint epsom salt scrub

For one, salt has antiseptic/antibacterial qualities (salt water rinses for colds and sore throats are a wonderful use of salt), making it great for areas like, say, your bikini line where you want to both exfoliate and keep the area free from infection or other inflammation after a wax (IMMEDIATELY post-wax a salt scrub might sting, though, so perhaps hold off there).

As a second benefit, epsom salts are mineral compounds that contain high levels of magnesium – apparently epsom salt is a combination of magnesium and sulfate. (I’m not shilling for any specific brand, but this website has a nice list of the benefits of epsom salts). Magnesium is great for your body as a muscle relaxer, which is why people use it in baths – magnesium helps alleviate muscle cramps and pain. Epsom salts are also supposed to have detoxification capabilities, helping to draw wastes and flush toxins from the body.

Now, while I recognize that your body won’t take in as many of the benefits of epsom salts from this external, brief use (compared to say, bathing in an epsom salt solution), it’s a nice potential fringe benefit. And of course, another coarse quality sea salt will do too, if that’s what you have in supply.

lavender and peppermint epsom salt scrub

Another benefit? Peppermint and lavender essential oils are stress-relieving and help you avoid the use of chemical or synthetic fragrances, found in so many other conventional skin-care products.

So scrub on! I love using this scrub in the shower. It smells wonderful and the warm water in the shower swirls the peppermint smell around. The lavender buds are optional – they look pretty, but quite frankly they mostly just make a mess in the shower before bee-lining straight down the drain. So, your option.

Happy pepperminting. Let this scrub help you be merry and bright!

Homemade Lavender and Peppermint Salt Scrub

  • Author: Backyard Owl
  • Recipe Notes: gluten-free, depending on your choice of oils and salts; delicious-smelling

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 -1 cup epsom salts, or a mix of coarse and fine sea salt
  • 1/4 cup skincare oil, like sweet almond, apricot kernel, jojoba
  • 4-6 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 6-8 drops lavender essential oil

Instructions:

  1. Mix salt and oil together in a small bowl until all salt is well incorporated and appears wet and sand-like.
  2. Add essential oils.
  3. Scoop into your favourite little mason jars or other containers. I like glass jars best – most sanitary and also you can see your scrub through the jar.
  4. NOTE: Unlike with sugar scrubs, I find the oil kind of sinks to the bottom after a while of sitting in the jar. So, after a few uses you might notice you’re able to add a bit more salt to equalize the salt-to-oil ratio.

© Backyard Owl

Refresh and Relax Peppermint Body Butter

peppermint body butter

Peppermint:

“An extremely good kind of mint which takes the depressing and uber-confusing world you are living in, and transforms it into happy swirls of red and white goodness. You can’t be sad eating one unless you choke.” – Urban Dictionary

Wise words indeed.

Friends, the festive season has come and gone, but it’s still winter, and that means there is still time for apple cider, fireplaces, steaming cups of cocoa, snow, and, of course,  peppermint. Peppermint smells like winter and it smells like happiness. That’s all the convincing I need to work it into my life.

And what better way to enjoy peppermint than with a self-care gift that’s good for the body AND good for the senses: peppermint body butter! Peppermint essential oil is wonderfully stimulating – it’s crisp, familiar, sharpens the mind, brings clarity, and yet it’s also kind of soothing and calming. When you are getting a deep whiff of peppermint, there isn’t room for anything else except you and the delicious refreshing smell. Like the Urban Dictionary says – peppermint makes you happy. And there’s no arguing with the Urban Dictionary (well, sometimes there is).

peppermint body body

And there’s also no arguing with quality. This body butter is made with simple, straightforward ingredients that generally one might have at home (okay, you might have to order/purchase an item or two, but outside of that, the ingredients are straightforward from a healthy/quality perspective). Something we can all commit to, as a powerful act of self-love for 2016, is to choose beauty products that support our bodies and contribute to our health and well-being. Most commercial products contain questionable ingredients, are intended to last on the shelf for months and months, and are a source of toxins for your body (which is ordinarily trying to get all of the toxins OUT). If you can, supply your body with beauty care products that don’t compromise your overall health and vitality.

peppermint body body 3

So get yourself some luxurious quality fats and craft up some body butter for your hardworking feet, hands, and other parts – you’ll make them happy. Add peppermint essential oil and you’ll make yourself happy, too.

Refresh and Relax Peppermint Body Butter

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup cocoa butter
  • 1/2 cup shea butter (or, more cocoa butter)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup liquid oil (like grape seed, jojoba, sunflower, etc).
  • 20-30 drops peppermint essential oil

*organic is best for all of these ingredients; even better, organic and fair-trade (particularly for the cocoa butter and shea butter).

Instructions:

  1. Create a double boiler system. By this, I mean: heat water to boiling in a pot or saucepan, and then put another heat-proof bowl over top – the ingredients melt in the heat proof bowl from the heat of the boiling water, but without coming into contact WITH the water.
  2. Next, into the heat proof bowl add your cocoa butter, shea butter, and coconut oil and stir occasionally until all are melted and mixed together.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in the liquid oil.
  4. Put the whole mix in the fridge and set your timer for 30 minute intervals – you want it to firm up but not become a rock. The 30 minute marker allows you to gauge how far along it is. If it’s really cold, I suppose you could put it outside.
  5. Once firm, remove from fridge and grab your hand mixer/whatever mixer and start to whip it. Whip it good. Add your peppermint essential oil as you go. If you want to really fire up your nose, add more peppermint oil.
  6. Whip until you’ve reached your desired state of whippiness, then scoop into jars and voila! Body butter a la peppermint. Ooh la la.

© Backyard Owl 2016