Long gone are the days when magnesium sulfate, better known as Epsom salt, was used strictly to soothe tired feet.
Numerous applications have been discovered for its use, not only for the body, but in the garden, too!
Here are 8 great uses for Epsom salt.
1. Sunburn Relief
Just in time for summer! Epsom salt has been shown to relieve mild sunburns. Make a cold compress by dissolving 2 tablespoons of Epsom salt into every 1 cup of cold water. Soak a washcloth in the mixture, wring it out, and then apply it to the sunburned skin for instant, soothing relief.
2. Aches and Pains
It’s well documented that Epsom salts helps relieve aches and pains, so this comes as no surprise. Adding 2 cups of Epsom salts to a warm bath, and then soaking in it for 20 minutes will relieve tired, aching muscles.
Epsom salts are also good for localized pain as well. Just combine 1 cup of Epsom salts into 1 quart of warm water, and soak a towel into the solution. Next, wring out the towel and apply it to the impacted area for up to a half an hour to relieve swelling and pain.
3. Fix Your Feet
As well as being an effective natural remedy against the everyday aches and pains in your feet, Epsom salts also helps feet in other ways. The magnesium sulfate absorbs into the skin, working to reduce foot odor, ingrown toenails and fungal foot infections, according to the Epsom Salt Council.
When used as a laxative, Epsom salt can help produce a bowel movement in as little as 30 minutes. Just add 1 to 2 (ages 6 to 12) or 2 to 4 (ages 12+) teaspoons of Epsom salts into 8 ounces of water, and stir until dissolved. Then drink it in its entirety. This is not recommended for children under six years of age.
5. Facial Mask and Spa
Talk about an inexpensive way to indulge your skin! Give yourself a deep-pore cleansing facial by adding ½ a teaspoon of Epsom salt into your regular cleansing cream and then massaging it into your skin as usual. Simply rinse your face with cool water afterwards and then dry it with a clean towel.
After your shower, while your skin is still wet, exfoliate it by massaging Epsom salts over your body. It may sound odd, but magnesium sulfate is a great exfoliator, and your skin will feel revitalized!
6. Splinters and Stingers
Why not reduce the pain and swelling associated with splinters and stingers while at the same time effortlessly removing the foreign object? Make an Epsom salt paste by chilling a mixture of Epsom salt (1 teaspoon) and hot water (1 cup) in the refrigerator. After about 20 minutes, remove the paste and apply it to the affected area. The magnesium sulfate should naturally draw out the splinter or stinger while relieving the associated ache and swelling.
7. Make Bath Crystals
If soaking in Epsom salt doesn’t sound appealing to you, consider combining a few drops of food coloring (or ½ tsp. glycerin) with a few drops of your favorite fragrance, and 2 cups of Epsom salts. Store the mixture in an air-tight container for future baths, or give it as a gift!
8. Fertilizer and House Plants
The properties in Epsom salt don’t only work wonders on the human body, but they can be magic in the garden, too. Magnesium and sulfur help increases chlorophyll production in plants, makes bushes more voluminous, and it even helps increase flower production. It’s also a natural pest deterrent. The Epsom Salt Council offers tips on magnesium sulfate and how much to add to different types of plants in order to maximize growth.
Epsom salts are an inexpensive and versatile way to relieve pain and soften skin, as well as remedy common ailments and conditions, including sunburn and fungal infections. This mineral compound hasn’t changed in centuries, but our view on it certainly has, as evidenced by its countless applications.
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