Best Bath Soaks

Updated November 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

13 Models Considered
5 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
18 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best bath soaks

Last Updated November 2019

Looking to relax? Bath soaks are a fantastic way to unwind while enjoying several great health and cosmetic benefits. The act of soaking in warm water alone loosens stiff joints and physical tension; adding a bath soak can make you feel like you’re at a pricey spa. In truth, a bath soak is an affordable little luxury you can use at home.

Your goal when using a bath soak may be detoxification, smoother skin, or relief from sore muscles. The question is, which bath soak is right for you? There are a few things you should know first. Bath soaks are absorbed directly into the skin, so finding a high-quality product is paramount. You should know exactly what’s in a bath soak before you use one — that way, you reap the benefits you seek. It also helps to know about your options; there are numerous bath soaks for sale today, and you’re bound to like some more than others.

If your skin needs a pick-me-up or you have a more targeted goal in mind, read this informative shopping guide for further information. You’ll also find our valuable insight on some of the best-selling bath soaks on the market today.

Bath soaks moisturize and revitalize skin. For this reason, they’re often used in the dry season.

How to use bath soaks

First things first: how do you use a bath soak? It’s quite simple, but you should be aware of the instructions. For most bath soaks, add one to two cups of the product to a comfortably warm tub of water. Do not use it in a hot tub or in a tub with jets unless the manufacturer explicitly says it is okay to do so. Soak for a minimum of 12 minutes. Speak to your doctor about the duration and frequency at which you use your bath soaks.

Key considerations

Types of bath soaks

Epsom salts soaks contain Epsom salts, which contain sulfate and magnesium. Magnesium can help maintain bone strength, a regular heart beat, and regulated blood pressure. It also relaxes your muscles in a bath. Sulfate assists the body in flushing out toxins and cleansing the liver. Magnesium sulfate is hard to absorb from food; pouring it in a bath can help your body absorb the minerals more readily.

Detox bath soaks offer detoxification in addition to relaxation. Most detox bath soaks include Epsom salts. Here are the most popular bath soaks which double as detoxes:

  • Salt detox: Ingredients may include Epson salt, Himalayan salt, apple cider vinegar, and baking soda. These soaks serve as a general detox, soothing irritations of the skin and increasing magnesium levels.

  • Clay detox: Ingredients may include bentonite clay, Epsom salts, and essential oils. A clay soak can provide a deep detox, as the clay binds to heavy metals and pulls them out of the body.

  • Scent/aromatherapy: Essential oils may be present in your bath soaks. These can help with a variety of ailments, both physical and mental. Many people prefer to opt for organic oils for a more natural experience.

  • Lavender: A bath soak with lavender can help you wind down at the end of a day and fall asleep faster.

  • Rose: Rose oil or rose petals contain anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties.

  • Ginger: Ginger can help ease a headache or stuffy nose while releasing toxins.

  • Neroli: Extracted from orange blossom flowers, this oil is gently sedative and helps reduce anxiety.

  • Jasmine: This oil can be very uplifting and doubles as an aphrodisiac.

  • Eucalyptus: A bath soak with eucalyptus is an invigorating way to wake up and clear your sinuses.

Side effects

Normal side effects of using a bath soak can include mild upset stomach, cramping, or diarrhea. If you experience itchiness, trouble breathing, hives, swelling, or rash, you may be suffering an allergic reaction and should seek immediate medical help.

Healing, scent-free relief

This bath soak by Minera utilizes fine-grain salt from the Dead Sea, which contains 21 beneficial minerals. The Dead Sea Salt soak is not a blend and hasn’t been depleted in any way. It is advertised for bath, shower, and foot usage and offered in a resealable plastic bag. This version is designed to treat skin conditions, specifically psoriasis, and for that reason is free of chemicals. A scent-free and hypoallergenic option, it’s a great alternative for those who don’t enjoy a perfumed bath.

Benefits of using bath soaks

Post-workout recovery

Bath soaks, when absorbed in warm water, offer profound muscle relaxation and reduced inflammation. If you have tired feet, an achy back, or some other sort of muscular strain, a bath soak can help speed up your body’s healing time.

Stress reduction

Bath soaks don’t just ease tense muscles; they also calm a frenzied mind. A steamy bath, when infused with the right ingredients, can lull an exhausted mind into a feeling of calm that is not unlike meditation.

Improved sleep quality

Many people go to bed with a racing mind, unable to turn off their thoughts until the wee hours. A warm bath with a bath soak helps ease that mental chaos. It also lowers your body temperature to one that brings optimal sleep. Try a bath soak infused with lavender, a plant known for its relaxing and sleep-inducing capabilities.

Skin disorder treatment

Bath soaks moisturize and revitalize dead, flaking skin, and for this reason, they’re often used in dry seasons. Psoriasis is often eased by bath soaks, and so is eczema.

However, remember this when buying: you should ensure that your bath soaks are all-natural and suitable for sensitive or inflamed skin, as many perfumes and chemicals could potentially aggravate your skin condition further. Bath soaks can also ease the pain of sunburn, but make sure to use water that’s not too hot.

Enhanced immunity

As mentioned, relaxing with bath soaks can help detox your system. With the help of the right essential oils and Epsom salts, you can also enjoy the benefits of an improved immune system. As you sit in warm water with bath soaks, your body naturally sweats out toxins. Using bath soaks infused with eucalyptus, tea tree oil, or peppermint can help to get rid of colds faster.

Improved skin

Adding bath soaks to your routine can help eliminate dead cells to reveal a glowing complexion. Bath soaks can be used as exfoliants to slough away dead skin, especially when mixed with body wash. Plenty of bath soaks also contain additional moisturizing ingredients like coconut oil, which is especially useful when transitioning your skincare routine after winter.

DID YOU KNOW?

Magnesium sulfate can be absorbed through a foot soak if you don’t have a bathtub or simply don’t enjoy baths.

DID YOU KNOW?

Bath soaks with high Epsom salt content can double as natural fertilizers that boost plant growth.

DID YOU KNOW?

Arthritis experts suggest integrating bath soaks with Epsom salts for inflammation and joint pain relief.

Bath soak prices

Plain bath soaks containing no frills with solely magnesium sulfate can be purchased in a three-pound bag for around $10. A five-pound bag costs about $15.

If you prefer some aromatherapy with your bath soak, you’ll find many reliable brands with safe ingredients that can be purchased for an affordable price. A six-pound bag may cost less than $20.

Moving away from drugstore brands and toward higher-end products with organic, complex infusions (essential oils, vitamin crystals that neutralize impurities), you’ll have to spend a little more. An eight-pound bag of this nature could cost up to $30. However, if you feel like pampering yourself and want a targeted remedy, this may be worth it to you.

Descend into soothing zen

Dr. Teal’s is a longstanding and trusted brand offering bath soaks with natural ingredients in a variety of scents. This soothing lavender version can help bring a better night’s sleep and has additional moisturizing and calming abilities. It comes in a generous portion with two three-pound bags and a resealable zipper to maintain freshness. The quality is excellent for the price and doesn’t force you to skimp on your DIY spa. Dr. Teal’s products don’t use animal testing and are made in the U.S.

Tips

  • Drink lots of water after you use a bath soak. Bathing in warm or hot water, especially in conjunction with a bath soak, can cause dehydration. Put a slice of lemon in your water to maximize the detox effects.

  • Don’t use water that is excessively hot when taking your bath. Hot water dehydrates your skin, and when combined with the powerful healing effects of bath soaks, it can make you feel lightheaded and dizzy. Instead, opt for water of a warm temperature, which you could always drizzle some hot water into if needed.

  • Add bath soaks to your routine close to the holidays. These are the times throughout the year when stress levels are often the highest.

Other products we considered

Although many bath soaks offer unique benefits, there are two other products that stood out from the crowd and are worth a mention. At a slightly higher price point, Detox Epsom Rx Bath Salts contain invigorating lemon and ginger essential oils within fine grains, as well as purifying vitamin C crystals which neutralize chlorine and ammonia. This product is handmade in San Diego and features no fillers, artificial ingredients, or additives.

If you prefer a mint scent to citrus, Better Bath Better Body offers its Muscle Soak specifically for achy muscles. Imbued with peppermint and eucalyptus aromatherapy, this soak is also all-natural with vitamin C crystals and high-grade oils.

Using a bath soak infused with ginger makes for a decongesting experience that eases tight muscles and also has antiviral and antiseptic powers.

FAQ

Q. Can bath soaks help with dry or ashy skin?

A. Bath soaks may contain hydrating ingredients such as aloe, but their effects are maximized in warm water. (Don’t use hot water, as it can be dehydrating to the skin.)

Q. Can I apply the crystals to a sprain or injury in concentrated form instead of a bath?

A. Yes. To relieve sprains, stings, and other acute issues, add at least one cup of Epsom salts bath soak to warm water. Soak a washcloth in this solution, and after wringing out excess liquid, apply it to the area until the cloth cools.

Q. Are bath soak blends more effective than simple Epsom salts soaks?

A. As long as it contains magnesium sulfate, the benefits will occur. If you have additional ailments that need remedying such as poor sleep or injured muscles, additional ingredients like essential oils and salt blends can enhance the healing potential of bath soaks.

The team that worked on this review
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Senior Editor

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