Creating simple herbal gifts for friends and family is an easy and inexpensive way to spread cheer while practicing your remedy-making skills.
I think Bath Teas are a very accessible form of herbal healing: they are easy to use, don't require anyone to drink anything "too earthy" or "weird" (you know those folks in your life, bless them), and can even be used by those who don't have a bathtub (more on that below!).
Another great advantage of giving herbal gifts is using up herbs that need a home so that they don't fall into disuse in the back of your tea cupboard. Better to give that jar of Juniper Berries a home than watch them languish away - we better respect an herb's gift of healing when we actually use them.
I created the Temple Bath Tea last year for my friends and family and I'm happy to share the recipe with you as the first in our #DIYHerbalGifts series. Temple is a skin-nourishing blend of herbs with a gentle forest scent mixed with epsom salts for additional calming and pain-relieving qualities.
Temple Bath Tea
Begin by mixing together the following herbs. The recipe uses parts which means that you can make a batch as large or small as you like. A part, for example, might be 1 cup or 3 tablespoons depending on how much bath tea you want to make. So, if you choose 1 cup = 1 part as your measurement you would add 3 cups of Juniper Berries with 3 cups of Strawberry Leaf and 1 cup of Passionflower Leaf and so on.
- 3 parts Juniper Berry (Juniperus communis)
- 3 parts Strawberry Leaf (Fragaria vesca)
- 3 parts Comfrey Leaf (Symphytum officinale)
- 1 part Passionflower Leaf (Passiflora incarnata)
- 1 part Blackberry Leaf (Rubus fruticosus)
- 1 part Cedar Leaf (Thuja plicata)
For every 1 part of your herbal blend add 1 to 2 parts of epsom salts. You then have two choices on how to proceed. You can either add about 1/2 to 1 cup of your bath blend to a large sealable tea bag (I like the large Press 'N Brew Tea Bags ones you can get from Mountain Rose Herbs) or a large reusable muslin tea bag. Your other option is to put the bath salts in a appropriately sized jar and let folks scoop out the amount they want when they want to use it. Either way, I do recommend letting your salt and herb mixture "brew" in a sealed jar for a few days to a week to help the scents and energies of the herbs blend together.
Finish up your gift by including instructions for use to help folks actually use their gift as well as an ingredient list so folks can be informed of what they are putting on their skin. Looking for labels to use for your herbal gifts? I'll be posting free labels to my Magick Mail subscribers later this month!
How To Use Your Temple Bath Tea
- Option 1: Add 1/2 - 1 cup of bath tea to your bath either directly in a tea bag or loose. Remember that adding it loose to your bath requires cleaning up the herbs afterwards.
- Option 2: Brew your bath tea ahead of time! Add 1/2 - 1 cup of bath tea to a large bowl or jar and cover with hot water and let steep for at least 15 - 20 minutes. This is a great option for folks who want to use the bath tea as a wash if they don't have a bath or if you're using the bath tea loose leaf because you can strain the tea before adding it to your bath. This is my favorite way of preparing a bath tea.
- Option 3: Feeling super stressed by someone or something in particular? Take a handful of bath salts and throw it at them while yelling "NOPE!" to powerfully communicate that you are done with their nonsense.
Be sure to check out the rest of the Herbal Gifts series and all of my recipes and tutorials! I have also put together a recipe book full of healing and fun recipes for the winter holidays. The Winter Apothecary can be purchased in my shop and is currently on sale through the month of December!