A mud bath is a great way to relax and refresh, and its anti-inflammatory properties and soothing minerals can work wonders on your skin. Thankfully, you don't have to make a trip to the spa to get the relief you seek.
But before you dive in, be warned: Making your own mud bath is not as easy as mixing dirt and water -- any old backyard mud just won't do. To achieve the same health benefits as you would at the spa, you need mud that contains lots of minerals and nutrients. Combine the mud with warm water until it reaches an ideal consistency and soak it in for 10 to 15 minutes. Another option is to mix potting soil with water and milk powder [source: Yankee Magazine]. These ingredients are easier to find, and the milk powder will have a soothing effect that's similar to a traditional mud bath [source: Bender].
Of course, mud can be messy, and if the dirt is too grainy, it can clog your drain. A fun way to simulate the experience of a mud bath and pamper your skin at the same time is to make a chocolate mud bath. Mix milk, chocolate powder or syrup, cornstarch and vanilla and pour it under warm running water. Not only will the milk make your skin soft, but this "mud bath" also smells delicious [source: Van].
Check out the links on the following page for more tips on at-home mud baths and other spa treatments.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- Bender, Michele. "Soothing Soaks for Smooth, Sexy Skin." Health magazine (Accessed 9/21/09)http://living.health.com/2007/03/01/soothing-soaks-for-smooth-sexy-skin/
- Bouchez, Colette. "Spas: The Risks and the Benefits." Web MD (Accessed 9/14/09)http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/features/spas-the-risks-and-benefits?page=3
- Catanese, Nicole. "Beauty Treatments: Create Your Own Spa Treatments at Home." Fitness magazine (Accessed 9/21/09)http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/beauty/guides/makeovers/create-your-own-home-spa-treatments/
- Cozzi, Franco. "Mud-bath treatment in spondylitis with inflammatory bowel disease -- a pilot randomized clinical trial." (Accessed 10/13/09) http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6W90-4NVKXXT-2&_user=10&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_searchStrId=1046884081&_rerunOrigin=google&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=b562bbcd692025121bf6be8fa49b8f75
- Lund, John W. "Balneological Use of Thermal Waters." International Workshop on Balneology and 'Water' Tourist Centers" (Accessed 9/14/09)http://www.sld.cu/galerias/pdf/sitios/rehabilitacion-bal/lundwj2.pdf
- Matz, Hagit, et al. "Balneotherapy in Dermatology." Dermatologic Therapy (Accessed 9/14/09).http://www.sld.cu/galerias/pdf/sitios/rehabilitacion-bal/matzh_et_al.pdf
- Mayo Clinic. "Psoriasis." (Accessed 9/21/09)http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/psoriasis/DS00193
- Van, Rhonda. "The Bath Gourmet." 2004 (Accessed 9/21/09) http://books.google.com/books?id=W3dU_UqA-cEC&pg=PA54&lpg=PA54&dq=making+a+mud+bath&source=bl&ots=LozXw-is2k&sig=xcKw1LX0C9HSmrj5gLeSQNU8-_o&hl=en&ei=8oy3SrbqIoPkNYOz2NoO&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=10#v=onepage&q=making%20a%20mud%20bath&f=false
- Web MD. "Massage Therapy Styles and Health Benefits." (Accessed 9/17/09)http://www.webmd.com/balance/massage-therapy-styles-and-health-benefits
- Yankee Magazine. "Living Well on a Shoestring." 2000 (Accessed 9/21/09)http://books.google.com/books?id=ie_2XMqudQMC&pg=PA292&lpg=PA292&dq=making+a+mud+bath&source=bl&ots=za4iJDavhM&sig=IKGUXkhdzW0erjzUyORzTu6rwXk&hl=en&ei=tIu3Suj5N4ykMdOe1NoO&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=10#v=onepage&q=&f=false