Epsom Salt

How did you and your family spend the Holy week this year? For some people this means a getaway of some sort but for Anne and I, we see it as a golden opportunity to do some much needed body cleansing which includes fasting. Yes, not eating for a couple of days straight is something that I actually really look forward to. I'm not saying that it's going to be easy or even fun but at the end of the day, the positive impact that it will have on my body is worth all the fuzz.

Epsom Salt is one key ingredient that I needed for the specific detox procedure that I did over the holidays. Not every household has it and it's not that easy to find when you need it. I'll bet you that most people don't even know about it and they'd give you a blank look when you ask them outright if they know of Epsom Salt. By the way, if you're wondering what kind of body cleanse I chose to do, it's the liver and gallbladder flush. Sadly, Anne couldn't undergo the same procedure I went through due to the fact that she is exclusively breastfeeding our youngest child, maybe in a couple of years or so, when we start weaning him.

Epsom salt, in reality, is not salt but a naturally occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate. Long known as a natural remedy for a number of ailments, it actually has numerous health benefits as well as many beauty, household, and gardening-related uses.


  • Ease discomfort of gout: Ease the discomfort of gout and reduce inflammation by adding 2–3 teaspoons of Epsom salts into a basin and soaking the affected foot/joint. The water should be as hot as it is comfortable. Soak for about 30 minutes.
  • Athlete’s foot: Just soak feet in an Epsom salt bath to help relieve the symptoms of athlete’s foot.
  • Splinter removal: Soak affected skin area in an Epsom salt bath, it'll draw out the splinter.
  • For soothing sprains and bruises: Add 2 cups of Epsom salt to a warm bath and soak to reduce the pain and swelling of sprains and bruises.


  • Exfoliating facial cleanser: To clean your face and exfoliate while you're at it, mix a half-teaspoon of Epsom salt with your regular cleansing cream. Gently massage it into your skin and rinse with cold water after.
  • Add volume to hair: Combine equal parts deep conditioner and Epsom salt and warm in a pan. Work the warm mixture through your hair and leave on for 20 minutes. Rinse thoroughly.
  • Removing blackheads: Add a teaspoon of Epsom salt and 3 drops of iodine into a half cup of boiling water. Apply this mixture to the blackheads using a cotton ball.
  • Foot odor: Mix a half cup of Epsom salt in warm water and soak your feet for about 10 minutes to remove bad odor, it'll sooth achy feet, and soften rough skin as well.
  • Exfoliate dead skin: In the shower or bath, mix a handful of Epsom salt with a tablespoon of bath or olive oil and rub all over your wet skin to exfoliate and soften. Rinse thoroughly.
  • Hairspray removal: Combine 1 gallon of water, 1 cup of lemon juice, and 1 cup Epsom salt. Cover the mixture and let set for 24 hours. The next day, pour the mixture into your dry hair and leave on for 20 minutes before shampooing as normal.


  • Getting rid of detergent build-up on washing machines: Fill the machine tub with hot water, add Epsom salt, and run an agitate/soak/agitate cycle to dissolve detergent build-up (please consult your machine’s instruction manual for specific instructions).
  • Cleaning bathroom tiles: Mix equal parts Epsom salt and dishwashing liquid and use as a scrub on bathroom tiles.
  • Keeping slugs away: Sprinkle Epsom salt on or near interior entry points to prevent slugs from coming in. 
  • Hand wash: Mix Epsom salt with baby oil and keep by the sink for an effective hand wash.


  • Insecticide spray: Use Epsom salts in your garden to safely and naturally get rid of plant pests.
  • Fertilizer for plants: Most plants need nutrients like magnesium and sulfur to stay in good health, and Epsom salt makes the primary nutrients in most plant foods (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium) more effective. Sprinkle Epsom salt once weekly to help nourish your houseplants, flowers, and vegetables.
  • Keep your lawn green: Magnesium sulfate crystals, when added to the soil, provide vital nutrients that help prevent yellowing leaves and the loss of green color (magnesium is an essential element in the chlorophyll molecule) in plants. Add 2 tablespoons of Epsom salt to a gallon of water and sprinkle on your lawn to keep the grass healthy and green.

Now that we've tackled some of the many benefits and uses of Epsom salt, here are some of the places around the metro where you can get it:


Article published on April 6, 2016