Products to Know About: The Many Uses for Epsom Salt

Getting Back to the Basics and Regaining the Knowledge that our not so distant relatives used everyday has become a fascinating journey for me.

I’ve always been interested in herbal remedies. But now I’ve rediscovered green cleaning products (like vinegar and baking soda) that do just as good a job (sometimes better) as the harsh chemical cleaners out there on the market. And I’ve started using raw honey and coconut oil for skin/hair care and home remedies. I’ve been so impressed I’ve sought out more and more of what was once common knowledge, about being self-reliant using everyday common products found in our homes.

Here’s another product I remember as a household staple when I was growing up. Epsom Salt.

Carton of Epsom SaltIt’s not really a salt, but a chemical compound of magnesium, sulfate and oxygen. Magnesium regulates the activity of over 325 enzymes, reduces inflammation, supports muscle and nerve function and helps to prevent artery hardening. Sulfates assist in improving the absorption of nutrients, flushes toxins and can help ease migraine headaches. Studies have shown that both magnesium and sulfate are readily absorbed through the skin, making Epsom Salt a natural remedy for numerous ailments. Even better, it’s inexpensive to purchase and easy to store. You can buy it in small cartons, like the one pictured, or in large quantity bags. You can even find it prepackaged with herbs and other ingredients mixed in, for specific uses such as a soaking bath. Do you have it in your home? If not, you should consider it!

Just this last week I bent over incorrectly and tweaked my back. My monthly massage was a week away. I managed to stretch away the worst of the pain so I could finish my day. But I was still in discomfort and knew all too well it could flair up any time. So that evening I filled the bathtub with hot water and added a mixture of Epsom Salt, Lavender and Baking Soda and soaked in it before going to bed. I woke up the next morning feeling great!

Epsom Salt in a bath has always helped me get rid of sore muscles, but there are other ways you can use this product. So here is a list of ideas for you to try. *Note: it’s recommended that you speak with your doctor and do research before using Epsom Salt to make sure it doesn’t react negatively with your body and/or medications.


  • Bath and Epsom SaltsSpa Bath – This is my favorite use. You can create a soothing bath using 2 cups of Epsom Salt added to your bath water. Soak for 15-30 minutes. Or treat yourself to a real spa experience and try the recipe from my blog DIY: Handy Home Remedies
  • Foot and Hand Soak – Add ¼ – ½ cup Epsom Salt to a basin or a Pedicure Spa Bath and soak for 10-15 minutes. A great way to relax and get rid of achy feet!


  • Bug Bites – using some Epsom Salt and water you can create a little bit of paste and pat it on the affected area.
  • Foot Odor – using the Foot Soak above not only relaxes you, it can help with a foot odor problem.
  • Splinter Removal – to reduce inflammation and soften the tissue around the splinter, use ¼ cup Epsom Salt in warm water and soak for 10 minutes, or more.


  • Garden Pests – Keep insects and slugs at bay by sprinkling some salt around problem areas. It will also nourish your plants at the same time!
  • For your Lawn– add a couple of tablespoons to a gallon of water and sprinkle on your lawn to keep grass green.


  • Epsom Salts in wooden bowlClean Washing Machine – sprinkle ¼ cup of Epsom Salt in the bottom of the machine and run full cycle. See manual before doing this to avoid possible warranty termination.
  • Clean Bathroom Tiles – use an equal mixture of Epsom Salt and liquid dish washing detergent to clean tiles.

What Ways Do You Use Epsom Salt?



  1. ruth

    Indy, great info! I’ve used before in the bath. Do you have a special recipe or suggestion for my dratted migraines?


    • indy

      Thanks for the comment and question, Ruth. First, I must admit I am no expert on migraines. But this is what I found during some research: “Despite an abundance of studies showing that those with migraines have lower Red Blood Cell Magnesium Levels in general, and the fact that the vast majority of those in these studies saw benefit from magnesium for headaches, there are virtually no doctors or hospitals encouraging their patients with migraine headaches to take magnesium for them…The combination of the warm relaxing bath and the magnesium that is able to soak right through your skin is a One-Two punch that has been used by many people to feel better quickly- it’s one of the really great ways to use Epsom Salt.” Here’s where you can read more about this… hope you find it helpful – Let me know!
      Read more:

  2. Mike Sirota

    My mom always kept that around, but for the life of me, I can’t recall why. This was, of course, during the Stone Age. 🙂 I think it had to do with soaking in it, as you mentioned.

    • indy

      Same for me, Mike. My Mom always used it for sore muscles. I had no idea how it worked, until I did the research. Then found all the other ways you can use this inexpensive product!

  3. Lois

    We always had epsom salts in the house when I was young. It was used mainly for soaking in a tub but it’s funny you brought up the subject because I just added it to my shopping list as I read it will help plants (especially peppers) to produce fruit faster. It’s been a crazy season and while my plants are healthy the peppers are just now forming and taking forever to grow and ripen. I’m going to hold on to this list and remind myself to use it more often.

    • indy

      Hi Lois – Always so good to hear from you! I’m glad you found this information helpful. Your blogs are always very helpful, so I’m happy I could return the favor. Good luck with the peppers!


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