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tin tie bag with blue and sage raffia and wooden scoop
We all need renewal time, and a little pampering pleasure tops my list. Who doesn't love facials, pedicures, full body scrubs and the like? You can create the decadence of a day at the spa, right in your own home.

So plan on a little you-time, invite your girlfriends over for a spa party, or create a spa day for your mom, just in time for Mother's Day (and early enough that you can get your materials together!). Or, get some pretty containers and give these "products" as gifts.

This week, we'll start with pampering the feet, and columns on the face and body (and hands) will follow in subsequent weeks.

Fun way to package your handmade foot soak(click thumbnails to view gallery)

foot soak packaging_042808tucking raffia_042808scoop tied_042808foot soak finished_042808

THE FEET

Especially this time of year, feet need a lot of attention. Break those dogs out of their winter state and make them spring and summer ready.

Foot Soak
Use this soak in a foot bath, or if you have a vibrating foot spa, even better. You'll only need a small scoop, about 1-2 TB, and soak until your feet are rested and soft, about 20 minutes.
  • 1 c. Epsom salts -- restores magnesium balance, detoxifies and soothes sore muscles
  • 1/2 tsp. ground peppermint -- optional, but pretty!
  • 1 tsp. jojoba or vegetable oil of your choice
  • 25 drops essential oils
Mix dry ingredients, then combine the oil and essential oils. Add to dry and mix well. Store in an airtight container, either a jar, a square window tin or tin-tie bag works well. Add a ribbon with a note about how to use and you've packaged your foot soak as a thoughtful gift. For details on how to package your foot soak in a tin tie bag, visit the gallery.

Foot Scrub
Follow up your soothing soak with a scrub. Since your feet are wonderfully hydrated, the dead skin will slough off with ease and you'll be one step closer to pretty feet.
  • 1/2 c. sea salt
  • 1/2 TB ground herbs -- peppermint, rosemary, lavender or any combination
  • 1 TB olive oil or whatever you have on hand -- approximate, as each oil will lend a different consistency to the scrub
  • 20 drops essential oils
Mix dry ingredients, then combine the oil and essential oils. Add to dry and mix well. You are aiming for a crumbly salt mixture; if it is sand-like, you need more oil, if it is soupy, you've used too much. Store in a jar, perhaps a pretty blue jar if you are giving as a gift.

Foot Butter

OK, you've got hydrated, soft and exfoliated feet. Keep them that way with this emollient-rich foot butter. Use this every night before bed, and wear socks. You'll wake up to the softest feet imaginable.
  • 3 oz. shea butter
  • 1/2 oz. virgin coconut oil -- at most health food stores
  • 1/4 oz. cocoa butter
  • 30-40 drops essential oils (less if you are using a lot of the minty ones)
Melt all ingredients together very slowly, either over a double boiler or in 30 second increments in the microwave. When melted to a clear liquid, stir and let stand for about five minutes. Stir in essential oils, pour into container and refrigerate until set.

The best containers for the butter are slightly shallow with a wide opening, so you can scoop it out easily, like a flat tin.

To scent these foot-pampering recipes, you can use any combination of:
  • lavender -- for calming and relaxation
  • tea tree -- antibacterial and anti-fungal for really clean feet
  • peppermint -- cooling and soothing for hot, tired feet
  • geranium -- to aid circulation
  • cypress -- again, for circulation
  • or of course, any of your favorites
Follow up with a nail trim and your favorite polish and don those flip-flops. Or, present your beautifully packaged foot spa products as a thoughtful pampering gift.


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