Posts tagged #aromatherapy

Foot soak: a DIY treat for your feet

Immersing your feet in a tub of warm water, even without anything extra in it, is a nice way to relax after a long day. A foot soak can soothe your muscles, hydrate your skin and may relieve aches and pain.  A little rough skin helps protect our feet, if you’re prone to developing thick calluses, softening them in a soak makes them easier to exfoliate. Soaking your feet on a daily basis can have a positive effect on your well being. A foot soak just before bed, for example, will help you to relax and enjoy the time you have before falling asleep in bed.

Preparing a foot soak at home can be as easy as filling an old washing up bowl with warm water. This alone can bring relaxation for your mind, increase circulation for your feet and aid the removal of hard or dry skin. Keep in mind that your feet may be dirty so, you do not want to use your nice soup pots for soaking your feet! However, buying plastic foot spas can prove to be pricey. Any flat bottomed bowl big enough to place both your feet in comfortably will make a great foot bowl.

There are some additions, however, that can enhance your  foot soak. Consider these options when caring for your hard-working feet:

Epsom Salt Foot Soak

Epsom salt, named for a bitter saline spring at Epsom in Surrey, England, is not actually salt but a naturally occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate. This combination is a compound that may help flush toxins and heavy metals from your skin’s cells, reduce inflammation, increase circulation and ease muscle cramps and joint pain.  As your feet absorb the magnesium, pain-reducing ions are believed to be released, relaxing your muscles. Epsom salt can also quell foot odour, help prevent fungus and soothe dry skin.

You’ll find this healing salt at most chemists and supermarkets. Simply dissolve one cup of Epsom salt in warm water and soak your feet for 10 to 15 minutes.

Dead sea salt Foot Soak

The waters of the Dead Sea have been renowned for their therapeutic effects since ancient times.
The waters from the Dead Sea are unique in that they contain 27% of various salts as compared to 3% in normal sea water. Further, while sodium accounts for approximately 80% of the salt content of normal sea water, it comprises much less of the salt total in water from the Dead Sea. The balance of the salts in Dead Sea water are magnesium, potassium, calcium chloride and bromides. It is renowned for having numerous beneficial effects on the body and skin and may be helpful for reducing stress, easing sore, stiff muscles and for skin conditions such as dermatitis and eczema.

Essential Oil Foot Soak

There are several ways to use essential oils at home, including adding a few drops to your soak. Here are some popular choices, which you can use individually or combine together for your healing foot treatment. Always be aware that some oils will not be appropriate for you so do seek advice from your therapist or essential oil supplier before using oils you are not familiar with. Here are some ideas, but there are lots of great essential oils which can benefit your feet and relax or revitalise your mind.

   Cedarwood oil is used as an antiseptic and anti-fungal.
   Lemongrass is an antiseptic and natural deodorant.
   Geranium is reported for its antiseptic and deodorising qualities.
   Lavender oil is a favorite for relaxation. It’s also know as a natural pain reliever.
   Ginger oil is reputed to improve circulation.

Essential oils will not mix in water without something to disperse them. After preparing the bath, mix five drops of your chosen essential oil with one dessertspoon of apple cider vinegar and add it to the bath. The apple cider vinegar a great way to help disperse the oil, and it also has its own therapeutic properties. Should you prefer not to use the apple cider vinegar, you could mix the essential oil with some powered milk, and forming it into a paste before mixing with the water, as it also helps to disperse the oil. If you don't have either a small drop of milk mixed with the oils will help to disperse it.

Salts and oils can both be used in one soak to create a truly soothing experience. If you have concerns about making your own foot soak then natural pre mixed products can be found in many health food retailers or online.

If you want to add an extra relaxing dimension to your footbath, you can place marbles or small pebbles at the bottom of the bath to run your feet over. Set the scene by playing relaxing music and dimming the lights. Always ensure you have towels close at hand to avoid walking with wet feet and risking slipping.

The process of soaking feet is cheap, easy, and relaxing. You do not have to go to a spa to feel pampered, and your body will thank you for the extra attention. Even if you are not looking for immediate results, soaking your feet can help reduce your stress levels and improve your overall feelings of wellbeing.

If you are preparing for a reflexology home visit then a great way to enhance your experience is to enjoy a foot soak prior to your appointment. Discussing appropriate oils with your aromatherapist can help you to tailor the soak to your needs.

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Posted on November 25, 2013 .

Mother's Day treats for new mums.


Aromatherapy, reflexology and massage are perfect for new mothers: It'll be just the treat they need.


Holistic therapies such as massage and reflexology offer new mums some valuable "me-time" and can really help her in the transition from pregnancy to being a mum.  Therapies for new mums can help relieve aches and pains, promote and support lactation and boost her confidence and self esteem. A real feel good gift.

Many mums enjoy therapies such as reflexology and massage during their pregnancy but its so easy to forget their own needs once their baby is born.  I can remember when I was a new mum and some days I don't think I even thought about myself enough to reach for my hair brush! Booking a therapy for a new mum may help them to recover from the birth both physically and emotionally. Its a perfect way to support them at this exciting and special time of change.

Breast feeding is wonderful for both  mum and baby but sometimes nature needs a little extra support. Aromatherapy can be used to promote lactation. Fennel oil is contraindicated in pregnancy but is brilliant for stimulating lactation.  This oil can be used mixed with a carrier oil and used to perform a foot massage while the mother is feeding. This has been shown by midwives to encourage the hormonal process that facilitates milk production. 

Mothers are often concerned about essential oils in their breast milk, but as the dose are so small to begin with there appear to be no effects.  If, however, mum uses essential oils on her breasts, maybe if she has breast pain, it is advisable that she washes her breasts before feeding.

At Breathe Holistic Therapy post natal treatments can be adapted to the new mother so she finds a comfortable position to relax and enjoy the therapy.  Home visits are also available. The therapist is experienced with maternity clients and aware of the potential medical issues after pregnancy. To ensure the new mums safety in the first  days after delivery a midwife prepared health checklist is used.  Comfort and safety are priorities for all treatments.

A mum's first Mother's day is always a special time. It's always lovely when I see my maternity clients as new mums enjoying a treatment given as a gift for their first mother's day.  Don't forget all mums deserve a treat and not just on Mother's day!

Advice should be taken before using essential oil in pregnancy or the initial post natal period.

Reflexology Kidderminster. Please contact 0753 1121199


Aromatherapy, massage and reflexology skills

As an aromatherapy, massage and reflexology therapist it is vital to keep up to date with new research and training, constantly learning and developing skills to provide the best possible experience and results for out clients. It was wonderful to meet so many of other therapists at the Federation of Holistic Therapists 50th anniversary conference. The FHT Training Congress provided the opportunity to listen to a wide range of expert speakers on aromatherapy, advanced massage and reflexology, it was also ideal for meeting other like-minded therapists and talking to reputable therapy training and product suppliers.

It was fantastic to meet and learn from other therapists and trainers in aromatherapy, advanced massage and reflexology. Lectures and workshops to develop my expertise in areas such as individually blending the perfect aromatherapy oil for my clients and advanced massage to really help with painful stiff muscles were enjoyable and educational. Expanding my skills in areas such as facial reflexology allows me to offer treatments even more tailored to my client's unique individual needs. You can discuss your needs before any treatment to ensure you enjoy the best treatment for you at that time.

You can spot me on the photo...the one on the left wearing spots!

For Reflexology in Kidderminster. Please contact Jo 0753 1121199