If you’re a shift worker walking, standing and dashing around all day, you know very well what aching feet is all about. One way to soothe and pamper these tired, aching tootsies is to soak them in a piping hot foot bath. This is such a simple remedy and they are so easy to make, yet they are luxurious, soothing and oh so effective.
Here are a handful of recipes to try, each use only a few ingredients and the items are accessible to source locally or online.
They can be whipped up in large batches if preferred so you can keep a stock ready on hand (shake container occasionally) or package them nicely and give away as gifts (seal in glass jars, label and add some decorative ribbon too if you like).
Directions: Unless otherwise noted, combine all ingredients thoroughly then store in an airtight container.
- Use 2 to 3 tablespoons (more if you like) of the mix per each gallon of water used.
Temperature is at personal preference, but I find the hottest I can comfortably tolerate gives the most relief.
ES = Epsom Salts
KS = Kosher Salt
Bicarb = Baking Soda
EO = Essential Oil
1 part ES
1 part bicarb
drops of choice EO (optional)
Chamomile Tea: #2
4 bags chamomile tea
1/8 C. dried parsley
4 drops EO of choice
- Steep in 1 gallon of hot water for 10 minutes before using.
2 C. KS
1 C. ES
drops EO of choice (optional; suggestions for Essential Oils to try are noted below)
1 1/4 C. ES
1 1/4 C. KS
1/4 C. bicarb
1/4 C. cornstarch
1 C. lemon juice
3 TBS olive oil
1/4 C. milk
1/2 C. buds (fresh or dried, both work well)
10 drops lavender EO (optional)
1 C. ES
1 C. KS (or use 2 cups Epsom)
- Directions: Use 1/2 C. per gallon of water.
Single Ingredient Ideas: (add only one of the items below to a gallon of water)
- 1 C. honey
- 1/2 C. ES
- 2 C. brewed coffee
Good to Know:
- Marbles or smooth river rocks can be added to the bottom of the basin to rub feet over while they’re soaking, this feels so good and is so relaxing! These can be found at your local craft store or online (do a search for “smooth glass stones” or “stone vase fillers” or “aquarium stones” or “river pebbles” or “large glass gems”. Just make sure they are smooth and not rough cut.
- Soothing EO To Try: peppermint, lavender, lemon, orange, eucalyptus, mint.
- The bath/vessel doesn’t need to be expensive or anything fancy, you can find plastic dish tubs for just a few bucks and they do the trick nicely. Also look at plastic storage tubs, they come in all sizes. After using, wash and dry then stash the packaged homemade soaks inside and cover tub with lid. Handy way to keep everything you need together in one place.
- If skin and heels are also dry and cracked, mix approximately 1 part vinegar, 2 parts lukewarm water. It’s fine to add one of the above listed essential oils to combat the vinegar smell (which will dissipate once skin is dry).
Tip For Floor Staff: If you have a job where you are standing all day, something I’ve recently discovered that is so helpful are compression socks. You can buy them knee high or ankle height and I tried both when traveling. I was up from before dawn to early evening, walking most of the day for nearly two weeks straight. These are also especially beneficial when dealing with Plantar fasciitis (when the soles hurt). I never had a problem with swollen or sore tootsies when wearing them and after talking to a couple friends who are nurses (shift work) and in retail, they too find that the socks really help. You can find them online in various retail outlets.