Friday, November 30, 2007

How to Make Bath Salts

Bath salts are very easy to make, and can be made with either Epsom salts or sea salts.

Epsom salt are basically manufactured sea salt. Sea salt has many different minerals, and varies depending on which sea it comes form. Epsom salt is standardized, made in lab, and much cheaper, but has less soul than sea salt. Epsom salts are created specifically to help alleviate sore and achy muscles. Sea salts have differing medicinal properties due to the various mineral content. Sea salt has more lore attached to it, but also costs many times more than Epsom salts. I often mix them together, for the healing benefits of both.

You can make bath salts or salt scrubs, very different things. (Well, okay, only a little bit different.)

Bath salts with herbs - fill jar 3/4 to 7/8 full with salt, pour into bowl, mix in dried herbs, put back in jar; use in hot bath. You can use green tea, chamomile, rose, lavender, or many other dried herbs. You should give these away in small sachets (think about buying paper or cloth tea bags for loose tea leaves) so that the herbs won't get stuck in the drain. Alternatively, you can use a mortar and pestle to grind the herbs so they can go down the drain.

Bath salts with essential oils - fill jar 3/4 full with salt, add a few drops of essential oils (and optional few drops of base oil), shut lid and shake VERY WELL, top off with salt if desired; use in hot bath. Essential oils are extracted from various plants and plant parts. Be sure to use only the highest quality, pure oils. Many oils are made synthetically in a lab, but they are slightly chemically different than the real stuff and can be harmful or irritating.

Salt scrub - fill jar almost full with salt, fill rest of the way with oil, add a few drops of essential oils, shake well; for use as scrub in shower.

Sugar scrub - fill jar almost full with sugar, fill rest of the way with oil, add a few drops of essential oils, shake well; for use as scrub in shower.

Sugar has naturally occurring alpha-hydroxy acids, which will help to dissolve dead skin cells. They are very weak acids, so they won't irritate most people's skin, but use in moderation or on a small area first to make sure they don't cause a reaction.

Water Filtering Roads

So if you have ever been to a wastewater treatment plant, the system at one point goes through what is basically a giant brita filter.

It usually goes into a big pond where they let the biggest chunks settle out and/or float to the top, then they skim both top and bottom, and then chemical treat it, and then it goes to the giant brita filter.

I couldn't find a very good picture online, but here is something kinda close:

Except it starts with the largest rocks on the top layer, and goes smaller and smaller through gravel until it gets to charcoal. Well, a road could be made like that. Large rock/gravel on top, but with a porous cover over it so it isn't like driving on a dirt road, but then through the porous cover and then through the various layers of filtering rocks.

It wouldn't do for freeways, obviously, and probably not even major city streets, but all neighborhoods could have roads like this, and even larger roads could have shoulders like this. They could also potentially filter into the water run off pipes that already exist, but the water would be filtered before it got channeled out to our lakes/rivers/streams/oceans.