DIY Holiday Gift Idea: Spa in a Jar

If you are at all familiar with a wonderful yet pricey personal care product, Salt Rub® by Origins, you may know that for some very odd reason, it has been discontinued. I know. How could they do this?

Origins now offers in its place some kind of ginger scrub concoction that contains sugar and spice. I think it is just awful, which makes me even happier that I know how to make my own version of Origins Salt Rub. Are you thinking what I’m thinking? This may be the perfect gift you’ve been searching for—one you can make yourself for many on your Christmas Gift List.

A mixture of salt and oil, authentic salt rub resembles wet, slushy snow. Unlike bath salts that are used in a tub bath, salt scrub is used in the shower. So you have a better idea, before I tell you how to make it, here is the kind of instruction you would print on a tag or label for the finished salt scrub:

After cleansing the skin, turn off the shower water. Scoop a small handful of salt scrub and rub in a circular motion all over your skin. Rinse with water. You can wash again if you desire, but you will enjoy the greatest benefit if you simply towel dry without soaping up again. Used every time you take a shower, dry skin will be a distant memory. Salt scrub helps to get rid of all those dead skin cells and then the oil seals in the moisture.

It is so easy to make your own version of Origins Salt Rub. The main ingredient is Epsom salt, available online and in any drugstore or supermarket. Cheap! Or another option is to use sea salt, because of it healing properties.

The other ingredient is oil. You can use sweet almond oil to emulate our favorite Origins’ product or baby oil.

Pour Epsom salt into a bowl or large container. Slowly pour in your oil of choice while stirring. Keep adding oil until it looks like and feels very wet snow. While not necessary, you can stir in a few drops of essential oil like lavender, eucalyptus, peppermint or spearmint to add fragrance and aroma. Want to color your product to match its fragrance or to add your unique signature? Add several drops of soap colorant available online or in craft stores.

I found that three parts Epsom salt to two parts oil (I use sweet almond oil) makes the ideal consistency for me. Not specific enough? Okay, mix 3/4 cup Epsom or sea salt with 1/2 cup oil. To that amount add four drops lavender essential oil. If you find this ratio to be a bit too “wet” add more salt. Too dry? Add a bit more oil. Of course you can multiply this recipe if you intend to make enough many gifts.

As you select your containers for presentation, keep in mind this gift is meant to be used in the shower. Glass may not be the wisest choice.  There are plenty of plastic and acrylic options, such as these cute 4-ounce and 8-ounce jars.

Because this gift has no shelf-life limitations, it something you can do now to get a head start on the busy holidays. More than that, it’s a gift you can give with confidence because while very practical, it is also quite elegant—the best kind of gift!

More homemade gift ideas, recipes and instructions HERE.

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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Cally

    I can’t help but wonder if the salt dries out the skin, even though there’s oil in there too? would a sugar scrub skip the drying part? I’ve used coconut oil in my sugar scrubs, hadn’t thought of baby oil. Also, sometimes it makes the shower floor slick, anyone with balance problems might be cautious of that. I love scrubs, they feel so good!!

  • Me

    Can this be used on the face?

  • Mary Kopacka

    Thanks so much for this recipe. Trader Joe quit making the grapefruit scrub I loved, so I am going to try yours with grapefruit essential oil. I use a salt scrub on my hands after cleaning house, gardening, or washing dishes and it makes them soft again. Can’t wait to try your version!

  • Cindy

    Although this does sound heavenly, I wonder about having all that oil go down the drain. A friend who used to be the director of the Sewer Department told me to thoroughly wipe the grease from all pans with a paper towel before washing them in the sink to avoid having all the grease/oil go into the sewers. Just wondering!

    • Me

      I think it may just be the oils that will turn to solids at a certain temperature that would be a problem with drains. But I am not positive about that…if I were you I would google it and research a little. Let us know what you find out!

      Like you, though, I do wipe all the grease out of my pans before washing, even vegetable oils….just in case.