Monday, December 9, 2013

Spa in a Jar

After yesterday's gingerbread TARDIS catastrophe (click here for a good laugh), I decided I needed a blog post to help relax me, take the edge off, and not involve an oven. The answer? The Gunny Sack. She's a blogger who put together a bunch of different ideas of what you can incorporate in a spa-inspired mason jar -- this would be a perfect gift for a new mom, a friend, or even yourself!

She has a lot of different recipes but I decided to go with the peppermint foot soak and the hand scrub. I bought a couple 32 oz. mason jars from Whole Foods, a couple small glass containers from Michael's, and I already had a few 4oz. mason jars left over from my slow cooker apple butter days.

I started with the hand scrub and decided to use lavender hand soap because lavender has been shown to reduce stress (perfect for a spa jar, right?). However, if you decide to use this as well, be aware that you're not going to get much of a color and even one drop of food coloring can be overwhelming. I put in two drops and had to start over because it looked like I had liquified Barney. So you might be better off using a soap that is already tinted, like the original post.

Next, the peppermint foot soak. Now I love the smell of peppermint but if you're not a fan, you might not want to do this recipe because it will make your entire working area smell divine. Once you've mixed together the epsom salt, baking soda, peppermint extract and food coloring (I used two drops of pink food coloring instead of red and it looks lovely!), you need to lay it out on parchment paper for 30 minutes. While you wait, it's a perfect time to print out the free labels she provides, cut them out, and attach them to the jars. By the time you're done, the powder will be ready to put into jars!

Keep in mind, once you put those two jars inside your mason jar, you're not going to have much room to put in much else. I added some peppermint chapstick, 3 Lindor truffles, and 3 tea light candles . If there had been room for more goodies, I would have kept adding but as it was, it was stuffed to the top. If you want to add more, go for a bigger jar than just 32 ounces!

TOTAL COSTS: About $11
$2.49 for 1lb of epsom salts from Whole Foods
$2.99 for peppermint chapstick from Whole Foods
$.99 for 3 Lindor truffles from Vons
$1.50 for 13.5 fl. oz of lavender soap from Michael's
$1.69 for 32oz. mason jar from Whole Foods
$.99 for small glass jar from Michael's
4oz. mason jar, food coloring, sugar, baking soda, and peppermint extract already on hand

TOTAL AMOUNT OF TIME: 1 hour, 15 minutes
This included the 30 minutes of waiting for the foot soak powder to dry and redoing one of the jars of hand scrub because of a food coloring disaster.

EASY-PEASY SCALE (1 super easy - 5 very difficult): 1 out of 5
Have fun with this - it's so easy, you can include whatever you like, and the recipient of such a jar of goodies will be pleasantly surprised!


  1. These are super easy, and super fun. When I was teaching, we often did "jar crafts," and for Mother's Day made bath salts - Epsom salts, baking soda, scented oils, food coloring, jar, glue gun, voila. Being fifth graders, the food coloring got out of hand with some of the boys, and I wouldn't have wanted to clean the tub after using some of their blends (oy), but the joy of childhood is that it's the thought that counts, and all the Mums were pleased.

    1. ...all this to say, I FEEL YOU on the liquified Barney. It takes so little to overdo.

    2. Right?? Oy, I'm glad I'm not the only one, so thank you for making me feel better :)