Christmas is soon here! I haven’t even had the time to think about that, let alone buy any gifts.
If you, like me, are stressing about what to get people, let me give you a few tips. Enjoy these last-minute homemade Christmas gifts that are both cheap and easy to make. I assure you they will be a huge success whether you make them for your grandma, boyfriend, best friend or piano teacher!
- Bath salts Making baths salts is extremely easy and cheap! It’s also easy to make a really big batch enough for many friends. Make a herbal bath salt or a bath salt with essential oils or fragrance oils. As the base you can use any salt – epson salt is said to work best but sea salt is just as good in my opition. I use himalayan salt, just because I got some cheap and the pink color is so pretty.
Christmas-y smells (you can use the herbs/spices/peel, or the essential oil) : aniseed, bay leaf, cardamon, cinnamon, fennel, ginger, lemon, orange, peppermint, pine, pomerance, saffron.
Other herbs: rosemary, thyme, lavender, rose petals, jasmine flowers, red clover, chamomile, nettles, or any nice smelling herb that you like.
Other essential oils: any of the herbs mentioned above, or for instance ylang-ylang, bergamot, sandalwood…
Herbal bath salt
Cut the dried herbs into small pieces, and mix with the salt. You can use as much/little herbs as you like. Mix one or more herbs or spices for a more interesting mixture. Use about 1 cup per bath, or a few tablespoons per foot bath.
Essential oil bath salt
Use about 30 drops of essential oil per dl (or about 70 drops per cup). If you make a bigger batch, take 3 tsp essential oils per kilogram of salt. Use about 2 table spoons per bath.
- Bath bags. Let’s continue on the bath theme. Instead of pouring the bath salt into glass jars, you can pre-portion it by putting the salt in small cloth bags tied together with a pretty ribbon. Then the bags will be added to the bath as such – makes it a bit less messy. The bags can also be used as a massager while in the bath.
You can also make herbal bath bags without the salt. Use about 1 dl dried herbs or spices and mix with 2 tbs oats or wheat for one bag.
- Coffe scrub Make my “Top of the morning” coffee scrub for your coffee loving friend, or to anyone who has trouble waking up in the mornings. Get the recipe here
- Massage oil. You can easily make a massage oil by mixing some vegetable oils with a few drops of essential oils and possibly a little bit of vitamin E (which will prolong the shelf life to well over a year). Read more about the different oils here, and use any essential oil that you like, or for the following effects:
Aphrodisiacs chamomile, cinnamon, rosemary, sage, myrrh, rosewood
Calming chamomile, vanilla, sandalwood, ylang-ylang, lavender
For athletes (after workout) basil, lemongrass, ginger, grapefruit, chamomile, rose, rosemary, teatree, lavender
Refreshing citrus fruits, rosemary, thyme, pine
- Herbal oils Make a herbal oil by putting some herbs in a pretty jar or bottle and pouring oil over them. Leave the herbs inside, it will look fantastic! Rosemary is one of my favourites, it looks so pretty and is delicious in cooking. Read more about herbal oils here
- Herbal honey My last tip is to make a herbal honey which basically works the same way as herbal oils. Just mix some herbs with honey and you have a pretty and useful present anyone who is interested in natural remedies or cooking (or who likes to put honey in their tea). Try peppermint or lemon peel, for instance! If the honey is hard, you can carefully warm it in a double boiler but make sure it’s not too hot. If you use fresh herbs, remember to tell your friend to store in the fridge (if using dried herbs, it doesn’t matter).
This is my que to leave you to your experimenting.
Have yourselves a merry little Christmas!
Picture: Suat Eman, freedigitalphotos.net