Valentine’s day is (literally) right around the corner. Homemade gifts that pamper and nuture are great ideas because they show how much you care…while going easy on your pocketbook and the earth. Going a step further, gifts that you do let the receiver know they are getting not only a thing, but truly the gift of you as well.
A foot massage can be a beautiful shared experience between you and a loved one.
You can embellish the massage in many ways to bring in a special and deeply loving touch. The feet are often sorely in need of attention and care, and the benefits of foot massage are many, including lowering blood pressure, increasing circulation, reducing stress and relieving blood stagnation from tight fitting shoes. If you choose to use essential oils, applying them to the feet allows them to be distributed throughout the whole body to support your health. (If you want to test this out, rub some garlic on your feet…in a few minutes you will taste it in your mouth!)
1. Start off with a homemade foot scrub, soaking bath salts and massage oil.
- Cleansing Foot Scrub Fill a glass jar 2/3 of the way with granulated sugar. Pour olive oil on top until the sugar is completely covered. Add a few drops of essential oils. Good ones to consider are sandalwood, lemon or grapefruit.
- Unwind and Soak Bath Salt Use dried chamomile leaves (either loose or in tea bags) to make a cup of chamomile tea, steeped in hot water for 20 minutes. Add the tea and enough warm water to fill a small foot tub to ankle level. Add 1/4 cup Epsom salts, 1/4 baking soda and 1 Tablespoon borax. Add a few drops of essential oils. Good ones to consider are geranium, lavendar, ylang ylang or orange.
- Relaxing Foot Massage Oil Use 2-3 Tablespoons of oil (Good oils to use are either coconut oil, olive oil, jojoba oil, almond oil or apricot seed oil). Add a few drops of essential oils. Good ones to consider are frankincense, lavender, peppermint (for a cool and refreshing sensation), or rosemary.
2. Set up the scene
- It is best to receive a foot massage when the rest of your body is at ease. Find a comfortable chair or couch and use pillows to help the receiver recline and feel calm. Lay out towels under the foot tub. (It is ideal to have two foot tubs if possible- one for the scrubbing and one for the soaking– but you can simply rinse one out in between if you need to). Have a wash cloth and hand towel near by.
- Dim lights, soft music and candle light can really transform this experience.
3. Give the gift in love
- Soak the feet in the warm water and one by one, scrub them gently with the foot scrub. After the scrub, use the towel to pat dry. The massage really begin here, with gently but firm circular motions as you scrub and cleanse.
- Next allow the feet to soak in the bath salts for as long as you would like. You can even begin massaging one foot while the other is still soaking. Be sure to pat dry before you apply the oil in the next step, though. You may also want to have some hot water ready to pour into the tub as you go along to be sure the water stays warm. Of course, anytime you are using hot water, be very careful not to burn the skin.
- Apply the oil while giving the feet and toes a lovely massage. Take your time, be sure to work over all the parts of the calves, feet and toes. Ask about what feels good.
- Finally, cover the feet with a pair of big comfy socks or slippers.
The soothing and calming gift of massage is a blessing to the giver and receiver- it is a way to bring the healing power of touch into a relationship and communicate love in a very personal and special way. If you need a bit more time to make the materials, consider giving a gift certificate and set up a specific time in the near future that you can do it. You may be surprised at how deeply it touches the one you love.
How will you be showing your love this Valentine’s day?
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