Monday, February 3, 2014

breathe better shower disks

Hello chick-a-dees. How is everyone today? Arik has been feeling a bit under the weather (with the icky, croupy, phlegmy, chest thing that's been going around), so we took it easy this weekend. In the meantime, I've been loading us both up with lots of vitamins, juices, green concoctions, Emergen-C, and we've been going through a lot of these shower disks (and kleenex). When I can't breathe and I'm feeling congested, nothing feels better than setting up camp in a super hot, steamy shower. And since essential oils like Eucalyptus and peppermint are incredible at clearing up sinuses, it's nice when you can do a steam + essential oil combo. But just dropping essential oils into the shower doesn't always have the staying power you need...enter: shower disks.

I think Vicks used to make something like this with their vapo-rub stuff in it. Guessing these are probably a bit healthier and a lot more natural. I tried making these a few different ways. You can learn from my mistakes. It was like a fifth grade chemistry class in our kitchen. 

Here are the results:

#1 batch = baking: a huge crumbly mess. 
#2 batch = baking and then freezing: worked very well if you make sure to generously spray the muffin liners. The scent was more mild once in the shower but the disk had good staying power.
#3 batch = freezing only: The scent was a lot stronger, but the disk didn't have the staying power that the baked one had. Side note: you need to keep these in the freezer until you're ready to use or you'll get a soupy mess.

Verdict: #3 batch was the overall favorite. More scent = more better.

breathe better shower disks

*2/3 cup baking soda
*1 tbsp cornstarch
*1/4 cup water
*1 tsp epsom salt
*10-15 drops of the essential oils of your choosing. For colds and chest congestion: eucalyptus and peppermint are excellent. Sore muscles: spearmint. Relaxing: Lavender
*Pam spray

Baking method: produces a sturdier disk that lasts longer in the shower, but scent isn't as strong.
No bake method: produces a stronger scented disk, but less sturdy and doesn't last as long in shower...also must be kept in the freezer until right before use.

Baking method:
1. Preheat the oven to 350.
2. Mix baking soda, cornstarch and salt together in medium bowl.
3. Slowly add water until a thick paste forms.
4. Spray 4 paper muffin liners with PAM spray or another non-stick cooking spray and place in muffin tin.
5. Scoop a TBSP into each muffin liner until mixture is gone.
6. Drop 10-15 drops of desired oils onto each disk.
7. Bake for 15-20 minutes.
8. Remove disks from muffin tin (keep in the muffin liners) and place in freezer for 2 hours.
9. Peel away the paper liners and place in shower corner out of direct water stream.

No bake method:
1. Do steps 1-6 above
2. Place disks (in the muffin liners) into the freezer for at least 4 hours
3. Peel away the paper liners and place in shower corner out of direct water stream.

Makes 4 shower disks

baked version:

OR the no bake option...

{stay healthy}