New Moon Bath Salts and Full Moon Bathing
The moon tugs and releases, influencing the depth of a whole ocean by feet. I can't even lift a few gallons of water that far! Celestial bodies dance, spinning around each other in an eternity of enthralled participation. The moon governs the more subtle cycles on earth and illuminates our nights with her beautiful silken glow. The oceans rise to meet her, causing our tides. Many people claim to be influenced by the moon’s cycles - and why wouldn’t we? After all, our bodies are filled with the same water that the ancient rising and falling oceans are. The moon reminds us to check in with ourselves, to become more aware of our own cycles and patterns.
The moon's stages are also a great opportunity for some introspection and self-love. Below are rituals for both the New Moon and the Full Moon; they can be done together or separately and are even more powerful when done on a regular basis. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!
New Moon Bath Salts ritual:
The New Moon is a time of beginnings, intention, and dreaming. As a new lunar phase begins, we re-charge and release. It’s time for us to set new intentions to work towards or hope for during the coming fortnight until the moon’s fullness, when we’ll sink into those dreams and absorb them. Now we release whatever is blocking us or hurting us to make room for the good things yet to come. We check in with ourselves about what we long for.
This is a wonderful ritual to share with your friends. You’ll make these bath salts together as a community, then treat yourselves individually to a ceremonial moon bath on the full moon.
a table or space on the floor large enough for everyone to gather around
a big bowl
fabric bags or pieces of cheesecloth to tie the bath ingredients up in
paper and writing utensils.
- Tell all of your guests to bring one or two bath ingredients that is representative to them of something they want more of in their life. Powdered milk could represent richness, lavender relaxation, olive oil softness, etc. Herbs, oats, flowers, and essential oils can all be used as well. Just make sure that whatever they bring is in a shelf-stable form.
- Before your guests arrive, clear your chosen space of any other distractions. You may want to lay down a sheet for easy clean up later. Make it cozy and welcoming - light some candles or turn on some fairy lights. You may cleanse the space in whatever way is most comfortable to you - with incense or smudge sticks, salt, or something scented, perhaps. (But please be mindful of any sensitivities to scent in your guests!)
- As your guests arrive, welcome them to your space in some symbolic way. Smudging works well for this, but you could also wash their hands with a warm towel or just simply give them a hug.
- Once everyone has arrived, gather your guests around your work space and have them place their ingredient in front of them.
- Begin by saying a quote, poem, or prayer (if that’s appropriate for you and your guests) to set a theme for the evening. Then have each guest write down all of their wishes, dreams, intentions, and desires. Tell them to be specific and detailed. Once everyone has finished, have them fold their paper up and place it in front of them. I love using a silver or gold gel pen to write on black paper for this, but any paper and pen will work.
- Pour the salts into the bowl (the quantities you use will depend on the number of guests - aim for 1/8th cup of each per guest.)
- Go around the circle, adding your ingredients one at a time. Have each guest state their intention as they add their ingredient. For example, “I’m adding powdered milk to bring more relaxing richness into our lives.” Each intention should be tied to an ingredient. If you and your guests would like to add more than one, that’s wonderful too.
- When everyone has added their ingredient, join hands and say a blessing. “May our intentions be absorbed and come to pass for the harmony of all.”
- Mix the bath salt well with a spoon or with your hands. Have each guest fill a container or bag with an equal portion of the bath salts. Have them place their new moon paper into the container with the salts and seal it.
- Instruct your guests to store the bath salt at room temperature, somewhere special - on a windowsill, by their bed, at an altar or sacred space, etc. Share with them instructions for indulging in their sacred bath on the full moon.
Full Moon bath:
This is a chance to use the beautiful intention-filled bath salts you crafted with your community on the New Moon. You may also choose to use any other bath salts or bath tea as well if you didn’t have a chance to complete that ritual. This ritual (or a variation of it) can be completed every full moon as an opportunity to check in with yourself and take some gentle self-care time.
This ritual is a beautiful way to honor the moon and yourself, to release negative emotions or blockages and soak up self-care and relaxation, as well as the calming effects of the ingredients in your bath salt mixture. Skin is our biggest organ and is very absorbent. Everything you put on your skin is absorbed into your bloodstream. It’s important to be mindful of what we absorb, from daily chemicals to intentional baths. Make sure that whatever you are adding to your bathwater is something your body would like to absorb.
bath salts created during the new moon ritual or bath treat of choice
flowers to add to your bathwater, optional
a cup of herbal tea or small glass of wine
a journal, optional
a dry brush
lotion, or any other body care products that you enjoy
- The first step is to clean your bathroom. This might seem like a weird thing to include in a ritual, but having a clean comfortable space free from distractions will make the rest of it so much more enjoyable. Scrub out your tub, put away unnecessary cosmetics or other items, clear your counters and wipe them down.
- Make your space extra cozy and relaxing. Light some candles, brew some tea to sip, take some deep breaths and release the stresses of the day. Turn off any harsh or overly bright lights.
- As you fill up your bathtub, undress and dry brush your skin to invigorate it. Always brush gently towards the heart. Brush your legs first, then move up your body working your arms and your shoulders. Brush your torso last. I like to go in a gentle clockwise pattern on my abdomen to stimulate digestion.
- Once the bath is filled, pour your container of bath salts in with a blessing: “I will allow the magic contained in these bath salts to nourish me deeply.” If you are worried about clogging your drains with plant material, you may put your salt mixture into a fabric bag or tie it up in cheesecloth first. Add some whole flowerheads, if desired.
- Relax and enjoy your bath. Take your time and release your negative emotions. Soak up the nourishment and love the bathwater now holds. It can be helpful to indulge in a meditation during this time - close your eyes and imagine that the silvery light of the full moon is entering your body through all of your pores, working its way into the core of your being until you are filled with healthy, happy light. Focus on being present. Notice your breath and the way it feels entering your lungs. Feel your body against the tub. Notice the flickering of the candles, the shadows made on the walls. Listen to the sound of the water moving if you move. Do whatever feels comfortable - maybe you like stretching, maybe just laying there in peace is what you need. Stay in for as long as it feels comfortable.
- After the bath, abstain from technology or work for the rest of the evening. If you live with someone, let them know that you’ll need some quiet alone time tonight. This is a wonderful time to light some candles or turn on some pretty lights, then spend a while journaling about your experience. Look back on your intentions from the new moon; are you seeing them come to fruition? If not, do you have any ideas about actions you could take to help reach them? Is there anything you’d like to release? Anything to hope for? What are you grateful for in this moment? Once you are done journaling, curl up in a cozy blanket or pajamas with a book for the rest of the evening. This is time to relax, unwind, and re-charge. If the moon makes you feel restless or adventure-some like it does me, you may even consider going on a night hike under its glow. It’s a magical time to be outside.
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