How To Set Up The Perfect Spiritual Bath At Home

One of Sylvia Plath's most famous quotes comes from The Bell Jar: "There must be quite a few things that a hot bath won't cure," the main character thinks, "but I don't know many of them." While we wish a hot bath could cure everything, Plath wasn't wrong about a bath's curative properties.

Baths, Black Female Therapists explain, have been used to "cleanse the soul, clear the mind," and help realign your chakras for centuries. Sometimes also known as goddess baths, spiritual or ritual baths can also help you connect to nature, your emotions, and what you want your future to look like, per PopSugar. Not only are you physically cleaning your body, but you can "wash away" the things that you want to let go of.

Iya Osundara Ogunsina, a.k.a the priestess Bruja Banton, pointed out to Allure that people are already "smoking out their homes with sage, palo santo, and incense," so it only makes sense that the body gets the ritualistic same attention.

So what makes a spiritual or ritual bath different from a normal one? Your intentions, according to mind body green. Even if you just soak your hands or feet, as long as you stay mindful of your original intention, you're still participating in the ritual. Taking the phase of the moon into account can add another spiritual layer to your practice as well as help guide the focus of your spiritual bath.

Full moon vs. new moon baths: what's the difference?

You don't need to wait for a certain moon phase in order to take a spiritual or ritual bath, but being aware of the moon phases — or taking a ritual bath during the new or full moon — can help. Astrologer Corina Crysler adds that ritual or spiritual moon baths are "all about unlocking emotional wisdom, soul memory, and the subconscious" to help reach our goals (via well + good).

For Ruby Warrington, founder of Numinous, being mindful of the moon phase helps her to "create a framework and a language" for the thoughts and feelings that can come up during the bath (via Byrdie). Think of the dark sky as your own personal blank canvas: What do you want your universe to look like?

New moons, Yogi Approved explains, are all about rebirth. This starts the lunar cycle, which can set a strong energetic foundation for your own new beginning. Whether you're looking to manifest a fresh start somewhere, or you'd like to set new intentions or new goals, these are the things that you can focus on during your bath (via Cosmopolitan).

It's the full moon — the end of the lunar cycle — that deals with endings. The completion of a project or process are endings, too, and ones that are often worked through during spiritual or ritual baths (via well + good). These are the baths where the extra emotional weight is rinsed away, where final pieces of a picture or an idea click into place.

The best spiritual bath recipe, according to experts

Charro Benteau, a moon bath practitioner and Reiki healer, told Byrdie that research on what supportive tools — candles, crystals, herbs, essential oils — is where she tells beginners to start. It's also important to keep in mind that this practice should be about you and what feels right for your needs. The process itself can be as simple or as complex as you're comfortable with.

On the day of your moon bath, you're going to want to set time aside to clean. As Farmer's Almanac points out, a clean space can help us physically and mentally relax, putting us in a better frame of mind before bath time. Wiping down your tub, straightening counters and shelves are all part of the cleansing process, one that can help you start to let go of the day to fully focus on what you want to get out of your moon bath.

In an email, Spa Seekers – the United Kingdom's longest-standing spa booking service — suggested adding candles and/or incense to your bath space. Using aromatherapy as a guide, you can choose the scents that are going to help support you the best. Crystals, too, can be beneficial because according to Spa Seekers, crystals help align your chakra and support tranquility through the energy vibrations they send out. Like with aromatherapy, certain crystals are going to help certain aspects, so make sure you look into what will give you the best energetic support for your moon bath.

For the deluxe spiritual bath experience, add these things to your ritual bath

One hard and fast rule Spa Seekers and others are adamant about when it comes to ritual baths is that you don't add soaps or chemicals. Only add natural ingredients: salts, herbs, flowers, crystals. Epsom or Himalayan salts help relax muscles, soften skin, and can help heal bruises and sprains, so if your body is aching consider adding these to your bath mix.

Salt is actually one of the ingredients Corina Crysler told well + good she suggests specifically for new moon ritual baths. Not only is salt a perfect cleansing agent according to Crysler, she added, "The combination of water and salt removes lower [energy] vibrations." When you rinse your bath away after, the negative vibes you might've brought into the tub with you can be washed down the drain, physically and metaphorically.

Other ingredients worth considering, according to Spa Seekers, are lemon slices and rose petals, both of which help keep skin soft while adding aromatherapy benefits to your bath. If you want to add herbs or essential oils, bay leaves, sage, mint, and lavender are where Spa Seekers recommends starting. These not only smell great, but soaking in these oils can help support stress reduction, muscle relaxation, and digestion.

Crysler and Spa Seekers both recommend adding relaxing music to help boost the calm space you're creating for yourself. Spa Seekers suggests going with "sound healing or meditation music" for the most therapeutic benefits.