Bath salts provide an inexpensive way to bring the comfort and luxury of a spa experience to your home.
Whether you use it while soaking in the tub or as a scrub as you take a shower, bath salts offer a multitude of health and wellness benefits for people with:
- Dry and itchy skin and other skin problems like eczema
- Stress, anxiety, and insomnia
- Stiff and aching joints and muscles
- Circulation problems
Plus, bath salts smell great.
But before you decide to stock up your bathroom with bath salts, you might want to check if they can go bad.
Do Bath Salts Go Bad?
Whether you are buying a pre-made bath salt or making your own at home, looking out for the ingredients of your bath salt is crucial, especially if you want a product that could survive in the long haul.
Essentially, salt does not spoil. It’s impossible for salt without additives to go bad since it doesn’t contain water that promotes microbial growth.
But you should remember that bath salts don’t contain 100% salt. There are many additives, from essential and fragrance oils, body butter, and even coloring.
So, do bath salts go bad or expire?
Sure, they can. While the salt in your bath salts has an indefinite shelf life, the additives in them can go bad or expire.
What Is the Average Shelf Life of Bath Salts?
Store-bought bath salts often contain preservatives, which extend its shelf life. Some of them can last for a couple of years, and you can check that on their containers.
It is best to consume bath salts within a year, especially when you are unsure whether they contain preservatives or crafting them yourself.
5 Essential Bath Salt Components: Do They Expire?
So, what can make your bath salt go bad and expire?
Take a look at the bath salt essentials commonly used in both DIY bath salt recipes and store-bought bath salts.
Find out the culprit why bath salts can expire so you’ll know what to look for the next time you purchase or make bath salts at home.
1. Coarse Sea Salt
Often the largest component of bath salts is sea salts. It is useful for a variety of skin conditions. Furthermore, it contains trace minerals, such as potassium, magnesium, and zinc, that may help relieve arthritic symptoms. Because of its profound healing properties, it makes a remarkable base for bath salt.
Does Coarse Sea Salt Expire?
One great thing about sea salt is it doesn’t expire. It may clump up after a long while, especially when exposed to moisture, but it will never go bad.
2. Pink Himalayan Salt
Bath salts with Himalayan salt are popular because of their bright pink color and their remarkable healing properties. Pink Himalayan salt is well-known to boost energy and your cardiovascular health and for its anti-aging benefits.
Does Pink Himalayan Salt Expire?
Like sea salt, pink Himalayan salt also has an infinite shelf life.
3. Epsom Salt
Epsom salt is a magnesium-rich salt that also contains significant amounts of sulfur and oxygen.
Soaking in Epsom salt dissolved in water has always been a common way to soak up and supplement yourself with magnesium to improve the immune and vascular system and alleviate pain.
Again, its healing properties make Epsom salt a favorite part of bath salt recipes.
Does Epsom Salt Expire?
Just like sea salt and Himalayan salt, Epsom salt doesn’t expire.
4. Essential Oils
Another common ingredient for bath salts, both store-bought and DIY recipes, is essential oils. Not only do they smell good, but they have a variety of therapeutic properties, depending on the essential oils used.
For instance, lemon, lavender, rose, and jasmine essential oil can promote relaxation and calmness. Meanwhile, you can boost energy with peppermint, eucalyptus, lemongrass, and grapefruit essential oils. Cinnamon and ginger essential oils can also help improve your immune system.
Do Essential Oils Expire?
Essential oils do go bad and expire. It slowly loses its strength, effectiveness, and healing benefits as it gets exposed to oxygen, heat, and light.
The shelf life for essential oils varies, making it extra tricky when using blended oils in bath salts.
For example, lime and lemon essential oils only have 1-2 years of single oil shelf life. Meanwhile, lavender and eucalyptus essential oils can go up to 3-4 years without going bad.
5. Other Oils and Butters
Bath salts offer numerous health benefits, including detoxification, healing properties, and aromatherapy. Following detoxification, your skin must be nourished, and that’s why bath salts also contain body oil and butter. They also dilute essential oils into the bath salt to prevent skin irritation.
Common oils and butter used in bath salts include cocoa butter, shea butter, almond oil, and coconut oil.
Do Carrier Oils and Butter Expire?
Like essential oils, carrier oils and butter expire.
Shea butter can last up to 2 years and cocoa butter even longer. Coconut oil is good for 1-2 years but almond oil only has a 6-12 months shelf life.
By checking the ingredients of your pre-made bath salt, you can determine whether it will expire and when.
Other Bath Salt Ingredients and Expiration Dates
Besides the bath salt essentials, some products may also contain other ingredients that can affect their shelf life.
Flowers and Herbs
Some bath salts contain flowers and herbs for added texture, scent, and beauty.
Since they are dried, they are already in their final state and won’t disintegrate further or go bad.
Nevertheless, fresh herbs and flowers in bath salts will not last more than a month before going bad.
A box of unopened baking soda has about a 2-year shelf life, but it will expire in 6 months once opened.
Although expired baking soda won’t go rancid, it will be ineffective in making your skin feel smooth while applying bath salts.
How to Know if Your Bath Salt Has Gone Bad?
Bath salts gone bad can be caused by essential oils, carrier oils, and butter, as well as baking soda.
Yet when it comes to baking soda in your bath salt, you won’t be able to tell if it’s expired.
Meanwhile, expired essential oils, carrier oils, and body butter in your bath salt have clear indications, such as:
- Funky smell compared to when you first used the bath salt
- Thinner or thicker consistency than when you first opened it
- Change in color, especially if it developed a cloudy appearance
How to Store Bath Salts to Extend Shelf Life?
The bath salt should generally not be exposed to elements that might cause it to go bad, which include heat, air, and water.
Keep salts inside an airtight container, tucked away from light and direct streams of water. You can also use darker glass bottles for your bath salt to preserve its essential oils longer.
Although bath salts will never go bad, some ingredients in them have expiration dates and can become unsafe when used on your skin. It’s safest to keep your bath salt in an airtight, dark container in a shady place and use it within a year.