Bath oils offer a way of making people feel better and more at ease. You can use these products to help you relax before bed or during the day if you need to—and with so many different scents and options to choose from, there’s sure to be one that suits your tastes and preferences.
Buying Guide for Bath Oils
Why buy bath oils?
Taking a warm bath is already a great way to unwind after a long day, and adding bath oils to the equation can bring some extra benefits. They’re great for increasing your skin’s moisture, which can help prevent dryness and flaking to help your skin feel softer all day. Certain bath oil formulas can help relieve muscle aches post-workout and improve circulation by maximizing blood flow. Many bath oils are enriched with essential oils that boast fruity, minty, or floral scents that can help to improve mood, energy levels, focus, and even sleep.
What should you look for in bath oils?
- Ingredients: Look for bath oil products made with natural ingredients, ensuring that they don’t include any harsh chemicals that could irritate sensitive skin. For dry or sensitive skin, look for a formula rich in nourishing ingredients like vitamin E and olive oil. Something lighter with ingredients like aloe vera or peppermint might be better if you have oily skin.
- Scent: You want something that will help you relax and unwind while remaining gentle on your skin. Consider what scents work best for your personal preferences. Some people love relaxing smells like lavender or vanilla; others prefer something more invigorating, like lemongrass or grapefruit. On the other hand, high-quality unscented bath oil options are also available if you’re sensitive to strong scents.
- Features: Many quality bath oils emphasize various features that support good skin health and eco-friendliness. Check labels to learn if your choice is certified organic, free of parabens and sulfates, and cruelty-free. You may also find bath oils that are vegan-friendly and dermatologist-recommended.
How should you clean your tub after using bath oils?
Bath oils can be a great way to relax after a long day, but if you don’t clean up after your bath, you’ll end up with a slippery mess that can stress you out all over again! If you’ve used a bath oil that leaves traces of oil on your tub, mix equal parts baking soda and water to create a paste. Then, using a sponge or cloth, rub the paste over the surface of your tub and let it sit for several minutes. The baking soda will absorb the oil residue and help lift it off your tub. If you notice that the baking soda paste needs a little extra help to cut the oil, you can add some dish soap or a stronger bathtub cleaner to it. After scrubbing the tub with the mixture, rinse with fresh water and then dry off your tub with a towel.
Our Picks for the Best Bath Oils
Pros: This lavender-scented, multipurpose oil is perfect for the bath, after showering, or anytime your skin, hair, or nails feel dry and brittle. Ancient Greek Remedy Natural Body Oil blends organic cold-pressed olive, sweet almond, and grapeseed oils, vitamin E, and lavender essential oil for a perfect blend of moisturizing and aromatherapy benefits. The all-natural moisturizer nourishes with essential nutrients and won’t clog pores. As a massage oil, it’s great for helping maintain healthy skin and improving the appearance of stretch marks and cellulite.
Cons: The lavender scent may be overpowering for sensitive individuals.
Bottom Line: If the idea of having an all-natural bath oil that you can also use for your hair, face, and nails appeals to you, consider this one from Ancient Greek Remedy. In addition to its versatility, this bath oil comes in a convenient spray bottle, and you can feel good that it’s vegan, GMO-, gluten-, paraben- and preservative-free.
Pros: Whether you’re feeling stiff, sore, and achy from working out or just from everyday life, Kneipp Arnica Herbal Bath Oil is here to help. This bath oil is infused with arnica, an herb that has been used medicinally for many centuries. It’s still widely used today to alleviate muscle pains, reduce inflammation, and heal wounds when applied to the skin as a cream, ointment, tincture, or in this case, bath oil. This product is dermatologist tested and contains plant-based ingredients without preservatives or animal testing.
Cons: It can be expensive for the 3.38-ounce size.
Bottom Line: If you’re looking to soothe aching joints and stiffness, this arnica bath oil from Kneipp may be just the drug-free solution you need to boost the pain relief factor of your already relaxing bath.
Pros: With this bath oil/body wash from Village Naturals Therapy, you get a moisturizing bath oil and a luxurious foaming bubble bath with one great product. This potent combination of lavender, chamomile, and menthol essential oils and botanicals helps calm your mind, soothe aching muscles, and hydrate your skin. The package comes in two 16-ounce bottles for excellent value.
Cons: This bath oil includes menthol in its ingredients for soothing aches and pains. If you are sensitive to the scent of menthol, this product would not be ideal.
Bottom Line: When you’re feeling overworked, achy, and tense, a nice warm bubble bath can provide you with the rejuvenation you need. And if you want that rejuvenation with moisturizing hydration for your skin, this might be the double-duty bath oil for you!
Pros: Here we revisit the Ancient Greek Remedy brand for another multipurpose bath oil, but this time, it’s unscented. That’s great news for those who are sensitive to fragrances but still desire a moisturizing bath oil soak. This oil is blended with organic extra virgin cold-pressed olive, sweet almond, jojoba, grape seed, sunflower, and vitamin E oils to saturate and rehydrate dry skin. And like the lavender-scented version, this oil can be used for a variety of purposes, including as a face, hair, or nail oil.
Cons: This is not the most lightweight oil. If you’re using it as a bath oil, it should be okay since it’s diluted with your bath water. But if you plan on using it undiluted as a face or hair oil, you may want to start out sparingly to determine if the consistency works for you.
Bottom Line: If you are sensitive to added fragrances, finding soothing, hydrating products that aren’t full of added perfumes may be challenging. Well, if you’re looking for unscented bath oil, you’ve found it here with this chemical-free blend of oils from Ancient Greek Remedy. Like the previous product, this one is also vegan, cruelty-free, and comes in a convenient spray bottle.
Pros: Finally, we return to the Kneipp brand of bath oils to take a look at their variety pack featuring six of their most popular formulas. The set includes travel-sized vials of Arnica Joint and Muscle, Lavender Relaxing, Valarian & Hops Dream Away, Argan & Marula Beauty Secret, Mandarin & Orange Stress-Free, and Eucalyptus bath oils. Each vial is 0.67 ounces for a total of 4.02 ounces of bathtime bliss.
Cons: Unlike the arnica oil we considered earlier from this brand, some bath oils in this set include added dyes. Those varieties may not be ideal for people sensitive to dyes and may need to be poured sparingly to avoid staining your bathtub.
Bottom Line: This set of six oils makes a perfect gift for a loved one or a treat for yourself to give you something to look forward to after a long day. You’ll almost have a different oil for each night of the week! Each bath oil in this set is free of silicones, mineral oils, and parabens. They’re also vegan and cruelty-free.
If you want a way to treat yourself to a luxury spa treatment in the comfort of your own bathroom, quality bath oil can do just that. With so many great options available, you’re sure to find one that suits your desires. Whether you need to soothe aches and pains, moisturize dry skin, get a relaxing start on a good night’s rest, or simply want to treat yourself to some self-care, one of our picks would be perfect for your needs.