At the end of the day, the quality of our food is determined by the quality of our soil, which of course is pretty bad due to poor farming, chemicals, etc…. So since our SKIN is our largest organ…why not lay in a pile of dirt and get all the minerals we need, right?
Up until this point, slathering myself with a badly mixed bowl of Bentonite Clay has been the extent of a mud therapy for me…
…but apparently sitting butt-first (otherwise you’ll burn your feet) in a stone tub of volcanic ash (rich in bentonite), peat moss (which helps you float) and hot mineral water is next level.
Although the end result was theee ultimate in self-care (downright sexual even…) the act of sitting in this MUD COFFIN was not quite pampering — especially since it slightly smelled like sulfur (AKA sh!t). The good news is that the rest of your body is so distracted with everything else going on it’s not that bad…..The bad news is that the first 5 minutes I was a “mannequin” and the last 15 a “mermaid”, which turned out to be the worst idea……
After 5 minutes of the weirdest “settling in” ever, I quickly went from just blinking to squishing the mud between my fingers to flailing around as best as I could, imagining how a fish out of water might feel (minus the whole breathing thing). Trying to move the body in something other than “normal” air and water was a completely different animal, literally.
Please don’t take this as a suggestion become a swamp thing — although I am sure there is some wacky Mud-Bath-Cardio workout somewhere for me to add to my list. Because of the heat it’s actually better to just sit still but since I have the maturity of a toddler I ended up moving myself right into a migraine that appeared later that night. Although my “mud master” Irene was dillegently feeding me water like a boxer in a ring (just with no arms), it was no match for the 105F desert heat…and my stupidity
After 20 minutes, the mud therapy is over. I ungracefully emerge but only after pushing pounds of sludge off my chest while at the same time trying not to touch the hot floor of the tub. Riveting stuff.
I’d never wanted a cold shower so bad in my life. I looove warm showers and unfortunately my skin is drier because of that. After I rinsed off I could definitely feel a difference in the texture. Smoother, softer, call me Satin baby! I couldn’t stop rubbing myself and two days later as I write this, I am still pretty impressed by the results.
If you have any skin issues mud therapy may be a great option. Although it’s best done on a regular basis, anytime under the dirt can be beneficial. Below are a few links to mud baths around the world and ways to do it at home.
Next stop, the Dead Sea.
Mud Therapy History
People have been taking mud baths since the beginning of time and at one point in time was the popular hang out spot. Members of the entire population – male and female, young and old, ill and healthy – would congregate, share lively conversation and immerse themselves in the mud.
Why Mud Therapy Works
Like most natural treatments, there isn’t a lot of research invested in definitive evidence but mud therapy is said to help improve skin conditions like psoriasis, dermatitis, rosacea, eczema, acne and general inflammation.
Mud therapy also can help to dilute and absorb the toxic substances of body and ultimately eliminate them from body. In fact clay (a component of a mud bath) is often used internally for this purpose.
Mud from different parts of the world contain different combinations of properties but more than likely will include some or all of the following:
Those properties will then include things like:
Zinc: The human body requires an adequate supply of zinc to heal inflammation.
Sulfur: Anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anti-fungal and keratolytic (removing dry, flaky skin).
Magnesium: Alleviates inflammatory disorders of skin and joints.
Calcium: Can increase cell-turnover rates in the skin
Iron: Crucial for oxygen-distribution throughout the body. Well-oxygenated skin cells are happy skin cells.
How Mud Therapy Works
Sink: Immersion involves stepping into the tub and maneuvering the body into such a position that it is entirely covered in the substance. Remaining spots left untouched are covered by an attendant.
Sit: Your body will literally suspend itself in the thick mud (which is a bit over 100F); weightless, as your muscles relax.
Sleep: You may experience drowsiness and even drift off to sleep for a few moments during immersion due to the steamy and soothing properties.
Shower: This treatment is definitely different for the very hairy. Add on a few more minutes under the shower to rinse off.
Where to Have Mud Therapy
Two Bunch Palms in Palm Desert, CA is where I went – which is the oldest mineral spa in the country with breathtaking (I’m serious) views of the San Jacinto Mountains and runs on 100% SOLAR POWER. In fact, the property’s mud baths were made famous in a scene from the 1992’s The Player with Tim Robbins.
Can’t make it to Cali? Here are 13 more places around the world to get dirty.
Mud Therapy at Home
Can’t make it anywhere? As I mentioned in the beginning good old bentonite clay is what I normally use at home. Simply mix the clay well with equal parts (mineral if possible) water and rinse off. More info here.
Mud Therapy for Face:
I’ve been washing my face with Osea Ocean Cleansing Mudd for the past few months with this stuff and I love it. Tingly too, good for oily skin.
Mud Therapy for Hair:
Terresentials Organic makes a great mud shampoo that I have been using for over 10 years, I’m pretty sure it’s good for all hair types if it was able to work for me.
As with anything, mud therapy can cause problems for people with allergies, heart problems, immune disorders and other medical conditions.