Growing up, Vicks VapoRub was the go-to cold and flu season cure in my home. The icy gel was quickly slathered on my siblings’ or my chest the second my mom heard the slightest cough or sniffle. Don’t get me wrong, it worked as an overnight fix and still does. But, I eventually grew tired of my sheets smelling strongly of menthol anytime a cold came my way. I still keep Vicks on hand for the strongest congestions, but I recently found an alternative: one that mimics the aromatic cold and flu relief, minus the menthol smell.
As someone who always gravitates toward a hot shower or bath when feeling under the weather, I first tried Vicks VapoShower tablets. I liked them — they basically make your shower smell like, how I imagine, standing inside of a jar of the gel would — but wanted to find something more bath-specific. When a friend recommended Pursoma’s soak to me back in October, I was immediately intrigued. Knowing cold and flu season was quickly approaching, I decided to buy it and tucked it away under my bathroom sink, waiting for the day I’d need it.
That day eventually came in December, when I got hit with a nice mix of dry sinuses from my apartment’s radiator and a seasonal cold. While I wasn’t necessarily thrilled to be unable to breathe through my nose, I was excited to finally try the bath treatment. Deciding to really lean into the experience, I made some tea, filled a tall glass of water (the instructions recommend staying hydrated throughout the process), lit a couple of candles, and turned on a relaxing playlist as my bathtub filled.
The soak is a combination of French gray sea salt, French green clay, and organic ginger root. Each piece comes individually wrapped, but takes just seconds to mix together. When my bath was nearly full, I poured in the sea salt, followed by the smaller packet of the green clay, stirred it around with my hand to ensure it was mixed, and stepped into the milky, taupe, water. At first, I was a bit skeptical. The aromatic smell was subtle and it felt like any other bath I had taken. However, a few minutes in, my congestion had suddenly disappeared and I could feel my muscle tension was rapidly dissolving. By the time I hit the 25 minute mark, I felt like a little kid not wanting to leave the tub. An hour or so later, as I got ready for bed, my congestion and muscle aches were still on hiatus, allowing me to quickly fall into a deep sleep.
The next morning, while my sinuses were once again dry (shout out to the aforementioned radiator), my muscle soreness was still gone and I felt more refreshed than I had the previous morning. So, while I’ll always keep Vicks products on hand for the most intense of cold and flu symptoms (like mother, like daughter, I suppose), Pursoma’s Cold and Flu bath treatment is a new staple in my bathroom cabinet.
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