Review: Portico The Escapist Bath Grains

My absolute favorite olde-timey remedy is Epsom salt, a.k.a. magnesium sulfate.While it has all kinds of uses in medical contexts, home use is typically in the form of a bath soak. It is postulated to have some anti-inflammatory properties, but is likely just soothing for tired and aching muscles.

While plain Epsom salt is cheap and nice to have around the house, it doesn't exactly satisfy my craving for glamour. However, Portico has solved that problem with their new line, The Escapist Bath Grains ($26). Combined with certified organic grape seed oil and olive leaf extract for skin conditioning, the Escapist Bath Grains also contains our old friend Epsom salt along with sea salt and Vitamin E.

The Escapist Bath Grains offers soothing minerals and sea salts drenched in healing mineral water and blended with Vitamin E, Organic Grape Seed Oil and Organic Olive Leaf Extract to nourish, condition and fight free radicals. Three signature scents of soothing Cucumber + Grapefruit, invigorating Blood Orange + Jasmine and a seductive Amber + Olivewood allow you to create the perfect ambiance for your bathing ritual for your body, mind and spirit."

This careful combination of ingredients makes for one soothing bath experience. Using the Cucumber + Grapefruit, I immediately fell in love with the refreshing and delicious scent. For whatever reason, cucumber scents recall my junior high gym class where all the popular girls had cucumber scented body lotion. I was insanely jealous of this and, to this day, associate cucumber fragrance with something luxurious, desirable and just slightly out of reach.  All of that is to say that Portico's Cucumber + Grapefruit scent is a home run in my book -- not only due to the cucumber, but because of subtler notes of grapefruit, apple leaves, lily of the valley and musk. The end result is something that is beautiful, refreshing and not too overly-girly.

Using the bath soak is incredibly relaxing. The grains dissolve easily in the bathwater and leave no residue on the tub at the end. The Epsom salt component raises the water's specific gravity and makes the body more buoyant. This results in more of a floating bath sensation as compared to a sitting and marinating experience -- subtle, but an interesting change. It also keeps the prune-finger effect at bay, although I ended up sitting in the tub so long that I outlasted it, leaving with decidedly pruned fingers and a very happy disposition.  After the bath, my skin felt both refreshed, invigorated and notably softened.

Bath salts have a tendency to be over-powering in their scent, but Cucumber + Grapefruit strikes the perfect balance. Combined with the comforting properties of the salts, Portico has succeeded in creating a perfectly relaxing bath experience.

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