The Magickal or Sacred or Lustral bath is a well-established idea in contemporary occultism, and one can find roots of the idea of a ritual cleansing of oneself as a part of religious or magickal ritual as a theme across cultures and faiths over time.
Now in your research you will find any number of recipes for herbal sachets and instructions that this music or these candles or those crystals should also be involved in the production of a ritual bath. Perhaps it is my beginnings in the Neo-Pagan Witchcraft and “Wicca” (1) of the 1980’s and 90’s, but I tend to go for a less is more approach to my own magickal bathing. I also tend to prefer an element of practicality and being both poor and (as I am blessed with ADHD) sometimes rather differently organized than most, the simpler the better.
Although now that I think of it, I also think some of it has to do with the improvisational and in the moment nature of a lot of my own Witchery.
Blessed Salt added to the Blessed Water is the classic or most widely known stand by. Any number of beginner books on Witchcraft suggest this as an essential preparation for ritual. If you use a shower, a salt scrub or (if you must) a simple muslin bag with some blessed salt in it can work…well…wonders. For myself whether bath or shower, the water needs to be as hot as I can take it. I also like to turn off the lights or have a minimum of light in the room, either a single candle or electric nightlight in the room or perhaps just the door slightly ajar and a touch of light coming in from the other room or the window.
If I am doing a magickal bath with a specific purpose, I tend to prefer an essential oil to a packet of herbs. Practicality and ease of clean up are key for me.
Even if I am not doing a specific working or bit of spell craft, I will often select soaps and shampoos along a variety of themes. If you take the time to go to a health-food oriented grocery store you will often find what I like to jokingly call the White Girl Santeria Aisle. You know the one, oils and incenses and candles and various notions lotions and potions… including bars of organic soap in varieties like Dragons Blood and Tobacco and Sandalwood among others.
It is surprisingly easy with the right frame of mind to turn ones daily routine into a time for reflection and magickal preparations for one’s day!
This sort of mindset can also include your selection of products for grooming. For example, I affect a goatee, and when it is in a bushier mode I will use beard oils with Sandalwood or a delightful Three Kings blend I found online.
I hope this helps stir some thoughts and inspiration into your own craft and daily routines!
Bliss, and Blessed Be,
Pax / Geoffrey