Definition of Epsom salts in US English:

Epsom salts

plural noun

  • Crystals of hydrated magnesium sulfate used as a purgative or for other medicinal use.

    Chemical formula: MgSO₄.7H₂O

    • ‘Just mix together some granulated sugar, Epsom salts, baking soda, and a few drops of lemon extract or essential oil.’
    • ‘People have had success with tea, vinegar, baking soda or Epsom salts dissolved in warm water.’
    • ‘Other foot soaks include baking soda or Epsom salts.’
    • ‘A pumice stone is the best exfoliator, or you can make your own scrub by mixing Epsom salts with a scented oil.’
    • ‘Add 2 cups of Epsom salts and 2 cups of baking soda.’
    • ‘In addition, a half-cup of Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) scratched into the soil at the base of each plant helps fertilizers work better and encourages new canes to form at the base of the plant.’
    • ‘Foot soaks, Epsom salts and essential oils, for example, are not recommended in certain conditions.’
    • ‘In the arid West, where the pH in soil is naturally high and limestone is not readily available, treat plants that develop blossom end rot with a solution of 1 tablespoon Epsom salts per 5 gallons of water.’
    • ‘Combine Epsom salts with food coloring and essential oil in a large bowl.’
    • ‘Toenails should be trimmed regularly; try a warm foot bath with Epsom salts twice a week, and use a loofah to get rid of dead skin.’
    • ‘Specific plants can be protected by sprinkling them with Epsom salts (needs re-application after every rain) or covering them with fabric or gallon milk jugs with the bottoms removed.’
    • ‘The blood needs the magnesium in Epsom salts, which neutralizes the toxins.’
    • ‘In June last year a trial showed that an injection of magnesium sulphate (the same chemical as in Epsom salts, which is both cheap and widely available) can halve the risk of pre-eclampsia progressing into eclampsia.’
    • ‘Perhaps the best known compound of magnesium is magnesium sulfate, popularly known as Epsom salts.’
    • ‘The tank is filled with about 10 inches of a buoyant Epsom salts water solution heated to body temperature.’
    • ‘Warm baths with Epsom salts and essential oils can help wash away the occasional blues.’
    • ‘Fill the tub with water that is as hot as you can tolerate, add 1 cup each of baking soda and Epsom salts, and soak for 15 minutes.’
    • ‘The solution is a cup of Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) to a footbath or dishpan full of warm water.’
    • ‘Mix 1 cup each of baking soda, Epsom salts, and citric acid (available at drugstores) in a large bowl.’
    • ‘Other foot soaks include strong tea, baking soda or Epsom salts.’


Mid 18th century: named after the town of Epsom, where it was first found occurring naturally.


Epsom salts

/ˌepsəm ˈsôlts//ˌɛpsəm ˈsɔlts/