Oatmeal baths are a good way to soothe sore, chapped, dry, irritated skin. The last time I checked (and that was a few years ago!), it cost quite a bit for a small box of oatmeal bath packets from the store. I believe a box of about 6 cost around $3-$4, and that was for the generic brand. The Aveeno brand was closer to $5 or $6. I got to wondering if there was a way that I could make my own, as just plain old oatmeal is rather inexpensive.
I managed to find a few ideas online. I haven't tried all of them, but I will share them with you. One idea was to place plain oatmeal in an old nylon stocking, tie a knot in the end, and let it sit in the tub. The soothing part of the oatmeal is supposed to leach out of the stocking and into the bath water. I haven't tried this one personally, but theoretically it sounds like it should work.
Another idea I liked even better was to take some plain oatmeal and place it in the blender or food processor and grind it up until it is a fine powder. You can use it like that, or you can also add a little bit of cornstarch and baking soda to add additionally soothing ingredients. That is the way that I make it, it works great! I actually adapted that recipe from this website http://www.allfreecrafts.com/homemade-gifts/oatmeal-milk-bath.shtml. The way I make it is I take 2 cups of finely ground oatmeal, 1/2 cup of baking soda, and 1/2 cup of cornstarch and mix it all up. Add 3-4 tablespoons per bath. I store the mixture in a ziploc baggie. The cost to make up a batch of this oatmeal bath is pennies on the dollar for what it costs to buy a box of oatmeal bath.
The website I posted above has printable sachets that you can make and put the oatmeal bath mixture into, as well as a more elaborate oatmeal milkbath recipe. I just may have to try that for personal gifts this year, especially Christmas!