DIY Homeopathic Hot Packs (A Tutorial)

These are great hot compresses that you just stick in the microwave for 60 seconds! So easy to make and you can be sure there aren’t any scary chemicals inside. My mother and Boo are responsible for this tutorial….I just took the photos for them! It’s the perfect use for those cute baby legwarmers your kiddo might have grown out of.  Make some as gifts to add to a basket of bath products! They’ve been great for when my leg hurts!

All you need is white rice (or buckwheat if you prefer), long socks or baby leg warmers. needle and thread, and some essential oils:


If you are using long socks you can cut the foot off or just skip this step. With the baby legwarmers, Boo sewed one end shut:


It’s such an easy sewing project a 4-year-old can do it:


Here’s the closed end:


Fill a measuring cup with white rice:


Fill the sock or legwarmer to the top with rice:


If you want to use essential oils, make sure you use pure, therapeutic-grade oils. Not only do they smell amazing but they have many medicinal and therapeutic benefits. Just add a few drops to the rice as you go….it will spread through the rice after you close the sock. We used rose oil in our because it smells so good but you can add any oil you like (here’s a list of essential oils and their benefits).

Sew up the other end of the sock or legwarmer so the rice is completely enclosed. Finished hot packs!


To heat the hot pack just put in the microwave for about a minute. You’ll be surprised at how long it stays hot! Put it on your shoulders, or under your back as you rest to relieve aches and pains!


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  1. Shelly says

    These were such a hit last year for all of our teachers gifts….Can’t wait to try this tutorial and compare!

  2. says

    Now, THIS I can make! Regarding anything with fabric, I’m not too crafty. But your painting tutorials have excited me most!

  3. Robin says

    These are awesome! My sis made a bunch for Christmas presents and my kids and I fight over them at night to snuggle with because they help warm us up in our cold sheets. Also help with tummy aches at bed time. Now we will make everyone their own so that I don’t have to give mine up anymore. Thanks for a fun after school activity!

  4. Liza says

    I was given one that clearly has no oil because it smells just like rice, I might pop it open and some. Thanks Boo and Grandma Blue Boo for the tutorial!

    • Jennifer Erwin says

      The oils are so volatile, that it would be easy to warm the sock up then add a few drops to the sock post microwave.. and even adding some lavender flowers or rose petals would be good too!

      • Jennifer Erwin says

        I meant, essential oils are highly volatile, they evaporate quickly. especially in heat.. so for those that already have on of these, just add a few drops to the sock after warming. :-)

  5. robin says

    In case there are others like us, who don’t have a microwave: {I make them with corn from the feed store} we wrap them in foil and put them in the oven for a bit. Takes longer but it works and the foil keeps the fabric from possibly catching on fire. :)

  6. Donna says

    My 6 year old daughter and I sewed some little stachels like these for Christmas gifts and put organic wheat in them. Although she loved using my new sewing machine, this is a great idea for another time that will make good use of my younger daughter’s mismatched Baby Legs!

  7. says

    Oh, I’ve got to try this one! Ever since my electric blanket broke, I’ve been debating whether I would old-lady-it-out with old fashioned heating pads, get a heated throw, or try hot/cold packs. Does the rice stay warm for very long?

  8. Meghan Grace says

    I love to see Boo sewing! Such a great skill you and your momma are teaching her! I am totally going to make some-problem is is that I don’t have any darling little girl socks to make mine out of! Black Nike socks from my 14 year old son just aren’t as cute. Ha! I hope that you have a good week, Ashley!

  9. Stephanie * Kalila says

    wow those are super easy to make!!! im on bedrest due to serious swelling in both my feet, ankles, and legs so im going a lil insane sitting here on the couch and away rom my sewing machine…which ive been trying to get to all week! grr these i can make from the couch (aka my prison! lol) Im going to make a few for my moms 78th bday coming up in Feb and also my sisters upcoming bday…plus..i think ill teach MY 4yr old dd how to sew since Boo can sew! lol Lets see how it goes! Thanks so much for posting such great easy tuts! Hope your feeling better today!

  10. says

    Cute idea. But it is not homeopathy. I think you meant aromatherapy? You can also use flax and it will hold the heat really well! You micro them for a minute or two and they are great!!1

    • says

      Glad to see I’m not the only one, too! Homeopathy is something completely different (won’t even go into my opinions on that). I hope the post is edited so that others aren’t turned off by the incorrect title!

  11. says

    Checking in, and I see such cuteness and a great reason to keep my daughter’s outgrown little Mismatched socks! I hope that it eases some of your aches.. I laughed, picturing you lying there with about 10 of these colorful socks all over you like a strange caterpillar attack. (:

    Bless you and your continued healing, Ash

  12. says

    I made our 3 older children ‘care packages’ for Christmas (homemade laundry soap, homemade deodorant, body wash, and vitamins, just to name a few things… but didn’t get one of these in the package… I still have time, so thank you for the tutorial! I was going to look for hot water bottles, but these are so much better! i wanted them to have some all natural things from home and this is the perfect last addition! Thank you! t.xoxooxo

  13. Anon says

    There is nothing homeopathic about these.

    You have misused the word homeopathy, I think you meant holistic.

  14. Betsy says

    Synchronicity~!…I took our kitty to the vet today and they use warmers that are made out of rice bags to keep animals comfortable while they are awaiting their tests. I was going to make a few for our little old lady who easily gets chilled now that she’s older and her kidneys are failing (although I may skip the essential oils for her)
    thanks for the great tutorial!
    Be well!

  15. Betsy says

    oh… I can also see these being made out of my worn out Smartwool knee socks that I hoard because somehow I know I can up-cycle them into something…yay!

  16. Erica says

    Love this idea! Just make sure you put on the essential oil AFTER you microwave, otherwise the oil is heat damaged and the therapeutic properties are lost.

  17. Holly says

    The only thing I would add is to make sure you keep these in a closed plastic container if there’s any chance you have mice!

  18. says

    oh my….i must make a few of these for my daughter’s first mother’s day out teacher. Ms. Cindy is fighting breast cancer and these would be perfect in her basket. Thank you for sharing this!

  19. Robin says

    One extra step will make these more practical. Use an inner and outer layer of fabric, then the outer layer can be removed for washing! Just close it with velcro, ribbon ties, or leave open like a pillowcase.

  20. Donna says

    I have been looking for this for a long time! I was so excited to see it on a friends Pinterest for Chronic Pain. I will be making these all weekend long lol. I have chronic
    rheumatoid arthritis in both hands, plus chronic back pain. So I am so looking forward to making these. Thank you for sharing your tutorial with so many.

    Hugs~Donna Thomas

  21. Kelly says

    My mom and I used to make these when I was a kid. If you put whole cloves in with the rice, they smell like chai when warmed up. It’s a fantasy!

  22. C says

    As a couple others have pointed out, this isn’t what “homeopathic” means. Also, it’s easier to find fragrance oil being sold as “essential oil” than it is to find real rose essential oil for under $100/oz.

  23. Zena says

    I know this may sound weird, but I do not have a microwave (it broke/haven’t got another one because of personal choice) how can I heat them? If I put them in hot water, the rice will cook lol

  24. Carla says

    I’m planning on making this for an xmas gift, but I have a few questions. I have a pair of adult legwarmers that are knit, pretty tightly, but I’m still worried about the rice falling out. I’ve been thinking about making a little bag out of muslin, filling that with rice, then using the leg warmers as a cover. Would it be ok to put the muslin in the microwave? And would it still work to put the muslin and the legwarmer in the microwave, or would it not heat up enough because of all the fabric? Thanks for your time!

  25. Melanie E says

    Is there another way to close up the ends of the socks other than sewing? I am using this to do with a large group of non-sewers.

    • says

      You could try fabric glue in a test run and see how it holds up. Just keep in mind that whatever you use is going to be microwaved. Sewing it up is going to be the best option probably. If you have someone in the group that could be the designated sewer using just a needle and thread, they could get them closed pretty quick :-)


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