There’s nothing quite as relaxing as immersing yourself into a soothing and fragrant bath with a fizzy bath bomb. But, when purchased on a daily basis, bath bombs can be expensive…so why not make your own?
Making your own bath bombs is very simple, and with the use of very safe ingredients, you can customise them with your own favourite fragrances and colours. Furthermore, these bath bombs are so simple to make and really easy to personalise. So, keep reading as we show you our great recipe and step by step tutorial on how to make your own DIY bath bombs.
What Are Bath Bombs
Bath bombs take bathing to a whole new level. Along with the aid of gorgeous colours and intoxicating scents, they work to help you relax while soothing and nourishing the skin. Additionally, when you drop the bath bomb into your tub you’ll undoubtedly experience a colourful explosion of fizzing and fragrant fun.
They are usually made from three key ingredients: baking soda, citric acid and corn starch. While these substances are inactive when dry, they undergo a chemical reaction in water. Interestingly, the sodium bicarbonate in the bomb reacts with the citric acid to release carbon dioxide gas – this chemical reaction is what causes the bath bombs to fizz in the water. When this reaction happens, the scented oils within the bath bomb are released into the air with the carbon dioxide bubbles. This creates a great bath experience and allows you to relax and unwind.
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Making Your Own Bath Bombs
What You Need
1 cup baking soda
Baking soda contains deodorizing and antibacterial properties which are beneficial to our skin. When combined with citric acid, it will create gas and forms bubbles.
1/2 cup citric acid
This acid is the main ingredient that causes your bath bombs to fizz – it also acts as a preservative.
1/2 cup Epsom salts
Epsom salts are known for their powerful ability to relieve aches and pains. They do this by helping break down the build-up of lactic acid – which causes muscle pain.
Essential oils not only provide a wonderful natural fragrance to homemade bath bombs but they are also packed with vitamins and antioxidants essential for healthy skin.
It’s important to choose your colouring agent carefully. You’ll also want to make sure that the colouring agent you use is fully water-soluble so that it doesn’t stain your bath. Soap dyes and food colouring are both good choices for bath bomb dye.
Metal or glass bowl
Try and use either glass or metal bowls when mixing your ingredients. This is due to some materials reacting to the ingredients. For example, copper will react to Sodium bicarbonate.
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When making bath bombs, it’s essential if you have a spray bottle to hand because it will allow you to balance the right amount of your wet ingredients, especially when you are blending it all together. Otherwise, it can be easy for your mixture to become too wet or runny.
Bath Bomb Mould
If you can’t get your hands on a spherical mould there are many other options like ice cube trays, muffin trays, disposable shot glasses or chocolate moulds.
If you are a beginner, then it best to start off by making smaller bath bombs. Not only are they easier to make, but smaller bath bombs are more robust and have less chance of crumbling.
And last, but definitely not least:
1 tsp. water, a whisk and a jar.
Start by placing all the dry ingredients into a bowl by measuring out the bicarbonate of soda, Epsom salt and the citric acid into the mixing bowl.
- If you are using a dry colouring pigment or powder, then add this at this stage too. Add as little or as much as you’d like to achieve the colour you prefer.
You can sieve the baking soda, if necessary, to get a smoother consistency and ensure it is clump-free. In all, you want a fairly smooth consistency throughout the entire mix.
Next, simply mix it with a whisk until everything is blended well together.
Important: Make sure you use gloves when handling the mixture as the citric acid can cause irritation and burns to the skin.
In a separate container, mix the liquid ingredients together.
Add about 20 to 30 drops of essential oil, depending on how scented you want your bath bombs to be.
If you are using food colouring, add a little at a time until you get the desired colour that you want. Additionally, don’t forget to blend the colour properly throughout the mixture to distribute it throughout the mix. However, if you want to make it more colourful, you can add more than one colour to create a unique style and design.
- If you are making a multi-coloured bath bomb, you need to separate your mixtures into a separate bowl before you add the colour.
In addition, if you are making the bath bombs as a gift and or simply just want to make them look more decorative, you can add dried flower buds to the mix. Essentially, you must remember to use food-grade dried flowers to avoid flowers that might have been grown with pesticides. However, keep in mind that these can get stuck in the tub after you drain the water out.
Next, add your desired amount of fragrance into the mix with your essential oils and mix it well.
- But, remember to go easy on the percentage of oils in the recipe. Too high a percentage of oils can cause the bath bombs to remain soft, instead of hardening. Additionally, most essential or fragrance oils will not cause the mixture to fizz, but some citrus oils can, so if this happens, mix in quickly.
Next, slowly start adding the liquid mixture to the dry mix, one small spoon at a time. It’s important here that you do this very slowly, adding little drops at a time while mixing.
Spray a mist of water onto the mixture a tiny bit at a time, then mix and work the mixture continuously to avoid it fizzing.
If it’s still too powdery to hold together, just add a tiny bit more water and mix until it does hold together. However, if you see the mixture starting to fizz or foam, you may be adding the liquid too quickly. So, be careful not to add to much water or the mixture won’t be able to hold its shape.
Aim for a consistency where the mixture is still a bit crumbly but starts to just hold together when lightly squeezed in your hand.
Now everything has been mixed well together, you’ll need to work quickly as you’ll notice that the mixture will begin to stick together at this stage. So, quickly you’ll want to pack the mixture into the bath bomb moulds by pressing down firmly to fill and compress the mixture.
- Important: Make sure that your moulds are dry when using them or it might ruin your bath bombs as they start to fizz when wet.
- If you’re using a two-part spherical mould, then slightly overfill each half of the mould, so that your halves stick together well.
When you’re ready, press the two halves of your bath bomb mould together tightly so that the mixture bonds into one ball shape. After a minute or two, you should be able to remove one half of the mould as the mixture should hold its shape when manipulated without feeling too damp. However, make sure you pack it tightly to ensure you get the best shape possible before letting it dry in the bowl! Ensure that you work quickly as the mixture can dry out if left out for too long.
Leave the mixture in the moulds to sit for one minute and once set, tap the mould and pull it apart.
Next, remove the bath bomb gently from the mould. It should easily come out of the mould, but if it doesn’t then gently tap it to try and loosen your bath bomb. Don’t worry if it breaks, just be sure to press it into the mould again and let it dry out longer.
There is no baking or freezing required when making bath bombs — just let them sit out to dry. We recommend that you leave your bath bombs to dry for a couple of hours in a warm, dry place. However, make sure you keep them away from direct sunlight.
Allow the bath bombs to dry for a day or two until they have hardened all the way through. But, remember that bigger bath bombs will take longer to dry than smaller ones.
How to Use the Bath Bombs
To use the bath bombs, simply plug your bathtub and start filling it with warm water. Once you have filled the tub to your liking, simply drop the bath bomb into the water.
When it comes in contact with the water, the bath bomb will start to break apart and dissolve in the water. Additionally, when the bath bomb fizzes it will bubble in the water, resulting in the release of its colours and aroma.
- It can take from five to seven minutes for the bath bomb to fizz once you have dropped it into the water.
Then, simply get into the bath and relax. You need do nothing more! When you’re done, just get out and dry off.
Note: If you’re using one with heavier oils or dye, you may want to rinse off your skin first to make sure you get all the product off your body.
The shelf life of Homemade Bath Bombs
If the bath bombs are kept in storage for too long, they can lose their fizzing power. So, it is best to use them sooner rather than later. The reasoning behind the loss of fizzing powder is due to the citric acid and essential oils. These products can evaporate after a certain amount of time.
Important: Because this recipe uses no preservatives, you want to use them within about 6 months.
How to Store Bath Bombs
Properly storing your bath bombs extends the amount of time the product looks and feels its best. So, once they are completely dry, store bath bombs in an airtight container or bag. Doing so can help protect them from excess moisture as bath bombs require a very dry climate.
The best place to store them is in a bathroom cabinet or closet. That’ll keep them away from heat, light, and moisture. If placed in direct sunlight, the colours and fragrances may fade. Along with this, high humidity will make them activate and excessive moisture in the air can promote cause the bath bombs to prematurely fizz.
Ingredients You Should Avoid Using in Bath Bombs
Glitter is made up of small pieces of plastic. Which can, in turn, cause inflammation and irritations to your vagina. So, it is best to avoid bath bombs with glitter in it.
You can, however, use glitter on sensitive skin for other reasons, check out our article on How to Wear Glitter Makeup on Sensitive Skin.
Can They Be Used on Sensitive Skin Types?
Bath bombs were actually invented with sensitive skin in mind. Whilst they contain moisturising and nourishing ingredients such as oils, some tend to contain ingredients, such as fragrances and salts, which can irritate sensitive skin. For most people with sensitive skin, they’re completely fine since they’re made of very mild ingredients. But everyone is different and what works for one person might not work for another.
If you’re using bath bombs that cause any kind of irritation, you should stop immediately and talk to your doctor.
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How to Use Them Safely
Be Careful When Stepping in and out of the Bath
When using bath bombs, your tub can get very slippery. This is due to the oils in the bath bomb that may leave some residue behind in your tub. So, make sure are extra careful when getting in and out of the tub!
Tip: Try and use hot or warm water in the tub as this can melt and rinse away any oils.
Do Not Use Them Too Frequently
Like everything in life, moderation is key when using bath bombs. Using it too often could be doing more harm than good.
As bath bombs can contain lots of dyes and perfumes, they can mess with the good bacteria in your vagina. This can lead to infections and inflammation. Even if you don’t get an infection, bath bombs may still disrupt the balance of the vagina. Which, in turn, will increase your likelihood of getting thrush, UTIs, and messing up your pH balance.
Important: If you’re prone to yeast infections, we suggest you stay away from bath bombs altogether. Using a bath bomb can lead to an increased risk of developing vaginal yeast infections. Why? Well, when the bomb dissolves in the warm water, the ingredients could potentially make their way into your vagina. When this happens, your vagina can become itchy and irritated. So, make sure you don’t use them too often to prevent this.