How to Make Basic Fizzy Bath Bombs
There’s nothing like a long, warm, fizzy bath at the end of the day! And there’s something even better about knowing that you made those fizzy bath bombs with your own two hands. Bath bombs can be a fun indulgence or a great gift, and with this simple tutorial, you can make them in batches to use or to share. Once you get the hang of this simple technique, you can customize your creations with various shapes, sizes, colors, and scents to really get creative.
What You’ll Need
- 1 cup baking soda
- 1/2 cup citric acid
- 1/2 cup cornstarch (be certain it is aluminum free!
- 1/2 cup Epsom salts (make sure they are fine grained, like these)
- colorant (I use these, 12 different colors)
- Essential oil (this is a good bath bomb package)
- Mixing bowls
- Measuring spoons
- Spoon for stirring
- Bath bomb molds
While you’re gathering your materials to make bath bombs, you can go two ways: either find materials individually or find a bath bomb kit that will contain everything you need. You may find that you already have many of the ingredients that are required, so be sure you check your pantry before you hunt for stuff!. Remember, your bombs, you pick! You can customize this basic bath bomb recipe with color and scent, so choose your favorite shades and essential oils depending on what you like!
The bath bombs in most of these “how to” photos were simply plain jane, no scent, no color. I just wanted to get them made so I could see how it went.
Mix Dry Ingredients
Mix the baking soda and cornstarch in a large mixing bowl. For now, keep the citric acid set aside and do not mix in. Use a mixing spoon to break up any clumps.
Add Essential Oil
The best part of making your own bath bombs is that you get to choose your own essential oils!
A few drops at a time, add you’re essential oil into the mixture and mix until fully incorporated. You may find that it’s easier to use your hands to incorporate the oil, rather than a spoon. If desired, you can wear gloves to keep your hands clean.
If you’re planning on making multiple colors of bath bombs from this single batch, separate the dry ingredients into equal parts in different bowls. (You’ll need to separate the citric acid as well.) A few drops at a time, mix the color into the dry mixture using your hands. The more drops you use, the more deep and saturated the color will become.
Add water 1/2 a teaspoon at a time, mixing the water in after each half teaspoon. Add water until the mixture becomes the texture of damp sand and will hold in a tight clump.
Add Citric Acid
Mix in the citric acid and thoroughly combine until well mixed.
Mold the Ball
Pack the two sides of your bath bomb mold full of the mixture. Pack it tightly and slightly overfill. Press the two sides of the mold together as tightly as you can. Gently pull off one side of the mold, flip the ball over into your hand, and pull off the other side of the mold.
You’ll need to handle the bath bomb very gently as the mixture is still slightly damp and not yet hardened.
Use the back of the spoon to smooth the seam of the ball where the molds met.
For your your next bath, plop one of these beauties into the tub and watch it fizz!
A decent soak in the tub should last for at least 20 minutes, but my tub is so not insulated and the bath water loses heat much more quickly than I’d like. You can always drain some of the bathwater and run hot water from the tap, but there are a few more “scientific” ideas…
Start your bath hotter than you think you want it. Better to err on the side of your bath being too hot than too cold. If it’s too cold, you have to add a ton of hot water to heat the whole tub up, but if it’s too hot, you can just drizzle cold water into the hot water.
Ambient temperature is important as well. Once you start running the bath, it’s important you keep the bathroom door shut. As Dr. Piliang explains to the Wall Street Journal, this lets steam build and warm up the room so the water doesn’t lose heat to the cold air too fast. If you can’t warm up the room too much, consider running a small space heater to make things nice and toasty before you start running the water, or keeping it safely off to the side while you bathe.
According to Professor Eugene Terentjev at Cambridge University, a thick layer of bubbles on top of your bathwater will also help keep your bathwater warm longer. The bubbles insulate the top surface of the water and reduce heat loss via straight diffusion into the surrounding air and in regards to water evaporation.(who knew?) If you still can’t seem to retain your bathwater’s heat, you go the old-fashioned route and bake some stones in your oven for 15 minutes at 350°F and then place them in the tub with you.
While you soak in your hot bath, you should keep two things nearby: an ice cold glass of water to keep you hydrated, and a cold compress rag you can place on your forehead or neck. Both of these will help you cool down and lower your body temperature (for if you get too hot) without cutting your bath short.
My daughter, Hannah is really the bath bomb queen in our parts so if you don’t feel like going to all this trouble, she’ll do it for you! See some of her work at Wildly Cosmic, her Etsy Shop.