Learn how to make bath bombs! Love those awesome fizzing bath bombs but don’t want to spend $6 a piece? It’s easy to make your own DIY bath bombs with natural ingredients that soften your skin. Rather than large round balls, these homemade bath bombs are half the size. It is just enough for one bath, making your materials go much further. Using floral or decorative moulds makes these look pretty and a breeze to make without the fuss and headaches of trying to get the round bath bomb to stick together.
Don’t get me wrong here, I love a round bath bomb and have made many in my days crafting skincare and beauty products. I’ll admit it, though: the technique does take a bit of practice to master.
To be honest, there are times when you want to make a bunch of them to give away as gifts and know FOR SURE that they will not crack or explode and look pretty enough to give away. When you press one into a floral, heart, or shell-shaped mould, it will almost certainly turn out beautifully!
That’s why these DIY bath bombs are a great project for beginners and kids. That being said, if you WANT to make a round shape, then you can certainly use this bath bomb recipe, and there are instructions down at the end of the post.
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Making the Switch to Natural Ingredients in Homemade Bath Bombs
As this recipe is part of the Natural Skincare Series, you can feel good that the ingredients are natural and safe for your skin and the water. I see so many projects (unicorn rainbow, anyone!?) loaded with artificial dyes and colourants that are just unnecessary.
Plants and nature have provided us with many wonderful scents in the form of real essential oils and just as many natural colour options. There is a better way!
I know many other bath bomb recipes recommend using synthetic fragrances and colouring. Yes, they make bright and beautiful bath bombs. There’s a trade-off, though. I don’t want to say they are toxic, but I choose to use natural ingredients.
Want to cover your bases? You can certainly look up the ingredients that you plan to use for your DIY skin care projects and prepared packaged products on the SkinDeep database.
Natural Fragrance for DIY Bath Bombs
I will say that I choose to use essential oils as a natural fragrance because they also add helpful properties to bath bombs, like aromatherapy. The soothing fragrance of lavender is the perfect complement to a relaxing bath.
Just a few drops of essential oils in your bath bomb will add a subtle fragrance that can help to soothe stress and restlessness.
You can also add lavender buds, rose petals, or other flowers right onto the homemade bath bomb as I did on the cover of my Home Apothecary book!
Bath Bomb Benefits
While it’s proven that bath bombs are just a good time and a fun additive to the bath, are there any real bath bomb benefits? In some cases, no.
Bath bombs are a reaction between the baking soda and the citric acid, and the fizzing results from the release of carbon dioxide. The actual process doesn’t have any benefits, but the release of other additives like essential oils does.
Many essential oils have beneficial properties, so depending on what you put in, you can get those benefits.
Most store-bought bath bombs, however, aren’t adding anything to the bath except for a fun experience. In fact, it may be causing the opposite. Artificial fragrances and dyes can irritate the skin.
In the end, I love them the most for the sensory experience. But I also don’t mind the aromatherapy from the bombs themselves.
How to Add Natural Colour to a Homemade Bath Bomb Recipe
As for colouring, there are many options available that are plant-based and will not harm you when absorbed into your skin. Try powders like:
Want a visual? Check out this post on Easter egg bath bombs to see how these natural colours turned out.
How to Make Bath Bombs
You can feel confident that when you use these natural products or give them as gifts, that they are healthy for the body. Making your own DIY bath bombs is a great way to know exactly what is going into the water and onto your skin (or the skin of those you love!).
Bath Bomb Ingredients and Supplies
Makes 6-7 large / 12-14 small bath fizzers (one-sided), or 3-4 large / 6-7 small bath bombs (two-sided)
DIY Bath Bombs Instructions
1. In a large bowl, measure in the baking soda and citric acid and mix well.
2. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of colouring and mix well. Add more colouring if you want a deeper colour, but remember that too much colouring will leave a ring in your tub, so go easy. The colour will become more pronounced when you add the witch hazel, anyhow.
3. Add 20-30 drops of essential oils and mix well.
4. Using an atomizer or spray bottle filled with witch hazel, spray the entire surface of the powder mix and mix with your hands. Keep spraying and mixing rapidly until the mixture holds together when scrunched with your hand (think of making snowballs).
5. Working quickly, firmly press the mixture into the DIY bath bomb moulds. You can use soap-making moulds, chocolate moulds, ice cube trays, or even plastic Christmas tree ornaments that snap into two parts. The key is that they are plastic and large enough for the homemade bath bombs to set.
6. Gently tap the mould, so the bath bomb releases, and carefully lay it on a towel or tray to dry.
7. Let the homemade bath bombs dry for 30 minutes or until they are firm and won’t fall apart. Use after 24 hours.
Make Bath Bombs Round
Round bath bombs are much more difficult to make, but I understand the appeal. They’re the classic shape, and sometimes you want to try and replicate the store-made ones as much as possible.
To make a round bath bomb, over-fill two round halves. You want them loose but overflowing. Press both sides together firmly. Let it sit for a minute before tapping the moulds to release the bath bomb. Let them sit for 24 hours like the other bath bombs before using or packaging them.
Another way to get amazing-looking bath bombs is to package up the halves in pairs in an organza bag.
Frequently Asked Questions About How to Make Bath Bombs
I use turmeric (yellow), raratanjot (purple), blueberry (blue/purple), spirulina (green) and madder root powder (pink) for natural colourants. You can add anything that comes in powder form. Find more natural colourants in this guide.
Just add a tiny bit of the colour to avoid dying the bathtub (and even your skin). For my bath bomb recipe, I add ½ tsp of colouring.
If you notice your bath bombs expanding while making them, it means there was too much witch hazel added.
When following the bath bombs recipe, lightly spritz the mixture with witch hazel and mix quickly. This ensures everything gets wet enough to stick together but does not fizz.
You can replace the witch hazel in the recipe with water, but the alcohol in the witch hazel helps to make the mixture drier when bonding the bath bombs. The witch hazel also helps to make the colour more pronounced.
Bath bombs need to be pressed very firmly into their moulds. Besides your thumbs, a spoon may help you push in the mixture. Then, they must sit in the mould for a minute before gently tapping them. Let them dry completely and left undisturbed, so they dry properly.
If it’s still falling apart, the mixture may be too dry. In this case, spritz more witch hazel and mix it in before trying to press the homemade bath bombs again.
Bath bombs at the store can get pretty pricey. If you tend to use bath bombs often, it may be easier to make them yourself and get the moulds. All it requires is baking soda, citric acid, and water, with optional additives like witch hazel, essential oils, or colourants.
Citric acid is probably the most uncommon ingredient, costing about 10-15$ for a 1 lb bag. This price is the equivalent of just two bath bombs at popular stores like Lush! My recipe requires just 1 cup of citric acid and 2 cups of baking soda to make 3-4 large bath bombs.
Bath bombs require few ingredients and are pretty straightforward to make. Getting the technique right can take a few tries so your bath bombs don’t fall apart. For beginners, I recommend pressing the mixture into silicone, metal, or plastic moulds before trying to make the round bath bombs using a special mould.
More Posts About Bath Bombs and DIY Natural Skin Care You Will Love!
DIY Bath Bombs
This bath bomb recipe will show you how to make bath bombs filled with plant-based natural colour and scents.
In a large bowl, measure in the baking soda and citric acid and mix well.
Add a 1/2 teaspoon of coloring and mix well. If needed, slowly add more colour.
Add 20 drops of essential oils and mix well.
Use an atomizer or spray bottle filled with witch hazel, then spray the entire surface of the powder mix and mix with your hands.
Keep spraying and mixing rapidly until the mixture holds together when scrunched with your hand (think of making snowballs).
Working quickly, firmly press mixture into the DIY bath bombs molds.
Gently tap the mold so that the bath bomb releases and carefully lay on a towel or tray to dry.
Let the DIY bath bombs dry for 30 minutes or until they are firm and won’t fall apart.
To make a round bath bomb, over-fill two round halves and press them together firmly before tapping the molds to release the bath bomb. Or you could simply package them up in pairs in an organza bag.