Bath bombs are a great way to bring the fun factor to your bathtub. The fizzy feel that they provide to your bathing water can indeed be beneficial to you. While you can easily find these tiny bath capsules in super-store aisles, making them yourself is very easy too.
Now you might think that making bath bombs involves some cumbersome processes that no normal household can handle. Let us break the bubble – it is actually a very easy and fun activity you could do in your free time. Making bath bombs is a great way to spend your evenings while making something useful for the weekend. Not to mention, the kids are going to love the process!
LUSH was the pioneer and continues to be the leading brand when it comes to shower and bath products. Their bath bombs are considered the best in the industry- and that is what we will be recreating in our homes today!
Bath bombs use a bunch of natural ingredients one can mostly find in their home. Although some optional ingredients can have you searching the supermarket but don’t worry – we have you covered.
There are various recipes out there that discuss various types of DIY bath bombs. These recipes use different ingredients that make or mar these bath fizzies. One such key ingredient is Epsom salt. Epsom salt is a naturally occurring compound that can have wondrous effects in terms of easement of pain and mental relaxation. (more details in a minute)
We have also made a detailed list of all the key and optional ingredients that you will need for this easy bath bomb recipe. While listing the ingredients, we have also discussed why these ingredients matter. In case you’re not able to lay your hands on any of these, do not worry; we have also included potential substitutes for them.
Since we will be using Epsom salt for this DIY bath bomb recipe, we have also explained what Epsom salt is and a detailed study on its various benefits. In the end, we have also formulated a small list of essential oils you can use to give your homemade bath bombs a LUSH touch.
- 1 Some Bath Bomb Trivia
- 2 What is Epsom Salt?
- 3 The Benefits of Epsom Salt
- 4 Key Ingredients
- 5 Things to Keep in Mind
- 6 The Recipe
- 7 Storing Your Bath Bombs
- 8 Essential Oils for LUSH Bath Bombs
Some Bath Bomb Trivia
In 1989, the world witnessed a ground-breaking invention that changed the way people unwound after a long day. It was already discovered how bathing could be a great way to relax the mind and the body. However, in 1989, an individual named Mo Constantine kicked the relaxing effects of a good bath up notch by creating the world’s first bath bomb.
While trying to simulate the fizzy action of Alka-seltzer tablets in a bathing environment, Mo tinkered around with recipes involving baking soda and citric acid in a bathtub.
It is said that Mo Constantine wanted to give the simple idea of bathing a luxurious twist that would benefit the whole process. So, with some natural ingredients, she ended up making an item that would become a rage in common households.
These bath bombs are known for giving a bathing experience that is pleasing to all sensory organs. The fragrance, visuals, and foamy feel of a bath bomb explosion can truly make one’s bath holistically calming and rejuvenating.
Not only that, but they are also beneficial to your skin. These bath bombs are also made of natural ingredients, which adds to the relaxing effect of the bath.
What is Epsom Salt?
Epsom salt is a compound called magnesium sulfate. This chemical compound was found in Epsom, England, where it found its name. It was discovered when the residents of Epsom started boiling water from a nearby spring.
Consequently, a bitter-tasting mineral powder that came to be known for its purgative effects was found. In the coming years of the eighteenth century, people would ingest this water directly as a way to expedite their bowel movements.
Slowly, the therapeutic and healing qualities of magnesium sulfate were also discovered. People started using it for baths, foot soak, and floatation therapies. When the bath bomb was invented in 1989, Epsom salt found itself a very natural place in its manufacturing process. Not only did it produce a silky texture in the water, but it also had a host of benefits.
The Benefits of Epsom Salt
We’ve discussed that this substance can be of therapeutic use. But how does that work?
When put in bath water, the compound breaks down into magnesium and sulfate. The magnesium in the Epsom salt helps soothe nervous or muscular pain. The idea behind this is that the magnesium gets into your body through the skin, alleviates joint pain, and relaxes sore muscles.
Although this action of magnesium isn’t entirely backed by science, soaking the affected area in warm water has been shown to help.
A study was done to find out if the Epsom salt can produce any pain-alleviating effects on its own. This study by Ruth Benita F. found that the Epsom salt was effective in reducing joint pain in old-aged people.
For this research, a group of patients with Rheumatoid arthritis was given an external treatment of hot water and Epsom salt. At the end of the treatment, patients showcased lasting alleviation of joint pain and stress.
Another study treated 60 patients with osteoarthritis. 30 of them were treated with 12 different mud baths, including magnesium sulfate bathwater, and the other 30 were given the regular OPD treatment. The patients were then assessed on the 15th and the 90th day. The group treated with Epsom salt mud baths showcased considerable improvement compared to the other group.
These studies prove that Epsom salt can be monumental in treating joint pain, arthritis, and muscular pain in general.
The benefits of this substance are not limited to only the physicalities of the human body. Studies have also shown that Epsom salt can boost mental health and awareness when used in therapies like floatation.
Epsom salt baths and therapies have shown various positive effects on the psychological being of humans. Effects like easement of anxiety and stress alleviation have been noticed.
Now that we know what Epsom salt is and how useful it can be, let us delve into the interesting Epsom salt bath bomb recipe we have for you today.
A bath bomb typically consists of completely natural ingredients. For your ease, we have divided the ingredients into two sections: dry ingredients and wet ingredients.
The dry ingredients are mostly consistent for all bath bomb recipes out there. When it comes to the wet ingredients, there is ample room for experimentation. This is because you can use different essential oils and fragrances depending on your needs for the best bathing experience.
1. Baking Soda: Baking Soda is perhaps one of the most basic ingredients required for producing bath bombs. This is the easiest part of the recipe to procure, and odds are – it’s already there in your kitchen cabinet.
Sodium bicarbonate, aka baking soda, is alkaline in nature. Its basic properties produce the fizz that we all love bath bombs for.
2. Citric Acid: Many recipes lay immense stress on this specific ingredient. The reason behind that is, the acidic nature combined with the alkaline nature of the baking soda reacts, leading to a vigorous reaction between the two.
This reaction is responsible for the effervescence you see when the bombs explode in your bathtub. These might require a little search in the supermarket, or you can buy them online where they are easily available.
3. Corn Starch: Now, we just mentioned that the reaction between citric acid and baking soda is very vigorous. In normal conditions, the effervescing action between these two might not last long. That is where Corn starch comes into the picture.
Corn starch acts as a binding agent. It binds itself to the two ingredients and slows down their reaction. The result? Bubbling and fizzing that lasts several minutes.
4. Epsom Salt: Epsom salt is another ingredient that you will easily find on the nearby supermarket shelf in the health & wellness section. Its benefits in bath water or warm water therapies have been proven and can be a great aide to the relaxation your baths can offer to you.
Although it is not a necessary ingredient, we recommend adding it to your bath bomb recipes today to enjoy its tremendous advantages. If it has been a rough day, an Epsom salt bath can do wonders for your mind and body.
5. Coloring Agents: This is another optional ingredient in our recipe. Attractive colors can make your baths visually pleasing. There are various substances that you can use to color your bath bombs.
Food coloring is perhaps the most commonly used colorant when it comes to DIY bath bombs. Another avenue that we suggest is Mica powder.
Mica powder is a certified safe product that is used to color soaps and bath products. It comes in various colors and can give a vibrant look to your fizzy bathtub. You can also easily purchase soap dyes that use mica powder and other elements that are safe.
1. Water: This is an obvious addition to the list. We use water to simply moisten the dry mixture we make and give it the traditional wet sand texture.
2. Isopropyl Alcohol: This is an optional ingredient. It removes the risk of setting off the acid-base reaction in your bath bomb. It moistens the bath bomb mixture perfectly without contributing any water.
Also, the alcohol evaporates within 24 hours, so you’ll be left with a sturdy, smooth bath bomb. Since this ingredient may be hard to find for some, we will be using water.
3. Essential Oils: Essential oils are optional ingredients too. However, their presence can make your bath bombs more capable of providing you a relaxing, refreshing bath. Various essential oils prove effective for different purposes.
Based on your needs, you can add any essential oil to your DIY bath bomb. No matter which oils you use, your bath bomb won’t be affected.
4. Carrier Oils: Carrier oil is an optional ingredient. If your skin is sensitive and may not bode well with the essential oils you use, then we suggest using a carrier oil.
Carrier oils are used to dilute the essential oils and allow them to get absorbed in your skin effectively. This can be handy in case of strong essential oils or if you are planning to make a bath bomb for the kids.
5. Polysorbates: Polysorbates are emulsifiers that can help bridge the gap between the oils and the water. Without polysorbates, you might find the essential oils pooling around a small area.
Polysorbate helps the oil and the water to mix well and spread uniformly across the whole tub.
6. Witch Hazel: This is also an optional ingredient. Many experienced bath bomb makers would tell you that witch hazel does a better job than water when it comes to binding the bath bomb mixture tightly.
The significant advantages of using this plant derivative for your bath bombs are that it helps in binding the bath bomb together and prevents it from starting the fizzing reaction prematurely.
Other benefits include its anti-inflammatory capabilities, alleviation of skin irritation, and reduction of acne.
Things to Keep in Mind
There are some important caveats to be noted when working with wet ingredients. The perfect DIY bath bombs require only so much moisture to attain the perfect consistency.
No matter how many of these ingredients you use, you want to make sure you do not overdo them since it can cause the mixture to end up more moist, like a paste. This can either set off the effervescence reaction early or prevent the bath bombs from hardening properly.
If you are using water, we recommend taking a small bowl and adding a few tablespoons of water. Now you can add any essential oils that you want to use for this LUSH-inspired DIY bath bomb recipe.
For example, if you want a warm bath that makes you feel relaxed and sleepy at the end, we recommend lavender oil. On the other hand, if you’re trying to blow off some stress, then frankincense is great.
You can also mix water and isopropyl alcohol to reduce the water content. This step is recommendable if you are also using water-based food colorants. In the case of mica powder, you might need to spritz a little water in the end to ensure the right consistency.
If you want to be on the safer side, you can also use witch hazel as a binding agent. Just spritz or slowly pour some on the mixture and stir slowly. If the bath bomb feels dry and powdery, you can always slowly add some more water or witch hazel.
We suggest adding only a few drops of the oils to the water. If you are using some strong or ‘hot’ oils, then we recommend putting a few drops of carrier oil as well. This will help dilute the oils and prevent them from causing any discomfort. In our experience, jojoba oil and coconut oil have produced wonderful results.
To ensure that the bath fizzies dissolve evenly, we suggest the use of polysorbates. If you are working with oils and colorants that are concentrated in nature (like mica powder), we recommend using polysorbate 80.
This will help mitigate the gap between the potent oils and the water. It will also help the colors disperse evenly.
What You’ll Need
- 1 cup Baking Soda
- 1/2 cup Citric Acid
- 1/2 cup Epsom Salt
- 1/2 cup Corn Starch
- Water/Isopropyl Alcohol/ Witch Hazel
- Essential oils (feel free to use whichever you need or like)
- Carrier Oil
- Polysorbate 20 or Polysorbate 80 (we will clarify which one to use.)
- Colorants, mica powder, or food coloring (bath bombs are amazing without them too!)
- A mixing bowl ( small and large, you’ll need more if you plan to get creative with the colors)
- A spatula
- Bath bomb molds (alternatives included in the recipe)
- A Tamper ( handy if you’re not using a mold)
- A table-spoon
This Lush-inspired bath bomb recipe is a simple follow-along. If you have all the materials available, you can start creating these bath fizzies right away. This recipe also takes very little prep time, so you can enjoy a warm bath as soon as possible.
While making these bath bombs, the general rule of thumb is that you mix the dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately in a mixing bowl. Once properly prepared, we move forward by mixing and molding them.
We have broken down this process into small, easy-to-follow steps for your convenience.
1. Mix the Soda and the Citric Acid
Take a mixing bowl. Now add 1 cup baking soda and 1/2 cup citric acid to this bowl. Stir them slowly with a spatula until they are uniformly mixed. In our experience of putting together bath bombs, we found that the ideal ratio between the baking soda and the citric acid is 2:1.
Feel free to experiment with this ratio to find the one that works best for you. The climate in a certain region can also affect how these homemade bath bombs work, so a little trial and error might be required.
A measuring cup can be handy during your little experiments.
2. Add the Cornstarch
Add half a cup of cornstarch to this primary mixture in the mixing bowl. The corn starch will prevent the ingredients from reacting too early and bind them together well. Stir them slowly.
3. Add the Coloring
Once you’ve made a uniform mixture out of the dry ingredients, it’s time to get creative. You can use mica powder, soap dyes, or food coloring for this process.
Some important warnings: some food colors or even soap dyes have water in them. If you use any such colors, be wary about how much water you are putting in with the colors. Food coloring is also notorious for staining your skin.
The advantage of using mica powder is it does not contribute any moisture and can help you get more profound, more vibrant colors.
Make sure that you add the colors a little at a time and mix them well. Then, if you feel like a deeper hue is needed, you can continue the process.
4. Ready the Epsom Salt
If we are actually planning to emulate the colorful magic of LUSH bath bombs, we have to make sure no ingredient is left behind.
For this step, take 1/2 a cup Epsom salt in a bowl. Now add another color to this bowl of salt and mix it well for a uniform mixture. We’ll be using this Epsom salt as layers between our dry ingredients mixture.
This way, when the bath fizzies explode, they’ll slowly release the Epsom salt. You can also mix the Epsom salt with the dry ingredients mixture we prepared in our last step.
However, Epsom salt is thicker in texture, so it might cause problems when you’re trying to mix the dry ingredients and make the bath bomb mixture bind together.
5. Prepare the Wet Ingredients
Take a small bowl and add a few tablespoons of water or witch hazel to it. If you use water, then a few drops of isopropyl alcohol would do.
Slowly add a few drops (8-12 each) of the essential oils you are going to use. Next, slowly pour a similar amount of carrier oil to dilute the oils.
If you’re making a unicolor bath bomb, you can also skip coloring the dry ingredients and directly pour the colorant into your wet ingredients.
Depending upon the kind of oils and colors you use, add polysorbate 20 or polysorbate 80. The golden ratio for this is 2 parts oil to 1 part polysorbate (including the carrier oil). So, if you put 20 drops of oils, then we recommend 10 drops of polysorbate for the mixture.
Slowly stir this mixture until it looks uniform.
6. Mix Both Ingredients
Once you have prepared the dry ingredients and the wet ingredients separately, all that is left is putting them together.
This process will require a little finesse. Be mindful of how much of the wet mixture you use. We recommend you slowly pour the mixture while you stir the materials in the mixing bowl.
Continue this process until you reach the desired wet sand consistency. Do not pour a lot of liquid at once since it can set off the fizzing reaction.
You can also use a spray bottle to spritz the wet ingredients onto the dry ingredients. This will help you get a better idea of the best texture.
7. Bring Out the Mold
Once you have achieved that sought-after wet sand consistency, it is time to give the bath bomb a fitting shape.
For this purpose, there is a myriad of things that you can use. A bath bomb mold is stereotypical. You can use silicone cupcake molds, a plastic cup, or even a small bowl for this bath bomb. The Christmas decoration ball is also a brilliant idea for a ball-shaped bath bomb.
If you are using a cup or a bowl, you can use a tamper to make the mixture settle properly. If you’re using a mold or a Christmas ball, fill one of the hemispheres or the mold partly with the mixture.
After this step, you need to add a small layer of the colored Epsom salt and cover it with another layer of the prepared mixture.
Repeat the process for the other hemisphere and fill both over the brim. Then simply twist the hemispheres together to attach them. Any excess mixture will fall off, and you’ll be left with a perfectly filled ball.
8. Let it Dry
After filling the mold, you have to let the bath bomb mixture settle in it. We recommend leaving it alone for around 24 hours. If you have to use the bath bomb immediately, you can just put it in the freezer for half an hour.
Once the bath bombs have dried, you need to tap the mold to free the bomb gently. Then you can simply flip the mold over and have your bath bomb ready to go! If you are using a ball, make sure you gently tap both the hemispheres before slowly pulling them out.
If you plan to gift this bath bomb to someone, you can let it stay in the bath bomb mold.
Here goes the perfect homemade DIY bath bomb with Epsom salt recipe. This recipe will not only produce a consistent fizz all across your bathtub but will also ensure that it does not make a mess on the bathtub floor. You can tinker around with the oils, fragrances, and colors to make LUSH-like bath bombs and even modify them to your whims!
Since you might be wondering how to store bath bombs for future use, let us discuss how that can be done effectively.
Storing Your Bath Bombs
Homemade bath bombs, like the one we just made, need to be stored in proper conditions to ensure longevity. In ideal conditions, these DIY bath bombs stay good for up to 6-7 months.
It is recommended that you store these bath bombs in an airtight container or a plastic wrap. This is because when you store them in an airtight container or an airtight plastic wrap, it can help cut off any interaction with foreign elements like moisture and air and help preserve the bath bombs.
This also ensures that they don’t lack the fizz, even if it has been months.
Essential Oils for LUSH Bath Bombs
If you are looking to truly simulate the quality that LUSH provides in your homemade bath bombs, then you have to know which essential oils to use for the finest results.
The Sex Bomb
The Sex Bomb uses two important essential oils that make it perfect for you. This includes jasmine oil and ylang-ylang oil.
Jasmine oil is known for its aphrodisiacal properties that give this bath bomb its popular name. Jasmine essential oil has a sweet fragrance that alleviates anxiety and helps ease mental health. At the same time, the ylang-ylang oil helps boost mood and wards off depression.
This bright neon ball by LUSH uses spearmint essential oil to create that mood-heightening effect that can have you feel as if you are roaming the galaxy in your very own bathtub.
The spearmint essential oil contains carvone and limonene. Carvone is known to be a relaxant for the human body, while limonene works brilliantly as an anti-inflammatory. If you plan to use our Epsom salt recipe, this essential oil can truly uplift the quality of your baths.
The pink-colored Twilight bath fizzy is perhaps one of the most sold LUSH products. The fragrant lavender and the tonka work excellently in tandem to help make your bath full of freshness. The tonka oil, which has been long used in the fragrance industry, also serves as a natural aphrodisiac. Lavender, on the other hand, has been used for aromatherapies and can instantly lift the mood.
The seasoned, green Avobath is bound to re-energize you for the rest of the day. This unassuming bath bomb uses lemongrass and bergamot essential oil to bring forward the rejuvenating factors of this product.
The invigorating scent that this bath bomb produces will have you charged up for the coming day. The added benefit of extra virgin olive oil keeps your skin smooth.
The bath bomb we just made is an easy recipe to blow stress off the equation and soak in everything that the bath has to offer to you. This recipe cuts down the prep time and lets you enjoy the fizzy, bubbly bath within an hour!
In case you are looking for more bath bomb recipes that are easy to follow, consider browsing our website. If you try this recipe, feel free to comment on this post to let us know how good you think it was.