I’m into crafty experiments lately, and when I saw this post for homemade bath bombs from one of favorite fellow bloggers, I knew I had to try it out. For the holidays, my daughter and I made “Keep Calm and Carry On” themed gifts with lavender bath salts to her teachers. For Valentines Day, we are going to keep going with that de-stress theme with a jar of heart-shaped homemade bath bombs in a jar.
The homemade bath bomb recipe is a pretty simple one. All you need is baking soda, citric acid, scented oil of choice (I used , and water in a spray bottle. Citric acid was the only ingredient I didn’t have readily at home. I ordered mine on Amazon, but you can usually find it at your local health food store as well. I bought the value sized baking soda so that we could make lots of different batches. An optional ingredient is food coloring of choice to make tinted bath bombs.
Here is the recipe ratio we used in our bath bombs:
1/2 cup baking soda
1/4 cup citric acid
1 tablespoon of massage oil
The first step is to mix the baking soda and citric acid in a large mixing bowl with a whisk. Then add the oil and mix again really well with the whisk.
Then the next step is the trickiest one. While my daughter mixed with her hands, I spray water into the bowl. The chemical reaction of the “fizzing” happens when water hits the mixture, so you don’t want to add too much at one time. I sprayed about 10-20 squirts in the bowl, until we got a nice clumpy consistency and it could hold a shape when squeezed together. That’s as complicated as it gets.
The final step is to press into silicone molds. I have been collecting some great ones that I found in the dollar bin at Target. Make sure to compact the mixture into the mold as much as possible. The mixture might expand a little bit in the mold while you are working but that is ok.
The first batch we made, we pressed out of the old right away, and put on a baking sheet to dry.
Then, so they could fully dry, I placed them onto a wire baking rack lined with paper towels.
Note, this method allowed the shapes to flatten out and expand a little as they dried. See above before and after.
For the next batches, we perfected the technique, by pressing into the molds and letting them dry overnight instead. And, we used tinted water from a few drops of food coloring in the spray bottle to color them slightly.
This is how they turned out after letting them dry overnight in the molds:
I liked the second method better, but the choice is up to you.
The homemade bath bombs held their shape really well, and then looked great when placed together in a jar.
For her teacher, I made a label “Teacher, You’re the Bomb!” along with a few other options like, “Mom, You’re the Bomb!” and simply “You’re the Bomb!”.
Here is the free printable if you want to use for your own homemade gifts.
You’re the bomb homemade bath bomb printable
I printed them out onto Avery Glossy White Sticker Labels.
We arranged our homemade bath bomb shapes into cute jars, and finished off with the label and pretty baker’s twine attached to a tag for what is inside each jar.
She made a small gift jars using mini mason jars that she will give to friends, and a bigger jar full of bath bombs for her teacher.
With Mother’s Day coming up soon, this would make a great homemade gift idea as well.
I HEART how the pretty blue fish bath bombs turned out. = )
So pretty! My daughter took a bath in our homemade bath bombs last night, and this morning she still smelled so good!
This is a small glimpse of what happens when you put the bath bombs in water— they fizz!
And, for all of the teacher’s out there, here is a great idea I got from one of reader’s. Have the kids in your class make homemade bath bombs, and package them up for a fun and easy Mother’s Day gift idea and classroom project.
Here is the free printable for with just the “Mom, You’re the Bomb!” design:
Mom, You’re the bomb homemade bath bomb printable
Have fun making your own bath bombs! Happy crafting!
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I noticed the recipe calls for 1/4 citric acid. Is this 1/4 cup or 1/4 teaspoon?
Good catch Cathy, it is 1/4 cup of citric acid.
Any way you could make the printable with just the mom you’re the bomb saying? I want to use it as a gift from my students to their moms & don’t need all the other sayings.
Great classroom project idea. See printable in updated post above. = )
I love your bath bomb recipe going to
Make Xmas gifts for all my nieces and
Nephews and grandchildren . Wondering
Where you bought your jars for them you had
2 different sizes . Thank you ,Cathie
We had so much fun making and gifting the bath bombs. I found the jars at IKEA.
Where do you find your citric acid? Is it the same kind that is used for canning or is it something different?
I found it on the laundry aisle in my local grocery store. I’ve never tried the citric acid labeled for canning. It might work the same, but I can’t confirm.
Yes, most citric acid, whether labeled for canning or not, is the same. It can also go by the name of “sour salt”.
does anyone know if you can add something to these that would make them moisturizing?
Coconut Oil. 🙂
How important is the citric acid? I cant find it anywhere. Where would it be in a general health food store?
the citric acid is pretty important. You can buy it online too through Amazon. Try this link. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004AC1SHS/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B004AC1SHS&linkCode=as2&tag=clubchic-20
I found some at Walmart with the jarring stuff (by mason jars and pectin).
Love love love this!! But I am wondering how long do they last before they do not work anymore? Like is I made them today, would they last until Christmas or do you need to use them within the week?
Absolutely! Keep them in a jar or container and they will last quite a long time. I gave these to all of my daughter’s teachers last Christmas, and we made enough to keep and enjoy ourselves. Enjoy!
Do these go bad at all? I’m in a crafty mood and wanting to make them this weekend, will they still be ok as Christmas gifts? Awesome idea, by the way!
No, these don’t go bad. They would make perfect Christmas presents. Just keep them in a jar or container after they are dry. Happy crafting.
How many bath bombs does this recipe make? A few moms are going to get together and make them for the teachers this year!
What a great idea! These were such a hit with my daughter’s teachers last year. One recipe fills about one of the trays pictured. It is so easy to keep mixing up batches, we just kept filling more trays. Have fun!
Thank you for sharing this! I will definitely try it as soon as I will go back home, I just need to buy some nice ice cube trays 🙂
Word of warning if you live in a humid climate. We made these as directed, and they looked like the picture… but than after setting to dry in the baking molds they expanded quite a lot and looked a little bubbley on the backs. The only thing I can think is that our house is too humid! Even in the winter it is over 60% humidity. So I guess I will be finding something else to put in those cute jars.
Hi Sarah, don’t give up. The first time we tried them too they puffed up more than I expected. But we tried a second batch and I made sure to press it down really tightly in the molds and I used a little less in each mold the second time. Use the ones that aren’t as pretty in your own bath and enjoy. I found that they were so easy to make that we kept making more and more batches. The humidity might be playing a role in how much yours puffed up. Try a second batch and modify how much you put in the molds. Don’t give up.
Thank you for this great idea! Can I substitute the massage oil for an essential oil? Would there be any difference in how much is required for each batch? The oil I have reads “100% pure essential oil” and comes in a 0.5oz bottle.
That should work perfectly.
I love this! I’m trying to find some less expensive ideas for gifting this year for my friends and family. However most of them live out of state. Do you think these would hold up for shipping (if shipped in a container similar to what you have)?
Absolutely! These would ship perfectly!
what kind of oils do i need to use specifically? i wanted to make a bunch for presents but i wanna make all different holiday scents. ie, peppermint, maple, cinnamon bun, pumpkin spice, etc 🙂
also where could i get the oils? there are a lot of people in my family so i need a lot!!
Good question Cassandra! You should use essential or massage oils. You can find these in stores like Bath & Body works, or health food stores like Whole Foods. You can also find them various place online, like PipingRock.com. Hope that helps!
Oh what a wonderful gift idea! Thanks so much for sharing this Pauline. Two questions for you, well three actually.
1. Can you use fragrance oils for these or potpourri oils?
2. Are these used in place of soap in the bath or is this merely for the water only?
3. Can alcohol inks be used to color or stain them instead of food coloring?
Thanks Jo. I’ll try and answer as best as I can. Yes, you can use other oils. No, this isn’t in place of soap, it is a fun fizzing reaction and adds fragrance to a bath. I have never used alcohol inks before, so this one I’m not sure I can answer. I think because the ink will touch the skin, a food coloring would be a bit safer.
This is such a cute idea for teacher appreciation or mother’s day! Stumbled and pinned.
If you spray worth rubbing alcohol instead of water, you won’t trigger the fizzing while you mold them.
Thank you for sharing. I love the step by step is so easy! These really turned out great and will make perfect gifts!