You can make perfect bath bombs and shower fizzies with these bath bomb recipes and tips. We share no-fail bath and beauty recipes which are ALL tried-and-tested. With step-by-step instructions, you will be able to make bath bombs and shower fizzies for yourself or as gifts!
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No-Fail DIY Bath Bombs Recipes
Most of my bath bomb recipes are the mold and release type. I am impatient… That being said, most any bath bomb recipe can be set into a silicone mold and left to dry. Note: a dry recipe like a heavy salt, low oil, is not great for an instant release mold.
4. Gentle Salt-Heavy (24-Hour dry-time, silicone mold)
Bath Bombs Versus Shower Fizzies
I’m often asked, “What is the difference between shower fizzies versus bath bombs?” Aside from a couple of ingredients, they are quite different.
If you’re here and are considering making shower fizzies (also known as shower bombs or shower steamers), please read Shower Fizzies versus Bath Bombs before you make your first set.
I promise, it’ll save you a world of headaches. :)
General Ingredients for Bath Bombs
For most bath bombs and shower fizzies, you’ll use the same ingredients. It’s more cost-effective to buy in bulk (we get most of our stuff from Amazon).
- baking soda
- citric acid
- witch hazel
- essential oils or soap scents (both are easy to work with)
- clay (French green, bentonite, etc.) – if you add this, add oil
For 99% of bath bomb recipes, the type of salt and oil is personal preference or whatever you have on hand. I tend to always have the following:
Dried Herbs and Flowers
When I first started making bath bombs, I used to include as many cool add-ins as I could. Now, I limit them to accents at the top of bath bombs or add them sparingly because I don’t like seeing dried lavender buds on the side of my tub.
You could gift the bath bombs or shower fizzies without the add-ins and put them into a coordinating bath tea where they can be contained. Bath teas are a great gift to round out a homemade self-care pampering gift.
Colorants and Glitters for Shower Fizzies and Bath Bombs
I’ve used a multitude of colorants over the years and will say: stick to soap colorants to avoid a messy, staining situation. You can use food coloring but opt to color a light, pastel bath bomb to avoid staining (of tubs or bodies).
To mix in the color, I recommend putting gloves on and using your hands! It’s the easiest way to incorporate all scents and colorants.
- Mica Powder incorporates the best (it’s dry like the mix and produces bright colors
- Liquid Soap Colorant is my second choice to color bath bombs and shower fizzies. It’s harder to incorporate than mica powder but gets the job done.
- High-intensity gel colorants like these are also an option but use the color sparingly to avoid staining. Again, stick to pastel bath bombs.
Adding Glitter and Extras to Bath Bombs
First off, let’s just get this said: do not use regular glitter in your bath bombs. It can cut and will never come off the side of the tub (and you certainly don’t want it in sensitive areas)…
You can use body or cosmetic-grade glitter which is a totally different product than what’s available at the craft store.
If you want to add sugar icing decorations, they are a quick (and dissolvable) option to make a themed bath bomb like these Avengers bath bombs. Another great add-in is sprinkles because they dissolve, as well.
The Best Bath Bomb Molds
You really don’t need a lot to get started making your own bath bombs and shower fizzies. Honestly, a metal or glass bowl, a mold, and the ingredients are about it.
Over the years, however, I’ve definitely found my favorite supplies with which to whip up a batch of bath bombs quickly and without fail.
My recommended bath bomb mold is this set. It’s inexpensive, has multiple sizes, doesn’t stick with recipes, and works every time. Actually, I’ve purchased 2 of these sets because I took mine over to a friend’s, she fell in love with them, and I left them there.
The best plastic one which worked without fail was a 45 cent snap-together, clear plastic Christmas ornament. They work but if you’re making more than just a couple, opt for the stainless steel.
Other molds I’ve tested were muffin and mini muffin tins, tarlett molds, silicone molds (both hard and soft), soap molds, and a snowball maker. The snowball maker worked, but those bath fizzies were GIGANTIC! Which can be pretty awesome if you’re gifting a colossal bath bomb or a very visually-impressive one.
The Best Way to Mix Bath Bombs
You might think it doesn’t matter, but I will tell you adamantly that it does. I have tried spoons, whisks, gloved and non-gloved hands.
Hands down (get it?), my favorite way is using gloved hands to mix. The color incorporates better because you can scrub it into the powder and a byproduct of this method is that any lumps will be removed easily.
Trouble-Shooting Bath Bomb Mixes
Over-Moistened Mix (Too Wet)
If you over moisten your mix, you might know immediately and you might not. Sometimes it will fizz wildly and other times it won’t become clear until about 20 minutes after you put it into the molds.
Just don’t toss your over-moistened mix, as it might be salvageable! I mold over-moistened mix into a silicone mold and let it rise out of the top of the shapes. After about 30 minutes, I took them out of the mold and hand molded them.
For the over-moistened blobs that I couldn’t make into shapes, I squished the mix down with my hand to about 1/3 of an inch and used tiny aspic cutters on them to make ‘itty-bitty-fun-sized’ bath fizzies for my daughter.
These compressed cuties fizz for between 30 and 45 seconds and still pack a great aromatic punch.
Under-Moistened Mix (Too Dry) – A.K.A. Fizzing Bath Powder
You might not know you had an under-moistened bath bomb mix until you pop the fizzies out of their molds and they crumble. Well, it’s not a loss. You will be able to crumble any large chunks and try again!
It really works, especially if you have a large proportion of Epsom salt in the mix!
If, however, you can’t get that mix to stay in a mold no matter what you try, don’t toss it. Test a little bit in some water and if it fizzes and is aromatic, put it in a beautiful jar and call it fizzing bath powder.
Bath Bombs Go Flat and Soften
If your bath bombs flatten out, it’s likely too much water (or other liquid) was used in the mix. You can dry the powder on the counter and try again (if there is a very small amount of oil and other wet ingredients).
Scent Combinations for Bath Bombs and Shower Fizzies
My favorite combos for essential oils scents are:
- peppermint, all on its own,
- lemon vanilla,
- lavender lemon,
- tangerine vanilla (yep, kind of obsessed with this now), and
- eucalyptus lavender.
**Just a quick note on the use of essential oils on children: While some sources (and manufacturers) of essential oils state their use is safe for children under 12, please note that other sources do not, namely Essential Oil Safety, a definitive resource for healthcare professionals. An excerpt from this book (and the use of essential oils on children) can be found here, and specifically cites eucalyptus and peppermint (among others) are not to be used on young children.
How to Package Bath Bombs (Gift Wrap Bath Bombs or Storage)
If you are gifting bath bombs and shower fizzies, or if you want to store them a while, consider heat shrinking them. You will need cello bags (or basket cello), an iron or craft flat iron, and a blow dryer or heat gun.
1. Place one item per bag – I mostly use the 4 x 6-inch bags you can get easily.
2. Seal the bag closed by ironing it about 1.5 inches away from the edge of the item.
3. Cut off the majority of the excess of the bag, leaving at least 1.5 inches from the seal.
4. Place the item on a drinking glass and apply heat. Alternate applying heat with pressing the plastic down with the palm of your hand to smooth it out.
Tip: I start with the bottom of the fizzy (the bomb is upside down on the cup) and apply heat slowly until the four corners began to curl up. Then I flip the whole thing over and apply heat while pressing down on the rounded part of the bath bomb with my palm.
You can see in the image below, I like to add a label to any half bombs (shower fizzies) if I’m putting together a gift set.
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