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Bath Bomb Basics

Who doesn’t love a fizzy bath filled with relaxing or invigorating scents? I know I do. Why not try making them?


In order to make the bath bomb spin you want to have different ratios of baking soda and citric acid for your embeds versus your bath bomb. I use a 1 to 1 ratio for the embed and a 2 to 1 ratio for the rest of the bomb. I suggest making them a day or more before you make the bath bombs so they are nice and dry. You can do a rainbow effect in the tub easily by making the embeds different colors. If you don’t care if they spin then you can scroll down to the Bath Bomb section.



Embeds have a different ratio of citric acid to baking soda so the embed will fizz at a different rate than the rest of the bomb. This reaction causes the bath bombs to spin.


  • Baking Soda – 1 cups
  • Citric Acid – 1 cup
  • Rubbing Alcohol – 3 tbsp
  • Bath bomb colorants (depends on the colorants you use as to how much you need)
  • Polysorbate 80 – 1 ml (use a pipette for this too)
  • 1/2 or 1/4 teaspoon – to use as mold. You can use plastic ones or metal ones but if you use metal I suggest stainless steel.
  • Cookie sheet wrapped in Saran wrap or silicone mat to place Embeds on to dry out.
  • You will also want to remove hand jewelry and wear gloves. I like dish cleaning gloves mostly because I poke holes in the others. They are more to keep my hands from contaminating the bath bomb. If you are making them to use yourself you don’t really need gloves just wash your hands and remove jewelry.


  1. Mix your dry ingredients.

    This means the baking soda and citric acid also if your colorants are powdered then include it as well. You want them to be completely blended together for an even fizz. Using a strainer to break up bigger pieces into easier blended powder makes for more uniform bath bombs and embeds.

  2. Mix your wet ingredients in a separate container

    . This would include the polysorbate, rubbing alcohol and if you are using liquid colorants. Make sure they are mixed well.

  3. Slowly add wet ingredients to dry ingredients.

    I think a spray bottle is the easiest way as a beginner. I now use a pipette and sprinkle it across my dry ingredients then mix sprinkle then mix repeat until your mixture holds together well. Using my hands to mix so I can feel the consistency hence the gloves. The mixture should hold and not crumble. If it holds but starts to sag there is too much liquid. This is why you add it slowly. You can still fix it, just add a tsp of citric acid and a tsp of baking soda and mix well. You don’t want part of your mixture perfect and part of it dry or too wet. Once you start molding you want to be able to just pop them out. You will have wet ingredients left over.

  4. Pack your mold.
    I like to push the teaspoon against the side of the bowl to pack the mixture in tightly and evenly.
  5. Set the embed on your cookie sheet or silicone mat

    I like the cookie sheet because I can move it if I need to use my work station for something else. I wrap it in Saran wrap because what cookie sheet is truly clean. To get it out I gentle tap the back of the mold or tap the mold on the cookie sheet.

  6. Repeat until you use all of your mixture.

    Your first batch will probably start drying out in the bowl towards the end. You should have wet ingredients still and can add them in a little to continue using your mixture. As you make more, you will get faster and won’t have this problem.


Bath Bomb



  1. Mix dry ingredients

    – (Baking soda, Citric acid and if you use a powdered colorants) I use a whisk to mix the ingredients together. You want them thoroughly blended. Using a strainer to break up bigger pieces into easier blended powder makes for more uniform bath bombs and embeds.

  2. Mix wet ingredients in a separate bowl.

    (Rubbing Alcohol, Essential or Fragrance oil, Olive oil, Polysorbate 80, and if you use a liquid colorants that too) mix thoroughly.

  3. Slowly mix wet ingredients into dry.

    You want to add a little and mix, add a little and mix until it will hold together well. Make sure it is mixed thoroughly you want to be able to just fill bath bombs after this step and not have to adjust the recipe as you go.

  4. Fill the mold

    Take a half of the mold and scoop the mixture into it. DO NOT TIGHTLY PACK. you want one half to be heaped over the top the other just filled to the rim. when you push the two halves together you will be compacting the mixture plenty. By not packing before pushing the two halves together you get a more universal compactness and a lighter more buoyant (it floats) bath bomb.

  5. To use embeds

    and make a spinning bomb you will want to put four embeds in one half in a square before pushing the halves together. I like to use one that is slightly bigger than the other three. Put them in a square shape. If you want a rainbow effect then you need to use different colored embeds in your bomb. If you make a smaller bomb you can use as few as one.

  6. Unmold.

    I like to use a cupcake pan with Saran wrap the silicone cupcake liners so the bath bombs do not become flat on the side you set them down. I have also seen people use egg carton foam (like for sound proofing). Once you compact the bomb can come out of the mold. They do not need to stay in the mold and if you do leave them they are very often hard to unmold especially if they expand even a little. They should hold together on their own if they don’t refer to pictures below.

  7. Let them dry.

    About a day or two and they are ready to use. I recommend storing them in a dry environment perhaps with a dehumidifier for extended shelf life. You can also shrink-wrap them but it does not always protect them. The very best way is to seal them in an airtight container.

Things that go wrong

img_0005 This one has started to crack and lost its shape. to fix this just crush it down and remold it. This was after it sat for about 30 minutes. If it had immediately done this I would have added dry ingredients.

Also this is on a towel and the towel fuzzies stuck to the bomb. It was one for personal use so I didn’t try very hard.



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This one needs more wet ingredients. It is way too dry and was actually towards the end of the batch so the wet ingredients started evaporating out.




Do you have other problems? Questions? I would love to hear them. Feel free to share comments or even pictures of your own creations.

19 thoughts on “Bath Bomb Basics

  1. hi there,,thx for the info.have been havin trouble with mine crumbly on one side so i guess they were to dry.will try a bit more hazel. 🙂

    1. You are welcome. When I started out my biggest problem was consistency of the mixture. If just one side is crumbling then that is probably the same thing. Mixing with my hands has always been the easiest way to tell if it is mixed enough. With gloves of course.

  2. hi there me again lol..mine are very powdery on the top when i take them out of the silicone cupcake mold.what am i doing wrong hope u can help? pls thx

    1. If you are using a silicone mold make the moisture slightly wetter and leave it overnight before unmolding. I have another post I believe called refreshing bath bombs where I talk a little about silicone molds and I have pictures of what the mixture should look like. A video is coming soon that should help as well.

  3. hi there, thanks for the post.
    im about to try this 2 ratios and hope mine spin..
    unfortunately, im unable to get mine to float, they fizz really well and hold its shape when i removed from the mold and drying out, but they always seem to sink when i place it in the water.

    the only ingredient i lack is polysorbate which i cant get where i am, is there any alternatives i can try in place of it???

    for liquid mixes, iv used isopropyl alcohol, witch hazel and also rose water individually.

    any suggestions?

    1. Floating is all in how you pack the bomb. Don’t compact as you fill, compacting should only happen when putting mold pieces together. You want a heap on both sides so the extra compacts universally in the bomb. You pretty much want to lower the weight per surface area.

      Polysorbate is only necessary if you use micas. If you use lakes for colorant then it won’t stain the tub.

      I use different liquids for different bombs. I use which hazel or rose water with my more natural bombs and alcohol for others. The alcohol is easier to use since it doesn’t set of the mix. If you use a standing mixer then witch hazel or rose water are way easier since it can mix faster then by hand.

      1. I did a batch yesterday and didnt over pack it, happy to say they floated *happy cheezy dance* lol..
        such an accomplishment

        Sorry, 1 more question.. at the moment im just testing out and im using coconut oil and/or almond oil
        I notice that i get a layer of oil, whats the best way to deal with this?
        Is polysorbate going to make a difference with this ?

        1. Yes. Polysorbate bonds water and oil. You can lower the amount of oil if you choose so it’s not as bad.

  4. Hi there, I notice you don’t use Epsom salt or corn starch. Could that be why mine will not float ?

    1. Epsom absorbs moisture so if bombs aren’t sealed well they are more likely to not be as hard. I have had a couple turn to straight powder with no fizz at all. Cornstarch creates problems if you are suceptible to yeast infection. Also really does nothing for the bomb. It’s mainly filler.

  5. I do like to make foaming bath salts from bombs that weren’t astetically pleasing where I add Epsom and pink Himalayan salt to crushed bombs. They are pretty popular with people who want more control over the amount of stuff they put in the tub.

  6. I meant in my bath bombs. Not on lol

  7. You can add slsa, cocobetatine and or powdered milk. I personally don’t like slsa. Powdered milk and cocobetatine are my go to.

  8. What can I put on my bath bombs to make them foamy when they fizz??

    1. In order to add foam or bubbles you will want to add Sodium Lauryl Sulfoacetate (SLSa) powder to your mix.

  9. what are embeds and why would you add them to bombs?

    1. They are a different ratio of reactants, which cause a quicker reaction. Because of a quicker reaction in a small part of the bomb where the rest of the bomb is at regular speed it makes the bomb spin.

  10. How many bath bombs does this recipe make?

    1. That depends on the mold you use.

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