DIY Bath Bombs!

My toddler and I do a colored bath at least once a week but dying the water with food coloring and bath-time fingerpaints gets old after a while. Plus, you are limited to how creative you can get with the colors. While I was looking into other alternatives, I stumbled upon bath bombs…do you know how expensive bath bombs can be??? Ughh.. but I am so in love with the cool things they do to your bath water!

Kid safe DIY bath bombs

There aren’t many bath bombs that are deemed “kid-safe” out there and I had some hesitation putting citric acid (one of the main ingredients) on my toddler’s skin/in his bath water because it can be slightly abrasive. So I decided to make my own bath bombs…actually, I made two versions…one with citric acid, one without. I’ve got the recipes for both plus a list of pros and cons below!

 

Update: I did a little more research on citric acid in bath bombs and found that the baking powder actually neutralizes the citric acid enough that it’s safe for your skin…or something like that. I also found that it helps to get rid of damaged skin, can be a source of vitamin C for your skin, and is used in a wide variety of things we eat/drink. All of that being said, I no longer feel bad about using it in my child’s bath!

Disclosure: Just an FYI…many of the links below are affiliate links that will earn me a commission if you purchase through them. If you do, I absolutely appreciate it! Rest assured that I only recommend things that I’ve personally used and loved. If you have any questions about any of the products or services please let me know!

Bath Bombs without Citric Acid (Kid Safe):

Recipe List:

  • 1/2 Cup Cornstarch
  • 1/2 Cup Epsom Salts (WARNING: please note that while the risk is not overly common, it has been brought to our attention that there can be an allergy to epsom salt. If this is the case for your child simply replace this ingredient with baking soda)
  • 1 Cup Baking Soda
  • 4 Tablespoons Cream of Tartar
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • Water to spritz
  • Essential Oil
  • Food Coloring
  • Mini Muffin Tin



 

Directions:

  1. Mix all of your dry ingredients into a large bowl.
  2. Add the coconut oil and lightly spritz with water – this should create a crumbly (wet sand) mixture. Be sure to stir while adding the water so you don’t activate the bath bomb.
  3. If you would like all your bath bombs to look and smell the same, add your food coloring and about 2 teaspoons of essential oil to the big batch.
  4. If you would like a variety of scents and colors, separate your crumbly mixture into 4 bowls and add your food  coloring/essential oils (about 1/2 teaspoon in each bowl) to each batchDIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!
  5. Pack your mixture into a mini-muffin tin. You can layer colors, add extra drops of food coloring to the center for a color explosion, add sprinkles, micro glitter, etc.
  6. Let dry for 24 hours.
  7. Place a cookie sheet on top of your muffin tin and flip over. Tap the bottom of the tin with a spoon if necessary to loosen your molds.
  8. Keep in an airtight container until you are ready to use. Place in bath and enjoy!

Kid safe DIY bath bombs

Pros: These can be taste safe for your kiddo by substituting the essential oils in your bath bombs with almond oil, peppermint oil, orange extract, etc. ♦ Your kiddos skin will be silky, soft, and smelling SO good! A fantastic moisturizer for the winter time.

Cons: These won’t fizz and spin as much as your typical bath bomb. ♦ They’re fairly oily so I would recommend washing your child’s hair before using the bomb.

DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!
Progression of a bath bomb using the kid-safe formula

 

DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!
Beautiful water color!

 

 


DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!

Bath Bombs with Citric Acid:

Recipe List:

  • Tennis ball cut in half and/or a meatballer (this tool was easier but yielded smaller balls)
  • 2 Cups Baking Soda
  • 1/2 Cup Cornstarch
  • 1 Cup Citric Acid
  • 1/2 Cup Epsom Salt (WARNING: please note that while the risk is not overly common, it has been brought to our attention that there can be an allergy to epsom salt. If this is the case for your child simply replace this ingredient with cornstarch or baking soda)
  • 5 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • Water to spritz
  • Food Coloring (I used icing coloring by mistake but it translated colors SO well in the bath!)
  • Essential Oils



Directions:

  1. Mix all of your dry ingredients into a large bowl.
  2. Add the coconut oil and lightly spritz with water – this should create a crumbly (wet sand) mixture. Be sure to stir while adding the water so you don’t activate the bath bomb.

DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!

Scents and Colors:

  1. If you would like all your bath bombs to look and smell the same, add the desired amount of food coloring and about 3-4 teaspoons of essential oil to the large batch.
  2. If you would like a variety of scents and colors, separate your crumbly mixture into a few bowls – I made 8 different colors from my main bowl (divided into about 2/3 cup each) and added two to three drops of essential oil to each bowl. I did one scent and one color per bowl.

    TIP: Bombs work best if you stick to one color or I recommend using all warm vs. all cool colors per bomb. When you try and mix a bunch of colors the water looks muddy and not very pretty.

Making the Balls:

  1. Tennis Ball: Pack the mixture tightly into each half of the ball. Overpack one side and then push the two halves together to form your bomb. You will want to twist and press the balls together at the same time as to connect all of the ingredients. Then, you will want to carefully remove one half, then the other. If you need to use your hands to finish sculpting your bath bomb just remember only to press, not to brush or drag so that your ingredients don’t fall apart.
  2. Meat Baller: This is a much easier route to go. Start by completely packing one side of the meat baller with your ingredients as tightly as you can. Then close the meat baller and use the hole in the top to continue filling the ball. Press each layer in tightly. Tap the meat baller with a spoon if necessary to loosen your molds.

Hiding Surprises Inside:

Consider… layering colors • adding extra drops of food coloring to the center for a color explosion • inserting sprinkles • mixing in micro glitter • hiding laminated notes • growing toys • rose petals • etc. 

We used Mini Glow Sticks (no eating, kids!) and then turned out the lights to enjoy some glowing magic

DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!

We loved watching our Magic Grow Capsules turn into cool animals – these CANNOT be swallowed so use extra caution with them.

DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!

 

Meatballer size: let dry for 24 hours. Tennis ball size: let dry for 48 hours.

Keep in an airtight container until you are ready to use. Place in bath and enjoy!

DIY Bath Bombs

 

Pros: These are extremely rolly and fizzy, they have super vibrant colors, and they are really moisturizing!

Cons: Forming actual balls rather than using a muffin tin (as in the first tutorial) was a little harder and more time consuming.

DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!
Magic Grow Capsule hidden inside!
DIY Kid Safe Bath Bombs!
Glow Stick Bomb!

I experimented with a ton of different recipes and was never totally satisfied with my results so I ended up using what I had learned to make my own little concoction and it worked pretty well. I couldn’t be any happier with my ultra moisturizing citric acid bath bombs – it’s like a spa day in my home every night. I love it!!!

Bath Bombs

How have you guys made this recipe your own? What have you placed inside or what color combinations have worked best for you? I’d love to know.

Want even more bath bomb fun? We’ve got you covered.

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This article has 25 Comments

  1. Hi Bonnie, we appreciate your concern and are sorry to hear that you couldn’t enjoy bubble baths as a child! We have updated our ingredients list with a note to parents about the possibility of an allergic reaction and have given alternative suggestions to this ingredient.

  2. Hi Theraisa! I haven’t personally used any other colorants in my bath bombs but I can certainly offer you some suggestions. You can use a powdered colorant that they would use in makeup (this is easily searchable online and can be found on Amazon) or you can use spices like cumin, paprika, etc. however I am not sure how well these will hold up in your bath bombs, if they will irritate your skin, or how the colors will look in the bath – I’d suggest doing some more research if you go the spice route!

  3. Fyi BOTH of your recipes list Epsom Salt (Magnesium Sulfate) as an ingredient, and I thought I should mention that your kid “SAFE” recipes are not safe for any child with a sulfur allergy, which (sadly) some parents may not even realize that sulfur is THE active ingredient of Epsom Salt and/or that their child is even allergic to sulfur, until their child suffers an allergic reaction at bath time from one of these bath bombs! I say this as both a **WARNING** to you and to parents, and also from personal experience. When I was a child I had an allergic reaction to the ever popular bath time “Mr Bubble” (due to the ingredient “Laurel Sulfate”, like in many cosmetics & shampoos/conditioners, etc)… it was not until YEARS later as an adult & after
    putting 2+2 together from my many adverse experinces that I figured out that the problem was the “Laurel Sulfate” that caused my Mr. Bubble reactions, my mum only knew that if I used it, I had an adverse reaction (got extremely itch and had hives, thankfully I did not suffer Anaphylactic Shock, which can be DEADLY!!, and that unlike my sister I could not use Mr.Bubble in my baths (much to my childhood disappointment). However, I digress…my point for posting is in the HOPE that I can potentially save a Parent & Child from what could be a HIGHLY
    DANGEROUS SITUATION!

    Thanks for your time…

  4. EEK! I am so happy that it all turned out so well for you – and what a great idea to use them for potty training prizes! How fun would it be to make marble sized bombs that you could drop in the potty as an instant prize?! I bet little tin-foil balls would be great for moulding those.. Thanks so much for trying out our recipes 🙂

  5. For me, the citric acid recipe yielded 11 cupcakes with a 2 inch toy animal inside each one. I used silicone cupcake holders and had no trouble removing the bath bombs.
    The recipe is beautiful naturally white so I used 50% white and 50% colored (blue and green) I am very happy with the results and I’m sure my daughter will love it.

    They are going to make perfect toilet training prizes! Thanks for the recipes!

  6. Hi Tena! Sorry to hear that. The issue could have been that there wasn’t enough liquid in your mixture or that they didn’t sit long enough before you tried to take them out. I let mine sit for a couple of days and then turned them over onto a baking sheet and lightly tapped the muffin tins, for the ones that didn’t come out I let them sit some more and tried again in a couple days. If you make these again and don’t want to risk the same problem, just line your muffin tins with some plastic wrap or cupcake liners. I hope you are at least enjoying your bath powder! 🙂

  7. So I made this recipe using my muffin tins. I could not for the life of me get them out of the muffin tins. I ended up mangling them into powder.

  8. Hi I love your ideas, they have Dino bath bomb eggs at the dollar store but no ingredient list so never bought them but after reading about your bath bomb surprises I’m going to make my own for my nieces maybe I’ll hid some zoo animals in some. I think I will also make some surprise ones using plastic eggs for Easter.

    Lara the food colouring is food grad and use for colouring food items, if you still feel like that is not the type you like you can get non artificial food colouring at places like Tara foods or other organic stores, I have a friend who prefers non artificial and she gets her food colouring there, her son loves blue pasta. Hope you can find one you like

  9. Hi Hollie! I absolutely agree with you, a tiny bit of food coloring isn’t my personal concern – however, you can’t get mad at anyone for wanting their little ones safe! Homemade is almost always better than the processed stuff anyway, right? haha!

    Your daughters spa party sounds awesome! Can I be invited? Haha — To answer your question, I have never had any staining from the bath bombs but would suggest being especially careful around reds and pinks as they tend to be a little stronger in color. As my recipe states I was using icing food coloring – so rather than adding drops, I scooped chunks of color in. I was able to do (approximately) 1/2 teaspoons of color in each section of my batch (remember, I divided one batch into a few different colors) and never had a problem with the bombs staining the skin or the tubs. Should you have a ring around the tub when it drains, I recommend a washcloth and some soapy warm water..as long as you get at the stain immediately you shouldn’t have a problem removing it – but again, I’ve never had any issues with staining. Have fun!

  10. I love the idea! Can you tell me how easy the bathtub is to clean afterward? Does the coloring stain the tub? LoL…. I have an 11 year old who wants to do a spa party for her birthday and I don’t want to send home a mess for parents to have to clean! I know…. I know….. I am much more worried about cleaning the bathtub than I am about the occasional food coloring on my daughter’s skin. To some, that makes me a “bad mom.” However, I believe it will be fine in moderation. Moderation is the key to life;)

  11. Thanks for the super fun recipe and pros/cons! Very helpful. However, Please consider removing the artificial food coloring. Having a child soak in dyes in a bath tub is literally poisoning a child. Artificial colors are a known documented neurotoxin, and if it doesn’t show in the child now, it will by school age. No child should be given artificial food coloring in anything, ever. Watch what happens to a young child when dyes are 100% completely removed from their diet and environment!! It’s AMAZING. (Finger paint, bath bombs, play-do, dyed candies & snacks, juice, etc…) there are great naturally sourced dyes on the market now and they work every bit as well! Or, just stick with good ole’ white! If they aren’t used to everything being these amazingly bright colors they’ll never miss it. Looking forward to trying out your recipe 🙂

  12. They should come out like damp sand so they will be very fragile but they should hold together. After you remove them from your moulding device just use your palms to gently press the ball together (if needed) – this process is like making a snowball. Once you feel that the ball is going to hold together, just place them gently on a sheet of wax paper or on a cookie sheet for about 24 hours. They should be ready to use after that and solid enough to move into a jar or a bowl for storage! Let me know if you have any further questions – enjoy!!

  13. After you remove from the tennis ball, or meatballer, how do you set them to dry, without breaking? Thanks! Looking forward to making!

  14. Plastic easter eggs work well for forming bath bombs also! Just break the hinge off and press into each side. You can also make minis using only one side and setting them up on wax paper like little castles. My toddler and I love making them together as well. 🙂

  15. If you use a meatballer you can expect to make around 20 bath bombs – if you go with the tennis ball method you’ll probably make about half of that (10). I find that the meatballer size is plenty big for my baths and leave me feeling soft without feeling oily. I hope this helps! Good luck with those “bathrooms”, Deanna 😉

  16. Hi Laura! A batch of our bath bombs only use a few drops of food coloring and they are not meant to be ingested. However, keep in mind that if the bath water is accidentally swallowed, the coloring used will have been diluted immensely. Feel free to use organic food coloring/powders if it concerns you!

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