Learn how to make handmade bath bombs with a secret cache of rose petals and lavender. They emerge as the bath bomb dissolves in warm water.
Natural bath bombs are relatively easy to make since they require only a few ingredients and very little in the way of equipment. Making a small batch should take you about half an hour so it’s a great project for a weekend afternoon. In that short amount of time, you can make enough bath bombs for your own bath time and to give as gifts.
The essential oils in these DIY bath bombs are gorgeously floral and the perfect complement to dried lavender and rose petals. Not only do flower petals decorate the top but there’s a secret cache inside that’s released when the fizzy is in your bath. Although the fizz is fun, the ingredient that makes these bath bombs especially great for your skin is oatmeal. Oatmeal turns your bath water silky and is wonderful for soothing dry or irritated skin.
Getting the right bath bomb consistency
The one challenging part of making bath bombs is getting the right dry-to-wet consistency. This is described in step three and involves wetting the dry ingredients until they’re just slightly damp. There’s a chance you might get the mix too wet and in this case, keep a silicone muffin tray on hand. If the mixture isn’t sticking inside the 2-part molds you can press it into the silicone mold and save your batch.
Alternatively, you can make your bath bombs inside a metal measuring cup, like the one below. When you’re finished constructing your bath bomb, you can turn the measuring cup upside down to remove the circular, yet flat, bath bomb.
Rose, Lavender, & Oatmeal Bath Bombs
Makes three medium (6cm / 2.25″ diameter) round bath bombs and one mini. You can double or triple the recipe but I don’t recommend making more than that in a single batch.
- 1/2 cup (110g) Citric acid
- 1 cup (290g) Baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)
- 1/4 cup (25g) Quick oats
- 1/4 tsp Lavender essential Oil
- 1/8 tsp Rose-geranium essential oil
- dried lavender buds
- dried rose petals
- Witch Hazel (in a spray bottle)
- Bath Bomb Molds
Step 1: Sifting
Sift the Citric Acid and Baking Soda (Bicarbonate) into a bowl. Sifting removes any clumps and will ensure a smooth and even consistency in your finished bath bombs. If you’re using a scale to measure your ingredients, place the bowl with your fine mesh sifter nested inside directly on top and pour the ingredients in.
Step 2: Mixing
Next, drizzle your essential oils onto the baking soda and citric acid and mix everything really well. I find that using my hand is far better than a spoon since I can break any clumps with my fingers and make sure that the fragrance is evenly dispersed. If you decide to do this too, wearing a latex/vinyl glove will save your fingernails. Pour the oats in next and stir.
Step 3: Wetting the bath bomb mixture
Here comes the trickiest part to describe. You’ll want to spray the dry mixture with witch hazel until it reaches a slightly damp consistency. The best way to describe this is damp beach sand — the type that makes perfect sandcastles.
When making bath bombs, I spray three squirts of witch hazel and then blend it in with my hand. I keep adding three more squirts and mixing until the consistency feels right. What you’re looking for is the mixture just being able to hold form when you squish it in your hand. With my sprayer, this took eighteen squirts though yours may be different.
Step 4: Molding the top
Traditional bath bomb molds come in two pieces with one side fitting inside the other. Take the half that has the lip that fits inside the other half and place a few dried flower petals at the bottom. These will be the pretty decoration you see on the top of the bath bomb so arrange the flowers in an attractive manner.
Step 5: Create the filling
Take a handful of the damp bath bomb mixture and carefully sprinkle it on top of your flower arrangement. Use both of your thumbs to compact the mixture down but leave a hollow in the centre. Fill this hollow with more dried flower petals and then sprinkle more bath bomb mixture on top. Leave this top dressing of mix loose and set this half of the mold down for a moment.
Step 6: Finish Molding
Take the second half of the mold in your hand and fill it with bath bomb mix. Press down with your thumbs to compress but don’t leave a hollow this time. Top it off with a bit more bath bomb mix and like the other half, don’t compress this top layer yet. Carefully pick up both halves of the molds and place them together. Press firmly so that the mixture from both halves compresses together.
Step 7: Unmold the Bath Bombs
Pull the ‘bottom’ mold off your bath bomb then gently slide it out of the second half. I recommend that you slide it out and directly onto a folded towel with a sheet of cling film on top. You can leave it there to dry. If the surface you dry your bath bombs on has fibers, they can stick to the bath bomb. Use bubble wrap or a non-stick surface like I’m doing here with cling film.
Step 8: Drying Bath Bombs
Depending on size, Bath Bombs can take anywhere from twelve to twenty-four hours to dry. After this, you’re able to pop them into your bath for fizzy and fragrant relaxation. If you’d like to save them for later, store them in an airtight container to help preserve the scent. The container will also help stop them from getting damp. Bath bombs have a long shelf life but I’d recommend using them within a few months. Over time the rose petals may fade in color and you want to use the bath bombs when they’re at their best.