How to Make Bath Bombs for Valentine's Day

A pair of hands putting a pink bath bomb in a tub filled with water.

Bath bombs are, well, the bomb when it comes to a relaxing bath experience, and Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to give bath bombs as gifts to the special people in your life—or simply expend a little energy on self-care. With a few basic products, you can make your own bath bombs at home, saving you a few bucks and offering a personal touch to your gift-giving. A thoughtful treat for any bath lover in your life, bath bombs are easy to DIY and are the perfect solution if you’ve procrastinated on getting your Valentine a gift. Here are the steps to produce your own bath bombs in less than an hour.

Step 1 - Collect the Supplies for Your Bath Bomb

Someone DIYing a bath bomb as a Valentine's Day gift.

There are many variations of the standard bath bomb recipe, but most have a few ingredients in common, many of which you likely already have at home. Coconut oil is all over the health world for a variety of reasons, and it works as a moisturizer to leave your skin soft and silky. In addition, coconut oil helps your bath bomb release from the mold once its formed into shape. Epsom salt is an essential ingredient in any bath bomb for good reason: it’s well known for its ability to detoxify the body and offer relief to aching muscles. Baking soda is another basic ingredient that helps calm irritated skin and create the proper chemical reaction needed to make the bath bomb dissolve and fizz.

You’ll also need some castor oil or almond oil for additional moisture. Essential oils allow you to add your favorite scent without synthetic products. Lemon, peppermint, and lavender are popular choices. Citric acid reacts with the baking soda to provide the fizzing action, and cornstarch helps hold everything together.

In addition to the list of ingredients, you will need a mold for your bath bomb. Most are round, but you can use your imagination here and use any mold that suits your preference. Try out an old two-piece Christmas ornament ball or even a plastic Easter egg!

Step 2 - Mix the Dry Ingredients

For this recipe, we'll outline the steps to make multi-color bath bombs, but if you want to simplify the project, just put all of your ingredients in one bowl instead of separating them into three.

Add all of your dry ingredients to one bowl. This includes:

1 cup baking soda
1/2 cup citric acid
1/2 cup corn starch
1/2 cup Epsom salt

After stirring these ingredients well, separate the mixture into three bowls.

Step 3 - Mix the Wet Ingredients

Melt one tablespoon of coconut oil in a cup and add a few drops of food coloring. You can use vegetable-based food coloring for a more natural dye. Then add about ⅓ teaspoon of almond or castor oil. To this, add 5-10 drops of your essential oil. Add this mixture to one of your bowls.

Step 4 - Repeat the Process for Different Colors

Repeat step three for the other two bowls, using different colors. Mix the ingredients of each bowl until the dry materials are consistently saturated.

Step 5 - Press the Mixture into the Molds

Now press the mixture firmly into your mold, layering a bit of each color. Make sure you really pack it in (think compressing brown sugar). Place the mold into the freezer for 20-30 minutes. This helps the bath bomb release from the mold without cracking or crumbling.

Step 6 - Remove the Bomb from the Molds

Bath bombs made as a gift for Valentine's Day with kraft paper and twine next to them.

When the time is up, remove the bath bomb by warming the sides of the mold. You can do this by vigorously rubbing the sides or hit it with a hair dryer on low heat. If your bath bombs crumble, try adding a touch more coconut oil and repress the mixture very firmly into the mold.

Step 7 - Add Sparkle

If you want to add a bit of bling to your bath bomb, you can dust it with silver mica. This adds a glitter effect to your completed gift. For children, you can even pack a small toy into the middle of the bomb as a surprise once it dissolves.

Step 8 - Enjoy!

Bath bombs are easy to use. Simply drop them into the warm water of your bathtub. The fizzing action will release the scent and relaxation properties so you’ll be ready for your soak.