Bath Fizzy Questions

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allinalather

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I have made two lots of bombs using this recipe. I wanted something simple..
http://www.thesoapkitchen.co.uk/acatalog/Recipe-Bath-Bomb.html

The first lot were probably too wet, they came out of the moulds round but they were misshapen after an hour or so, flattening out on the bottom. I only made them yesterday, so haven't tried them out for fizzing.

The second lot, I made sure to use far less water. One large ball came apart at the seam, it might not have been packed densly enough. I crumbled it up, spritzed and remoulded, it seems to be holding its own, but again, they have flattened out. I don't think I could have used less water.

Any suggestions? The recipe seems to use a lot more soda bicarb to citric acid than other recipes I have seen.

I do have witchhazel but not tried it yet. The recipe stresses that they should be removed from the moulds as soon as possible, but I was thinking of removing from the moulds, washing them, lining with cling film and putting the bombs back in to dry for a longer time.

I didn't use anywhere near the amount of fragrance the recipe suggested, that would have taken the full bottle.

By the way, I am in the UK, I get the citric acid from amazon. Some time ago I tried to buy some in my local supermarket for a bread recipe. The pharmacist took me to one side and told me that they didn't stock it because heroin users used it :crazy:
 

shunt2011

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Usually it's a mix of 2:1. Also using water is likely the problem. I usually add an oil or butter and use witch hazel. It certainly takes a lot of trial and error.
 

allinalather

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Thanks Shunt. I picked the recipe because it seemed to be the most simple. I don't have epsom salts or cornflour at the moment. I will try witch hazel on tomorrows batch. If that doesn't work, maybe I will look for another recipe.
 

Rowan

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I'm finding bath bombs harder to make than I first thought. Mine release well from the mould, but plain bath bomb were too drying for my skin. So far I've realised that I like a little oil, but not too much. I tried Holly Ports book and while her bath bombs came out beautifully they were too oily for me. I'm still in the process of trying different recipes, until I find one I really like.

If you're having difficulty locating supplies, Mystic moments has a lot of products with free delivery. Freshskin has reasonably priced EO's etc, with free delivery too. The larger soapmaking suppliers are sometimes cheaper but the delivery costs are much higher,
 

allinalather

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Hi Rowan and thanks. The fragrances I have used, Rose Garden and Lily of the Valley both came from Mystic Moments. I used their Fushia colour in the first batch and yellow food colouring in the second batch. Just a few rose petals in the bottom of one half of the mould for the first batch and cornflower petals in the second batch. Just to give a bit of interest.

I will try the first batch in the bath tomorrow. They both smell quite nice, despite only using a few drops of fragrance. I don't want them to be overpowering. Todays bombs are sill sinking, hopefully the witch hazel in tomorrows batch will make a difference. I think I will leave them in the moulds for a longer time, maybe overnight and then turn them. If that doesn't work, I will look for a different recipe.
 

SplendorSoaps

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I agree with Shari. A little bit of oil or butter will be your saving grace here. It won't cause the SB and CA to react together, and it will help the mixture hold together nicely. If I have a particularly difficult batch, coconut oil is always a life saver for me. So going by the 2:1 rule, I'd make the recipe look something like this (hopefully my measurement conversions will come out - I'm used to using ounces):

300 g. Sodium Bicarbonate
150 g. Citric Acid
20 g. Coconut Oil (melted)
Fragrance (amount varies depending on what you're adding)

The amount of coconut oil I listed here is just a suggested starting point. A little goes a long way, and you may not need all of it. A small drizzle here and there will help you to get to the consistency that you're looking for (moist enough that it holds together when you squeeze it into a ball).
 

snappyllama

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I like to use a hard butter (mango or shea) to bind instead of witch hazel or water. Mine don't float, but I don't mind since they always hold together well and soften the water. I do put in about 1 - 2 % Poly 80 to emulsify the oils into the tub water.
 

allinalather

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@SplendorSoaps thank you, I will try that.
@snappylama I have ordered some poly 80 and shea. Thank you.

I looked at the number 2 batch again last night. The balls were expanding slightly. I stuck them back in the moulds with some cling film and squeezed, then released the top mould, leaving them in the bottom. This morning, they were a respectable shape. The ball that had come apart and that I had added extra water to, was fine.

When I find something that works, I am going to stick to it - like glue :)
 

squeakycleanuk

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I've been having the same problem with mine, perhaps its the crappy UK weather ;) Anyway despite the recipe telling me to unmold straight away I have taken to leaving them in the molds for 2 - 3 days to really give them chance to harden up, it seems to make a difference. Even in the molds I store them in an airtight container because I daren't take my chances. Unfortunately I still found a squished looking one today, it was underneath a couple of the others, so they are obviously still not hard enough, so will have to tweak the recipe somehow and I think I'm going to try double wrapping them with the cellophane maybe and see if that helps.

Oh and regarding the citric acid, the same happened to me when I tried to buy from a chemist, bloomin' druggies!
 

allinalather

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Well I tried one of the first batch. Rose Garden (very small amount) with fushia colouring (very pale). I dropped it in the bath and it fizzed, floated, and shot off into the corner of the bath. There was some scent but this dissipated fairly quickly. You could see the colour coming out of it, but there was not enough in the bomb to make the water pink. The 8 rose petals floated and looked pretty without being over done, Quite pleased with the results, just a shame about how they looked. Not the best mathematician could have described that shape.

I am waiting for supplies before I make the next batch, tweaked in line with SplendorSoap's suggestion. I might try the Lily of the Valley with cornflour petals tomorrow.

@squeakycleanuk - if you double wrap them, will that keep moisture in and delay the drying?
@TBandCW - I will bear that in mind. These were going flat within minutes! I have a lot to learn.
 

squeakycleanuk

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@squeakycleanuk - if you double wrap them, will that keep moisture in and delay the drying?
Sorry, I meant double wrapping them after I'd left them in the molds for a couple of days because with my last batch, despite me leaving them in the molds till they were fully hardened, they then lost their shape the day after they had been wrapped in cellophane, so moisture must have been able to get in some how.
 

hmlove1218

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I also recommend ditching the water. If you need to spritz it with a liquid, use 91% isopropyl alcohol. 70% will work in a pinch, but it has more water and will set off the reaction if you don't stir it in fast enough. Don't worry, the smell won't last in the final bomb. As they dry, the alcohol evaporates.

I would also recommend adding in a butter or oil. I use 1:1 mango and coconut with a bit of ewax to help with the oil slick that they can leave.
 

allinalather

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Thank you for your suggestion hmlove1218. I will bear that in mind.

I made batch no 3 today. I upped the citric acid 50g and used witch hazel instead of water. I left out the coconut oil purely because it would be changing too many things at once. I am going to try it in my next batch though. They are still in their moulds and so far show no signs of trying to break out. The new batch is pale blue with jasmine fragrance. The colour was liquid and it was starting to fizz so I didn't add as much as I would have liked. I need to look at powdered dyes. I have a few mica samples, I guess I could add those to coconut oil.
 

snappyllama

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For colorants, I really like the La Bomb colors from BB. They are dyes suspended in glycerin that don't stain the tub or cause premature fizzing and since they are wet - it's easy to get the shade you want. I'm sure they sell similar under a different name at other companies. You can use micas but have to be *very* careful since they can leave a ring around the tub or even stain. I've tried powdered bath bombs colorants from WSP and got nice results, but I prefer using liquid so I can see the shade as I'm putting them in.
 

allinalather

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Thanks Snappylama. I am trying to find something like La Bomb but in the UK. If anyone has any suggestions I would be grateful. Postage from the US or Australia is a killer and it takes ages to get here.
 

PlumNatural

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add salt

We use the bathbomb press and use oils and butters in making them and some sea salt also....this makes the bomb very hard and easier to make in the press....if hand pressing it does the same thing...makes the bomb hard...
 

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