Monday, December 16, 2013

How to Make: Fizzy Bath Balls

Originally published in 2010, these balls are still a hit with everyone who tries one.
The Farm Inspector and the Ag Analyst enjoy fizzing bath balls. I decided to try to make some. 
I began, of course, with research. The balls are a science experiment, a basic combination a dry acid with a dry base. The two react when combined with moisture. The trick is to get enough moisture into the combined dry ingredients to hold their shape without losing their fizz. When it came time to make balls, I followed each of these three recipes. That taught me quite a bit about the basics of the bath bombs. 
Most of the ingredients are available in grocery stores, but I ordered some things online. 
I started with Recipe One. This Recipe takes the simplest ingredients. Fruit fresh is an acid product that works in making the bath balls, but it is expensive if you are going to make several batches. I did like the fact that Fruit Fresh has an anti clumping agent that meant there were no lumps in it. I found a dented can of Almond Oil on a clearance shelf and bought it. It is roasted almond oil which gave it a distinct aroma and I should have purchased sweet almond oil.
However, canola oil is in my cupboard, has no scent, and seemed to work fine. Since I am making these for home use, I would use canola oil in recipes that call for oil. With the change to canola oil, I can make the Citric Acid Bath Bomb Balls from ingredients I have on hand in my kitchen: Baking soda, Fruit Fresh, and Canola Oil.
Orange Oil was used for scent and soft orange coloring came from a few drops of yellow and red food coloring.
 The bath bombs are moistened with water. The recipe says 1/2 Tablespoon which is more accurately stated as 1 and 1/2 teaspoon. I used a 1/2 teaspoon measure and regular tap water.
I used my electric mixer. It worked great and made things easy. Keep the speed at its lowest setting or you will raise dust. Mixing the soda and the Fruit Fresh completely is essential. I stopped the mixer and scraped down the sides a few times in the process. I added the oils slowly and let it mix in thoroughly before adding the water a little at a time. Then scraped and mixed well.
I formed these orange beauties by hand. For perfect spheres you can use a mold. A tennis ball can be made to work as a mold. I like to hand formed look of these. They dried into five fine Bath Bomb Balls. But I wasn't done. Recipe Two tomorrow.

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