Simple DIY Gift Idea – DIY Bath Fizzies

December 16, 2013 at 7:08 pm 2 comments

Well Christmas day is right around the corner, and I know many people (including me!) are still scrambling to find last minute gifts for friends and family. I am always looking for inexpensive gift ideas and found a great gift idea in these DIY bath fizzies.   I came across many posts on Pinterest on DIY bath bombs, fizzies, bath salts, etc.  But all of them were slightly different, and many of the instructions contradicted other sets of instructions.  After doing LOTS of research, I found a great “recipe” for bath bombs that met all of my musts:  simple, inexpensive, and QUICK!  I made the mistake of waiting just a few days before Christmas to make these, so time was of the essence.  No worries, they came out great and seemed to be a hit.  Here’s what you need:

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– Baking soda

– Citric acid

– Epsom salts

– Fragrance oil or essential oil (I bought mine at an expensive natural foods store then a few days later found it at Wal-Mart for much cheaper.  Oops!)

– A mold/shape for the fizzies (I used small tart pans from Bed Bath & Beyond – worked great and only 25 cents each)

– Spray bottle (must release a mist of water, not a stream)

– Gel food coloring (optional, I didn’t use it)

– Measuring cup

– Large mixing bowl

– I also found this YouTube video extremely helpful (I’m a visual person)

The only ingredient that I had a hard time finding was citric acid.  I found some at a local wine store, but cleaned them out of the tiny 2-ounce bottles they had.  I would recommend planning ahead better than I did and ordering a 1-lb. bag online (you can get a better price when you buy in bulk, it’s about $5-6 for a 1-lb. bag).  I spent double that for less than 1-lb. of citric acid when buying in 2-ounce increments   I also spent a little more than what I should have on my essential oil at an organic, all-natural foods store.  After Christmas I found fragrance oil at Wal-Mart for $2 (in the candle section).  Oh well, live and learn!

The basic recipe calls for 1-part citric acid to 2 parts baking soda.  Everything else is added in addition to those ingredients.  Mix together 1 cup baking soda with 1/2 cup citric acid and 1/2 cup epsom salt.  Mix these together well with your hands, making sure to loosen any lumps in the mixture to make it as smooth as possible.

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Then you can add the food coloring if you’d like.  It doesn’t take much, so add very small amounts at a time (mixing with your hands) until you’re satisfied with the overall color of the mixture.  Now it’s time to add the fragrance/essential oil.  I added about 4-drops of my oil, but a little goes a long way, so be careful not to add too much!

Now this next part is the most subjective, and is where this project can go off track if you’re not careful.  Water will set off the reaction between the citric acid and the baking soda, so it must be added sparingly – hence the spray bottle.  Quickly, spritz the water (about 3 spritzes) on the mixture and then rub between your hands to distribute the moisture evenly.  Continue this until the mixture begins to change texture to the point that you can squeeze a handful and it stays together (for the most part) when you drop it back into the bowl.  In the above YouTube video, she uses 14 spritzes of water which is about what worked for me.  However, the amount of moisture in the air will affect this, as will food coloring, if you choose to use the liquid kind.  Too much moisture will cause the fizzies to fall apart, as will too little – so again, add a little at a time!

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Now the mixture is ready to mold.  Pack the mixture into your chosen mold as tightly as you can, paying special attention to any corners or angles that the mold may have because these tend to crumble first.

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When you’re sure it’s tightly packed, slowly and carefully upend the mold over a piece of wax paper.  Repeat these two steps over and over until you have used all of your mixture.  Then let the fizzies dry overnight (at least 8-12 hours) without disturbing them.

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In my research, I found that the many tutorials varied greatly on this last step – some specified letting them dry for 6 hours, some vaguely said “overnight” and some said to leave them for 24 hours.  Well, I defied instruction and picked them up repeatedly at various points to see if they were “ready” and didn’t see much of a difference in them from the 6-hour point to the 20-hour point.  With the exception of a few slightly crumbled corners, mine came out just fine 🙂  In the end, I let mine dry for about 18-20 hours because I’m paranoid cautious.  If you have the luxury of waiting longer, I think it’s always a good policy that more time is better than less.

So that’s basically it!  I purchased a package of clear plastic favor bags from the gift section of Target and placed 4 in each bag.  One of the tutorials said that 2 small fizzies should be used in one bath, so this was enough for 2 baths.  I also saw beautiful renditions of fizzies in pretty ball jars wrapped with ribbon.  I chose my favor bags because they were inexpensive (about $2 for 25), but anything will work, really.  Just don’t use tissue paper or fabric (or anything else that’s porous) to wrap them in because that will allow the scent of the essential oil/fragrance oil to disappear very quickly.

Fizzies_6That’s it!  My fizzies seemed to be well-received and I definitely plan on making them again.  They would make great gifts for colleagues at work, and are perfect teacher gifts.  Has anyone else had success with homemade bath fizzies or salts?  Please feel free to share any alternate recipes you have had success with!

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Entry filed under: DIY Projects, Gift Ideas. Tags: , , .

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Ben L.  |  December 16, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    These were fun to do, and our relatives liked getting them!

    Reply
    • 2. Blue Skies in June  |  December 16, 2013 at 7:30 pm

      They were fun, weren’t they? We should make them again!

      Reply

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