Many people are still new to the concept of bath bombs. Next to wondering what they exactly are, you might also be wondering about their safety. After all, your skin comes into direct contact with the substances found inside of the bath bomb so should you be worried?
The answer to your question is: Yes bath bombs are safe to use on the assumption that you get them from a reliable source who had their bombs recipes inspected by the food and health administration. The manufacturer or seller of the bath bombs also needs to abide the strict standards and regulations that come with the fabrication of bath bomb cosmetic products.
Ingredients in bath bombs that could form a health hazard
While at first glance bath bombs might all look-alike this could not be farther from the truth. If you do not know any better you will not have a clue at what exactly you, or your family members are exposing your body to during bathing.
Bath bombs mostly exist out of Sodium Bicarbonate (which is known as baking soda), citric acid and Epsom salts as their main ingredients. There are plenty more substances that a bath bomb can contain which might not be as harmless as you think.
Citric Acid is one of the main base ingredients in any bath bomb. We use citric acid in all of our bath bombs as it helps to cause a fizzy reaction with the bath bomb as soon as it touches the water. This is also the reason why bath bombs are sometimes referred to as bath fizzers.
The citric acid also has another beneficial factor as it helps to soften the water. Citric Acid is not a dangerous chemical, instead it is a natural organic weak acid that is found in citrus fruits. Many food products you eat daily such as desserts; candy; dressings and soft drinks also contain citric acid.
Citric acid together with Sodium Bicarbonate forms the core of the bath bomb and will produce the best bath bombs possible. The main function of citric acid in the bath bomb is that its chemical reaction, when citric acid comes in contact with water, aids to distribute and dissolve the oils, colors and all the other ingredients of the bomb into the bath water. You can completely rest assured that the usage of citric acid is completely safe and will not harm your health or your skin.
Liquid Colorants And Powders
Next to the three base ingredients mentioned above a bath bomb will also often contain colorants which exist in all kinds of variations either in powder or liquid form. The colorants will disperse themselves into the bath water once the bomb is released in the tub.
There are certain bath bomb creators (very often the amateur bomb maker) who use food colorants in their melange. While this technique works and and will color the bath water effectively it will also color the bathtub and your skin as well.
So unless you want to walk around with a green or purple tinted skin for a couple of days you might want to avoid using bath fizzers which incorporate food coloring into their recipe.
Professionally made bath bombs will always use cosmetic grade soap colorants into their ingredients when making their mixture.
Tree nut oils and allergies
Bath bombs will often contain multiple oils. Certain of these oils are derived from nuts. Bath blasters can contain almond oil; hazelnut oil; argan oil or coconut oil, or any combination of them. While usage of these oils is fine for most people, there are people who are allergic to nuts. Bath bombs that incorporate these oils into their recipe could trigger allergic reactions with people who suffer from nut allergies.
The symptoms of such an allergic reaction can exist out of having irritated skin; tingling of the throat; swollen lips or more severe reactions such as anaphylaxis.
That being said it is extremely important to check the ingrediënts of any bath bomb if you suffer from any form of tree nut allergy. A reputable vendor will list all ingredients of each bath bomb on their website and on the product label which they are required to do by law.
Still even if you are a sufferer of nut allergies there exist plenty of bath bombs without any trace of tree nuts in them so you can still enjoy the pleasure of bath fizzers like anyone else.
To continue with our previous subject of oils in bath bombs, I would like to touch upon the topic of fragrance oils used in bath bombs. Unlike essential oils which are completely natural in origin and used for their aromatherapy and therapeutic qualities, fragrance oils are synthetic oils. They do not come with the same qualities that essential oils have. When the main reason that you use bath bombs is for their health and therapeutical benefits, you are better to use our range of natural bath bombs which we only fabricate using quality essential oils.
Does this mean that fragrance oils are unhealthy? No not at all, fragrance oils are completely safe and are used plentiful in the cosmetics industry. Perfume for example consists out of blends of many fragrance oils mingled together to become rich scents. Essential oils are plant based and much more limited in their scents because of this. The main advantage of using fragrance oils is that they are available in a very wide palette of scents.
Some people can have allergic contact dermatitis to fragrance oils due to their synthetic structure. If you are such a person we recommend that you use our range of natural bath bomb products instead. Always check the ingredients on the label of our products. We clearly describe the type of oils which are used in each of our bath bombs.
Certain manufacturers will use corn starch in their bath bombs as a filler. Corn starch also helps the bath bomb to harden and make it firm once it is taken out of the mould.
Like the name suggests corn starch is a carbohydrate extracted from corn. It is often used as a binding agent or thickener in normal culinary cooking. While there have been some reports that cornstarch can cause vaginal yeast infections with women or bladder infections, these reports are on the scarce side and overdone.
Many bath bombs contain small amounts of corn starch and should not cause problems for the large majority of females. If you are prone to having yeast infections or bladder related infections it might be wise to avoid bath bombs that contain corn starch as a substance.
Is it mandatory to use corn starch to make a good bath bomb? The answer is no, there exist various substitutes for the bath bomb maker to use in their recipes. Just like with oils there is plenty of choice to use bath bombs which are completely free of corn starch.
SLS – Sodium Laureth Sulfate
Quality bath bombs tend to produce foam when they are thrown into the bath water and start to fizz. To produce this bubbly foam a chemical substance named SLS is used in the recipe.
SLS stands for Sodium Laureth Sulfate which is a rather severe chemical that can remove natural oils from the human skin. SLS is used by many soap and shampoo manufacturers because of its cleansing capabilities. You can even find SLS in your toothpaste.
SLS was invented about 90 years ago in the 1930’s as an alternative to the common bar soap which was used at that time. SLS is an accepted reduction of sodium lauryl ether sulfate (SLES) and uses coconut oil as its primary component.
Certain people are against the use of SLS in their soap or shampoo as it could slightly irritate the skin or make the skin dry. There are however no real dangers attached to using soap products containing SLS. The use of SLS has been rigorously tested over a long time span because it is so commonly used in household cleaning products.
Besides the fact some people might find that it makes their skin a bit on the dry side there is not much to worry about when a bath bomb contains SLS. When done right, the amount of SLS that is used in bath bombs is also very tiny. When you will check the soap and shampoo bottles that you have in your home and look at their ingredients, you will come to the conclusion that just about any bottle you find will make use of Sodium Laureth Sulfate SLS.
When you have been using the same brand of soap or shampoo for years which contains SLS and your skin is fine, the SLS in bath bombs will not cause any special effects to your skin that you have to be concerned about.
SLS has been declared safe for consumer usage by the department of health on a global scale, even while it is described as a harsh chemical. Next to its qualities to produce foam and bubbles in your bath, SLS also works as an emulsifying agent that helps to disperse the oils and colors into your bath water.
Here at Bathbomb.EU we prefer to use SLSA which stands for Sodium Lauryl Sulfoacetate which is a milder alternative to SLS and is less likely to cause any skin irritation or dryness. SLSA is made from palm and coconut oil and is completely conform with the natural and organic cosmetic standards and 100% of natural origin.
Some people worry about the use of alcohol in bath bombs and that this might be unhealthy to them when it comes in contact with their skin. There is some concern that alcohol in bath bombs would cause the skin to absorb more of the other chemicals used in bath bombs and help to transfer these into the blood stream.
While this might be a valid point the alcohol used in bath bombs (when used correctly of course) is called rubbing alcohol or isopropyl alcohol[propan-2-ol]. This alcohol substance contains 90 percent by volume of pure isopropyl alcohol and is merely used as a wetting agent right before bath bombs are pressed into their molds.
Instead of using water as a wetting agent, which could cause the bath bombs to break easily or deform during their drying period, isopropyl alcohol is used to temporary wet the bath bomb mixture just enough to effectively press the bomb into shape.
The advantage of using isopropyl alcohol consists out of the fact that the alcohol evaporates from the bath bomb very quickly after it did hydrate the bath bomb blend with just the right amount of moisture. Hence giving the bath bomb blend the right consistency so it is ready to get pressed into the mould.
Polysorbate 80 or Tween 80
As a manufacturer of bath bombs we care a lot about the safety of our customers when using our products. In this next point I want to touch on an ingredient that is commonly used in bath bombs named Polysorbate 80.
At Bathbomb.EU we do not use Polysorbate 80 in our recipes and the information in this section should make it clear why we are not inclined to make use of it.
What exactly is Polysorbate 80 you might be wondering and how is it used in bath bombs? Polysorbate 80 is a synthetic componont that functions as a surfactant and emulsifier in both food and cosmetic products. Even in some vaccines you can find traces of Polysorbate 80 as it helps to blend together all the substances.
However, of everything that we have discussed so far in this article Polysorbate 80 is the most controversial ingredient used within the manufacturing process of bath bombs. The function of Polysorbate 80 withing the bath bomb creation cycle exists out of the fact that Polysorbate 80 or Tween 80 functions as a solubilizer. This chemical assists in making sure that the oils and colorants get distributed into a solvent and mingle together perfectly. Under normal conditions oil and water will never be able to blend together into one cohesive liquid.
When a bath bomb dissolves into the water and no emulsifier is being used, the colorants and oils that are contained in the bomb will float to the top of the water. Under normal conditions oil and water will never mingle together.
Polysorbate 80 will help to emulsify certain ingredients used in the bath bomb together with the bath water, so that your water has an overall nice color as it should be.
Another important reason why many bath bomb makers catch a hold of Polysorbate 80 to use in their mixtures is that it helps a lot to avoid colorants would stain the bathtub. Nobody likes it when they need to scrub their entire bathtub clean after bathing because there is a colored ring on the tub caused by the use of a bath bomb.
For this reason many manufacturers lunge for using Polysorbate 80 into their blends as it solves multiple problems in making good bath bombs. While Polysorbate 80 might sound like a magical solution it also comes with serious concerns. After we performed a significant amount of research into this synthetic chemical there are enough valid reasons for using alternatives and let me discuss why exactly.
- Polysorbate 80 has been extensively tested on animals. We prefer to avoid using products that have been subjected to tests on living animals.
- Polysorbate 80 / Tween 80 is a moderate to severe toxic chemical and can be poisonous in large quantities. This means while in diluted form Polysorbates might be conceived as safe by the food & health administration, it does not exclude the fact that it can have negative effects on people’s health.
- While Polysorbate 80 has not been found to be carcinogenic, tests have been performed on mice using Polysorbates where the animals developed tumors, hence the contradictions and concerns about this synthetic substance.
- Polysorbate 80 is described as being slightly hazardous in case of skin contact and eye contact (irritant). Also is this chemical hazardous in case if ingestion or inhalation.
- Cosmetic grade Polysorbate 80 can contain ethylene oxide, 1,4-dioxane and mono- and diethylene glycol. These impurities are rated as highly hazardous and unsafe.
While Polysorbate 80 is a useful product in the bath bomb manufacturing process it is not without risk. When any of the raw materials we use is to be found perilous, we prefer to look for a more safe alternative. Having a good relation with our customers is paramount and your safety is of the utmost importance to us.
Glitter versus Biodegradable Glitter
When you love bath fizzers like we do you might have noticed how beautiful they can look. With their vibrant colors and sparkling decorations they are a treat to watch. One such enhancement to make bath bombs look prettier is glitter. Fragments of glitter are very small-scale and typically made out of micro plastic or aluminum foil. While this type of glitter is not unhealthy to come in contact with your skin, it can cause other issues. Regular glitter made out of plastic can clog the drain of your bathtub over time. This type of glitter is neither good for the environment as it doesn’t decompose itself and is not recyclable.
To overcome this obstacle Bathbomb.EU uses biodegradable glitter. Biodegradable glitter or Eco-glitter is constructed to be metabolized by bacterium in the sewage system. This means that it is completely broken down in a ecological friendly organic manner. Biodegradable glitter will leave no trace at all and is completely environmental friendly and will not clog up your plumbing.
Biodegradable glitter has the same holographic properties as regular glitter made out of PET (plastic). Bio glitter is sourced from fibers of the Eucalyptus tree and then cultivated into a non-toxic cosmetic grade raw material that is free of heavy metals.
The glitter we are using in our bath bomb products adhere to the standards and regulations of both the European Cosmetic Products Notification Portal [CPNP] and the American Food And Drug Administration [FDA].
The last potentially precarious ingredient that is used in bath bombs which you might have some concerns about are sugar decorations. Just like glitter bath bomb makers often use edible sugar decorations for aesthetic reasons to please the eye. Especially bath bomb cupcakes often are affluently decorated with sugary toppings such as sprinkles, confetti or sugar flowers.
Is the use of these confections a reason for concern or are they safe since they just dissolve in the bath water? This question brings us back to what we wrote above in this article in the section about about corn starch.
Some females who are prone to urinary tract infections (UTI) would do best to wipe of the sugar decorations from the bath bomb before throwing it in the water. This also applies to females who are prone to having vaginal yeast infections, some people are sensitive to get yeast infections and sugar can cause yeast to overgrow especially in the vaginal area.
While only a very small percentage of females suffer from these conditions, we still like to focus your attention to this fact as it is always better to prevent than to cure. For the large majority of people sugar decorations will not form any issues at all. Those who are concerned can just wipe of the sugar toppings before using their bath bomb in the water.
Final conclusion to the question:”Are Bath Bombs Safe To Use?”
On this page we have tried to cover in detail every possible ingredient in bath bombs that can pose some form of health risk. Well crafted bath bombs that come from a reliable source and are approved by the responsible authorities, either the American Food And Drug Administration FDA or the Cosmetic Products Notification Portal CNCP in Europe will be trustworthy enough for you to use in a safe manner.
Bathbomb.EU submits all of its product formulations which are used to produce bath bombs for audit and review with the CNCP before offering any products for sale as required by law.
We would like to recommend when you are looking to purchase bath bombs, to keep in mind the following key points. These tips will help you in finding good quality bombs, without the need to worry about any possible side effects.
- Is the vendor or supplier trustworthy?
Are the bath bombs offered for sale by a legitimate online store, or are they being offered via a social network like Facebook, by an unknown supplier? Or maybe they are sold on some hobby and crafts website? Certain hobbyists might be selling their bath bombs to make some extra income. It is however not likely these hobbyists took the trouble having their recipes reviewed and inspected for safety, and adhere to compliance regulations.
- Is the point of sales reliable enough?
Purchasing bath bombs from a well known brick and mortar store compared to buying them from a booth at the local farmer’s market or craft fair can also be a wise decision. This will aid you in finding a good quality product versus one that can contain harmful substances. When your doctor provides you with a medicine prescription, you will buy it from your pharmacist and and not from some vendor on Facebook correct?
The same applies for cosmetic products such as bath bombs? Choose a supplier you can trust, is knowledgeable and who is subjected to follow industry regulations.
Bathbomb.EU submits all of its ingredients for review with the EU Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety SCCS to ensure the safety of our products.
- Check if the bath bomb is properly labeled.
Some bath bombs you will find will have a little sticker on them only mentioning the name of the product. Other bombs will only be shrink wrapped in plastic foil without a label.
Any decent bath bomb manufacturer will accommodate their product with a clear label that will mention the company name of the vendor, a link to their website and also provide a complete list of ingredients used in the particular bath bomb. Manufacturers are required by law to properly label their products and disclose a list of all ingredients used within their products.
- Are you suffering from one of the following conditions?
If you are suffering from one of the following conditions you cannot just use and bath bomb. You will either have to search or ask for advise on which type of bath bomb is specifically suitable for your needs. When you suffer from one of these conditions you can also ask your physician or dermatologist for advice before using bath bombs.
1. You are receptive to having yeast infections.
2. You suffer from a tree nut allergy.
3. You are allergic to fragrance oils and perfumes.
4. You are susceptible to having Urinary Tract Infections UTI.
5. You have a skin condition.
When in doubt you can directly contact us and we will be glad to show you which bath bombs in our assortment are safe for your particular needs. Each bath bomb we sell on our website has a complete list of ingredients on the page so you can without doubt check for yourself if a bomb is ok for you to use.
There is nothing better than to relax in a warm bath after a stressful day. What better way to do it than by using your favorite bath bomb to treat yourself with a luxurious soak and enjoy all of its skin-nourishing ingredients while you repose in colorful water.
The conclusion of this article is that bath bombs can be used by babies; toddlers; children and adults of all ages in a safe and responsible manner, when you follow the guidelines we have laid out in this article.