Homemade Bubble Bath: EPIC FAIL


When I started experimenting with homemade bath, beauty, and cleaning products, I promised to share the good, the bad, and the ugly. This one was definitely ugly. Such a waste of good, organic ingredients. 😦

Zander loves bubble baths, so yesterday, he and I decided to make our own. He chose the scents (orange and rosemary), and we even doubled the recipe to make a larger batch. I had such high hopes for this recipe, which I found on the DoTerra blog, but at the end of the day, it was very disappointing.

Don’t get me wrong; I wasn’t expecting the mountains of bubbles that you get from chemical-laden store-bought products. I knew to expect smaller bubbles that would not last as long. However, this “bubble bath” did absolutely nothing other than turn Zander’s bathwater a milky white color. There was barely even any foam on the surface while I squirted the bubble bath under running water.

So I’m sharing this recipe as a DO NOT TRY and hoping that maybe someone out there will be able to recommend a tried and true recipe that will redeem our faith in homemade bubble bath.

Here is the FAILING recipe:

1 cup unscented castille soap
1/2 cup vegetable glycerin
2 Tbsp water
15 drops of your favorite essential oil

Coming soon… a really great recipe for homemade vegan lip balm! 🙂


About Kim McCoy

Kim McCoy is a passionate animal and environmental advocate with a B.S. in Business Administration from UT Knoxville and a J.D. specializing in Animal and Environmental Law. She graduated with honors from Lewis & Clark Law School, where she served as Editor in Chief of the internationally acclaimed Animal Law Review and interned with the National Center for Animal Law and the International Environmental Law Project. Kim is a member of MENSA (the “high IQ society”) and previously worked for Sea Shepherd Conservation Society in a variety of roles, including Executive Director, Director of Campaigns, and Director of Legal Affairs. Kim is also the former Executive Director of the One World One Ocean Foundation and the proud mother of a healthy, thriving son who has been vegan since conception. Currently serving as Executive Director of Big Life Foundation, which protects wildlife and wild lands in Eastern Africa, Kim remains deeply committed to the defense of animals worldwide.
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3 Responses to Homemade Bubble Bath: EPIC FAIL

  1. Mike & Gloria McCoy says:

    That’s too bad! Good luck with the lip balm coming soon.

    Sent from Mike & Gloria’s iPad.

  2. Robert says:

    The equivalent story has followed this recipe all over the nets. Apparently the recipe (and similar recipes based on actual soap soap, such as liquid castile) keeps being propagated by (1) people whose water is “soft” enough that a reasonable amount actually makes lasting foam on a tubful of it, and (2) people who don’t try it in bath water at all. The problem is that most people’s water has enough “hardness” minerals that a bathtubful of it would require an enormous amount of soap to suds up rather than merely making curds and then scum and a ring.

    I did make my own densely foaming formula at home, and had such success with children & adults who had trouble with regular bath foams because of urinary or genital irritancy that I got US patent 5,336,446 on it, but I didn’t have commercial success. Thing is, it’s not made with ingredients you’d buy at the grocery, drug, or even hardware store; here’s a preferred version:

    4 volumes 40% diammonium lauryl sulfosuccinate solution
    2 vols. 30% active lauramidopropyl betaine sol’n
    2 vols. 40% disodium laureth-3 sulfosuccinate sol’n
    1 vol. 30% active palmitamidopropyl betaine sol’n

    There are hobbyists who do mix ingredients like these; search for Susan Barclay-Swift’s blog or It’s All In My Hands for examples of people using “real” ingredients at home to make toiletries. There’s less chemistry involved than in making your own soap or biodiesel; it’s just mixing bought stuff.

    If you’re not going to go that far as to get individual chemicals, you can often find advantageous mixtures of household products to make bubble baths. (A popular recipe says to mix non-soap-based shampoo with water & salt, but the water & salt are superfluous!) For instance, Clorox Green Works hand dishwashing detergent and Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day dish soap mixed 3:1 or 4:1 seems to make a very mild & sudsy mixture, albeit perfumed. It helps to study about surfactants used in household & personal care products to know their characteristics individually & mixed, because certain mixtures are sudsier and milder than the individual ingredients alone.

    • Kim McCoy says:

      Wow, thanks, Robert, for this detailed comment full of interesting information! You are clearly very knowledgeable about such things. I’ll know better than to try making my own bubble baths in the future. For now, we are into bath salts, instead. No fun suds to play with, but they’re still great! 🙂

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