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Will a bath bomb work in cold water?

Will a bath bomb work in cold water?

With summer on the horizon, the idea of soaking in a hot bath might seem more like a recipe for sweat than relaxation. But don’t worry, because there's always the option to dial down the temperature and enjoy a refreshing dip in cooler waters. Cold baths might not get as much love as their toasty counterparts, but they come with their own set of perks

Now, if you're anything like us and can't resist the allure of a bath bomb experience, you might wonder: do bath bombs work their magic in cold water? Well, let’s find out!

Science time: How water temperature influences bath bomb fizziness

To understand this, let's first dissect the composition of a bath bomb. These effervescent spheres are concocted from a blend of baking soda, citric acid, Epsom salts, essential oils, and coloring agents. When submerged in water, they undergo a chemical reaction, releasing fragrances, colors, and moisturizing components into the bathwater.

Now, let's explore how temperature impacts the efficacy of bath bombs. Bath bombs do indeed function in cold water; however, their performance is notably enhanced in warmer temperatures. This phenomenon can be explained by fundamental principles of chemistry and physics.

In warmer water, molecules move more rapidly, accelerating the dissolution process of the bath bomb. This results in a quicker release of colors, scents, and moisturizing agents into the bathwater. Conversely, in colder water, this process is slower, leading to a more gradual dispersal of the bath bomb's components.

Additionally, the absorption of essential oils and moisturizing agents by the skin is facilitated by warmer water. Higher temperatures cause the pores to dilate, allowing these nourishing ingredients to penetrate deeper into the skin, leaving it feeling hydrated and refreshed.

Furthermore, the aromatic experience of a bath bomb is heightened in warmer water. As the steam rises, it carries the fragrance molecules, intensifying the olfactory sensation and enveloping the bather in a soothing aroma.

In summary, the water temperature itself doesn't alter the chemical reaction within the bath bomb. However, it does influence how the bomb dissolves and the duration of its scent and bubbles. Cold water tends to result in less fizz and slower dissolution, but rest assured, the effectiveness of the bath bomb remains unchanged. 

Even in cooler temperatures, you can still reap the moisturizing and exfoliating benefits, as the active ingredients within the bomb remain potent and efficacious.

What about the oils and butter in bath bombs? Do they mix with cold water? 

While some bath bombs boast moisturizing butters and nourishing oils to pamper your skin during your soak, the question remains: do these oils and butters dissolve efficiently in cold water? The simple answer is no. 

Regardless of temperature, oils and water don't mix due to their differing chemical properties. Water is polar, with a slight positive charge on one end and a slight negative charge on the other, while oil is nonpolar. Consequently, they repel each other, preventing the oils from dispersing in the water.

However, don't let this deter you from enjoying the moisturizing benefits of CBD bath bombs in a bath. While the oils and butters won't dissolve into the water, they will cling to your skin upon contact with the bath bomb. This forms a protective barrier, sealing in moisture and nourishing your skin, even in cold water.

Ultimately, although the oils and butters may not dissolve in cold water, they still fulfill their purpose by moisturizing and rejuvenating your skin. So, indulge in a CBD bath bomb experience, knowing that your skin will feel soft and revitalized after your bath, regardless of the water temperature.

What we recommend: Tub Therapy Soakshow CBD Bath Bomb in Lemon Jasmine Mimosa, $15 each with free shipping


Show and tell: How bath bomb fizzes in cold water versus hot water

If you're curious to see how exactly bath bombs dissolve in cold versus warm water, check out this YouTube video. It offers a clear demonstration of how water temperature can significantly alter your bathing experience.

Another visual experiment showcased at a Science Fair aimed to illustrate the varying fizzing reactions of bath bombs in water of different temperatures.

The highest temperature tested soared above 179 degrees Fahrenheit, far too scalding for a comfortable soak. Conversely, the warm water hovered just above 90 degrees Fahrenheit. While this may sound tepid, it's actually more than 8 degrees below our normal body temperature, slightly cooler than the ideal bath temperature. 

Interestingly, at the two-minute mark, the bath bomb in the warm water was only just beginning to bubble over, whereas the one in the hot water had already fizzed out completely. This highlights the importance of finding the optimal temperature for a luxurious bath experience, somewhere between these two extremes.

Bath Bomb Science Fair Project
Image courtesy of Steampoweredfamily


The perfect water temperature for a bath bomb use

The ideal water temperature for using a bath bomb typically falls between 97°F (36°C) and 100°F (38°C). This range is warm enough to help the bath bomb dissolve fully and release its aromatic oils and other ingredients effectively. It also allows for optimal absorption of moisturizing and nourishing components by the skin. 

However, preferences may vary, and some individuals may enjoy slightly warmer or cooler water temperatures. It's essential to find the temperature that feels most comfortable and relaxing for you while still allowing the bath bomb to work its magic.

The health benefits of a warm bath

Choosing a warm bath offers numerous health benefits, from promoting better sleep and potentially lowering blood pressure to relieving stress (but you're probably familiar with that one). If you're physically active, soaking in a warm bath can help alleviate tired muscles, and research from the Cleveland Heartlab suggests it may even have positive effects on heart health. Explore the myriad benefits of indulging in a warm bath in our article here and take comfort in knowing that you're nurturing your entire body the next time you sink into the tub with your favorite bath bomb.

Our verdict?

For those seeking relief from the summer heat, a cold water bath infused with a bath bomb can still offer a refreshing experience and provide a welcome respite from the sweltering weather.

While bath bombs exhibit optimal performance in warmer water, they are still capable of enriching the bathing experience in colder temperatures. Whether enjoyed in hot or cold water, bath bombs remain a delightful indulgence, promoting relaxation and rejuvenation in the comfort of one's own home.