Thursday, March 5, 2009

Bubble bath!

Who doesn't love bubbles in a bath? And the more the better, right? (I guess you could have too many bubbles, but really...they're bubbles!) And the question we ask ourselves - what do we want out of this product? - is BUBBLES! (Okay, I've said bubbles too many times now!)

We want a good flash foam (meaning immediate bubbles), rich lather (for a layer that stays), foam stabilization, and BUBBLES!

So from our surfactant list I would choose...
  • Amphosol CG: Good foam, good foam stabilization, and increases mildness
  • Bioterge AS-40: Good flash foam
  • BSB: Adds thickness and bubbles
I would ideally have SCI and SLSa in there, but those are best left for bubble bars and other solid bubble baths as they can thicken TOO MUCH. (I know I seem obsessed with thickening, but if you can't get the bubble bath out of the bottle, it's too thick!)

We want some glycerin, because this maintains your bubbles for a long time, and Crothix to thicken. And we'll want a fragrance oil and preservative.

36.5% water
30% Amphosol CG
22% Bioterge AS-40
6% BSB
up to 2% Crothix
1% glycerin
0.5% to 1% preservative (Germall Plus or Germaben)
2% fragrance oil
Colouring, if desired

Mix your surfactants together until well blended, then add the water and blend well. Add the glycerin, preservative, fragrance oil, and colouring and blend well, but not too well as we don't want a ton of bubbles. Let it rest for a bit - say an hour or so - and check the viscosity. If you are happy with it, bottle and label it. If you aren't happy with it, then add 1% liquid Crothix and stir well. If you still aren't happy with it, add another 0.5% Crothix. You can go up to 2% Crothix, but ensure you stir very well in between additions.

You'll note we're using 2% fragrance oils instead of 1%. If you are using essential oils, do not increase to 2% unless you really know what you are doing! We use an increased amount of fragrance oil as a small amount of this mixture will go into a large bath, and bubble bath is all about the scent.

And we're colouring this mixture. Bubble bath is a feast for your senses, and a colour can go a long way to setting the stage for super happy fun bubble time. You can use fancy colourings like LabColours (which I love!) or by using food colouring.

Coming up - using essential and fragrance oils in your surfactant creations!


Nathalie said...

Oh i'm going to try this.

when i was young we used to have mr bubble powder in a pink box. do you think we could make bubble bath powder?

I love your blog

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Yep, you can use SLSA to make bubble bath powder, or throw some SLSA into a bath bomb to make it foaming.

Hey, there's an idea for a post!

TheSoapGallery said...

Could we use something else aside from Crothix? Have everything else but that :)

Michelle Deken said...

Hi Susan!

I was playing with this recipe and browsing The Dish and noticed that in 2010 you commented that you wouldn't use coco betaine as the main percentage of surf in your bubble bath. I wonder if you've come up with a new formula for bubble bath that works better than the one here? I'm a bubble girl and was curious what you've learned since '09!


Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Michelle! I have altered it slightly to be 32% C14-16 olefin sulfonate (Bioterge AS-40) with 10% less water as I found this offers amazingly long lasting bubbles and thick foam. I have made a version with ACI that is really bubbly, but they aren't making that surfactant any more, so I turned to the C14-16 as a good replacement. I really like this version!

Thanks for bringing this up. I always mean to update old posts, then I forget!

Frankie said...

Hi Susan! I was very excited to try this recipe to make my own bubble bath so I whipped some up last night. It was so simple and it smells great... but it's so thick that it took about 30 minutes to bottle it! And I didn't even use anything to thicken it. I know bubble bath is supposed to be on the thick side, but mine is super thick. Perhaps this is a silly question, but if I want to thin it out a little bit, can I simply add more water next time? Thanks.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Frankie! The short answer is yes. The long answer is yes, and add more preservative. But there's more to it than that, so I'll encourage you to read Sunday, April 3rd's Weekend Wondering to learn more! Great question!

Lucille L said...

Hi Suzanne , do you think that we could replace water with goat milk? Thank.

Susan Barclay-Nichols said...

Hi Lucille. The first question is - why would you want to do that? What does goat milk bring to a bubble bath?

The short answer is no - don't do this. Goat's milk is hard to preserve. As well, it will dampen the bubbles, which defeats the purpose of bubble bath!