15 Bubble Bath Ideas to Wash Your Worries Away
Updated: Nov 16, 2021
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Imagine being the first person to discover a natural hot spring. It must have seemed like pure magic to take that first soak in the relaxing, all-over warmth of a natural hot bath.
I’m glad I don’t have to search out a hot spring to take a bath today. I’m also grateful that I can simply turn on the faucet and have instant hot water—no hauling it in buckets to the woodstove like my grandparents had to do.
Bathing became commonplace in ancient Rome, but the magic of bubble baths wasn’t invented until the 20th century when soap flakes became a thing.
There’s something wonderful about a bubble bath—warm water, iridescent shimmery bubbles, and soft fragrances greeting you as you step into the comfortable buoyancy of bliss. It’s one of my favorite ways to relax after a long day.
A bath is best when unhurried. Try setting aside time to let your mind drift as you wash your worries down the drain. To take your bath to the next level, try one (or more!) of the 15 tips I’ve listed below.
1. Bubble bath
What’s a bubble bath without bubbles? Depending on which product you choose, you might find yourself sitting in a warm tub of soapy nothingness. This is the time to splurge a little and treat yourself to something special.
When selecting a bubble bath, go for higher-end products. You’ll find that the bubbles last longer, and—if you’ve chosen a foaming bath oil—you won’t lose bubbles for the sake of adding moisturizing ingredients.
Pour your foaming bath product directly under the running faucet for the most abundant bubbles. Let the water do the work!
2. Try a bath bomb
Bath bombs create an effervescent explosion of fizz, fragrance, and color. You can buy them with essential oil and bright colors added or make a DIY version and customize them to your liking.
You’ll need to grab some citric acid to make the fizz, but other ingredients (like baking soda and rubbing alcohol) are common household staples.
3. Bath bars and bath melts
Bath bars and melts are made for moisture. Formulated to leave your skin feeling luxuriously soft (like these sugar scrubs), bath melts come in a variety of shapes, scents, and styles. They are frequently made with coconut oil but may also include shea butter, kaolin clay, and an array of other delightful add-ins.
Not all bath bars create bubbles (check the label before you buy), and some can leave your tub a bit on the slick side. I love the feeling a bath bar leaves on my skin, but fair warning—be careful getting out of the tub when you’re done!
4. Bath oil
Like bath bars, bath oil delivers moisturizing goodness to dry skin. Opt for a fragrance-free bath oil if you have sensitive skin or are using a fragranced candle at the same time. Too many conflicting scents will disturb your relaxation experience. Choose scents that complement each other, or only use one fragranced item, and let your other bath time splurges be fragrance-free.
5. Bath salt—soothe away the aches
Bath salts usually have Epsom salt as the main ingredient. Epsom salt, which breaks down into magnesium and stearate in water, is a naturally occurring chemical compound named after a spring at Epsom in Surrey, England.
This inexpensive ingredient can be found at most drugstores and supermarkets (or you can get it here) and is well-known for soothing sore muscles and tired feet.
You can use Epsom salt on its own or buy bath salts with added ingredients such as sea salt, moisturizers, and artificial or natural fragrances and colors.
Add bath salts before you drizzle in your foaming bath product. Swish the salts around in the water to dissolve them; then add your bubble bath product and get ready for some well-deserved you time.
6. Essential oil
Another way to bring the benefits of aromatherapy into your bathing experience is to add essential oils directly to the bath or diffuse them in a mist. Unlike bath oils (which may contain a blend of carrier oils in addition to fragrances), essential oils are highly concentrated compounds extracted from plants.
Choose pure essential oil (not artificial fragrances) to truly reap the benefits. Some of the most well-known essential oils for inducing relaxation are lavender, chamomile, and clary sage.
7. Listen to music
The perfect relaxing bubble bath experience occurs when the ambiance is just right. For me, that means silence or quiet nature sounds, like birds singing in the trees or the occasional croaking of frogs on a pond.
But for music lovers, bath time can become a symphony for both the body and mind. Use a waterproof Bluetooth speaker to play your favorite slow-tempo or New Age tunes safely. (Keep electric items away from the bath!)
8. Listen to an inspirational audiobook
If music isn’t your thing, but you have difficulty relaxing in silence, try listening to an inspirational audiobook or guided meditation. YouTube has some excellent guided meditations you can listen to for free.
If you tend to fall asleep while listening, opt for something that will help you relax but won’t make you doze in the tub.
9. Nature sounds
As I mentioned earlier, I find nature sounds to be relaxing. There are no words to keep track of or tunes to get stuck in my head—I can just listen and drift away into a mindful meditation, imagining myself walking on a leaf-covered path or sitting in stillness at the edge of a bubbling brook.
If you like nature sounds, too, but your bathtub isn’t located in the middle of a meadow or woods, try listening to recordings made just for this purpose. You can project them to your Bluetooth speaker or use a cordless sound machine with options such as a campfire, crickets, or thunder.
Ambiance is about more than just sound. The right lighting can stimulate your senses or ease you into bathing bliss. Candles are a delightful way to add low lights and fragrances to your bathroom.
If you have sensitive skin and can’t use scented products in your bath, a flickering candle might be the perfect way to get the benefits of aromatherapy without triggering an unwanted itch.
Submersible LED lights are another way to add ambiance to your bathroom. You can find them in white or a variety of colors to create the perfect mood.
11. Water temperature
Did you know that there’s more to water temperature than comfort? Although the perfect temp is debatable, a Wall Street Journal interview with dermatologist Melissa Piliang states that 112℉ is the perfect temperature for washing away dirt and bacteria.
If you’re more concerned with reducing stress and relaxing tight muscles, you don’t need to get so specific with the temperature. Test the water on the back of your hand before stepping in to make sure it’s comfortable. You’ll want the water to be warm, but it shouldn’t burn or make your skin too pink.
12. Plants in the bathroom
Ah, gardens! Just thinking about being surrounded by greenery lifts my spirits. Try bringing the garden indoors to create a luxury spa experience while you bathe.
Plants produce oxygen and remove pollutants from the air. A study conducted by researchers from Kansas State University found that simply viewing plants encourages and enhances healing.
Choose plants that love humidity and have low or indirect lighting requirements.
13. Relax, don’t rush
Set aside time to de-stress in the tub. Limiting the amount of time you have for your relaxing soak can put you on edge and make it more challenging to give in to the experience.
I like to save bath time for evenings, right before I go to bed. Whereas my showers are quick and invigorating morning wake-me-ups, a relaxing bubble bath may last 20 minutes or more.
Try hydrating inside as well as out! A bubbly drink for your bubbly bath might be just the thing you need to make your relaxing bubble bath a little extra.
Sparkling tea, an herbal infusion, and flavored water are just a few suggestions to get you started thinking about your perfect bath time libation.
15. Bath caddy
If your bath time goodies keep sliding off the edge, invest in yourself and get a bath caddie to keep everything in its place. Bath caddies come in adjustable sizes that span the width of the tub or hanging styles for tubs that have one edge against the wall.
Before getting out of the bath …
When you’ve finished your soak, and you’re ready to get out of the tub, take just another minute to finish bringing yourself back into a state of balance. Take a few slow, deep breaths and lift the tub’s plug so the water can begin to drain. In your mind’s eye, envision your worries as wisps of soapy residue, spinning in a whirl as they disappear down the drain with the water. As you imagine them washing away, you may begin to feel lighter and even more refreshed.
Pat dry with a fluffy towel, smooth on your favorite moisturizer, and enjoy the rest of your day!
If you want some ideas for turning your shower into an aromatherapy experience, check out this post for shower steamers.