Bath Bombs and Hair – The Truth, pH & Rinsing


If you love a bath bomb you may never have wondered if they are good or bad for your hair. This article is going to explore the various products in the bath bomb range and ask ‘are bath bombs bad for my hair?’

Bath bombs are not bad for your hair with the exception of the citric acid potentially lowering the pH level. By rinsing your hair thoroughly after use, no long-lasting damage will occur and your hair may smell like your bath bomb for the day. Specifically washing your hair with bath bomb water is not recommended.

When you use a bath bomb in the bath, you are adding a mix of ingredients and chemicals into the water. The vast majority of bath bombs these days use organic ingredients, and are generally very good for the skin and relaxation, and will not be detrimental to the health of your hair.

How do the Ingredients of a Bath Bomb Affect Hair?

It is easy to check the ingredients of virtually all bath bombs, and you should do this as a matter of course anyway. The main 4/5 things to consider are

IngredientPotential Problem
Baking SodaNone
Citric AcidpH Lowering
SaltDyed Hair
Essential OilsNone
ColoringPossible
SurfactantsNone
GlitterNone

The 4 main ingredients of any bath bomb have virtually no effect on hair

Baking Soda/Bicarbonate of Soda

Baking Soda is not something you will want to create a solution with to wash your hair regularly. In most cases it will have no effect whatsoever, but some hair may be less tolerable to it than others.

Remember to rinse or shampoo your hair after using a bath bomb

Citric Acid

It’s all about he pH and you probably remember from school how 7 signifies the ‘neutral pH level’ – Well, citric acid is not going to be the biggest promoter of maintaining a neutral pH level in your hair, and if left will significantly lower it, and that’s not good.

Don’t panic, there is very little citric acid in the water that is getting on your hair, but as I always advise…

Remember to rinse of shampoo your hair after using a bath bomb

Salt

Most bath bombs will use salts of one kind or another. Arguably the most popular would bath bombs with Epsom salts.

If your hair is dyed it is possible that if left in the water for any length of time the salts could start stripping some of that color away. so be careful.

Remember to rinse or shampoo your hair after using a bath bomb

Essential Oils

Essential oils are fine on your hair based on the amount generally used in bath bombs being low enough to not really have any effect. They may leave a scent on your hair for the day, but if that is something that you don’t mind that’s all fine, although, you know what I would recommend?

Remember to rinse or shampoo your hair after using a bath bomb!

Additional bath bomb Ingredients are generally safe for hair too

There are more ingredients to consider with bath bombs of course, including glitters and colors. Let’s see what effects, if any, they may have on your hair in the bath.

Choose a bath bomb with mild colors

Or none at all. Most colorants in bath bombs are generally quite mild. Food coloring is often used as well as other variants. If you have colored hair of a lighter shade, say, blond, grey, or white, then there is a chance that strong colors may leave a tint, which will disappear in a couple of good washes.

Enjoy glitter for weeks

Or Avoid it altogether. Who doesn’t love a little bit of organic glitter in a bath bomb? [Well, not me actually, but anyway!] – That glitter gets everywhere, and so expect to find it in your hair if you are washing or dipping your hair in the bath with a glitter bath bomb.

And don’t expect it to disappear in a wash or two, or just fall out. That glitter is going to be in your hair for maybe two weeks regardless of what you do.

Surfactants in bath bombs are good for hair

As a general cleaning product surfactants are the product that gives any soap, shampoo, shower gel, or in this case bath bomb, the bubbles.

This product lifts dirt, grease and grim from surfaces including your hair.

Check your bath bomb ingredients if you plan to get your hair wet.

If you are unable to find the ingredients of a bath bomb either bought off the shelf in a shop, or online, then I would strongly advise not buying the bath bomb in the first place.

You want to be certain that everything that has been used in making the bath bomb is natural and organic, especially if you have concerns about how your hair will be affected by a bath bomb.

Bath Bombs with Surfactant in are Safest

Surfactants are the ingredient that creates the bubbles in bath bombs or any other cleaning product, whether that be in the bathroom, or the kitchen.

The word surfactant, is created from surface active agent [obvious now huh?] and its job is to lower the surface tension between two things. In the case of your bath bomb, presumably, dirt or grease and your skin!

In releasing the tension it is easier for you to remove and cleanse whilst in the bath.

Surfactant in bath bomb is good for your hair

This is not to say a bath bomb is the best product you can use for cleaning your hair, but what it does mean is that if you must have a bath bomb and clean your hair at the same time, then select a bath bomb that has a surfactant like SLSa contained in it.

I have a DIY bath Bomb Recipe with SLSa here on site which would be one of the better options for you if you have hair concerns with bath bombs as this recipe also has no coloring.

Can you wash your hair with Lush Bath Bombs

Using all of the guidance from above it should be OK to wash you hair with a lush bath bomb. If you are looking for advice ona specific brand then i would suggest taking a look at the associted companies website for definitive answers.

Regarding Lush, they have the HairLab and a dedicated A-Z guide on Hair Care Products on the UK site

Rinse your hair thoroughly after using a bath bomb

I would recommend giving your hair its normal wash treatment after using a bath bomb if your hair has been introduced to the water.

The citric acid will be lowering the pH level and any colorants may be getting to work on your dye.

At the very least rinse your hair in clean water after bathing with the bath bomb, or go through your normal hair washing routine with the normal products you would use.

Should you wash your hair in the Bath?

Not really do to with bath bombs directly, but in any case, washing your hair in the bath should only be undertaken if the water has no products in it.

If you can rinse with clean water from the facet rather than the sitting bath water for cleanliness purposes obviously

Will the colors in the Bath Bomb dye my Hair?

It is possible that if you have dyed hair, in the lighter colour ranges of blond, grey or white, then contact for an extended period of time with some syes used in bath bombs, and especially of the deeper and stronger colors could very well tint your hair.

How quickly this will be able to be removed, if at all, will depend on the coloring prodct used in the bath bomb.

My advice is to avoid getting hair that is dyed to light shades in bathwater with a bath bomb with strong colors. It is not worth the risk.

Although if you are a little more adventurous, Hey, its experimentation time!! Just make sure you also have a surfactant ingredient for cleaning and rinse well in clean water after.

Should you wash your hair with a bath bomb?

Washing your hair actually with a bath bomb is definitely a bad idea and should never be done. The ingredients are not designed for hair care, and whilst should not leave lasting damage, should always be rinsed out with clean water

Can I wash my hair in a bath that has a bath bomb in it?

You can wash your hair in the bath normally with shampoo and conditioner if you are using a bath bomb, but of course the rinsing procedure should be with clean water and not the water in the bath. But you do that anyway right?!

Bomb Guru

A bathbomb enthusiast who happened to be in the birthplace of bath bombs as they were born. My passion remains to this day

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