Do you have kids that love bringing a little art to their science projects? This Hand Painted Unicorn Bath Bomb project is perfect for a science and arts STEAM project. Kids learn some fascinating chemistry, then get to create and paint using a bath bomb as their canvas. How cool is that? Check out these Hand Painted Unicorn Bath Bombs for Kids.
DIY PAINTED BATH BOMBS – UNICORN INSPIRED
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We love a good bath bomb making project around here. It started as a fun little science experiment and a chance to save some money by making my kids favourite bath time item ourselves.
Bath bombs are expensive!
But it has turned into this huge passion around here. With my kids love of bath bombs only growing more and more now we make them ourselves. Best of all it has inspired them to become incredibly creative and artistic. Something my kids used to shun.
Inspiring Reluctant Artists with Painted Bath Bombs
Without a doubt one of the things that makes me smile whenever we are making bath bombs is how much my kids get into it. My children hated doing crafts. It is just not something they enjoyed at all, even when they are really small.
So discovering something that challenges them creatively and brings out their artist sides makes me incredibly happy.
The best is when we create custom designs and use our bath bombs as a canvas. We did it at Christmas, Halloween, Easter and when we made Spiderman bath bombs. Although, we have done it before, but this project is our most artistic yet!
Painted Unicorn Bath Bombs RECIPE
SUPPLIES AND TOOLS
2 cups baking soda
1 cup citric acid
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup kaolin clay
2 tablespoons Epsom salt
1/3 cup coconut oil
2 teaspoons polysorbate 80
10 – 20 drops rosemary essential oil (or use your favourite)
1/2 teaspoon each of pink, purple, teal, green and yellow mica colorant
Glitter if desired*
Stainless steel bath bomb molds
Mini muffin tin (optional)
1 large mixing bowl
1 microwave safe measuring cup
5 small bowls
Small, medium and/or large paint brushes depending on the design you want
*A NOTE ON GLITTER – Glitter has become very controversial due to the negative impacts on the environment, but I know many of you still love a little sparkle in your projects! When it comes to glitter, I believe it is always optional. None of my projects require it. But if you decide you do want a little sparkle and shine in your creations, I highly recommend using a biodegradeable glitter. There are lots of fantastic options available. Links have been provided below to some great options.
Prepare your work space. Usually to help speed clean up I cover our work space with parchment paper or a table cloth.
In a large mixing bowl, add the baking soda, citric acid, Epsom salts, kaolin clay and cornstarch. Mix dry ingredients together. Be cautious with citric acid. If it gets air borne it can be a bit irritating. I always
In the microwave safe measuring cup add the coconut oil and melt until just liquid in the microwave. Add the polysorbate 80 and essential oil. Mix well.
Add the liquid mix to the dry mix bowl. Start blending it together. Use your hands and make sure you really work everything together well. It should become like clumpy wet sand. When you press it, it should hold a shape and clump.
Once it is ready, loosely heap the mix into each half of the bath bomb mold until it is nicely mounded. Press the two halves together and gently twist until the sides touch. Do this over a bowl so all the extra mix can be collected to be used in future bath bombs.
Tap the ends of the mold then gently open to release the bath bomb. There is a bit of a technique to this, but with practice it becomes easy.
Set your bath bombs in a mini-muffin tray so they don’t roll around. Then place them in a warm, dry place to set up for a minimum of 24 hours until they are hard.
Hand Painting The Unicorn Bath Bombs
Now it’s time to get creative!
Add 1/2 tablespoon of each of the mica colors into each of the small bowls. Add 1/2-1 teaspoon of alcohol to each bowl. Mix well. Add a pinch of glitter if desired.
Dip a paint brush into one of the colour mixtures and brush one color onto each of your bath bombs. It will dry very quickly.
Repeat with other colours to complete your design.
If you are reusing your brush, rinse and dry your brush between each colour.
The Chemistry of Bath Bombs
Bath bombs have their wonderful fizz thanks to a chemical reaction between an acid and a base. This is a very common chemical reaction we have explored many times. It always erupts in wonderful ways!
Our acid is Citric Acid and our base is Baking Soda.
We are also using an emulsifier, polysorbate 80. I highly recommend you do not skip this ingredient. Oil and water do not mix without the addition of an emulsifier. Without this, your bath bomb oils and colours will float on top of the water sticking to everything and making a big, unicorn explosion, type of mess! Don’t skip the polysorbate 80!
Have fun STEAMing up your Bath Bomb Making Projects!