After a long day, it helps to have a routine that urges you to unwind. While we're all for vegging out with Netflix and our favorite snacks or sweating it out at a Lagree class, there's no denying that a fizzy bath bomb can basically cure-all. Of course, that requires knowing how to draw the best bath possible. To learn how to do so, we chatted with Lush brand and product expert Erica Vega.
Meet the Expert
Erica Vega is Lush's brand and product expert, specializing in Lush product use and education. She's been with the brand for over 15 years, previously holding roles as product trainer and experiential content designer.
Water, Then Bomb
End of story. While it's often debated which comes first, Vega says that dropping your bomb into a full tub is what lets it dissolve properly, unleashing all its lovely ingredients in the process. So wait for your tub to fill all the way up, then add your favorite bath bomb or oil. If you choose to add a bubble bar, however, be sure to hold it under the faucet (as opposed to directly tossing it into a full tub) to create lots of bubbles.
The Warmer the Water, the Better
While there isn't a set temperature for dissolving bath bombs, Vega points out that the water has to be warm in order for ingredients like cocoa butter to melt. "A comfortable bath temperature is going to vary from person to person; it’s really a matter of personal preference," she says. "For some, lukewarm is comfortable. For others, they like to let it get really steamy. Depending on how long you like to linger in the tub, you will probably find yourself topping up with more warm water or cooling off with cool water during your bath." Just keep in mind that, as cozy as a hot bath might feel, you don't want to overheat the tub, as Vega says that you'll likely come out feeling faint and weak, which could be a potential hazard.
Add Bath Oil For a More Insta-Worthy Experience
As relaxing (and colorful) as a bath bomb already is, adding a bath oil or bubble bar to the mix can make it feel (and appear) even more magical. "Your bath really is your conduit to get creative and experiment, whether that means adding a little extra bubble to your bath art or dropping in a bath oil for extra silkiness on the skin," Vega says. "Just remember that if you’re looking for a specific effect from your bath, e.g. you want to relax, then it’s best to opt for the same, similar, or complementary ingredients to produce that effect, so go for products that contain lavender, chamomile, or tonka."
Chamomile is an herb. It contains high levels of an antioxidant known as apigenin, which helps calm, heal, and soothe skin.
Create a Purpose For Your Bath
"As the inventors of the bath bomb, we’ve created sphere upon sphere of new inventions to help you reimagine what a bath can be," Vega says. "Consider what you’re looking for from your bath—are you going to sink into the tub just before bed to help you drift off to sleep? Are you hopping in for a quick wash in the morning to set yourself up for the day? Do you want to be surrounded by beautiful colors and patterns, or do you like a dark candlelit bath? Do you need some extra moisture to soften the skin?" Whatever your answer, there's a Lush bath bomb for that mood or intended effect.
Add Essential Oils to Customize Your Bath
Depending on how you want to walk away from your bath determines which type of bath bomb you should use in your bath. "Any warm soak will relax you, so use your nose and choose what stands out to you," Vega says. "If you’re looking for essential oils to relax, lavender and chamomile are always sure to be an excellent relaxing bath. If you’re looking for something that’s more rejuvenating and spa-like, you can choose essential oils like mint, lemongrass, or ginger." If you prefer the former, stock up on Lush's Twilight Bath Bomb ($8); if you'd rather invigorate the senses, consider the Avobath Bath Bomb ($7).
Add Oat Milk, Rose, or Lavender to Calm Sensitive Skin
Like all skincare, you need to be cognizant of the ingredients in your bath bombs so as to not irritate your skin. "Lush bath bombs were invented by Mo Constantine, who wanted something simple for her own sensitive skin, so Lush products are already a wise choice," Vega says. "For especially sensitive skin, a warm soak in a bath infused with calming ingredients like oat milk, rose, or lavender can work wonders to soothe troubled skin." If you have specific allergies, however, it's always a good idea to check the ingredient list before purchasing a bath bomb.
Set the Mood Before You Climb In
More than just the things you buy, creating your most relaxing bath comes down to the intention you put into the entire experience. "Before you begin, lay out your steps and any items you might need so you’re not rummaging around in your medicine cabinet, breaking the mood," Vega suggests. "Use your cushiest towels and have your clean PJ’s or your favorite robe at the ready. Create a beginning and an end to your routine, whether that’s with lighting and blowing out your candles, playing some soft music, or burning your favorite incense." Vega reminds us that when you're mindful of the steps you’re taking, you can elevate your everyday actions to create a spa-like environment without ever leaving home.
Use a Shower Bomb to Self-Care More Sustainably
For those who want to relax with a bath bomb but are concerned about time or water waste, you can use one of Lush's shower bombs (since showers use less water on average than baths). "Just like their bath-foaming counterparts, shower bombs awaken in a fizzy explosion of scent and sound," Vega says, noting that the difference is in their usage: bath bombs plop into the tub with you, while shower bombs dissolve in your hand (or on the floor of your shower) and can be used like a cleansing shower foam. "While both fizzers share a base ingredient of sodium bicarbonate and citric acid—the ingredients that make them fizz—shower bombs have seaweed and potato starch to create a puffy mousse you sweep over your body, leaving skin silky-soft."