A homemade spa is the ideal way to involve kids in a new and exciting range of crafts for kids. The end results are a joy to use at home or give to family and friends as gifts. The process of making simple spa products is also a great way to entertain more than one child at a home birthday party.
Making homemade spa products introduces children to simple chemistry and if your child is bath and soap shy, it’s a great way to introduce fun into their daily lives. Younger children will require adult supervision.
All the ingredients you need are readily available in most shops or you can buy pre-packed kits in craft stores or online.
Make your Own Soap
Traditional soap making uses chemicals like ‘lye’ which requires a great deal of caution but there’s a much easier and safer method commonly called ‘melt and pour’.
- Pure glycerin soap (either clear or white, available in supermarkets, chemists and health food stores)
- Soap dye (specialist dye from craft stores or food dye)
- Fragrance i.e. an essential oil (optional)
- Textured additives (nothing scary- for example, oatmeal, dried lavender heads or herbs)
Glycerin is lost in the manufacturing process of most soap. Homemade soap is rich with glycerin, making it fabulously moisturising and luxuriant.
Start by cutting the glycerin soap into chunks. This is a grown-up job. Melt the soap gradually in the microwave, using short bursts of heat and stirring at intervals. Treat the soap gently!
When thoroughly melted, add the dye. Experiment with the amount of dye you use, a few drops should be enough. If you want to achieve a ‘marbled’ effect, add tiny drops of the colour once the soap is in its mould and swirl lightly with a cocktail stick or skewer.
If you want fragrance, add the oil now. Essential oils are very concentrated, so go easy with this job.
If you wish, you can now add oatmeal, flower heads or herbs. Remember whatever you use will be ‘dissolved’ out when the soap is used.
Ideal moulds are lollipop moulds, shaped ice cube trays or even plastic cups. You can make lots of small guest soaps. Push a loop of thick, bright string or ribbon into the mould to make your very own soap on a rope. Leave the soap to set for at least an hour, somewhere dry and cool.
For a fantastic gift idea, decorate a paper cup and fill it with mini soaps. Finish off with a twist of polythene, ribbon and a label.
Another Way to Make Soap
Use 1 part of soap flakes to 4 parts of water. Start by boiling the water and gradually adding the flakes. Mix to together to create soapy dough.
Don’t forget to add drops of colouring or fragrance as you mix. Add to your moulds and leave to set.
If you add more water when mixing, you will eventually have liquid soap
Make your own Bath Bomb
This is another simple craft project for kids. Bath bombs are a great addition to your homemade spa, kids and adults love the fun of stepping into a fragrant, fizzing bath.
To make your own bath bombs you need:
- Citric Acid (1 part) – available in most chemists, you may have more luck if you try an independent chemist.
- Baking Soda (2 parts) – easy to find in the home baking section of grocery stores.
- A mould
- Witch-hazel – available at chemists or health stores, look for a spray bottle.
Even though the process is straightforward, the success of your bath bombs depends on keeping the ingredients as dry as possible at first. It’s best not to make them on a wet or damp day.
Start by mixing the dry ingredients together. Make sure the baking soda and citric acid are thoroughly combined. Add as little fragrance and colour as you can, the mixture needs to be brought together so it can be moulded but too much liquid and it just won’t work!
Witch-hazel is a good liquid to use to bring the wet powders together. A spray container gives you perfect control.
The bath bomb is ready to mould when you can shape it together with your hands. It should feel like damp sand castle sand.
Press the mixture into your chosen mould and leave to set for 5- 10 minutes. The very short drying time means that you need to work quickly.
Release the bath bomb from its mould and leave it to completely dry out on waxed or non stick paper for around 24 hours.
Making a homemade spa is good fun which leaves you with lots of happy memories and lovely things to use or giveaway.