Bath bombs are a great product for making a normal bath into a more relaxing experience. Though, after that time of relaxation, the last thing you want is to return to your bathroom only to find your bathtub covered in stains caused by the bath bomb. These stains can be hard to remove, so we've gathered the information on the best methods available to help you clean your stained tub.
Cleaning a bath bomb stain is easy if you have the right tools, but it depends on the bathtub material and bath bomb type. Here are the most common methods to try:
- Spraying regular bathroom cleaner, like Clorox, and letting it sit before scrubbing.
- Mixing bleach and baking soda to apply to the stain.
- Using a heavy-duty product, like Bar Keepers Friend.
There is some important information that you should know before starting to use new chemicals on your tub. From here on, we will discuss that information and provide step-by-step cleaning instructions for each method.
Getting Rid of Bath Bomb Stains
As mentioned above, there are several types of materials used to make bathtubs, and these materials handle various chemicals and cleaning methods differently.
Clorox or Similar Product
The first method uses the cleaners most people already have in their cabinets. Oftentimes, the stain will respond to a regular household cleaning product like Clorox or Scrubbing Bubbles. So when rinsing the bath out with the showerhead won't get rid of the bath bomb stain, try giving the bath a good routine cleaning.
To get the best results out of your bathroom cleaner, follow these steps:
- Spray the cleaner liberally on the areas of the tub affected by the stain.
- Let the chemical sit for 3-5 minutes.
- Using a sponge or cloth, scrub the stained area.
- Rinse the chemical away and examine the tub for progress.
If you do not see any progress after a few rinses and repeated use of a Clorox type of spray, we recommend moving on to one of the other methods below.
Bleach and Baking Soda Mixture
Bleach and baking soda are common household items. Using them to make a thick paste can be a powerful cleaning agent for all types of difficult stains. This is actually a common method to clean filthy grout between shower tiles, which is common and difficult.
Bleach is a liquid chemical that reacts with and stops chemical bonds in other substances. This causes a whitening behavior that is useful in getting rid of stains from white bathtubs, among other materials. Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, is a combination of chemicals known as a compound with many household uses. Usually, it's used to remove tarnish from metal or freshen up a refrigerator.
In this case, baking soda is used as a thickening agent that makes the mixture easier to apply to the tub's surface. Because it's thicker than a liquid, it can stay in place longer, going to work on the stain. This mixture is very tough on stains.
Making the Mixture
To make the bleach and baking soda mixture, follow these steps:
- Gather the materials: a mixing container, bleach, baking soda, and a sponge or brush.
- Mix 3/4 of a cup of baking soda with 1/4 of a cup of bleach.
- Apply to the stained area and let it sit for 5-10 minutes.
- Scrub the area completely and rinse.
- Repeat if necessary.
If the mixture is too thick with this ratio, you can add more bleach. Be sure always to exercise caution when using bleach as it can stain clothes and carpet.
Never mix bleach with vinegar or ammonia. Doing so can create harmful gases that are poisonous to breathe. On the other hand, mixing baking soda and bleach does not create chlorine glass and is safe for home use.
Baking soda is also safe to combine with vinegar and other chemicals for different cleaning uses. Check out our article on "How to Unclog a Bathroom Sink with Vinegar and Baking Soda."
Bar Keepers Friend or Similar Product
There is a chance that your stain won't respond to either of the first two methods. In that case, purchasing a more specialized product will be the best way forward. A specialized stain-fighter like Bar Keepers Friend is a great cleaning material to keep in the cabinet.
Bar Keepers Friend is a bleach-free cleaning agent that can remove stains from everything from bathtubs to the aluminum siding on a building. Simply pour a little of the powder on the affected area and scrub with a wet sponge or cloth, adding more product and repeating if needed. Bar Keepers Friend also recommends testing the product on a corner of the tub before committing to applying it to the complete surface. Do this to make sure that no surface damage occurs.
This 21 oz container of Bar Keepers Friend will fight through many bathroom stains, including those left from your bath bomb. Click here to see on Amazon.
Other Considerations - Bathtub Types and Cleaning Tools
Some bathtub material types will not respond well to particularly strong chemicals or tools like rough sponges. Acrylic tubs, for example, are the most common type of bathtub but are more easily damaged than other types. It's best to use lighter cleaning solutions and a softer tool like a cloth or sponge instead of a brush.
For more information on cleaning acrylic, please see our article called "6 Simple Steps to Clean an Acrylic Shower Base."
Some other bathtubs are made of ceramic or enamel and are more resistant to damage. Harsher chemicals and harder cleaning tools like pumice sticks can be used on these types of bathtubs. These can be especially useful on stains. Click here to see on Amazon.
Another mixture to try if you have a ceramic tub is baking soda with hydrogen peroxide.
Are bath bombs bad for your tub?
Bath bombs not any worse for a bathtub than any other soaps or chemicals we put in them. But, wherever there are bath bomb reviews, there seem to be reports of people experiencing staining. So, the worst that can happen is some staining from brighter-colored bath bombs. As long as you clean soon after the use of bath bombs with some of the methods described above, the tub should be just fine.
How do you stop bath bombs from staining the bath?
To get bath bombs to stop staining the bathtub, the easiest thing to do is to use color-less bath bombs or bath bombs with neutral colors. There are many options available such as these colorless bath bombs. Click here to see on Amazon.
There is another method if you like the bright and colorful bath bombs and don't mind the extra work post-bath. Cleaning your tub immediately or very soon after bath bomb use is a good way to avoid stains. Not allowing the colored residue to sit in your tub will go a long way to prevent stains.
How much of a bath bomb should I use?
Bath bombs are designed to be single-use and to be used all at once. It is possible to split a bath bomb in half and get two uses out of it. When splitting a bath bomb into two parts, it is important to ensure that the unused half is stored in a dry place. Otherwise, drop the whole thing in the bath and enjoy.
It may seem that using less of a bath bomb may decrease the likelihood of a stain occurring, but we find no evidence of that. The amount of a bath bomb you use is entirely up to the bath experience you want to have in terms of color and fragrance.
Bath bombs are a great bathtime accessory, but the stains they leave can make them not worth the headache. Luckily, three methods will make getting rid of that stain painless. After your next bath bomb, be sure to use either a typical bathroom cleaner, make a baking soda and bleach paste, or invest in a more dedicated stain fighter like Barkeepers Friend.