Exploding Bath Salts?

Thanks to my friend, Michelle, for alerting me to a possible danger associated with storing bath salts made with baking soda in a glass jar!

I have never had this happen to me, nor have I heard of it happening before. Every book that has suggested giving bath salts as a gift and provided a recipe, said to store in a jar with a tight-fitting lid.


…after googling, I did run across a few instances of people having glass jars containing bath salts (made with baking soda and salt) explode.

Now wouldn’t that be a surprise?!

You can read an account of it happening here.

I wanted to post this since I have a few recipes for bath salts on this website. I’ve added a note to those particular posts too.

As of right now, I still have my bath salts in jars, but am thinking about punching a hole in the lid to let any air build up escape.

I’ve also submitted this to Mythbusters 🙂

Stacy Karen

Stacy is a DIY obsessed, healthy living advocate. A preacher's wife and mom of three, she loves to encourage others to live a natural lifestyle.
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  1. I have made my own bath salts before and I stored them in a zip bag, but I noticed the bag puffing up really taut.

  2. In anticipation of holiday gift giving, I just made 6 or 7 different recipes of bath salts. I noticed them clumping in the air tight mason jars that I was storing them in, so I shook them and started to loosen the band on one to smell the salts and the lid blew off and the salts exploded out of the jar. I carefully picked up the rest of the jars to loosen the lids and release the pressure on them. The last one blew off of the jar, breaking my index finger and showering bath salts over the entire room. I now have them all in plastic jars with loose fitting lids. Everyone please be careful!!!! Thank goodness this happened to me and not to someone I had given a jar to as a gift. I also have never seen a warning with any bath salt recipes.

    1. Tammy,

      Thank you for letting me know your experience with bath salts. That is very scary!

      I’m sorry about your finger. I’m sure that hurt a lot.

      I appreciate you taking the time tell us. I’d hate to give someone a gift and have it explode on them!

  3. I recently made some and put them in glass bottles I had decorated. I put them in my bathroom in an attractive display. About two weeks later, I was taking a nap and heard glass shattering loudly. I went to the bathroom and realized two of the bottles (the most airtight ones) had exploded. One was an old Crown Royal bottle; the glass was almost a quarter inch thick. The explosion sent glass and salt flying all over the bathroom. It could have SERIOUSLY injured someone had they been in there at the time. Be careful with home chemistry!

  4. Regarding explosions, if you search the web with “citric acid reacts with sodium bicarbonate” you’ll see why enclosed containers explode. Remember those elementary school science projects to make a volcano erupt? They use baking soda and citric acid or vinegar. So as long as the EOs used don’t have any citric acid in them, they should be fine. But I don’t use baking soda any more for this reason, it’s not really needed and just easier not to worry about.

    1. Also, any salt bath with essential oils should be stored in glass or a PET plastic bottle (without the baking soda), so the EOs don’t dissolve the plastic. A baggy is not suitable for storing EO bath salts.