How to make bath oil with essential oils

Learning how to make bath oil with essential oils is stupendously simple. Combine carrier oils suited to your skin type with essential oils. Choose them for their proven effects on mood, but also for their delicious scent profiles.

In this article, discover how to decide whether to use a surfactant to disperse the oils. Then, we show you how you don't even need a bath to enjoy the fantastic skin-enhancing properties of bath oils because you can use them in the Shower too.

We guide you on preparing for this and getting the most from the bath oil with essential oils by massaging it into your skin. Massaging boosts your circulation, gets your lymphatic system moving, and helps to regenerate your skin cells, all helping to make your skin appear smoother, supple, and more youthful. Who wouldn't want that? 

Why Should You Use Bath Oils With Essential Oils?

When you learn how to make bath oils with essential oils, you will discover that it gives you perfect control over all ingredients and that you can tailor the formulations just for you and your clients or to make excellent holiday gifts for your friends and family.

Bath oils can be wonderfully soothing, and you will find them a perfect way to feed, nourish, soften and protect your skin. But not to relax you and relieve the stress of the day.

Look at your arm for a moment. See all those tiny hairs? Eerie hair sits on a hair follicle that betrays the presence of a pore. The skin is the largest organ in the body and is semi-permeable. Each pore is like a doorway into the body. Warm water makes those pores open.

Water supports the body allowing the muscles to rest as the oils enter. Don't forget that the warm water releases the vapors we inhale and soothe our minds.

Massaging the oils into your skin while in the warmth of the bath waters offer some of the following benefits:

    • Reduce stiffness in the joints and fight fatigue
    • Keep the skin fresh, glowing, and supple
    • Encourages better circulation
    • Strengthens the immune system

This would support the decision not to use a dispersant in your bath oil. More on that later.

Bath Oil VS Bath Melts

Bath melts are a relative newcomer, especially in a market that has seen bath oils in use for thousands of years. 

Bath melts are made of cosmetic butter, carrier oils, and essential oils, designed to be melted into warm bath water. 

They offer added nourishment and skin-smoothing properties from the cosmetic butter, which can add a luxurious element to the bath. 

However, from my experience with bath melts, they make a real mess of your bathtub after, and it takes some cleaning to get all the residue off. Spoils the fun for me, for sure.

However, if bath oils have been used for thousands of years and are good enough for Cleopatra, let us focus on those wonders instead!

Advantages of Bath Oil for Skin Care

Massage the Bath Oil Into Your Skin

When used in the right way, bath oils can have a tremendous effect not only on your skin but also on your circulation. It may be tempting to pour it into the bath and soak up the goodness, but you are missing a trick if you don't massage and work that oil into your skin.

Massaging that sumptuous bath oil with essential oils into your skin is the best thing you can do. Massaging stimulates blood and lymphatic flow, bringing blood into the capillaries for a luscious post-bath glow. This can also help relieve aching muscles and reduce stress and anxiety levels.

Stimulating your blood flow is fabulous for the wellbeing of your skin, kickstarting skin cell production, which leads to firmer, plumper, younger-looking skin. Not to mention a significant boost to your immune system.

While you are in the warming waters of the bath, your skin's pores will also be opened, ready to accept the fabulous gift of oils you are about to bestow upon it. Nourishing and feeding your skin with the remarkable properties of your chosen oils.

Power of Choice 

Now, the word 'choice' here is vital because that is what you have when learning to make bath oils with essential oils. You have control over the choice of ingredients you wish to include, which is a mighty powerful thing.

Choosing the best, ethically sourced, and well-provenanced carrier and essential oils are truly wondrous. It may leave you feeling a little smug and happy that you did something great for the planet and your skin.

Tailor Made For You

The choice of carrier oils should be suited to your skin type, and we will look at this in more detail shortly.

Your choice of essential oils would be based on what type of bath oil you are trying to create. Do you want something deeply relaxing? Body firming? Or something wickedly sensuous and a bit daring?

Let's talk about those essential oils in more detail.

Best Essential Oils to Use for Bath Oil

My first comment here would be - if you would not usually put it in your bath, then do not put it in bath oil. Stay away from known skin irritants and sensitizers for apparent reasons.

This is where it is imperative to check and follow the safety data. You are making something you are about to immerse your whole body in. You want it to be correct.

Other than those known irritants and sensitizers, you have many to choose from, and the world is your oyster.

But how do you choose?

Keep things simple if this is a new concept and something you have yet to try. Try one carrier oil and maybe only add one or two essential oils to try it out. Remember to always do a 24-hour patch test before using it first.

Just like when constructing perfume, when creating a blend of essential oils, you want to consider the properties of the essential oil themselves and their scents.

In a perfume blend, you would have a top, middle, and base note which make up the fragrance's body.

You can learn more about how to construct the perfect blend for perfume and any of your essential oil-based products in this article on How to Make Perfumes with Essential Oils.

I always like to think about the bathing experience; what am I trying to achieve? What do I want the experience to be?

Do I want to be soothed because I'm feeling fractious and tetchy?

Do I want to be cocooned in something wondrous because I need to feel cosseted?

Do I want to feel sexy and impressive for a hot date?

Or do I need to sleep?

This is where you need to think about the properties of your essential oils and their ability to affect your mood and wellbeing and the scent profiles.

Some more vital scented essential oils translate very well into filling the bathroom with scent. Still, you will often want the subtle effects of less highly scented essential oils, so find your balance.

I will include plenty of well-balanced and highly fragranced blends to get you started. Check them out below.

Best Carrier Oils to Use for Bath Oil

If you have a nut allergy, you should not use any of the nut oils on your skin. If you are unsure which oils come from a nut, check out the individual carrier oils on the website for more detailed information.

There are many excellent carrier oils; where do you start? Well, that is easy, start with your skin type and choose oils that suit you. 

Check out my Carrier Oil for Skin Type - Ready Reckoner for a head start. Then pop right back because you don't want to miss a thing!

Here are some of my best recommendations for all skin types to get you started:

1. Jojoba Oil

Is the closest carrier oil we have to replicate our body's natural sebum, and for this reason, it is a multi-purpose oil that suits all skin types. It is easily absorbed into the skin, feeding and nourishing it deeply. It is also wonderful to use on your hair and scalp, so don't be afraid to give yourself a treat from head to toe with this one.

2. Rosehip Oil

Full of Linoleic Acid, also commonly known as Vitamin F, is well renowned for plumping the skin and complexion but also plays a role in strengthening the skin offering enhanced protection. Commercially, it is used extensively in cosmetic treatments and applications that protect the skin from premature aging and environmental damage. It is also super loaded with Vitamin C, which is lovely for anti-aging preparations.

3. Argan Oil

Many of the benefits of Argan Oil are found in its composition; nearly 80% of it is essential fatty acids (Omega 6 and 9). Both of these are potent antioxidants that can soften the skin deeply. Hydrating, nourishing, and feeding the skin, helps to smooth out, plump, and refine the skin's surface. It is this effect that helps your skin look younger. Again, another excellent oil for your scalp and hair for a tip-to-toe experience.

4. Sweet Almond Oil

Is a great oil to bring the skin back to life. However, it is one that is best combined with another to give lightness to the thicker consistency of Sweet Almond Oil and encourage a little more slipperiness. It is an oil that has been used to nourish and restore skin for thousands of years for good reason. It may be one to avoid if you have very greasy skin; plump for Jojoba instead, in that instance.

How To Make bath oil With Essential Oils


    • Large Mixing Jug 
    • Small Mixing Jug
    • Funnel
    • Stainless Steel Spoon or Stirrer
    • Dark Amber Glass Bottles and Lids.
    • Labels


    • Selection of Carrier Oils
    • Selection of Essential Oil

Optional Ingredients

    • Bath Dispersant Base (Surfactant) such as Polysorbate 80 - use a 1:1 ratio of 5- 20% of your finished volume. 

*Note that different manufacturers may have different instructions, so always follow the manufacturers' guidelines for the product you are using.


    1. Carefully pour your chosen carrier oils into the mixing jug to the desired measure.
    2. Measure out your essential oils into a small measuring jug
    3. At this point, if you are not using a surfactant, skip stepping 5.
    4. Add the same volume of Polysorbate 80 and mix well to combine thoroughly. (For example: If you have 10ml of essential oil, add 10 ml of Polysorbate 80).
    5. Pour this gently into your carrier oil and stir thoroughly to combine totally.
    6. Using a funnel, decant the oils into your amber glass bottles and secure the lid tightly.
    7. Label and date the bottles.
    8. Store in a cool, dark place with a consistent and ambient temperature.

DIY Bath Oil Recipe

This recipe focuses on making approximately 500ml (2 cups) of bath oil; you can always make more by multiplying the ingredients. However, creating small batches, if you are making them for yourself, is best, especially if you do not use them that often because the carrier oils can sometimes go rancid after some time.

However, if you are anything like me and bathe every day, I would make a big batch for myself, as I know I will use it within a month or two.

Also, note that I am working with Polysorbate 80 here; if you have a different surfactant, you will need to read and follow the manufacturer's guidelines that might differ from mine in how much you need to add and when you need to add it.

Ok…are you ready to dive in?

How To Make bath oil With Essential Oils - My Favorite Recipes and Blends

Cosset Me

I am focusing here on that slightly thicker consistency of Sweet Almond Oil so the skin feels enveloped and 'held.' The essential oils that I have chosen repeat time and again where we need our mood and nerves soothed, but also have the double whammy effect of being fabulous and sublime for our skin.

Cosset Me
Carrier Oils
Sweet Almond Oil Argan Oil
1 cup 1 cup
Essential Oils
Rose Otto Essential Oil
(Rosa damascena)
Violet Leaf Absolute
(Viola ordorata L.)
Cardamom Essential Oil
(Elettaria cardamomum)
Fresh Ginger Root Essential Oil
(Zingiber Officinale)
50 drops 50 drops 25 drops 25 drops
Optional: Surfactant - based on using Polysorbate 80
Equivalent volume approximately
= 7.5ml or 1 ½ tsp
Safety: Not for use in the first 16 weeks of Pregnancy.

Soothe Me

Sometimes our day gets the better of us and our mood. It is then that we need something to make us feel a bit more human again. There is nothing complicated about this bath oil, it does what it says on the label! You will be feeling yourself in no time.

Soothe Me
Carrier Oils
Jojoba Oil Sweet Almond Oil
1 ½ Cups ½ Cup
Essential Oils
French Lavender Essential Oil
(Lavandula Angustifolia)
Roman Chamomile Essential Oil
(Anthemis nobilis L.)
Palo Santo Essential Oil
(Bursera Graveolens)
Palmarosa Essential Oil
(Cymbopogon Martinii Var Motia)
55 drops 25 drops 5 drops 30 drops
Optional: Surfactant - based on using Polysorbate 80
Equivalent volume approximately
= 6ml or 1 ¼ tsp
Safety: Not for use in the first 16 weeks of Pregnancy.

Smooth and Seduce Me

One for when you want to make yourself feel suitable for no other reason than it pleases you! Feed your skin and your soul all at the same time. This is one to pamper yourself wholeheartedly with; go for it and enjoy!

Smooth and Seduce Me
Carrier Oils
Jojoba Oil Rosehip Oil Argan Oil
1 Cup ¼ cup ¾ cup
Essential Oils
Frankincense Essential Oil
(Boswellia Serrata)
Rose Otto Essential Oil
(Rosa Damascena)
Rose Geranium Essential Oil
(Pelargonium Asperum Var Roseum)
20 drops 30 drops 50 drops
Optional: Surfactant - based on using Polysorbate 80
Equivalent Volume Approximately
= 5 ml or 1 tsp
Safety: Not for use in the first 16 weeks of Pregnancy.

Sex Me Up

This should come with a warning label - 'Too Hot to Handle! Best saved for that hot date night. Maybe even a bath or Shower for two, but remember the warning about avoiding 'intimate bits' don't ruin your fun too soon!

Please keep the long list of essential oils from putting you on trying it out for yourself. It is the most beautiful, sumptuous, and seductive bath oil, and it evokes those ancient recipes that are truly fit for a King or Queen.

Sex Me Up
Carrier Oils
Argan Oil Rosehip Oil Jojoba Oil Coconut MCT Oil
½ Cup ¼ Cup ¾ Cup ½ Cup
Essential Oils
Patchouli Essential Oil
(Pogostemon Cablin)
Sandalwood Amyris Essential Oil
(Amyris Balsamifera)
Grapefruit Essential Oil
(Citrus Paradisi)
Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
(Cananga Odorata)
30 drops 10 drops 30 drops 40 drops
Palmarosa Essential Oil
(Cymbopogon Martinii Var Motia)
Sweet Orange Essential Oil
(Citrus Sinensis L)
Cardamom Essential Oil
(Elettaria Cardamomum)
Fresh Ginger Root Essential Oil
(Zingiber Officinale)
50 drops 50 drops 15 drops 15 drops
Optional: Surfactant - based on using Polysorbate 80
Equivalent volume approximately
= 11ml or 2¼ tsp
Safety: Not for use in the first 37 weeks of Pregnancy.

Knock Me Out

For the time when all you want to do is sleep. Massaging the bath oil into your skin will also help that process, so don't underestimate how important that can be. Especially when you are exhausted and, perhaps, want to soak.

Knock Me Out
Carrier Oils
Jojoba Oil Rosehip Oil
1 ¾ Cup ¼ Cup
Essential Oils
Lavender Essential Oil
(Lavandula Angustifolia)
Vetiver Essential Oil
(Vetiveria Zizanoides)
Marjoram Essential Oil
(Origanum Majorana)
Patchouli Essential Oil
(Pogostemon Cablin)
100 drops 30 drops 50 drops 20 drops
Optional: Surfactant - based on using Polysorbate 80
Equivalent volume approximately
= 10ml or 2 tsp
Safety: Not for use in the first 16 weeks of Pregnancy.

How to Use bath oil in Shower

If you use bath oil in the Shower, leave out the surfactant, you will not need it.

Make your bath oil from just carrier and essential oils.

Plan here. Make sure you have a non-slip bath/shower mat fitted ready; the last thing you want to do is slip and fall in a slippery, oily shower tray.

Your bath oil might be better in a plastic pump bottle. You want to avoid handling a slippy glass bottle with oily hands while in the Shower. It is an accident waiting to happen. Please note - I do not advocate keeping your whole stock of bath oil in a plastic bottle, but decanting a small amount to use within a few days will be fine. Then, refill from a glass bottle as and when you need it.

There are a couple of ways you can use this oil in the Shower.

Rinse Off Method

Firstly you could use the 'Rinse Off Method,' which I recommend if you are including oiling and massaging your scalp and hair in this rather luscious routine.

After warming your skin, and opening your pores for a couple of minutes in the flow of the warm water, pump a few pumps of bath oil into your hand and start to massage the bath oil into your body. Working from your feet up and always working in upward strokes to encourage the lymphatic system and get circulation going. Avoid any intimate areas. Depending on what carrier and essential oils you have chosen, you could continue to massage your scalp and nourish your hair with the oil. Argan oil is perfect for your hair, scalp, and skin.

Let the bath oil soak in for a couple of minutes - to save yourself from getting chilly and to help the oils absorb, wrap yourself in a big warm, fluffy towel while you wait.

Then, rinse thoroughly in warm water with regular soap/shampoo products. You may find your hair needs more than one rinse with shampoo to remove all the traces of oil.

Leave On Method

The Leave-In Method works the opposite way to the above; you would use all your regular shower products first and then apply the bath oil once finished with your Shower.

Sometimes, people like to finish their showers with a cold water blast; you want to do something other than this. Your pores need to be warmed and open to benefit from the bath oil application.

Pump the desired amount of bath oil into your hands and, starting from your feet, using strokes upward, apply all over your body and save those intimate areas. You should avoid including your hair unless you plan to wash your hair the following day and sleep with a towel upon your pillow slip to avoid oil stains.

Whichever you choose, the key to great skin here is as much in the massaging action as it is in oils. So help wring every last inch of goodness from those oils by giving yourself an excellent and vigorous massage. You will not regret it, and your skin will thank you for it.

Precautions of DIY bath oil With Essential Oils

If you do not dilute essential oils in your bath, they sit on the surface of the bath water and cause quite a reaction - I had a spectacular reaction once after using some Lime essential oil I picked up by mistake. Talk about being like an itchy lobster, hopping around the bathroom!

Therefore, using a surfactant to disperse the oils into the bath water is a safer way to add essential oils both in and into your bath oil.

Avoid using essential oils known for causing irritation or sensitization when using bath oil. However, making them soluble only sometimes means they will reduce the chances of hurting your skin.

Now, carrier oils are notoriously slippery in the bath. I think my sisters and I nearly killed my poor dad several times after using bath oil in the bath. You would hear him shout down the stairs, "Who used bath oil again and didn't clean the bath"? As funny as it was then, we would have stopped laughing had he slipped and hurt himself.

Sensible precautions, like using a non-slip bath mat when getting in and out of the bath, need to be taken.

Handling a glass bottle with oily hands while sitting in the bath is also a recipe for an accident. Instead, decant what you need into the bath BEFORE you get into it, and if you feel you want more oil to massage into your skin, decant a little into a plastic pump bottle and use that instead. Much safer and easier to use.

Cleaning the bath after using carrier oils is also a must. It will leave a thin oil coating on the bath - thankfully, it is much easier to remove than the residue from a bath melt!

Important Question

Can I Put Essential Oils Directly in My Bath?

We have covered the majority of this question in the section above.

Before putting them into your bath, you would always want to dilute or make your essential oils soluble with a surfactant.

If you add them directly to the bathwater, the essential oil sits on top of the surface of the bathwater, and as you can learn from my experience, sometimes, that is the last thing you want to do, and it can cause quite an irritation.

Final Thought

With all the incredible advantages of using bath oils with added essential oils, your skin benefits from the deeply nourishing and skin-smoothing benefits of the oils and your mood and demeanor. 

You can use these bath oil blends to lull you to sleep, soothe your frayed nerves, reduce the stress of the day, and make you feel cosseted and your skin comforted. Not to mention a rather racy one to help you get ready and in the mood for a daring night of sensuous fun! Oooh, La La.

You will now know which carrier oils to choose for your skin type and which essential oils best suit your needs. You can choose whether to use a surfactant or not, whichever suits your needs best. You can even choose to use them in the Shower instead of the bath.

Nothing is stopping you from learning how to make bath oils with essential oils. So get stuck in and reap all those attractive benefits!

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