Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Vicks Pucks

I saw a great pin on Pinterest, but my sister got to it before could and now I get to learn from her how to do this one right. Carolyn says, "It's that time of year again. Time for my husband's biyearly sinus infection and for my bout of the cold. Both of us have been pretty stuffed up the past few days. I decided it was the perfect time to try out this pin since we both needed it sooo badly."

The Original Pin
"All they are made of: baking soda, water, and essential oils: eucalyptus, rosemary, and lavender. I lucked out and had a bunch of baking soda that had expired (from my grocery bridal shower over three years ago) so I figured, all it is used for is to hold the oil, and then dissolve in the water to release the scents. Water... if you don't have that you are in big trouble!! The oils I have been wanting to get for awhile, now I had an excuse to start an essential oil collection."

"So I gathered everything up and started to mix. Let me tell you, if you are very stuffed up go mix this up. You will be cleared out very well! Then I poured them into my lined muffin tin."

The Pinstrosity

It seemed pretty easy, but Carolyn says that filling the cups was where she thinks she went wrong first. "I didn't fill them up as far as the original blogger filled hers up. I didn't think to look at her picture to see how far she filled hers. I figured, since she didn't say how much to fill that I just needed to evenly divide it among my 12 muffin cups. Then I let them dry. While drying the kitchen smelled of Vicks for a good long while.
After they had dried I grabbed one and went to the shower, and stuck it on the floor. It dissolved beautifully... maybe a little too quickly. But no smell came from it. It did nothing for the sinuses. So the next day I tried to place it where it would be away from the main flow of water to see if slowly dissolving would release the "Vicks" better. Nope. Shower number three I started out with two discs, and nothing. When I was done soaping I sat on the shower floor, just enjoying the water, and put a third disc in with me, in another floor location. I kinda sorta started to smell the "Vicks."

"Annoyingly this batch was a bust. Luckily on the original blog there was this at the bottom of the post (added at a later date): "for anyone who is having issues with these being "crumbly", try using 1 cup of baking soda and 1/3 cup of water (plus maybe a few tbsp more) and baking for 20 minutes at 350. THEN add a few drops of essential oils to the cooled "puck". That was a suggestion from a commenter and I tried it this morning with great success!" 



  1. The same things happened to me and I made them twice! The second time I used the directions to avoid "crumbly" disks and it still came out terrible. This was such a waste of time, baking soda and essential oils.

  2. I did these too but with cheap paper cups & it was a disaster; HOWEVER...since it smelled up the house SO MUCH I took them out to the patio. Surprisingly, we haven't seen ONE mosquito, and we live in Montana! For someone who is allergic to mosquito bites & hates bug spray, I counted it a HUGE success!! :)

    1. Ooh! That's fantastic! I would have never thought about them keeping mosquitoes away. Good to know.

  3. A thought. When you go to pour the mixture into the cups, continuously stir between pours. The oils will separate from the water mixture. That's probably why she didn't smell anything until using the 3rd disk in the shower.

  4. I have a much better way of making these, much more like the Shower Soothers. Here is my recipe:
    1/4 cup baking soda
    1/4 cup cornstarch
    1/4 cup citric acid
    10-20 drops eucalyptus oil (or other desired fragrance, peppermint is nice as well!)
    2 tablespoons sweet almond oil
    Food coloring (optional)
    Witch hazel(just a spritz or two)

    Mix all dry ingredients, then add oils. Blend well. Spritz with witch hazel, mixing quickly until it's moist yet crumbly. Don't overwet mixture. Press into molds(old ice cube tray works well) and let dry 24 hours.

    There is a link to the how to (with pictures) on my personal blog. It is my most read/pinned/linked post!


  5. I have made these a few times as well and yeah, they do not ever come out! I cannot even get them out of my muffin pan (which had to be thrown out because it was so bad) This is a big waste of time, eo's, and baking soda. Oh and do NOT use cornstarch! It will clog up your drains BADDDDD! They always come out crumbly no matter what... I'm curious what people did to make them come out as pucks at all!

  6. I just made my first batch (twice in fact because they crumbled so badly!) but discovered that the FOIL muffin liners work much better than paper and do not disintegrate.

  7. We've made them with success. I bake mine without the oils (250 degrees for an hour or more) and then I add the oils to the puck. If you don't put it in the direct stream of your water, it works better. I stick mine on the little ledge in the shower.

    Hope it helps!

  8. Essential oils are voltile (?) and will evaporate with heat. You should add them after baking

  9. No matter what I do they crumble... HELP

  10. I have colds all the time due to my weakened immune system. I have tried many different things to help ease the symptoms at least for a little bit. When I found these on pinterest I was so excited I couldn't wait to get started. My first batch I did I let them dry for 18 hours, no baking, didn't work at all. 2nd batch I added some eo's to them, baked for about 10 minutes and then took them out of the liners (paper) very carefully. And added more drops of the oils. I've tried other methods and measurements to make them and that was by far my best batch. I don't put them in direct spray of the water,I put them up front where the water travels to get to the drain.that works to best for me,I could smell it wondefully and it lasted my whole shower, which was about 15 minutes as I didn't feel good and it was relaxing. These can be hard to make and get the kind of results we all want, my advice is each batch u try, do only a little at a time in case it doesn't work and keep a little journal to note what u did in case it tuns out fantastic. It does work, but it can take some practice.


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