The Best Bath Water Filters to Reduce Toxins

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Regular tap water can be a source of many chemicals from chlorine to fluoride and many others. We have a water filter for our drinking water, so why not have a bath water filter too?

Thoughts on Bath Water Filters

I’ve gotten lots of water filters over the years. While I still use the drinking water filter, I’ve added a whole house filter too. This helps further reduce contaminants throughout the home.

For showering and bathing, we also use shower filters on our shower heads. When my kids were younger and taking baths though, I wanted a good option for bath water. They’re not easy to find! I told my dad (an engineer) that he needs to work on one of these.

In the meantime, I wanted to find ways to reduce the chemicals my children were exposed to during bath time. My son had allergies and skin troubles since he was a baby, so it was especially important for him. Thanks to some food and lifestyle changes we’ve been able to mostly get rid of those.

Step one was switching to more natural bath products. Even homemade bath bubbles helped. Still, I knew I wanted to do something more.

Toxins in Bath Water?

While the EPA regulates water quality in the US, there’s still plenty to be desired. High levels of heavy metals, like lead from old pipes, can cause problems. Then there are the PFAS (forever chemicals), pesticides, and other contaminants.

What’s added to public drinking water isn’t any better. Fluoride is a known neurotoxin. And chlorine is a poisonous gas. While the idea is that diluted amounts aren’t harmful, that may not be the case.

Most municipal water supplies use chlorine to help reduce pathogens in the water. Some combine chlorine with ammonia or add fluoride. These chemicals are known to increase the risk of asthma, allergies, breathing problems, cancer, and more. They’re toxic when ingested or absorbed through the skin.

Children: A Special Concern

Unfortunately, this puts children most at risk. Some children bathe for 45 minutes or more several nights a week. They also have a larger surface-area-to-body-weight ratio and may absorb chemicals more quickly. They can also be more severely affected by them.

Children’s tissues, organs, and biological systems are still developing. They go through several stages of rapid growth and development from infancy to adolescence. These factors make it so children are likely to have more issues with toxins. Especially at certain age ranges.

Types of Shower & Bath Filtration

We don’t want our kids soaking in a toxic soup, but what can we do about it? And on the occasion I take a relaxing soak, I don’t want to bathe in toxins either!

There are several different options, depending on your preference and budget. For people with rust and really hard water, a water softener is a great first step. Culligan is one popular option. This is more common with well water. Tap water in cities is more likely to have added fluoride and chlorine to it.

Whole House Filter

One of the best ways to get out toxins is with a whole-house water filter system. This water filtration system helps clean water before it even gets to the tub. Here’s the one we have. For added protection, you can pair this with a faucet water filter or shower filter.

Bath Ball Filter

These are a popular option that are budget-friendly. The bath ball hangs on the bathtub faucet and filters the water as it flows through. The filtration media in it can catch sediment and neutralize chlorine. Some popular brands are Crystal Quest and Sprite. Replacement filter cartridges vary in price and quality. Crystal Quest bath filters claim to remove a much wider variety of contaminants.

One common complaint is bath ball filters don’t do well with hard water. Another issue is they don’t work well with the flow rate of certain tubs. The fast water flow can spill over the sides, leaving some water unfiltered.

I like using this bath ball de-chlorinator instead. You just swish it around in the water for 5-8 minutes before getting in. This water purifier is good for over 200 baths and uses vitamin C as the filter media.

Shower Filter

We also have a shower filter the kids and I use. If you have a good shower filter you can also use that to fill up your tub. It takes longer though and the water may not be as warm by the time you get to it.

Here’s what else I do to reduce chemicals in our bath water.

Vitamin C to Reduce Bath Toxins

Carbon block filters remove chlorine, but they can be tough to use for shower and bath water. I have a countertop filter that uses carbon for drinking water. You can also find them in under sink water filter options.

A simpler option is to use Vitamin C. Vitamin C is great for the immune system, but it can also play a role in reducing bath water chemicals and chlorine. It also helps with chloramine (chlorine and ammonia). These chemicals are often used in treating water and can be more dangerous than chlorine alone.

Two forms of Vitamin C will work to neutralize chlorine more effectively:

Personally, I prefer to use sodium ascorbate since it has less of an effect on the pH. But either form will work. I use a teaspoon of either of the above per tub of water. It’s best to put the powder in for 2-5 minutes before getting in the bath to allow it time to work.

If you aren’t a fan of adding powder to the bath each time, there’s another option. The bath ball de-chlorinator mentioned earlier does the same thing.

Adsorbent Clay

Healing clays (like Bentonite clay) bind to heavy metals in the body and help remove them. They’re used as an adsorbent even across industrial and agricultural industries. This same process happens on the skin, and many people use it in detox baths.

One of my favorites is Bentonite Clay (from a previous post):

“Bentonite Clay is a unique clay due to its ability to produce an “electrical charge” when hydrated. Upon contact with fluid, its electrical components change, giving it the ability to absorb toxins. Bentonite is known for its ability to absorb and remove toxins, heavy metals, impurities, and chemicals.”

I use Bentonite Clay to detox my hair and as a “shampoo” of sorts. I also regularly add bentonite clay to my kids’ baths after removing the chlorine.

Note: Don’t use metal when dealing with Bentonite, as it makes it less effective. I mix 2 tablespoons of Bentonite clay with water in a glass jar with a plastic lid and shake well. I then pour this into the bath after the chlorine has been removed. The two types of clay I personally use and have good results with are:

Salts & Minerals

While these don’t reduce toxins in bath water, they help add nutrients back in. I’ve written before (a lot) about magnesium (tired of hearing about it yet?). Due to depleted soil levels of magnesium and synthetic fertilizers, many of us don’t get enough magnesium. One of the easiest ways to help kids avoid this problem is to add these minerals to their bath water.

One 2016 study examined how well magnesium is absorbed through the skin. The researchers found magnesium levels increased in the skin starting at the 15-minute mark.

I regularly add a cup of Epsom salts or magnesium flakes and a few tablespoons of Himalayan salt to my kid’s baths. When I have the time, I take a relaxing bath in this mixture also. Ideally, you’ll want to soak for at least 15 minutes for the best results.

When I don’t have time for a bath, magnesium oil also helps. I notice the benefits of transdermal magnesium (baths or magnesium oil) much more quickly than when I take internal forms of magnesium.

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Relaxing Magnesium Bath Salts

These soothing magnesium bath salts add a relaxing dose of healthy minerals to bathwater
Prep Time5 minutes
Total Time5 minutes
Yield: 1 bath
Author: Katie Wells



  • Mix the salt and magnesium together in the jar.
  • Sprinkle the vanilla and essential oil on top (if using). These are optional, but add a nice scent and some added health benefits.
  • Add the entire mixture to a warm bath and soak for at least 20 minutes (30 is even better).


  • I try to make time for a relaxing bath at least once a week.
  • When my kids were little I added it to their bath each night, (plus some homemade bubble bath).

For intensive therapy (illness, eczema, etc.) you can take a magnesium bath every day. But check with your doctor first if you have any medical conditions.

So to recap, here are the steps I do to reduce toxins in our bathwater:

Do you use a bath water filter? Do you add anything to your kid’s bath water? Leave a comment and let me know!

Katie Wells Avatar

About Katie Wells

Katie Wells, CTNC, MCHC, Founder of Wellness Mama and Co-founder of Wellnesse, has a background in research, journalism, and nutrition. As a mom of six, she turned to research and took health into her own hands to find answers to her health problems. is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the Wellness Mama research team. Katie is also the author of the bestselling books The Wellness Mama Cookbook and The Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox.


204 responses to “The Best Bath Water Filters to Reduce Toxins”

  1. Laurie Bowers Avatar
    Laurie Bowers

    I want to start off by saying thank you. Thank you for your research into all the topics of affordable home health and the great products you have developed. I have made them in bulk and sold many of them in my spas. Spot on!

    Until recently I owned a few float centers which are also called sensory deprivation floats. We use 1000# of USP grade magnesium sulfate per float pod. This becomes a 30% magnesium sulphate solution when dissolved in 150-200 gallons of filtered water. Soaking (actually floating because the water is so dense with salt) is great for your hair, skin, and mental frame of mind as it calms the nervous system and fully relaxes the body.

    What I am saying is the Epsom salt is good for your little ones. It will calm and relax them. And give them the mineral nutrients to have increased organ and brain function, muscle control, reduced anxiety, improved mood, better sleep etc. I’m not a doctor, of course, but you can reference The Laureate Institute for Brain Research (Libr) where they study the effects of floatation on ptsd and anxiety in military and non military members.

    Soaking in Epsom salt is one of the best things you can do for your skin and body overall. My point is the more the better. Considering my line of work I can safely say you are not going to be able to add too much Epsom salt to your home bath. 😉

    At home we also have shower filters. When filling a tub at home we use an RV filter adapted to connect to the shower. Easy peasy. I love to add a cup of ground oatmeal to two cups of Epsom salt at home. Where the Epsom salt detoxes your skin the oatmeal nourishes and moisturizes.

    Thanks Again for your hard work!!!

  2. Pilula Avatar

    Why not just squeeze a lemon in your bath for vitamin c?

  3. Danielle H Avatar
    Danielle H

    So, chemically speaking, is it safe to add Vitamin C/Ascorbic Acid or Calcium Ascorbate AND Epsome salts to the same bath? Is it bad to add them both in the water at the same time, or should you add Vit C first, wait & then add the Epsome Salts? Or Bentonite Clay? Just curious how timing might affect the effectiveness of each addition.

    1. Jamie Larrison Avatar

      Vitamin C and Epsom salts should not interact negatively with each other. Because bentonite clay absorbs things it may reduce the effectiveness of other minerals and vitamins if added to the bath with them though.

  4. Ashlee Avatar

    Good information! Just a friendly FYI about adding essential oils to a bath, especially when using it with little ones. They need to be properly mixed with a liquid soap such as Castile, then that soap can be stirred into the salts and it can be used immediately or stored for future use. If not you run the risk of being exposed to oils touching your skin without dilution (neat form.) Some companies have stronger oils and people, especially children, have been burned. Also make sure the oil you choose is safe for your bath, because they aren’t all created equally.

  5. Barbara Avatar

    Hi! I was just wondering how much vitamin you add to the add aka, the ratios of bath water amount to declorinator amount?

  6. Cortney Avatar

    Just curious if you measured the amount of fluoride (or other chemicals) before and after the above listed methods. And what the results were for you? Do the above methods actually work?

  7. Stacia Avatar

    Can you also add EPSOM SALT to this recipe? VIT C, Bentonite Clay and Epsom Salt?
    thank you

  8. sara long Avatar

    Hello –

    I noticed this article was written five years ago – are the recommendations still up to date? Thanks for your help.


  9. Leanne Avatar

    Thank you Wellness Mama for such an awesome article!

    I am curious if anyone has a recommendation for anti-slip bath tub mat since with adding the Bentonite Clay in the bath or taking baths in general, it could get slippery at times.

    Thank you in advance!

  10. Thea Avatar

    Do you have a concern about your children drinking the water once you add your suggestions to it? My daughter likes to put the water in her mouth so I stopped with magnesium flakes for a bit. But I was wondering if it’s a big deal.

  11. Chris Avatar

    Doing some research about Epsom salts for health and found this post. Do you know if any of the products put in the bath water to get rid of the yucky stuff will also decrease the benefits of the magnesium in the epsom salts? Thx!

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