When fishing for carp, tench, or big common bream, I have always used a variety of boilie dips for my hookbaits. They have the ability to really boost your boilies’ attraction and flavour, which can lead to far more bites. To many anglers, boilie dips remain to be something exotic and mystical. So, what exactly are boilie dips and how do you actually use them?
Boilie dips are liquid or semi-liquid glycerin-based bait attractors that come in all types of flavours and colors. They are also miscible in water, making them a very natural bait enhancement that blends in well and spreads its flavors all over the swim.
Read this article to learn all about boilie dips and how they can improve your baits.
What Are Boilie Dips?
Boilie dips are liquids that are used to enhance your hookbaits’ (boilies, pop-ups, fake corn, etc) natural flavors and attraction in the swim. They are supercharged with a specific bait flavor and have a strong, intense taste and odor to them. Boilie dips come in all colors of the rainbow and in dozens, perhaps even hundreds of different flavors.
They are most commonly made from glycerin, which is glycerol; a colorless and odorless non-toxic liquid that tastes sweet and is used as a sweetener in the food industry. Additionally, glycerin has antiviral and antimicrobial properties and is miscible with water.
All in all, glycerin is the perfect base compound for boilie dips. All that’s usually added is the flavor and color of the boilie range the dip is matching. This way, using a boilie dip on its matching boilie will drastically boost the boilie’s flavor, and thereby its attraction, as the added in flavors are practically identical in both boilie and dip.
Boilie Dips, or bait dips, as they can be used for any type of natural or artificial bait, can be ranging from very liquid, to semi-liquid, or even thicker than that. Super thick and sticky dips are usually called glugs.
Different Types of Boilie Dips and Bait Attractors
This is the most common type of boilie booster. Usually, every respectable boilie range has its own boilie dip, but there are also completely unique and odd flavor variants. Examples of these can include “Shitty Lobster”, “Vodka” or “Bacon”. They are most commonly used to enhance your hookbait and the particles that come with it (usually in a PVA bag or stick).
Simply dip the hookbait (and PVA bag) into the boilie dip, or pour some of the dip onto a handful of hookbaits in a small bait container for longer marination.
Thicker types of boilie dips are commonly used for long-term bait preparation of boilies or particles. The glug’s sticky texture makes that it both slowly oozes into the baits and also attaches itself to them.
Boilie glugs are used in greater quantities than dips, in order to prepare large amounts of bait, usually for purposes of pre-baiting a swim with flavor-enhanced boilies or particles.
This is a rather crafty invention that has brought the world of bait and boilie dips to a whole new level. Bait goos are dips, soaks and glugs in one bait boost.
You can either sprinkle goo directly onto your hookbait, marinate larger amounts of boilies with it, or mix your particles or groundbait with some goo, in order to give it a little more pep.
Bait goos also have the amazing ability to create slowly expanding flavor clouds under water, as the goo is slowly coming off your hookbait and spreads itself.
Here are two of my favorite Korda Goo Flavours:
I actually made an explainer video on how to prepare your baits with Korda Goo, which is the most popular of bait goos:
These are cheaper flavored liquids that come in greater quantities, usually of 500-1000ml. Groundbait attractors boost your groundbait or particles with specific flavors.
Classic flavors include Brasem, Scopex, Tutti Frutti or Strawberry. Fish and krill oils are also very commonly used groundbait and particle attractors that are super efficient.
Insider Tip: Qualitative attractors can also be used as bait dips, for example for your fake corn, sweetcorn or fake maggots.
Here is a YouTube video I did on how you can use boilie dips and groundbait attractors to boost your fake corn:
Bait and groundbait additives usually come in powder form and are somewhat less advanced boosters. Much like groundbait attractors, they are meant to boost your groundbait a little, giving them an extra bit of flavor or a combination of them.
You actually have quite the arsenal of bait additives at home in your kitchen! Spice powders are a commonly used additives that many anglers appreciate.
Flavors that could be of interest for your fishing include vanilla, curry or cinnamon. I have often used these cheaper alternatives when first starting to fish for bream and tench.
What Are The Best Boilie Dip Flavours?
While you can use boilie dips all year round, there are certain differences when it comes to warm and cold water flavors that should be considered when preparing your baits. Here is a general rule that you can apply to your fishing:
Best Boilie Dip Flavours for Warm Water
During summer, when the water is warmer and the fish a little less active, strong and smelly flavours are much preferred by carp and other species.
Go for fishmeal- or seafood-based flavours when choosing your boilie dips. Perhaps, such flavors relate to the general environment that carp find themselves during the warmer months of the year.
There are plenty of fish everywhere spreading their scents, there are plenty of insects and freshwater crustaceans and mussels around, which carp love, by the way, and generally, the water just has that fishy smell to it.
Also, fishy baits and dips include a lot of protein, which relates to the carps’ increased activity and food sources during summer.
There is a gigantic range of fishy boilies and dips to choose from, just try out a few and see what produces bite sin your venue. Some of my all-time summer flavors, for both boilies and boilie dips, include:
- Sticky Baits The Krill (Best summer dip on the market, and super smelly! Find it on Amazon: here)
- Mainline High Impact Spicy Crab
- NashBaits Scopex Squid
Best Boilie Dip Flavours for Cold Water
In late autumn, winter, and early spring, carp and all other fish screw down their metabolism, which means that they feed a lot less during those colder months of the year.
They also need a longer time to digest the little food they eat, which is why you now have to go for baits and flavours that are a little lighter and easily digestible. Heavier baits and dips that are based on fish meal and/or meat are not what you want to offer during winter.
Heavier dips and oils have now also a harder time spreading and dissolving in the cold water of winter.
All this leads to boilie dips that are both lighter and more liquid. Most commonly the right boilie dip flavors to use during winter are fruity. They should be bright in color, super liquid and should have a very strong scent.
One of the absolute best flavors and boilie dips to use in winter are:
- Mainline High Impact High Leakage Pineapple (My absolute #1 for cold water! Find it on Amazon: here)
- Rod Hutchinson Legend Boilie Dip – Fruit Frenzy
- Mainline High Visual Pop-ups Pink Fruitella
Insider tip: Use bright and fluorescent baits and boilie dips in winter, as they can active and move even the slowest of carp! I have had immense success with yellow and fluo-colored baits and dips in cold water.
Best All Year Round Boilie Dip Flavours
If you only want to use one dip flavor to fish it during the entire season, you should go for nutty flavours! Nut-based boilie dips (and boilies, for that matter) have somewhat of a unique flavor range, which excludes them from both fish meal and fruity ingredients.
This makes nutty dips more of a general, year-round choice that nevertheless manages to combine both a zestful and sweet flavor, thanks to stronger, more spicy or piquant ingredients on the one hand, and milky and sweeter ones on the other.
Many nut-based boilies and boilie dips are also packed with amino acids and proteins, which equal highly nutritive food sources for carp and other species.
Some of the best nutty boilie dips are:
- Dynamite Baits The Source (My personal favorite for both carp and bream. Find it on Amazon: here)
- Dynamite Baits Monster Tigernut
- Sticky Baits Manilla
How Do You Use Boilie Dips on Your Baits?
The easiest way of flavoring your hookbait with a boilie dip is by simply dipping your bait into the dip. This is a fast and smooth way to boost your bait while fishing on the bank.
Ideally, you should have your bait already on your rig or hair and simply let it down into the dip container, while holding on to your hooklink. If you are using PVA bags, you can also put one on your hook and dip it together with your boilie or pop-up. This way, your hands will stay clean and you can cast our your dipped baits directly afterward.
Goos and glugs should be dripped or poured onto your hookbaits or feed boilies.
Do not pour regular boilie dips onto your baits, as dips are more expensive than glugs and should hence only be used to dip your hookbaits in. Similarly, do not drip boilie dips onto your baits the way you would do with the goos, as there will be spillage and you will be wasting part of your precious dip, without it ever coming in contact with your hookbait.
Dripping goo onto your hookbaits is the most efficient way of boosting them with such a boilie attractor, as goo is extremely sticky and will stay on your baits. So is pouring glugs onto larger amounts of feed boilies in a container, as this will prevent spillage and allow for many boilies to be boosted all at once.
Some baits can be injected with boilie dips or bait boosters. Certain soft plastic baits, such as larger fake corn or fake bread, are commonly injected with dips.
Another way of boosting your baits from the inside is by using a syringe and injecting dips or attractors into your PVA bag or stick. Rather than having a drippy PVA bag when casting out, the groundbait or particles inside the PVA mesh will hold the booster locked inside, until the PVA hits the bottom and starts to release its content. This can create a nice, thick flavor cloud in your swim.
Pouring glug onto your feed boilies is one way of soaking your baits over a longer period of time, but there are others!
Soaking your hookbaits in a small bait container for a short, or a very long period of time can increase their attraction immensely. Simply always have a few such containers with you in your fishing bag, in order to always have some fresh and smelly baits ready for the hook.
Enhancing your particles by soaking them in glug or bait attractors is yet another way. Long-term soaking of particles, such as maize, pellets, beans or hem seeds, makes your feed more complete and creates a wonderful carpet and cloud of all types of mixed flavors that will slowly spread through your swim.
Soaked particles like that are commonly used in spod mixes, which then become super drippy, semi-liquid and highly attractive.
How Long Should Baits Soak in Boilie Dips?
For Short Fishing Trips
As briefly explained above, the soaking time of your baits for shorter day sessions can be kept to a minimum. Of course, it’s good to have some readily soaked baits in your arsenal.
Those can have soaked for a couple of hours, or perhaps a day or two in advance. That will give them enough attraction to draw in fish that are already near your swim and can produce bites fairly quickly.
But sometimes, you just don’t have time for any bait preparation in advance, or you simply forget about it. If you don’t have any pre-soaked baits with you, that is not a problem at all. Dipping and quickly soaking them on the bank, just before casting out, is very efficient as well!
Soaking your boilie, and preferably, a PVA stick or bag, for just 30 seconds or so will be totally enough! They will be boosted just enough to create the necessary attraction and to create a small, very localized flavor cloud around your hookbait.
While also carrying some extra free offerings, the PVA actually has another major task here, as it acts as a carrier of your boilie dip liquid. The dip will stay attached to the PVA, or within it, far longer than on the outer layers of your hookbait, thereby prolonging the boost effect of the boilie dip in your swim.
Here is a third YouTube video I recorded that shows you how to soak your baits for short or long sessions.
For Long Fishing Trips
If you planning a weekend session, or perhaps a trip that will last even longer, you should definitely soak your baits for a longer period of time.
Count weeks, but if you can arrange it, start soaking them months in advance! This can be done quite easily during winter when there isn’t much fishing going on anyways.
Soaking your hookbaits in winter will give them 3-6 months to really sponge up all that liquid and flavor. Then in spring or early summer, when it’s time to get to the bank, your baits will be soaked up and ready for action.
Long fishing trips are often planned well in advance, which gives you the time, and motivation, you need to prepare and soak your baits long-term.
Another important argument for long-term soaking is that your baits will probably be in the water far longer than during a short session. As you have much more time on your hands, naturally, you will leave your rigs in your swim longer as well and not recast as often. Also, your baits might be in the water for the whole night, when you are sleeping and the carp aren’t in the mood.
In order for the baits to remain boosted that long, extensive soaking is definitely required if you want your baits to give off that little extra flavor the entire time.
Now that you know everything about boilie dips and bait boosters, I hope that you will start using these little helpers the next time you head out to the bank.
Essential Tackle Tips
If you’re looking for solid and reliable carp fishing equipment, these tips might be useful for you.
The following tackle is of top quality and sells at a very decent price on Amazon.
I have been using this setup myself for many years and have caught plenty of big carp with it.
Rod: Daiwa Black Widow
A very strong and beautifully made 12ft 3lb carp rod with a ton of backbone and a great bend. Casts anything up to 5 oz extremely well and lets you navigate and control your fish smoothly and effectively. Fits both open and snaggy waters.
A reliable standard-sized baitrunner reel that works great for short to medium-distance carp fishing. Loads around 200 yards of 15-18lb monofilament mainline. Handles any wild run very smoothly! Fits the Black Widow rod perfectly.
Mainline: Daiwa Sensor 15lb
One of the strongest and most durable monofilament lines out there! Sells at a very good price and will last you for many fishing trips. Has just the right amount of stretch to perfectly hook and fight every fish.