17 Jan Make your own soap..here’s how
Have you ever wondered how soap is made?
There are 2 ways to make your own soap.
- The simplest method: heat soap pieces in a double boiler or micro-wave, stir in any of the following: essential oils or fragrances, dried herbs, for an exfoliating soap add oatmeal, ground coffee, poppy seeds, candle making dye then pour into soap molds, food molds, butter or candle molds.
2. Making soap from scratch:
You will need
- stainless steel, enamel, tempered glass bowl (do not use copper or aluminum or plastic as the plastic may melt)
- wooden or silicone spoon
- 6 cups distilled water
- 6 pounds of blended oils (olive, coconut, almond, lard, grape seed etc) Just using olive oil yields very slimy soap
- 13 oz lye: use 100% sodium hydroxide or lye in crystal form. Usually found in the grocery store. Lye is caustic and can cause burns on your skin so wear protective eye covering, face mask, gloves and an apron as the lye will eat holes in fabric. Once the lye mixes with the oils it is no longer dangerous. Lye heats up and will create fumes for about 30-60 seconds. Do not inhale the fumes
- molds, loaf pan or cloth-lined wet wooden box to pour the soap into
- optional: essential oils or fragrances, dried herbs, for an exfoliating soap add oatmeal, ground coffee, poppy seeds, candle making dye or any thing you want to use; loofah, insert rubber duckies, the options are endless
- white vinegar for clean up as it neutralizes the lye after the soap has been made. Rinse pots, spatula etc, with the vinegar than wash the equipment with soap and water.
Heat oils to 100 degree F
Mix 13 oz lye to 6 cups of water and cool to 100 degrees F. (do not add water to lye as it can splash) and begin stirring immediately. Once clear you can leave it to cool.
Carefully add the cooled lye solution to the oil mixture stirring steadily until this mixture is thick, creamy and traces. You can mix completely by hand (it may take an hour or longer) or hand mix for 10 minutes then use a blender or an immersion blender.
Once thick add herbs, essential oils or any other additions and stir thoroughly to combine.
Pour into molds and cover with plastic wrap then wrap the containers up in an old blanket or towel to keep warm. After 24 hours check the soap. If it is still warm or soft cover back up and let rest for another 18-24 hours. If it is cold and firm remove from mold and place on a baking rack. If you are using a loaf pan, cut into bars.
Allow the soap to cure for 4-6 weeks. After 4-6 weeks use a vegetable peeler and remove the white ash. The soap is ready to use. Wrap in air tight packaging or container for storage.