How to Make Your Own Soap Bars at Home
Nearly 85% of U.S. households use bar soap. Not only are they cheaper than liquid soap, but they also last longer. On top of that, they don’t contain any preservatives.
Not all bar soaps are the same, though. For example, some contain sodium laureth sulfate (SLS), a surfactant that can irritate the skin and eyes.
One way to avoid undesirable ingredients is by making your own DIY soap bars—that way, you’ll know exactly what’s in the product.
Interested? Want to learn how to make soap from scratch? If so, you’re at the right place. Keep reading for a step-by-step guide!
Step 1: Select a Soap Base
It’s highly recommended that you use a melt and pour soap base if you’re a beginner. If anything, it’s the easiest way to make homemade soap.
For one thing, it’s already been through the saponification process (a chemical reaction that prepares the lye); this will speed up the soap making process.
Ingredient-wise, they often contain a combination of glycerin, purified water, alkali, and surface-active substances. Depending on the base, it may also contain add-ons such as oatmeal, cocoa butter, aloe vera, or goat’s milk.
If you want, you can also color your soap with a water-based dye. You can also use clays, micas, or natural colorants (click for mica powder).
Step 2: Melt the Soap Base
Melt the soap base on the stovetop using a double boiler. Fill a pot with some water and place a heat-safe bowl inside. Place the base in the bowl and bring the water to a low simmer over low heat; the steam from below will gently melt the soap base.
Alternatively, you can use the microwave. Place the base in a microwave-safe container and heat it for one minute. Continue to heat the soap base in 15-second intervals, stirring in between each session, until it’s completely melted.
Pro Tip: Stir the base slowly and gently to prevent air bubbles.
Step 3: Fill the Mold
Mix in your fragrance. As a general rule, you want to add one teaspoon of fragrance per pound of soap. Once you’ve done that, carefully pour the molten base into your mold. Try to fill it as close to the top as possible (the soap won’t expand or rise upon cooling).
Allow the soap-filled mold to cool at room temperature. Depending on its shape and size, it can take up to 24 hours. Avoid touching the mold until the soap is fully solidified.
When it’s hardened, you can pop it out of the mold.
Learning How to Make Soap At Home
As you can see, it’s not that difficult to make soap bars at home. If anything, you just need the right ingredients and tools. Why use store-bought soaps when you can make your own, right?
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