Try our Soap Recipes
for Making Homemade Soap with easy, no-fail Recipes
homemade soap recipes
with easy step-by-step instructions on how to
make soap at home. Make your own handmade
soap without lye and with lye,
also known as caustic soda. The soaps made without lye can be found
towards the bottom of the page.
Try these soap making recipes for
handmade soap. If you missed the first page to this topic visit the how to make soap page which will give you
an introduction to soap making, the equipment you need and the
precautions you need to take when using lye.
you gain confidence in your soap making you may want to be adventurous
and start adding new ingredients to your basic soap recipes. However,
you will soon learn that not everything will work and end up being
successful. For example, if you are thinking of adding some of your
favorite fruit, don't, because it just won't work.
can add is an ounce or two of additional oils at the end of the soap
making process, just before putting the soap in moulds. This is a
superfatting agent that is an oil in excess of the oils or fats used in
the recipe. Just mix it thorougly. This is also the time to add any
scents or perfumes.
Another way of adding something special to
your soap recipes is to make a tea of the plant you want to add. In
this way you will get the properties of the plant but you won't get the
scent. The way to use this 'tea' is to subsititute some of the water
with the tea when dissolving the caustic soda.
To make the plant tea for soap recipes:
boiling water over the the plant material. Cover and leave for 24
hours. When making up the caustic soda solution leave out 4-10 oz of
water, and when the solution has cooled, add the required amount of tea
and stir well.
Some soaps can be made to suit different skins and hair
For dry skin: Use a tea made from acacia
or clover For oily skin: Use a tea made from roses
or cucumber For blondes: Use a tea made from chamomile
or marigolds For brunettes: Use a tea made from
raspberry leaves or rosemary For putting the red back into black hair
use a tea made from stinging nettles. To make an astingent soap use chamomile or
Hand Milled Soap Recipes
The hand-milled homemade
allow you to make soap without coming into contact with lye. So,
effectively, you are making no
lye soap, although technically, it had
lye initially to cause a chemical process resulting in soap as a
finished product. So, for those of you who would like to make your own
soap without using lye are a raw material, these soap making recipes
are the answer. They are soaps that are created using store-bought,
unscented, white bars. Baby soaps are perfect for this.
Each recipe is different,
however, as a rule of thumb, you should add 1 cup of water to every 2
cups of shaved soap.
Remember, the smaller
shavings, the quicker your soap will melt. You can melt your soap in a
glass bowl placed over a pot of boiling water on your stove as you
would use a double boiler.
If you want to,
you can also melt the soap in a microwave.
However, do this carefully. Heat on low, or if you want to use full
power, only do so for a few minutes at a time, and stir in between each
time you take it out.
HAND-MILLED SOAP MAKING RECIPES for SAGE SOAP
is a soap that you can rebatch, call your own and here you are making
soap without using lye or caustic soda. Therefore it is safe, fun and
can be used for kids crafts too.
Grate 2 cups of your chosen
store-bought white soap, or your homemade Castile soap
Place grated soap in a heat-resistant
Add 1/4 cup of water
Take a pot of water simmer over a low
heat. Place bowl over the pot of simmering water and heat gently until
melted. Do not stir, although you will be tempted. If you do, you will
add bubbles to your soap that you don't really want.
Remove from heat and add 1/4 cup rubbed
sage. Fold in carefully to mix in ingredients without adding bubbles.
Take a suitable mold, such as an ice
cream box, which as been pre-smeared in a thin coating of petroleum
jelly to ensure that your soap will be released easily.
Pour your soap into the mold and place
in fridge to set.
Once set remove from fridge and release
from mold. Place on a cake rack for 3 weeks to dry completely.
Once your soap is dry, cut up
your bars accordingly and wrap as desired.
is a basic homemade soap recipe that you can then use to substitute
sage for oatmeal, add a teaspoon of saffron or paprika for coloring
etc. Just remember that food colorings are not suitable color
additives for making soap.
HAND-MILLED SOAP MAKING RECIPES for OATMEAL and
3/4 cup grated white
1/4 cup oatmeal
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon almond oil
Make this soap using the same
homemade soap recipe as above.
ANOTHER HONEY SOAP RECIPE
1 lb Castile soap 1/4 lb honey 1 oz glycerine few drops of perfume of choice 2 tablespoons fine oatmeal
This is a good soap recipe that makes the skin lovely and soft.
the soap and add enough water in the pot to melt the soap without
burning it. Add the honey and the glycerine, the perfume - I like
sandlewood with this soap - and the oatmeal. Mix altogether until soap
is dissolved. Boil for 3 minutes and then pour into a deep wet
container or soap moulds. When quite cold, cut into pieces and leave
out until quite dry before storing.
SAND SOAP FOR GARDENERS AND WORKERS
1 lb Castile soap fine sand 2 teaspoons eucalyptus oil
the soap. I use my own Castile soap made from olive oil that I have
made previously. Place in a saucepan with just enough water so that it
doesn't burn. Add as much fine sand as the soap will hold. Add the
eucalyptus oil. Boil for 2 minutes and pour into moulds. Leave to dry
slightly. Cut into bars and allow to dry out before storing.
HAND-MILLED LAVENDER SOAP
Grate a bar of quantity of
good-quality, plain, natural soap and place in a bowl with a cup of
Place the bowl in a pan of hot water and stir until smooth.
Crush about 1/2 cup of dried lavender flowers and remove the bowl from
Add the dried lavender flowers to the soap.
Put a few drops of lavender oil to the mixture.
Now mold your soap and wait for it to dry before using.
This soap doesn't need to cure.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for BEGINNER'S SOAP
Here you will be using
small quantities to start off with, so if you mess it up it's no big
deal. Remember, that for your soap to be successful you have to measure
your ingredients accurately, make sure that both the temperatures of
the lye water and the oils are at 95°F when you mix them together, and
that the soap has been sufficiently mixed together so that it has
reached the 'trace' stage. When the spoon is dragged through the soap
mixture and it leaves an indentation for a few seconds, your mixture
has began to turn to soap. This can take from 10 minutes to an hour of
6 oz coconut oil
6 oz olive oil
5 oz vegetable shortening
2.6 oz lye
1 cup water (8 fluid ounces)
Using your safety glasses, and gloves,
carefully combine the lye and water in a glass jar. It will heat up
fast, so be careful.
Stir until dissolved and then place the
lye in a sink full of ice and water to get it to cool to 95°F.
Melt the vegetable shortening in a
stainless steel pot over a low heat. Add the coconut oil and the olive
oil. Mix well and heat to 95°F.
Make sure that both the lye water and
the oils are at 95°F. Now add together carefully, stirring constantly
until the mixture begins to trace.
Pour into molds and leave for 24 hours.
Release from molds, cut into bars and leave on a wire rack for 3 - 4
weeks to harden. This recipe makes about 5 bars.
Add 2 tablespoons of oatmeal
after the soap has reached the 'trace' stage. Mix thoroughly and then
pour into molds as usual.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for a SMALL BATCH OF
this is a soap recipe for a small batch of soap for you to try out when
you first begin making soap. If it turns out a disaster, then at least
you haven't wasted a lot of money and ingredients.
is also an excellent recipe to use when you are more advanced
your soap making and are looking to experiment with additional
ingredients and fragrances.
This soap recipe will make 1 bar of soap.
Mix 5 teaspoons of lye with 1/2 cup of water. Add 1 cup of lard, and
whatever extras you may wish to add.
Castile soaps are so
called, because the main oil that is used
in these soap making recipes is olive oil.
16 oz water
6 oz lye
16 oz olive oil
8 oz coconut oil
17 1/2 oz shortening
Not forgetting your safety glasses and
gloves, mix the water and the lye in a large glass bowl or stainless
steel pot. The water mixture will get very hot, so take care.
Heat the oils and the shortening over a
low heat, stirring often. Heat to about 95°F. This will take about 30 -
Check the temperature of both the lye
water and the oil mixture as both should reach about 95°F at the same
time. If one is hotter than the other, place in a sink of cold water to
get the temperature down to match the other.
Once the temperatures are even then add
the lye to the oils, stirring constantly.
From 10 minutes to an hour of stirring,
the mixture should begin to 'trace'. This means that when a spoon is
dragged through the mixture, an indentation is left behind for a few
seconds. If you do not stir your soap to the point of tracing, then
when the soap is poured it will separate into levels of lye and oils,
and your soap will not be successful. Once tracing has been reached
this is the time to add any herbs, plants or essential oils to your
soap, if desired.
Pour your soap into suitable plastic
molds, cover with lids and wrap in a heavy blanket for 24 hours.
Once the soaps have hardened they
should leave the the molds very easily. If you have trouble, in the
future you can use a thin coating of Vaseline on your mold to help with
the un-molding process.
You can cut your soap into smaller bars
at this stage and leave on a wire rack for 3 - 4 weeks to air dry and
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for ALOE VERA SOAP*
Based on the
1x 4oz bar of Castile soap,
2 tablespoons aloe vera gel
1 1/2 tablespoons rosewater
30 drops evening primrose oil
6 drops tangerine essential oil
4 drops juniper essential oil
Take a flat baking tray and line the
base with waxed paper. Set aside.
In a glass bowl mix the aloe vera gel,
the rosewater and evening primrose oil and leave overnight.
The next morning beat the mixture
thoroughly. Add the essential oils drop by drop, mixing well after each
Wet your hands, and taking a small
amount of mixture ( about 1/3 of a cup at a time) form it into balls.
Place the balls on your baking tray
that has been lined with waxed paper.
Leave until dry and firm.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for COCONUT SOAP
20 oz coconut oil
4 oz olive oil
12 oz lard
20 oz water
6.5 oz caustic soda
The caustic solution is adjusted to 75
F. and the fats to 85 F. Some oil of coconut can be used if desired at
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for TRANSPARENT HONEY SOAP
500 ml distilled water
175 g caustic soda
1.1 kg tallow or fat
50 g honey
225 g coconut oil
2 tablespoons sugar "burnt" so that it caramelizes for the colouring.
Follow the same soap making
process below for the Hard Laundry Soap Recipe, adding the honey and
coconut oil to the tallow as it melts.
above soap making recipe:
Add a few drops of perfumed
oil to the soap just before you pour it out.
Add half a cup of powdered
milk to this homemade soap recipe just before you pour it out for a
very smooth, rich, moisturizing soap.
Add half a cup of honey just
before you pour it out for a rich, clean soap
Add chamomile or parsley tea,
or tea made of calendula petals and hot water instead of water in the
recipe - these are all soothing herbs which make a mild soap.
Replace part of the oil with
avocado or almond oil for a very rich moisturizing soap.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for HONEY BAR
This recipe is for those of
you who are not up to speed on the metric system. I
was one of those who was brought up with both the Imperial and the
metric system, so can happily work with both. However, I do understand
that it can be frustrating for those who are not that fortunate. So
here is the recipe that is almost the same as the one above.
20 oz distilled water
6.5 oz caustic soda
40 oz tallow
2 oz honey
8 oz coconut oil
burnt sugar coloring, not over 2 ozs.
the normal soap making process add the caustic soda to the water and
adjust to 110F. heat the fats to 98 F. Add the honey, coloring matter
and scent if you are using any just before pouring into the moulds.
make the burnt coloring, place 1/2 lb. sugar into a frying pan and heat
until it turns black and flaky. Take off the stove and pour a cup of
water over it. Stir the mixture for 5 minutes, strain through a gauze
and keep in a bottle for later use.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for TRANSPARENT BROWN
17 oz water
6.5 oz caustic soda
6 oz brown sugar
14 oz glycerine
12 oz 80% proof vodka
20 oz lard
10 oz coconut oil
the brown sugar in the vodka and add the glycerine. When completely
dissolved, add to the caustic soda solution and adjust to 90
coconut oil and lard together and adjust to 90 F. and make soap in the
usual way. This soap must be covered quickly when poured and should not
be disturbed for at least 24 hours. The transparent appearance will be
completed by aging the soap.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for SANDALWOOD SOAP
2 oz Sandalwood essential
1/2 oz Sandalwood powder
14 oz tepid water
6 oz lye
18 oz coconut oil
6 oz palm oil
12 oz olive oil
4 oz wheat germ oil
Combine the Sandalwood oil
and powder together and set aside.
Blend the water and lye
together carefully. Set aside and cool to 95°F.
Gently heat the coconut
oil and palm oil together over a low heat. Add the olive oil and the
wheat germ oil and then heat to 95°F.
Once the temperatures are
the same, mix the lye water into the oils.
Stir the mixture until it
reaches the 'trace' stage. Now add the Sandalwood mixture. Stir
thoroughly and put into suitable molds.
Leave the soap to set and
solidify for about 24 hours. Release the soap from the molds, cut into
bars and place on a wire rack to air dry for 3 - 4 weeks.
Homemade soap on display
SOAP MAKING RECIPES for COLD LAUNDRY SOAP MADE WITH
2 quarts strained rendered
beef fat (fat around kidneys is best)
1 can lye (14-16 oz)
1 quart water
1/2 cup ammonia
2 tablespoons borax dissolved in 1/2 cup water
Carefully combine the lye and water in
a glass jar. It will heat up fast, so be careful.
Stir until dissolved and then place the
lye in a sink full of ice and water to get it to cool to 98°F.
Cool the melted beef fat in the same
manner to get it down to 98°F too.
When the right temperature has been
achieved, add the lye solution into the beef fat and stir well.
Add the ammonia and the borax and
continue to stir until it is thick; like honey.
Pour into wooden mold or a glass baking
pan that has been coated with a light coating Vaseline to prevent it
After 24 hours, cut into bars and allow
to harden in a dry place. Grate and use after 3-4 weeks.
MAKING RECIPES for HARD LAUNDRY SOAP (Makes 6kg)
This homemade soap recipe uses caustic
soda, so please take the necessary safety precautions.
500 gm caustic soda
3 kg clean fat, or olive, coconut, sunflower oil, or a combination.
2 litres of cold water or herbal tea
Weigh the caustic soda with gloves and
goggles on. Pour water or herbal tea into a jug and add the lye,
It will bubble and heat at this stage, so take care. Set aside to cool
while you are measuring the fat.
Melt the fat if necessary, or heat oil
to 30 degrees centigrade. The lye (caustic soda / water mixture) should
also be at 30 degrees centigrade. Pour the lye into the fat or oil,
stirring continuously until well mixed and sponification takes place.
This can take as long as 20 minutes or more. When the mixture becomes
thick and opaque you have reached that stage. Stop stirring!
Both the lye and the oil need to be at
the same temperature or the soap will separate.
Pour mixture into molds and cover with
a blanket to stop it cooling too quickly. If an oil film develops on
the top, stir again; you may have to do this several times. Soaps made
with oil are more likely to react in this way and separate.
After 4 weeks, cut the soap into bars.
It should be firm, but not hard at this stage. Now allow to dry and
harden for at least another month before using.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES: LAUNDRY
6 pounds rendered down
2 gallons water
0.5 pound resin
2 ounce powdered borax
1 pound caustic soda
1 bottle cloudy ammonia
fat, water, resin and borax into large pot and heat thoroughly until
the fat has melted. Remove from heat and add the caustic soda very
carefully adding just a little at a time as the mixture
will rise up each time you add some caustic soda.
to heat and boil gently for 2 hours. Stir with a wooden spoon taking
care that the mixture doesn't boil over. Remove from heat, and in a
well-ventilated room add the ammonia. Mix well and put mixture into
molds. Leave for 24 hours before cutting into bars.
SOAP MAKING RECIPES: QUICKLY
recipe is very similar to the one above. The difference here is the
addition of bicarbonate of soda and where you have to boil for 2 hours
in the recipe above, in this soap recipe you only have to boil for 20
minutes, thus its name.
The caustic soda can be
poured directly from the tin straight into the cold water, being
careful not to splash your hands. It only boils up when added to
6 pounds rendered down mutton fat
14 pints water
1 pound caustic soda
0.5 pound resin
Heat over low heat until fat has melted.
Now add 2 teaspoons borax
2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
for 20 minutes. Pour into moulds and allow to set, and then cut into
bars. This soap can be used for washing dishes, showering, bathing or
even washing your hair.
Old Fashioned Country Soap Recipes
Fashioned Citrus Soap
1 lb caustic soda
1/2 gallon water
8 lb grease
citrus leaves (optional)
the caustic soda into a pot with the 1/2 gallon of water. Stir well
with a flat stick. The mixture will heat up. Put aside to cool.
8 lb lard or animal grease free from salt and allow to cool until the
fat is still warm and still at the liquid stage. Now pour the lye
mixture into the fat mixture. Make sure you add the lye to the fat, and
not the other way around!
the lye in steadily, stirring all the time. It should look like honey
in about 2 minutes. If not, stir until it does. Pour into moulds to
set. Afterwards you will have 16 lb of good soap.
you would like your soap to smell nice, take some citrus leaves, and
boil with the water that you will use with your caustic soda. Remove
before adding the caustic soda.
Fashioned Copper Kettle Soap
12 pints water
1 lb caustic soda
1/2 lb crushed resin
small packet soap flakes (no quantity given)
1 tablespoon borax
7 lb clarified fat or lard
the caustic soda to the water and add all the other ingredients to the
pot. Boil altogether, stirring constantly, until the mixture starts
looking like honey. Pour into molds and wait for it to set.
MAKING RECIPES for HOMEMADE SOAP WITHOUT LYE or CAUSTIC SODA
the milled soaps that have been reworked and rebatched, you can also
make soap without lye using other ingredients as you will see from the
soap recipes below.
Unfortunately, the recipe calls for large
amounts of the ingredients, but if you want to try these you will have
to adjust them accordingly.
the lime, washing soda and water in a large suitable pot for soap
making and boil for 1 hour. Remove from the stove and leave overnight.
The following day, drain off the clear liquid that has risen to the top
and place in a separate container.
Add the fat, resin and borax to the clear liquid that you have just
drained off. Boil for 3 hours, stirring all the time.
You must stir the mixture, and this is a very important part of the
process which will make excellent soap.
Second Soap Recipe
3 gallons water
3 lb fat
3 lb lime
3 lb washing soda
1/4 lb resin
the water, lime and washing soda for 2 hours. The allow to cool. Pour
off the clear liquid into another pot and and add the resin, crushed to
a powder. Boil for another 3 hours, stirring well. Remove from heat and
place in your molds to allow to set.
together half a kerosene tin of clean wood ash with 1 kg of lime and 2
3/4 kg of washing soda. Boil this in one kerosene tin of rain
water for 1 hour.
Stand overnight, well covered with hessian bags.
In the morning strain, place in a clean vessel, add fat, borax,
kerosene and resin. Boil for 3 hours stirring often.
Pour into wetted mould, and when cold cut into bars. Store to dry for
one month before using.
Fourth Soap Recipe
3 lb lime
6 lb washing soda
1 lb resin
7 lb fat
3 tablespoons borax
12 quarts rain water
water, lime and washing soda for 1 hour. Leave to stand
overnight. Pour off the clear liquid and place in a new pot. Add the
rest of the ingredients to the clear liquid and boil for 3 hours,
stirring constantly. Pour into molds and allow to set.
Lemon Shower Gel Recipe
4 oz Castile Soap Shavings
3 oz glycerine
20 drops oil of lemon
20 drops oil of lime
1 pint distilled water
soap and water into a double boiler over hot water. When melted add
glycerine, remove from the heat and add the oils. Keep in plastic
bottle for use in the shower.
Seed and Soap Spice
Balls (Makes 8)
These are great soaps to make, firstly
because they can be made for cheap and novel gifts, and secondly, even
the kids can get involved.
Place the soap flakes - such as Lux -
into a large bowl, adding the water and the oil. Mix these ingredients
with a spoon. Know knead the mixture with your hands until it resembles
play dough. Divide the soap 'dough' into 16 portions by scooping out a
rounded tablespoon of soap mixture for each portion, shaping each
portion into a ball.
Place one tablespoon of each of the
seeds and spices into 4 separate bowls or saucers. Quickly dip a soap
ball in a small bowl of cold water then roll it between your hands to
evenly wet the surface. Now drop the soap ball into the sesame bowl,
dry your hands then spin the bowl around to coat the soap ball evenly
with sesame seeds. Roll and press the seed-coated soap ball between
your hands to 'fix' the seeds. Working with one seed or spice at a
time, repeat this step to coat the remaining soap balls.
These soaps do not need to cure.
HOW TO USE YOUR SOAPS
most economical way to use soap is to wet the hands and rub them
together around the dry soap bar. Return the soap to the dish and rub
the hands together to get a good lather. We often waste our
down the drain, so just another way of being
Well, we hope you have enjoyed reading
our soap making recipes and feel inspired to try some out yourself. If
you have any problems drop us a line through our Craft
Forum. We would love to hear from you.
Old-Fashioned Soap Making
Photo courtesy of NY Public Library.
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