Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Domestic Goddess Dress Up: Making Liquid Soap

This tutorial is a little different, mainly because what I did may not work for you.. it's quite a fickle project. But not to worry! The product you get will be hand soap just the same, and quite possibly better than mine.

This is a great project for people with super sensitive skin who have only found bar soaps that are gentle enough for them, and we all know how much we hate bar soap. It gets dirty and all cracked and slips out of your hands. No good. This soap can be used as a sink-side hand soap or as a body wash.

It's SUPER easy and well worth the time. I always make sure that the time I put onto my projects is worth the money saved, and this most definitely is.

What you need:



A large pot, a jar for extra soap shavings, containers for storing soap, a spoon for stirring, measuring cups and spoons, a grater and bowl, a soap container with hand pump, glycerine, and a bar of soap. Some of these things are not in this lovely picture.

1 Cup of Bar of soap - Any brand should work, I've heard Yardley's works really well but I've never even heard of that brand and as you all know I love my Mrs. Meyers, so that's what I used.



1 TBS of Glycerin - you can get this at any pharmacy. I got mine at Target and they keep it behind the counter, so you'll just have to ask if you don't see it on the isles. One bottle will last you AGES.



10 Cups of Water

And there's your ingredients.

Directions-

First, shave your bar of soap with a small grater ( I bought a special "soap grater" and am now wondering why I did, it's not like the soap gets it dirty and unsafe for using with food...)





Isn't it so cute and curly?
Note: Mrs. Meyers bar soaps are quite a bit bigger than the regular size, so how much you get out of your bar will vary. I got about 4 cups of shavings, compacted. I put the extra soap in a jar for next time.



In a large pot, combine water, soap flakes and glycerin. Turn on medium-low and stir until soap dissolves. This happens fast, just a minute or two. Let the soap cool completely and use a funnel to pour into your soap container. That's it! Unless....

Your soap is still looking really watery. This happened to me, so, being the over-doer I am, I doubled the recipe (except the water.) I put another cup of soap and another tablespoon of glycerin. This helped a little bit, but not nearly enough, so I went to bed and let it sit overnight, giving it a chance to cool and thicken up. And in the morning.. it had only thickened up a little bit. So, I went to the trusty worldwide web and found another thing I could do. Blend.

And I blended.



And it worked. (insert another praise for the extremely versatile Vitamix, haha)

It thickened right up in about 2 minutes. It's still a bit runny, but it's works great, and in the couple weeks since I made my soap it has gotten thicker still.


You can see in this picture that it's still quite runny, this is right after I made it. Now it's much much thicker, almost to "store bought" consistency.



Now, following the recipe I did, it said that I would get about 2 quarts of soap.... I ended up with more than 4. Good thing I had containers on hand (you need to as well.) So really, I used half of my soap (about $2) and 2 tbs. of glycerine... (maybe 20 cents?) and got 4 QUARTS of hand soap. That will last us quite a while, talk about savings!

Next time I think I will cut down on the amount of water I use and see if that makes much of a difference. But that won't be for a while, I've got soap coming out of my ears.

And the last wonderful thing about this project... the cleanup. Everything is all soapy already, so you just have to rinse and dry! Ta da! I hope you try and like this great project. Enjoy!

71 comments:

Stephanie Shumway (and family) said...

Stop it. I love you too much for this post. and if I had time I would totally make this.... it's going in my back pocket and getting pinned. that's right, I said it... This post will live on in pinterest infamy!!!

Cory said...

Wow...am really loving this post, will buy bar soap tomorrow.
Thanks for sharing.

Homespun Country Designs said...

I loved your tutorial...thanks for sharing! Where did you get your bar of soap? I have not seen that brand before.
Lee Anne

mama k said...

any idea if this would work in a foamer bottle?

Nynaboo said...

I have made this recipe before and it works much better in a foamer bottle. Either way, it works great and is really worth the effort!

Mel said...

The foamer bottles can use any liquid soap BUT its a 1/4 soap to 3/4 water ratio. The magic with the foamer bottlers is the water... not the soap.

Sera Lucia said...

Mrs. Meyers soap is available at Wal Mart, Smiths and Winco (at least those stores in my area), or online at their website www.mrsmeyers.com. <their seasonal scents are out now too! :)
Foamer bottles would work great, especially with the watery consistency that mine ended up with.

Anonymous said...

8 oz is one cup, and your bar of soap is 8 oz... so when the "recipe" calls for one cup of soap maybe it means before it is graded. Have you tried using the whole bar of soap? that might be why is is coming out so thin for you.

Anonymous said...

8 Fluid ounces is equal to the volume of one cup of water. But because ounces are a measure of weight and cups are a measure of volume, 8 oz of something (unless it is water, milk, or eggs) does not equal one cup.

Melanie @ Addicted to Homes said...

Can't wait to try this, thanks for the tutorial!

amanda said...

So smart! I am super excited to use this!

Lisa said...

I like to use Dr Bronner's liquid soap for a variety of stuff. I use a 1:4 ratio of Bronners soap to water in a foaming soap dispenser (the lower portion is the Bronner's). You could even add a drop or two of essential oils if desired. I use this also as a cleaning agent (in place of 409). I use 1/4 c Bronners soap, 10-20 drop essential oil and put it in a quart spray bottle. Be sure to put the water in first, leaving room for the 1/4 c. of liquid soap...otherwise it will be tooooo foamy :)

zeuster333 said...

You are definitely my hero! Do you or anyone know where to get the cheapest foam bottles? Like would Dollarama have them, for instance? Love my Dollarama, even since they've gone up to $2, they've got such quality merchandise, and even more so now...

paintergal said...

Ooh, love this idea. And yes, I came over from Pinterest. :)

Good Girl Gone Green said...

Great recipe!

NOELFAM said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
NOELFAM said...

Great idea!!! One bar of Ivory soap is 4 oz. so I would think the recipe calls for 2 bars of soap. But if you used less and it's working great, then I guess it just saves your more money! But that is probably why it's runny.

Kate said...

Found you Through Pinterest. thanks for sharing.

thefredleys said...

I just made this and used a local home made soap (spiced Pear) it is amazing. The smell is amazing and has a lovely green color!!

sukiwoon said...

TQ so much for such a useful tutorials!!

Carrie122569 said...

I am going to try this thank you so much.

Melissa said...

It is still extra watery. I used 1 bar of soap. It was about a cup and a 1/3. I used a little of 1 tbsp of glycerin to compensate the 1/3 cup. I kept it to 10 cups of water. It was still watery so I added another tbsp of glycerin. It was still very watery when I woke up other than what settles to the bottom of the pan. Very little. So I added another bar of soap and a tbsp of glycerin. I even tried the blender part and all it did was make a mess and make bubbles. If this doesn't thicken up I don't know what to do other than add corn starch and that just doesn't sound right. What else can I do?

Sera Lucia said...

Oh no! If I were you I might try putting it back on the stove, let some of the water evaporate, or I would just get some foam pump bottles and use those. The soap should thicken up, given time. Maybe use foamer bottles and if the soap you store gets thick enough you can use normal pump bottles after that, if not, keep on using the foamers!

I forgot to mention how much the soap "grows" in the blender, I almost had a mess on my hands too. You can try blending a little more, I don't know what kind of blender you use, mine is a vitamix and very powerful and if yours isn't a so-called "super blender" it might take a while to have it thicken up.
Hope these suggestions help!

www.apronsandapples@blogspot.com said...

YOU ROCK!! I love healthy thrifty ideas. I came from pinterest too!Gotta love it! Kristy from my crafty, homeschool, DIY blog www.apronsandapples.blogspot.com

Anita said...

I found you through pinterest and have just tried this today, can't wait to see how it comes it.. my house smells incredible right now.

Anita said...

Hey I googled a few recipes and I thought you might find this helpful, but a lot of recipe's call to boil the water first. I don't know if this will help with the thickness or not, but it's worth a shot!

Nicole Searfoss-Owner, Indulgent Aromas said...

I made this soap today....here's what I did and it's perfect!!!

1 cup soap shavings, 1 TBS of glycerin, and 9 cups of water. Cooked on high until all soap was dissolved. Then I put it in a foaming hand soap dispenser. The 'soap' that comes in those dispensers is very 'liquid-y' so I thought it was worth a try. It worked great! This is much easier than adding extra and blending, etc. Hope this helps :)

Sally said...

another pinner here!! woot!

Anita Ramirez said...

Thanks so much I am going to try this. And FYI you can now get Yardley Bar Soap at the Dollar Tree. They have a great smelling Almond Bar

Anonymous said...

I'm looking forward to making this (or at least attempting to) and maybe gifting them this year. I am pinning this for sure!

Sarai said...

I used Aveeno, thinking to have a nice facial soap, but it stayed watery despite doubling the recipe, and waiting, and blending, and waiting some more. I tried putting it in a foam dispenser and that diodn't work either-- seemed to clog the pump even watered down. So I think Aveeno is not good for this stuff.

jme71 said...

I just made this tonight...I used 2 tbsp of glycerin...and one gallon of water...I used Mrs Meyers the whole bar. I made this with dove soap before and it was WAY runny!

JenE. said...

I made this today. I liked the recipe except once I went back to use the pump I realized the soap had solidified! What to do??

tara said...

I just finished reading all the comments and am hoping to be able to do this successfully, with the help of everyone else, today.
Regarding the last comment by JenE ... you've probably figured out what to do by now but perhaps putting the bottle in hot water to get it liquified again and then add some water to make it thinner will help?

carlita said...

this is fantastic! thanks for sharing...

Anonymous said...

Yardley is a really nice soap brand and I was surprised to find it at Dollar Tree of all places. So obviously, very affordable as well. They have several great scents. I love the lavender. Thanks for the tutorial.

ChrisM said...

This is a great idea! I can't to try it. It appears that different soaps may make a difference. Thanks from another Pinterest fan. ;)

Candi said...

Came from Pinterest :-) Thanks for posting!
I've done this twice. The first time I used a bar of Yardley soap (found at Wal-Mart) and mine also solidified into a jello consistency after it cooled, so I heated it up again (while stirring) and poured it into the containers before it got too cold/solid. Even though it still stiffens in the containers, my pumps have worked just fine at getting it. At one point I did add a little extra water to my soap dispenser and shook it up and that thinned it out too - though I'm not sure that was even necessary.
The second time I made this recipe, I used a bunch of those little bars of hotel soap that had collected in my travel bag. Got the exact same results.
Thanks again for this recipe! I love saving the money and having extra soap for refills.

Anonymous said...

just tried it with Trader joe's Lemon Verbena w/ Shea Butter...some sort of crazy checmical reaction made it into a solid once cooled. Just thought I'd warn you.

Ellen said...

Found this on Pinterest and can't wait to try. I have been using baking soda & vinegar (for washing & conditioning hair) for a few weeks now and just started makinig my own facial mixture for cleansing my face via the oil cleansing method...both are wonderfully frugal and more natural! I was just thinking today that I needed to find a body wash option! Thank you!

Lu Ann said...

Thank you thank you thank you!

I hate spending so much money on those liquid bottle soaps. I knew there had to be an easier way.

I hope to make this project next weekend.

Goinggreenmom said...

So I am totally being lazy... The kids are "exploding" a bar of ivory in the microwave so I don't have to grate it. :)

Sera Lucia said...

Genius! I still have oodles of the soap from the first batch, but next time- I'm using your method for sure! It doubles as microwave cleaning too! :)

Patsy said...

I've learned that if the soap you use has too much additives or softeners it will not thicken. That's why the Yardley works so well, it's all soap and very little condtioners, etc.

Anonymous said...

Love this post. I made the first batch over 4 months ago and just needed to make another one. It is slightly more watery than store bought, but at these savings, I can deal with it. I also want to point out how great this is for the environment! I hated buying a bottle/week of hand soap. I've reused the same 2 bottles for 4 months, which means thats 14 bottles saved! Great all around. I'll never go back to store bought hand soap.

Anonymous said...

Is anyone concerned about possible bacteria growing without adding a preservative? Can soap even get bacteria if you're adding water to it????

Anonymous said...

Not sure what went wrong. Ended up with a mixture to thick to put in soap dispenser...even after heating back up and adding 3 more cups of water!

Marisa Hopkins said...

I made a huge batch of this 6 months ago (about a gallon worth) - mine was very jello-like, but worked fine in my soap dispenser.

I'm just now making my second batch - so glad to have found this tutorial on Pinterest!

Gottes Belle Farm said...

I think I will try this, very soon. I make my own goats milk soap {Gottes Belle Farm} and am going to try using my own bar soap to make the liquid. I was thinking 8 cups is 2 quarts... so unless you boiled off 4 cups and 2tbs of water of course you would get 3 quarts, but how you got 4 qts is mind boggling. OH maybe 1 qt of air got pushed into the soap when blending it... idk. lol But maybe you added too much water to begin with, so before you decide you need to reduce the water think if you might have added too much water the first time. BUT the recipe saying you will get only 2qts of soap has to be wrong anway...

Danielle Hansma said...

I made this ivory springs soap bar, and my husband uses it in the shower. Way way cheaper than buying body wash from ivory springs. 3 bars were on sale for less than $4.

christinolini sartori said...

Before I saw this post, I have been putting the little pieces of soap that usually gets thrown away in a liquid soap bottle and add a little water. Let it soak and shake it. After a while, the soap melts into the water. It is runnier than store bought, but it works. I don't even heat it up and it melts. I just give it a shake once in a while.

I'm going to try your recipe, too, it looks super easy.

Anonymous said...

I just made a batch of the hand soap. (using Dove shea butter bar) I had so much left over I decided to make a body wash. I completely filled 2 empty bottles of caress with this and added 2 cups of sugar, 2 tbsp of honey, 1 tbsp of coconut oil and vanilla essential oils (add your strength of scent ). It smells awesome and makes my skin feel so soft.

kristal6571 said...

I made this recipe with all of the shavings from my 8oz bar of soap and the consistancy was perfect. I store my extra soap in a mason jar. It will thicken over time, but I've found that if I shake it up it's fine again. I will continue to use this soap method in the future!!

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know the difference (or is there a difference) between glycerin and vegetable glycerin?

Cindy said...

Found you via diycozyhome and i am so off to try this thanks for this recipe!

Anonymous said...

I made this soap using the 2cups soap, 2Tbs glycerine, 10 cups water recipe. Then put it in the fridge for a few hrs. thickens it right up

Jane said...

Making your own liquid soap is great! One suggestion: please use only 100% natural bar soaps, like pure castile (olive oil). That's what most recipes suggest.

Other soaps usually have chemical ingredients, including 'scents' -- natural soaps use only essential oils for scent if they're scented at all. There's probably a natural soap maker near you, and there are loads of internet sites (including mine, I admit).

Jolene said...

any liquid soap will work in a foam-dispenser bottle. You only need to get the proportions of soap
:water correct for a 500 ml soap foam dispenser I use ~1/5 soap:~4/5 water. close the soap dispenser, shake it and try it out. if its too runny, you've added too much water. if the liquid won't come out, its too thick and you need to add some water.

Anonymous said...

How can you "flavor" this soap? I was thinking the juice of one lemon, lavender, spice? What do you think?

Sandra Haley said...

Ladies your gonna think I am nuts, but I have been using this type a recipe for shampoo for months, shampoo with the watery SOAP solution(do not use a cleanser bar) then I just rinse my hair out with warm/hot water then apply white vinegar/water rinse I put into a white rain shampoo bottle adding enough recipe to fill the bottle, leave on three minutes while I soap up with same soap solution on a scrunchy, then rinse the vinegar/water rinse out, and then I am done. Vinegar rinse solution is ratio 3 TBS of white vinegar to 1 cp warm water in recycled shampoo bottle each time I shower. My hair has never been so thick, shiny and soft. I have honey blonde hair that is down to my knees, and I never get tangles using this method. I use a wide tooth comb starting from the bottom of hair up, never tangles because I don't pile my hair on top of my head when I wash it. IF there is a tangle it is from a piece of lint from the towel. I pop my towels hard before using them, this helps to rid the towels of lint. If I get a tangle in my hair after it has dried it is always a piece of lint in the center of the knot most likely from a towel, my blanket I cover with to watch tv or from my sweater, or from a piece floating in the air. Some no-commercial shampoo group people use apple cider vinegar but for me it just didn't get the extra oil out. I do not use the baking soda wash they recommend because it leaves a white powder residue on your hair, especially if you have hard water. I have been commercial shampoo/conditioner free for almost a year now, the silicone is out of my hair that took about a week to get rid of, the silicone coats the hair shaft and stops water from the core of your hair shaft drying my hair out from the inside out. My hair is no longer falling out, and has grown and thickened up nicely. Especailly now that I use a liquid soap recipe like this method, minus the glycerin in place of my shampoo and the white vinegar solution in place of my conditioner.

Peter Thomos said...

I like the above thought and I am glad to be the part of it.Thanks for sharing it!!
liquid hand soap brands

Anonymous said...

I have seen others make this on YouTube and what they do is let the mixture settle over night. Its now thickened a lot and they use a hand mixer to blend it together. It comes out creamy. And they use 1 gallon of water to 1 8oz bar of soap. Makes about 1 gallon and a half of liquid soap. Hope this helps!

Peter Upton said...

This is great - thank you for the delightful tips and recipe. Store-bought liquid soap is really bad for the environment because of the CO2 from driving what amounts to millions of tons of heavy water-soap being transported - from factories to depots to supermarkets to homes. Then many millions of plastic soap dispensers being discarded (more transport and use of raw oil-based materials). Buying dry soap, adding tap water, then re-using dispensers is ideal for reducing our carbon footprints. I hope many, many people will take up this idea. (It's fun too!)

Anonymous said...

Is it Glycerin really needed? Can i replace Glycerin with natural oils?

women tips said...

This sounds interesting!i am gonna to try this.

shoppe_4_u said...

I have recently started making my own bar soap, I'm going to try this recipe with my soap. Should work great for hands and laundry.

mary said...

Thanks for sharing ! You explained very beautiful and
accurate . I am going to make those soaps as soon as possible . Great job !!!

Anonymous said...

A cup of liquid is different from a cup of dry ingredients. 1 bar of soap could be much more than 1 cup after it's grated.

Pam Sjolund said...

Does anyone know whether this would work with LAVA soap? I am already answering my own question...as it is a soap that employees at our work use to get grease stains off of their hands. LAVA has some gritty stuff in it that helps clean very dirty hands. Tips?

Iauraha said...

Glycerin is a natural byproduct of the saponification that creates real soap in the first place. Most commercial bars are often stripped of most of their natural glycerin in order to add it to more expensive cosmetics, moisturizers, and many pharmaceutical pills. I'm not sure that adding other oils wouldn't just end up leaving a film on your hands.

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Bathroom Liquid Soap Dispenser
Bathroom Soap Dispenser