Guest Author - Winsome Tapper
This is a basic recipe for liquid soap. Although it may appear very involved, it is quite easy. If you would like a recipe using different oils, check out the lye calculator that Magestic Mountain Sage has on their website. The water may seem a bit much but it is okay since much of the water will boil out in the cook.
* 23 oz coconut oil
* 25 oz of olive oil
* 10.15 oz potassium hydroxide (KOH not lye)
* 30-36 ounces distilled water
* 3 ounces borax (supermarket mule train brand)
* Alcohol in spray bottle. (I usually use gin or isopropyl alcohol)
* Large double boiler (stainless steel- will not react with lye)
* Stick blender
* Candy or meat thermometer
1. Don protective equipment, including eye goggles or eye shield and nerile gloves. To review equipment needed see article Equipment used to make cold process and hot process soaps.
2. Combine lye and water. Be careful that mixture does not splash. Potassium hydroxide is more caustic than lye.
3. Cool to about 140 Degrees Fahrenheit.
4. Heat your oils to 140-160 and combine. Use a stick blender and mix until traced. If stirring makes it foamy then spray with alcohol to keep down the foam. The alcohol evaporates so there is no danger that it will become part of the final product.
5. Heat water in the double broiler, then turn it down to simmer.
6. Place pot of traced soap into simmering water and cover. It takes about 3-4 hours to cook, so you need to check it ever so often to stir and make sure it is not boiling over.
7. As the soap cooks it gets thicker and clearer until it becomes like clear gooey play doh.
8. About 3 hours into boil check to see how far along the mixture is by dissolving a small amount in boiling water to see if it is clear. Cool the test mixture and if clear, take the soap off the stove because it is done.
9. Add half a gallon of distilled water and heat to boiling in the outer boiler or another large pot - If you want the liquid soap to be really thick, then add less. Add the goopey soap paste to the distilled water and simmer for a while until the paste dissolves.
10. You will need a large wisk or stick blender to help break up the clumps, and at the same time, spray with some of that alcohol to keep down the foam.
11. Try to work out all the clumps, take a break every now and then and get back to the mix and work out those lumps.
12. In a separate bowl add 3 ounces of borax to a couple ounces of boiling water and mix well. The borax adjusts the PH of the mixture and thickens the soap a bit. Add to soap mixture.
13. Pour the finished soap into large buckets or gallon containers. It will thicken a bit after cooling. If it is too thick, add distilled water after it cools.
14. Leave the soap alone for a couple days to finish curing.
15. Fragrances, essential oils and exfoliants may be added once it is cooled and cured.
Summerbee Meadow is a wonderful mom and pop company located in Baldwinsville, New York. They have all the supplies needed to get started making soap.