If you have never made your own soap, you may think it’s a really complicated process. I know that’s what I thought. I was afraid of the lye, didn’t understand how easy it was to be creative, and felt like I was learning chemistry. Then a friend showed me how she makes it, and after some alterations to make the recipe my own, I came up with this simple soap. We have used it around here for years, and I always have fun trying new scents and additives. The trick to soap making? Just get started and don’t be afraid!
Simple Soap from One Ash Farm Recipes
(Remember to reference part one and part two of the soap series for tips on Homemade Soap Making)
2 cups of liquid~ this can be things like Chamomile Tea, pureed cucumbers mixed with
some water or green tea, or goat milk.
8 ounces Olive Oil
1 1/2 lb. (24 ounces) shortening (yes, the kind you cook with)
Any other additives (cornmeal, dried herbs, oatmeal, etc.)
– Combine the Liquid and the Lye and stir until mixed. The mixture will begin to get hot from the Lye. Make sure to be wearing your apron and protective goggles. And don’t splash!
– Slowly add the oils to the liquid/lye mixture, and using your stick blender mix thoroughly until saponification occurs. (this is when the mixture begins to thick and you can see a trace, or trail, through the soap)
– Quickly add your Essential Oils (generally 2-3 ounces for this size batch of soap), and any additives. Make sure they are well blended using your stick blender. *Do not over mix, and don’t let the soap harden.
– Pour the completed mixture into your pre-greased soap mold.
– This is where you can design the top of your soap bars. Smooth the mixture, or give it some peaks like when you ice a cake. You can also lightly press in some dried herbs like lavender or rosemary.
– Once the mixture is firm enough, turn your mold upside down onto a parchment or wax paper covered surface. (for me this is usually overnight since we live in a humid area). Utilizing a knife or other tool, cut the soap into the size and shape you want for your bars.
– Leave the soap for about 2 weeks, rotating occasionally so it dries all around.
– After that you will have your own beautiful bars of soap to give or enjoy!
Have fun making your own soap!