Homemade Liquid Handsoap

Liquid soap is, in my opinion, ridiculously high-priced.  The other issue I have is most of it is anti-bacterial and it tends to dry out my hands because I wash them so much.  In my effort to save money, and switch as many supplies to a non-toxic homemade alternative, I've come across this recipe.

Here's the thing.  This soap is slightly temperamental.  Depending on your water and whether you are able to fully incorporate the liquid glycerin {if you choose to use it} it can be runny.  Soapy, but runny nonetheless. 

The recipe below makes 1 gallon.  *Note* If you would like, you can certainly start with 3/4 of a gallon of water to see if you can make it slightly less runny.  The measurements do not have to be exact, so if you have a gallon jug that you'll be using for water measurements, just eyeball it.  If the soap is too thick after letting it sit, heat it back up and add 1/2 cup - 2 cups more water until it reaches the consistency you desire.  Once you know how much water works best with your water, you can use the same recipe over and over.

The cost is whatever 2 - 4oz. bars of soap cost you + the cost of the glycerin.  I used 1 bar of castile and 1 bar of Ivory {that's what I had on hand}.  **Update:  I have since learned that Ivory does not firm up and will always result in runny soap.**   I found the glycerin in the supermarket in the laxative aisle {who would have known that's what it's used for!} but can also be ordered from any soapmaking supplier or Amazon.  The glycerin gives it a slightly more gel-like consistency.

Here's the recipe/directions:

1 - 8oz. bar of soap, grated {or 2 - 4oz. bars of soap, grated}
2 T. liquid glycerine
1 gallon water *see note above*

Heat the water in a large pot on the stove over medium-high heat.  When the water starts to feel quite warm, add the liquid glycerine {if using} and the grated soap, stirring to combine.  The water will get sudsy or bubbly as you stir, but continue to stir until the grated soap is thoroughly melted.  DO NOT allow it to boil.  If it starts to bubble as if it's going to boil, remove the pot from the heat, turn it down to medium, then return to the heat and continue stirring.  All of this takes approx. 15 minutes.

Remove from the heat and allow to cool to slightly warmer than room temperature.  Using an immersion blender or hand blender, blend the mixture.  The mixture will still be runny at this point.  Cover and let sit 12 hours or overnight, and the mixture should firm up.

Blend again.  At this time you can determine if you would like to add more soap or more water.  If so, re-heat the mixture, add the desired ingredients and follow the directions above again.

Pour into desired containers.

**I have read of others adding xantham gum to their mixture, although I have not tried this myself.  My soap is slightly runny but very sudsy and I'm fine with it.**  Update:  I tried xantham gum - 1 Tablespoon for half of this mixture and it did not work.  Instead, I'm using any bar soap except Ivory and have had no problems.


Kerin said...

Looks like it works like a charm.
Thanks for posting the recipe too.. I need to print it out and give it a try :)

Have a great day.


daisy g said...

I will definitely be making this. My hands too, are so dried out from constant washing or wiping down counters, etc. Thanks!

Unknown said...

I've been meaning to try this out for some time...I have plenty of bar soap in the house but not much liquid. Right...this is going to be my weekend project :) Thanks Staci