The Why and How to Make Soaps
There are several ways to make soaps, but if you're starting out, it will be
understandable if you find some recipes difficult. But as with any activity, it takes
practice before you can become a pro. If you're feeling a bit jittery, well, you shouldn't
worry. Once you get used to the terms and become familiar with the stuff and materials
used, soap making would be as easy as pie.
There are also plenty of reasons why you decided to take a turn in soap making. You may
be disgruntled about soaps that are out in the market, especially if you are allergic to
certain soap chemicals. Maybe you are thinking of having a new hobby, and soaps may seem
like a perfect fit for you. Or maybe you are looking for something to while your time and
earn a little extra on the side. Whatever the reason, soap making will definitely be an
activity that's well worth your time.
Before you delve further into the addicting world of soap making though, it is best
that you become familiar with the different types of soap making methods used by pros and novices.
• Cold process. This is possibly the most popularly used soap making
method today. It may take some time to make cold process soaps compared to other methods,
but the end result is well worth the effort. Special function soaps like anti-acne or
pimple fighting soaps usually fall under the cold process technique. If you are starting
out, this may not appeal to you as much since this can be likened to an exact science -
the more precise the measurements, the better. Plus, you may need more materials and
chemicals here compared to the other types of soap making methods.
• Melt-and-Pour. Seen as an effortless, easy way of making soaps,
melt-and-pours are not far from the popularity ladder as it comes a close second to her
sister, cold process. Here, all you need would be pre-made soap (of your choice) which is
usually melted in a double broiler, scents and color added when the soap melts, and
mixture is then poured into molds. You don't need lye for this, and melt-and-pours can be
used immediately as soon as it hardens (unlike other types where curing the soap is
• Hot process. By "cooking" lye and fat together (breaking up the
fatty acids and combining it with the alkali) at 80 to 100 degrees Celsius, this is simple
saponification at its best. Compared to the cold process, soaps made via the hot process
is easier to make, and takes less time. But it would specifics are a must, so as with the
cold process, be a control freak, as you will really need to have a watchful eye while you
"cook" the soap; overheating it will render the batch useless ... unless it can be still
be salvaged for use for the next method we will be discussing.
• Rebatching. A failed attempt at soap making may look heart
wrenching, but that's where rebatching comes in - to make do with your botched up soap
job. Like melt-and-pour, just grate the soap finely then melt it again with either soap or
even milk. (While experiments are encouraged to release the full potential of a creative
mind, it may be best to follow a recipe first, especially if you lack the budget to buy
materials for another soap-making session.) Sometimes though, the soap never really melts
properly, so you're stuck with soap that's difficult to mold, due to air bubbles that may
get trapped in your soap.
The power of a useful soap lies within your hands. See what best suits you by using the
Make your very own
homemade soap recipes with a little help.