Feb 21, 2012

Homemade Liquid Hand Soap {Tutorial}

I was super excited about trying this frugal recipe for homemade liquid hand soap after seeing a pin from The Farmer's Nest detailing how to make my own.

This project was super easy, hands-on time was minimal, and it cost a grand total of $1.50 for a whole gallon of  soap. 

Supplies you need:
bar of soap, glycerin, squirt of dishwashing liquid, water
I found glycerin in the first aid section at Wal-Mart.  This 6 oz. bottle cost $2.99, but I only used 1/6 of the bottle.

Set a gallon of water (16 cups) on the stovetop on medium heat. I recommend a non-coated pot, since you may use your mixing beaters later on; the beaters may scratch the non-stick coating.

Meanwhile, grate the soap.  I used my kitchen grater and bowl. It's just soap, right?  Excuse the scaly claw there; I'm not sure who that belongs to, but they may need to check out a recipe for homemade lotion. Just a thought.

 My helper decided this looked like fun, so she jumped in on the fun.

Once the bar is grated, stir the soap shavings into the gallon of water.

Add 2 Tbsp. (1 oz.) of glycerin to the soap mixture and a squirt of (hand) dishwashing liquid.  The dishwashing liquid is only added to enhance the suds factor.

Immediately after the ingredients have been added, the water will look cloudy and thin.  Now just put the lid on your pot, and allow the compound to marinate for 12-18 hours. 

I made mine around 3 p.m.  At 10 o'clock that night, it was still very watery, so I continued to let it sit.  By 9 o'clock the next morning, the mixture had thickened to a gel-like solid.

You may not need to, but I had to use a mixer to slowly add water until the consistency is similar to hand soap.  

Bottle it up!

Note: The kind of bar soap you begin with may affect your final result.  From what I've read, Dove seems to cause problems with thickening.  Also, the glycerin additive is a humectant that helps the skin draw the moisture in.  You may be able to get by without it completely.

Linked up to Frugal Friday.

10 lovely comments:

Phyllis Blickensderfer said... Best Blogger Tips

Now that sounds easy -- and it stores well, too? Excellent.

TyKes Mom said... Best Blogger Tips

This is wonderful! I have switched to several homemade cleaners and soaps but never thought about hand soap. I am definitely going to try this. It sounds like a great thing for the kids to help out with. Thank you so much!

Debbie said... Best Blogger Tips

I just might try this!

content2be said... Best Blogger Tips

Not sure on the storage issue, but I'll update if there's a problem!

content2be said... Best Blogger Tips

Good luck! You could also use leftover soap slivers too, reducing your out-of-pocket and waste.

content2be said... Best Blogger Tips

Let me know how it turns out!

BarbL said... Best Blogger Tips

I have done this with hotel soaps I toss in my bag when traveling, which makes it almost no cost. I will try it without the glycerin next time to see if I can make it NO cost! :)

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

Thanks for your post! I'm trying to make all homemade products now, and reading all I can about it. I had read the soap tutorial at the Farmer's Nest, as well as the many comments after it. Many people had problems with it thickening up. One person noted that most soap bars are 4 -5 oz, and her recipe called for an 8 oz bar. I see you used the 4.25 oz Yardley bar that I had bought from Walmart. I have not made it yet. Did your batch thicken up well? I was thinking I needed another bar before I made it. Thanks. BarbaraS

Tami Yee said... Best Blogger Tips

I just made some last night. I hadn't seen your site, but I used the same bar soap that you did. Did you have any trouble when washing your hands with it, having a waxing feeling on your hands? I did and I am not sure what to attribute that to. I did not have glycerine so that was not in my soap. Could that be why?? I don't know if you will have the answers, but it doesn't hurt to ask!! Thank!

Erin Rothie said... Best Blogger Tips

You also may want to add vitamin E oil to your solution which acts as a natural preservative/fighter against bacterial growth which can grow inside your bottled soap over time (i.e. mold).