Tuesday, 19 May 2009

The £0.10p bar of soap extravaganza

Ok, so you all know I love it when I make things for £0.10p... for a litre of home made washing up liquid, for a litre of home made liquid soap... well now I have done it for bars of soap as well...

Goat's Milk, honey & Oatmeal Soap

This soap is ideal for sensitive skin...
I bought 6 bars of plain Castille soap for £0.99p at the £0.99 store - any inexpensive soap you can find will do (Tesco do some I think)
I then used two of those bars, £0.32. Each bar is 100g.
I grated down all of the soap into a glass bowl. I placed this bowl of grated soap inside a pot of hot but not boiling water (bain marie method).

To the grated soap, I then added a little over 100ml of goats milk (basically, half of the volume of the soap), plus one tablespoon of honey, a teaspoon of ground oatmeal and half a teaspoon of cinammon for texture. You can judge for yourself how much liquid to add, just don't make it too liquid or the soap may end up softer than you would like.

Once completely melted, this is when you would add essential oil if you wanted and mix well.
I then poured it all quickly into a clean used butter tub (the 500ml size is good). If you don't pour it quickly, it may start to set in the glass bowl so act fast... and don't overcook!

Once in it's 'mould', this was left to cool some more and once cooler, then placed in the fridge for 3 hours.

I then removed it gently and sliced into 5 soaps, which are perfect hand soap sizes...

A fun thing to do on the weekend and if you have kids it's lots of fun. You can experiment with any soap and any 'flavours', just remember if you are adding aromatherapy oils to add these when the soap is close to cool (but not yet hard) as otherwise the oils evaporate... also do not add too much liquid (milk, water, lavender water etc) as otherwise the soap could end up too soft.

Ideas to add:
- Ground almonds
- Orange / lemon / lime / grapefruit zest etc
- Aromatherapy oils
- Dried lavender etc
- Old soaps you want to melt down and reuse
- Chocolate powder

This process is what is called the 'Melt & Pour' technique, so no scary lye is involved, just a fun quick 10 minute project to multiply 2 bars of soap into 5 nicer, gentler ones...

As these simply involve melting down and re-shaping with some added nice ingredients, you could give these to friends and family as a thoughtful gift. Wrap with some nicely edged brown paper or card, with a little sticker and even maybe a dried flower or emboss the soap with a shape you like.

If you were to turn all your soaps from 2 bars into 5 bars - that will keep you going a long time, and soap improves with age!


Maisie said...

How much hot water did you use?

These would be good to make for teachers gifts ready for the end of the summer term.

SavingsNow said...

Hi Maisie, yes these would make great gifts once you have found a combination of textures and smells you like.
I use half the liquid of the soap amount, or a little over depending on how you feel the mixture is thickening. So for my 2 bars of soap (200g) I used half that amount in goat's milk, plus an extra splash. If you use too much it can make the soap go too soft. Experiment and see! Glycerin soap could also eb fun, just adding some texture to it perhaps but I magine with that you might use less water, have not tried those yet... let me kow how you get on!

cheerfulness said...

These look superb and great fun to make. We love Lush soaps but the price means we can't afford them often. Love the idea of making our own.
Thanks for the recipe!

SavingsNow said...

Hi Cheerulness thanks for your comment! Yes they are great fun and so quick too. Plus if you use inexpensive soap, you can experiment alot and it won't cost too much.

The goat milk, oatmeal and honey/cinnamon is lovely, mainly unscented as I wanted it to be for sensitive skin (well it has some smell from the original soap). Next time I would like to make a lemon / lime / bergmot one maybe, using lemon zest for texture and some essential oils for more scent...

It may not come out exactly like Lush *as such* in terms of ingredients but it can be as creative as your wallet can afford... plus at least you know that the base is simple and you have added some nice stuff to it... for very little cash!

Maisie said...

Thanks for clarifying will give it a go next week as I have some spare soap I could use.

homespun living said...

This sounds fun and easy!
Your website looks great, Sophie, and I will certainly spend some time reading through it.
Have a good weekend,

SavingsNow said...

Thanks Deb - hoping you will find articles you enjoy, although you probably have experimented alot yourself anyway ;o) Still, I find that with each new thing I try to make I learn alot and it does cut down our costs... or at least provide enough enjoyment as a hobby!

Alan said...

I'm off downstairs now to have a go at this soap making thingy. I asked the wife for a soap making kit for chrimbo... I've just found one on your site !!!
Not only have you turned 2 soap into 5 but also into a chimbo pressie....

As a side note have you any recipes for skin lotion ?? My wife uses the bodyshop white musk but is running low on her stash so I said i'd make her some. She has dry skin in small places but she just screwed her face up at me when I said use caustic soda to sort her face out !!!

of corse it was and she knew I was joking..

SavingsNow said...

Hey Alan, I'm chuffed - glad to help out!

I'd recommend the book Holistic beauty on Amazon, it will sort you out for all recipes for beauty for skin,shower, hair and save you lots more than it costs. I have done her facial scrub, shea butter lotion and more, all natural and my ingredients were bought on ebay - usually organic and fairtrade, I am sure you could do a lovely lotion for your wife. Though lotions are notoriously hard to get 'just like' store bought because of the emulsifying, it comes close enough though!

A face oil would be lovely too and cost you pennies yet feel like a very luxurious gift. Holland and Barret sell mixing bottles to prepare it in, you could then peel off the H&B label and give it to her as a gift. Or find another bottle with a dropper maybe on ebay?