Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Works For Me Wednesday: Homemade liquid hand soap...Take Two

You may have already seen my other post about making homemade liquid hand soap. (If you're interested, you can click here to see it.)  Since that time, I have made another batch of liquid hand soap using a slightly different recipe, and I like the new batch a lot better.

I think for these recipes for liquid hand soap, how your liquid soap turns out really depends on which bar soap you use.  If you have tried one recipe and did not like the results, play around with it a little longer (different recipe and/or different soap) before giving up!

This time around, I used Ivory soap because we always have it on hand, I know I can tolerate it with my allergies to many fragrances,  and it's one of the cheaper soaps out there.

This was the recipe I used, which is from the Raising Arrows blog:
  • 1 cup of soap shavings (I used Ivory soap)
  • 4 cups of  water
  • 1 Tablespoon of glycerin (I omitted this because I was using Ivory and the website said "regular soap" may not need it)

Where do you find liquid glycerin?  The cheapest place I've found it around here has been at Hobby Lobby.  The glycerin (pictured on the right) was in the soap making section of the store and was priced at $3.47.  Remember to go to Hobby Lobby's website and print a coupon for 40% off!

Add all ingredients to a pot and heat on your stovetop until the soap shavings have completely dissolved.  

I should have taken a photo of the mixture at this point, because it looks really disappointing and you would probably think you've done something wrong.  My mixture at this point looked like water with yellow food coloring add to it.  That was it.  (It will look like soapy water with most soaps.)  I thought I had messed up something somehow, and thought I'd better add some glycerin to it because I had heard that would thicken the liquid soap some.  I added 1 tablespoon of glycerin; however, I'm not sure it made much difference and it turned out fine in the end.

I set the pot outside, covered, and let it cool overnight.  This was how it looked after cooling and sitting overnight, after I'd stirred it a little:

I used a hand mixer to blend the thickened soap to ensure a good consistency, since I'd had some complaints with my last batch (see note below)...

and then used a really fancy funnel (a.k.a., an empty bottle from my last purchase of liquid hand soap, cut in half) to pour the soap mixture into my really fancy storage container (a.k.a., a well-rinsed milk jug).

This funnel was a great improvement over the kitchen funnel I used last time.

I doubled the recipe to make this amount of liquid hand soap.

I really like the way this batch turned out!  This batch was a little thicker than my first batch, but not as thick as I thought it would have been since it didn't use nearly as much water.  Again, I really think the results depend on which bar soap you use as well as the amount of water called for in the recipe.

NOTE:   Since this post, I have made this soap again several times.  Instead of letting it cool and thicken, I've poured the soap water mixture into my storage container.  It worked just fine--it was easier to pour into the storage container, I can use an empty Softsoap container for storage (which makes it much easier to refill my soap pumps!), and the consistency of the soap has been just fine.  I've also made the liquid hand soap without glycerin, as well as with less water, and the results have been good.

Have you ever made liquid hand soap?  If so, which soap did you use, and did you like the results?

Do you have any tips to share that work for you, whether it is about liquid hand soap or any other topic? 

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