Monday, March 7, 2016

Hand-Milled Soap Making

I had the opportunity to attend the Community Arts workshop at Kiwassa Neighbourhood House. In the previous session we learned to make soap. It didn't seem too hard, but we had to do exact measurements (especially for the latter method). We experienced 2 methods of making soap: 1) melt and pour, and 2) hot process.

Here is the recipe for the
Lemongrass Coconut Oil Soap

If you want to leave out the leaves and just have a smooth non exfolliating soap, then you can do that.
If you want to leave out the scent, then you can do that too. You are the creator, make it your own.
This recipe is going to make a 2 pound batch of soap. You can make a bigger batch if you like. Just
make sure you have a mould large enough to accommodate your larger batch.
12 oz coconut oil
12 oz soy bean oil
3.9oz sodium hydroxide
9.1 oz Rooibos Tea (3 tablespoons of Rooibos Tea that has been steeping in hot distilled water for at
least 3 hours)

Up to 1 Tablespoon Rooibos Tea for exfoliation (anything over 1 tablespoon/1 tea bag content is too scratchy)

½ oz Vanilla essential oil or boosted vanilla extract (or ½ oz of any essential oil you like)

Kitchen Utensils & Equipment:
large pot or saucepan
stick blender
few small glass or ceramic bowls
digital scale
wooden or plastic spoons
measuring cups
rubber gloves

For safety pre-caution: Prepare a bowl filled with vinegar and water in case skin comes in contact with the lye. Use protective eye gear or safety glasses.


1. Weigh the coconut oil an set aside.

2. Measure water into medium glass or ceramic bowl. While wearing protective gear, weigh the lye and slowly add the lye to the water and mixing gently with a plastic spoon.
Note: Make sure you are adding the lye to the water in this order. The mixture will become very hot.

3. Heat the coconut oil in a saucepan to 120-130F.

4. Add the lye mixture to the melted coconut oil and stir slowly. Use a stick blender and begin mixing evenly until mixture is like a pudding texture.

5. Set the heat to low and cook until the soap gradually takes on a waxy appearance. Stir occasionally. It will look like mashed potatoes when it's nearly finished.

6. Mix in lemongrass oil and mix thoroughly. Then cut open the tea bag and pour in the green tea. The fine tea leaves can be added as an exfoliant.

7. Pour the mixture into a lined milk carton or mould. Cover the top with wax paper and let site for about 12 hours until hardened.

8. After it is hardened for a day or so, cut into bars and let it sit for few more weeks to completely harden before using. The soap will last a bit longer.

Once the process of saponification is complete, the lye and oil molecules are combined. So, there is no lye (sodium hydroxide) present in the finished bars of soap. Saponification means the chemical reaction that occurs when oil or fat is mixed with a strong alkali (lye).

Bookmark and Share
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...