23 November 2015

Homemade Soap

I made soap today. The cold process method.

It's still sitting in the tray, hardening for the next 24 hours. Only then will I know whether Project Soap is a success.

This year has seen a lot of firsts in homemade products for me, like my breads and rolls, and collagen soup, and now soap.

I saw a few posts on FB regarding hand made soap, and with the drastic decline in the value of the RM this year, our usual soap costs a lot more. We use One with Nature, an American brand that uses Dead Sea minerals. The soaps are mild, and my kids don't step out of the shower with red blotches on their skin like they do if they use other readily-available commercial brands.
Lye solution

So I thought why not try soap making? Doesn't seem that hard. And the attraction for me was the thought of making soap that is all natural and chemical free.

Alas, soap cannot be entirely chemical free. It has to have lye (sodium hydroxide) to interact with the fatty molecules of oil in order to saponify into soap. At least, that is the ONLY chemical in home made soap.

The ingredients for making soap are delightfully simple: water, oil and lye. That's it.

The Youtube videos on soap making give dire warnings of the potential dangers of lye - it is a caustic alkaline substance that will burn you upon contact, and the fumes it produces when dissolved into water are powerful.

So I had to do some psyching up before taking the plunge. I purchased my first soap making kit from Soap Lab and designated my work area outside the house; the patio by the fish pond and bamboo hedge just outside the family room. Perfect.

I achieved trace very quickly
Everything went well today; I set up my work table, I laid out my utensils, I weighed out my ingredients, I suited up with goggles and gloves and mask, and I kept the children and pets away.

Now I wait.


  1. Awesome. Is there anywhere in ipoh you can buy sodium hydroxide?

  2. Hi Yasuan, are you a soaper too? I source my materials from Soap Lab online.