Quick and Easy DIY Herbal Soap for Beginners


Looking to put your herb garden harvest to good use? Making your own herbal soap is a fantastic way to utilize the abundance of herbs you’ve grown while indulging in a bit of creative DIY. Not only does it offer a delightful way to incorporate your homegrown herbs into daily routines, but it also allows you to tailor the soap to your preferences and skincare needs.

With just a pound of melt and pour soap base, a few essential oils, and your favorite herbs, you can embark on a rewarding journey of soap-making right in your own kitchen. Whether you’re a seasoned DIY enthusiast or simply looking for a new project to explore, crafting herbal soap promises to be both fulfilling and enjoyable. So, roll up your sleeves and let’s dive into this aromatic adventure!

the soaps that were in a flower shape mold on a white plate with a fresh carnation next to it.

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What Herbs Are Good for Soap Making?

There are several ways to make soap, but in this article, we’ll focus on one of the simplest and most beginner-friendly methods: melt and pour soap. This method involves using a pre-made soap base that you melt down and customize with your preferred additives, such as herbs and essential oils. It’s a fantastic option for those new to soap making or anyone looking for a quick and easy DIY project. Plus, with melt and pour soap, you can skip the hassle of working with lye and enjoy the creative process of crafting your own unique herbal soap blends.

One of the most popular bases for melt and pour soap is goat’s milk soap base, and it happens to be my personal favorite. Goat’s milk soap base offers a luxurious creamy texture and is renowned for its moisturizing properties, making it an excellent choice for herbal soap formulations. Plus, it’s gentle on the skin, making it suitable for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

With melt and pour soap base, you can skip the complexities of formulating your soap from scratch and dive straight into the fun part – customizing your soap with herbs, essential oils, and other additives. Whether you’re infusing your soap with the soothing scent of lavender or the refreshing aroma of peppermint, the possibilities are endless when it comes to crafting your perfect herbal soap blend. So, grab your favorite melt and pour soap base, gather your herbs and essential oils, and let your creativity flow as you embark on your soap-making adventure.

pouring essential oil into melt and pour soap.

How to Make Natural Herbal Soap at Home

Step 1: Begin by Melting the Soap Base

If you’re unfamiliar with melt and pour soap base, it’s a pre-made soap that has been melted down so you can add your own color, scent, and properties. It’s available at most craft stores. Melt and pour soap base is quickly melted in a double boiler or. microwave, making it the perfect choice for soap-making beginners. This recipe uses goat’s milk melt and pour soap base. For a plant-based option consider using Shea Butter Melt and Pour Soap Base.

Step 2: Add the Herbs

Start by chopping your herbs into small pieces. You’ll want to use about 1/4 cup of herbs for each pound of soap base. Since you’re using melt and pour soap base, there’s no need to worry about calculating the correct amount of herbs to add. Simply add as much or as little as you like. Some people want to add a handful, while others prefer to use a couple of tablespoons.

Once you’ve added the herbs, stir them to ensure they’re evenly distributed.

Tip: Finely chop the herbs for a smoother lather experience. Coarser herbs may result in a chunkier texture

Step 3: Add Essential Oils

After incorporating the herbs into the melted soap base, it’s time to add your chosen essential oils. Essential oils not only provide fragrance but also offer various therapeutic benefits. Select essential oils that complement the herbs you’ve chosen and create a harmonious scent profile.

Start by adding a few drops of each essential oil to the melted soap base, stirring gently to ensure even distribution. Keep in mind that essential oils are potent, so a little goes a long way. Aim for about 20-30 drops of essential oil per pound of soap base, adjusting the amount based on personal preference and desired fragrance strength.

Experiment with different essential oil combinations (see suggested combinations below) to create unique scents tailored to your preferences and the intended purpose of the soap. Once you’ve added the essential oils, stir the mixture thoroughly to blend them evenly with the soap base and herbs.

Step 4: Pour the Soap into the Mold

Once the soap base and herbs have been combined, it’s time to pour the mixture into your soap mold. Any soap mold will work, but silicone works best because it easily pops out when the soap is ready.

If you don’t have a soap mold, you can use a glass container or even an ice cube tray. Just keep in mind that it may be more challenging to remove the soap once it’s hardened.

Now it’s time to let your soap cool down and harden. This process can take a few hours, but depending on the size and shape of your soap, it could take longer—it’s worth the wait. Once the curing time is finished, remove the soaps from the mold and store your handmade soap or use them accordingly.

Tip: I love to enhance my homemade herbal soap by adding dried flowers for both color and texture. They not only brighten up your soap bars but also provide a delightful tactile experience. Experiment with different varieties like lavender buds, rose petals, calendula flowers, or chamomile blossoms to create visually appealing and artisanal soaps that capture the essence of nature.

A close up of the completed soap.

Recommended Essential Oil Combinations for Herbal Soap

One key aspect of soap-making is selecting the right combination of essential oils to create captivating scents that complement each other. Essential oils not only infuse your soap with enticing aromas but also offer various therapeutic benefits for the skin and senses. In this chart, we’ll explore recommended essential oil combinations carefully curated to balance scents, enhance properties, and elevate your herbal soap-making experience.

HerbEssential Oil Combinations
LavenderLavender + Chamomile, Lavender + Rose
RosemaryRosemary + Peppermint, Rosemary + Lemon
PeppermintPeppermint + Eucalyptus, Peppermint + Tea Tree
ChamomileChamomile + Lavender, Chamomile + Geranium
EucalyptusEucalyptus + Peppermint, Eucalyptus + Lemon
Tea TreeTea Tree + Lavender, Tea Tree + Peppermint
LemonLemon + Rosemary, Lemon + Eucalyptus
GeraniumGeranium + Lavender, Geranium + Rosemary
PatchouliPatchouli + Lavender, Patchouli + Orange
OrangeOrange + Lemon, Orange + Patchouli
CedarwoodCedarwood + Lavender, Cedarwood + Rosemary
Ylang YlangYlang Ylang + Lavender, Ylang Ylang + Bergamot
lavender and ylang ylang oils.

Fresh vs Dried Herbs for Soapmaking

When it comes to incorporating herbs into your homemade soap, you have the option of using either fresh or dried herbs, each with its own set of benefits and considerations.

Fresh Herbs: Using fresh herbs in your soap can add a vibrant burst of color and a subtle natural fragrance. Fresh herbs also contain higher levels of moisture, which can impart a hydrating quality to your soap. However, it’s important to note that fresh herbs may introduce additional moisture into the soap, which can affect its texture and shelf life. Additionally, fresh herbs may turn brown or wilt when exposed to the high temperatures involved in the soapmaking process.

Dried Herbs: Dried herbs are a popular choice for soapmaking due to their extended shelf life and concentrated aroma. Dried herbs are less likely to introduce excess moisture into the soap, resulting in a firmer and longer-lasting finished product. They also tend to retain their color and fragrance better during the soapmaking process. However, it’s essential to ensure that your dried herbs are properly stored and free from mold or contaminants before use.

Considerations: When deciding between fresh and dried herbs for soapmaking, consider the specific properties of the herbs you intend to use and how they will interact with the soap base. Some herbs may lose their potency or fragrance when dried, while others may retain their beneficial properties more effectively in dried form. Additionally, take into account the visual appeal you wish to achieve in your soap design, as fresh herbs may offer a more vibrant and textured appearance compared to their dried counterparts.

Tips for Using Fresh and Dried Herbs:

  • For fresh herbs, ensure they are thoroughly washed and dried before incorporating them into your soap to prevent mold growth.
  • Consider finely chopping fresh herbs to release their essential oils and enhance their dispersion throughout the soap.
  • When using dried herbs, crush or grind them slightly before adding them to the soap base to release their aromatic compounds.
  • Experiment with different combinations of fresh and dried herbs to achieve the desired color, texture, and fragrance in your homemade soap creations.

Whether you choose to use fresh or dried herbs, both options can add a touch of nature’s goodness to your homemade soap, creating a unique and delightful sensory experience for you and your skin.

Here is a list of herbs suitable for making soap:

  1. Lavender
  2. Rosemary
  3. Chamomile
  4. Calendula (Marigold)
  5. Peppermint
  6. Lemongrass
  7. Eucalyptus
  8. Rose Petals
  9. Sage
  10. Thyme
  11. Oregano
  12. Basil
  13. Mint
  14. Lemon Balm
  15. Comfrey
  16. Nettle
  17. Yarrow
  18. Dandelion
  19. Fennel
  20. Helichrysum

These herbs can add natural fragrance, color, and skin-nourishing properties to your homemade soaps. Experiment with different combinations to create unique and aromatic blends that suit your preferences and skincare needs.

herbs hanging to dry.

Ylang Ylang Lavender Carnation Soap DIY Herbal Soap Recipe

yield: 4-5 bars of soap

Ingredients:

Instructions:

  1. Prepare and Melt the Soap Base

    Cut the melt and pour goat’s milk soap base into small cubes for easy melting.Place the soap cubes into a microwave-safe bowl or a double boiler.
    Melt the soap base in the microwave using 30-second intervals, stirring in between until fully melted. If using a double boiler, melt the soap base over low heat until fully melted.

    A block of goats milk cut into cubes for melting.

  2. Add Essential Oils

    Once the soap base is melted, add a few drops of ylang ylang essential oil and lavender essential oil to the melted soap, stirring gently to combine. Adjust the amount of essential oil based on your preference for scent strength.the ylang ylang essential oil.

  3. Incorporate Dried Carnation Petals

    Next, sprinkle a handful of dried carnation petals into the melted soap mixture, stirring gently to distribute them evenly throughout the soap.
    Optional: Save some to add to the top of the soap as it begins to harden.
    adding dried carnation to the soap mixture.

  4. Pour the Mixture

    Carefully pour the melted soap mixture into the prepared soap molds, filling them to the top.pouring the soap mixture into silicone molds.

  5. Allow to Harden

    Allow the soap to cool and harden completely, which typically takes a few hours.Once the soap has fully hardened, gently remove it from the molds and store it in a cool, dry place until ready to use.A close up of a hardened soap.

Enjoy your homemade herbal soap featuring the soothing scents of ylang ylang and lavender, complemented by the delicate beauty of dried carnation petals!

Frequently Asked Questions about Making DIY Herbal Soap at Home

Are there other melt and pour bases I can use for making herbal soap?

Yes, besides goat’s milk, you can also use bases like shea butter, cocoa butter, olive oil, and coconut oil.

What are some other items I can add to the melt and pour soap base?

Great question! You can add natural ingredients like herbal powders, flower petals, dried herbs, and powdered herbs for texture and fragrance. These fun add-ins provide a creative way to customize your homemade soap recipes!

Is making my own soap safe?

When following proper instructions and safety precautions, making your own soap using melt and pour bases is a safe and enjoyable activity.

Do I need to use lye to make herbal soap?

No, when using melt and pour soap bases, there’s no need to handle lye, as the saponification process has already occurred.

What are some natural color options for my herbal soap?

Natural colorants like chamomile flowers, french green clay, and powdered herbs can be used to add color to your soap without synthetic dyes.

How long does it take to make herbal soap at home?

The process of making herbal soap with melt and pour bases is relatively quick, usually taking a few hours from start to finish.

What’s the difference between cold process and melt and pour soap making?

Cold process soap making involves handling lye and creating soap from scratch, while melt and pour soap making uses pre-made bases that only require melting and adding ingredients.

Do I need any special equipment to make herbal soap?

Basic kitchen tools like a microwave-safe bowl or double boiler, stirring utensils, and soap molds are all you need to get started.

Is it necessary to wear gloves when making herbal soap?

While gloves are not mandatory when using melt and pour soap bases, they can protect your hands from potential irritation from handling ingredients like fragrance oils or essential oils.

The soaps on a white dish in the sun.

For more soap making try this:

stack of soaps with lavender sprig.

DIY Lavender Soap Made Easy: Discover the simplicity of crafting your own luxurious lavender soap using natural ingredients like goat’s milk and lavender essential oil. Whether you’re a seasoned soap maker or a beginner, this article, “DIY Lavender Soap Made Easy,” has something for everyone. Dive into delightful homemade lavender soap recipes, explore customization options, and troubleshoot common issues. Get ready to indulge in the calming scent and gentle touch of lavender with every wash. It’s time to pamper your skin with the goodness of nature!

Herbal soap is a great way to use the herbs you grow in your garden. Not only will you be able to control the ingredients, but you’ll also be able to add additional beneficial herbs. Plus, the process is relatively simple and only requires a few basic supplies.

With just a few supplies and a little time, you can create a unique and beneficial product that’s perfect for yourself or as a gift!

If you’d prefer a 100% organic final product, you can even find organic soap bases and organic herbs. This is a great way to make sure that your finished soap is free of harsh chemicals and synthetic ingredients.

Now it’s time to get creative and start experimenting with herbal soaps!

my signature which is a drawing of me sitting.

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