Posted 2010-05-21 3:22 PM (#4204) Subject: soap making recipes???
Does anyone here make their own soaps?
Can anyone direct me to any web site that shows the recipes for shampoo, dish washing liquid, bar soap and so on, or share their own recipe. I have the one for laundry soap, though I have to say that finding Arm & Hammer Super Washing Powder is impossible, but I know we could cut our family expense down quite alot by doing this one simple step.
I saw a web site for bar soap, but the cost would be about 50.00 for all the necessary items. I don't have a clue as to how much it would make.
Any suggestions would be appreciated!
Posted 2010-05-22 1:45 PM (#4205 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
Looking forward to answers on this one but can't provide one myself. I would like to make and be able to sell organic body soaps as well. Was just thinking about doing it as I chopped a bar off a block at our local organic store. Figure it can't be too difficult to do, our grandparents did it all the time but I know their recipe involved Lye ... which I would rather not use.
Posted 2010-05-22 6:47 PM (#4206 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
OK. Here is what I've been able to find on my own after another day of research. There is a web site that shows a reasonable recipe for shampoo and body soap. Beforehand all I could find was egg mixture ones that had to be kept in a fridge and used in 4 days. Not practical for my FTOTR situation.
HOWEVER. If you don't get $100.00 worth of soap, the shipping is almost 21.00! I checked Wal Mart a few days back and the only part they still carried was the BORAX. I went to a small town local store called "LEEVERS" and they carried all 3 products, however the fels naptha is hidden in the body bar soap section of the store. I found Fels Naptha at Mills Fleet Farm in the cleaning area almost on the to shelf, but they did not have the washing powder. Supposedly Home Depot and Lowes carries a few of these items, but I haven't looked for myself & Menards doesn't carry it all. (2X yearly resets can bump items off a shelf before anyone knows it!)
I have a HE washer and it did really well. I made a batch last night and tried it on several items that were stained and dingy from age and they came out IMPRESSIVELY, & Noticeably cleaner, and brighter than before. It did not foam up the washer either. Since it is a soap instead of a detergent, the PH and acidity in the water have to be compensated to make sure that the soap doesn't leave a scum. I did what they suggested and added a small bit of vinegar to the rince cycle to eliminate any possible build up. I actually have used a 30-50% mixture of vinegar in my fabric softener for 10+ years.
SO, I had 1.79 in the bar of soap, 3.75 in the washing powder and 4.75 in the borax. The washing powder and Borax I still have 90% of, since you inly need a small amount of it for a 5 gallon bucket.
Will keep you posted on any further progress I make!!!
Posted 2010-05-22 11:35 PM (#4207 - in reply to #4206) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
We have been making laundry detergent for a while now. We love it-especially the price! We do have to order the washing soda from soaps gone buy. I usually go in with a friend to save on shipping. I have used Zote brand soap also instead of fels naptha. I like Zote just as well. M
We also have used the recipe for dishwasher detergent and been very pleased with it.
I make my own baby wipes with the recipe on the Duggar Family website. They are wonderful for quick clean ups even if you don't have a baby.
I am always looking for a bargain and these simple recipes really work and saved us $$
Posted 2010-05-23 12:13 AM (#4208 - in reply to #4207) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
Cindy. I didn't see the recipe for Laundry soap, and tried the one I made for laundry... BIG MISTAKE! Can you tell me what you use?
Posted 2010-05-23 11:50 AM (#4210 - in reply to #4208) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
To make the dishwasher detergent, I mixed equal parts borax with washing soda. Occasionally, I would have some spotting on my glasses, but not anymore than I did with ready made detergent.
When I had 6 kids at home, we went through body wash like crazy. I could purchase Suave shampoo, (green apple, strawberry, etc) for about 50 cents a bottle using coupons/sales. My kids used it for body wash/shampoo and I never had any complaints or problems. We also bought the conditioner and diluted it to use as spray on moisterizer for those of us with dry curly hair.
We have had to live extremely frugally for 30 years because of large family. During the first season of Wife Swap the network sent a producer to our home to film for 10 hours our "frugal lifestyle". LOL little did I know then we could have cut our expenses in half by leaving our stick home and moving to the RV.
I would love to have a swap meet with other rv families to trade outgrown toys, books, clothes etc. We used to do this at a school my kids attended and it was such a blessing to pass on your gently loved items and receive "new stuff". I think it could be a great fun weekend. I would be happy to host it at the park we are currently in.
Posted 2010-05-23 3:26 PM (#4214 - in reply to #4204) Subject: RE: soap making recipes???
I have had better luck finding washing powder at smaller grocery stores. I have had no luck at the big chain stores. You might check a small store next time you pass by one.
For soap and shampoo I do not make or buy anything. I use baking soda and vinegar for both my hair and body and it works out great. For my hair I have finally gotten to the point to where I only need to use the baking soda and vinegar once every 10 days or so. I use water as needed in between and I bush my hair throughly twice a day. My hair looks great and I spend very little money or time on it.
For my body I have found that doing a scrub with baking soda makes me feel so much cleaner then body wash. I do a vinegar rinse because I have mild eczema and it helps keep it under control.
To clean I use vinegar for my windows and baking soda for surfaces. I have tried to wash dishes with baking soda but I haven't had much luck with that. I am not sure if it was the baking soda or that I am working in a child sized sink (I'm not kidding, I kneel to do dishes) with horrible lighting.
Posted 2010-05-23 9:10 PM (#4218 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
Cindy. I appreciate any "reminders" (the ones I used to know) of saving tips. When on the road and limited income, you have to make it count! I will take it to heart when I go to the 99 cent stores and shop.
I tried your recipe for the dish washer soap. Started with 2 cups each and wanted to make it liquid, which seemed to work good..... Then I had the brilliant idea to mix the last of the store bought washing gel to the concoction... (Maybe 12 ounces left) I had a 3 quart cottage cheese BRICK in 20 seconds... It diluted right down, and smoothed right out but I am learning FAST! It is quite funny to initially learn these kinds of things.
Thanks for the input, Vanessa! I read about vinegar and baking soda, but wasn't too sure about it!
I know what you mean about the baking soda scrub. MY last 2 pregnancies, I CRAVED baking soda. I would brush my teeth with it, bathe with it (DAILY) and almost became fixated on that bath time ritual. I loved the cooling feeling and how nice my body felt afterwards. (Probably overdid it by bathing every day, but it felt so relaxing!)
Posted 2010-05-28 8:25 PM (#4245 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
My order from Brambleberry came in today. HOW FUN!!! SO quick to microwave the base, add the perfume oil & color (If you want) stir and let it set. The "baby rose" ones I made an hour ago, are already done. I used a small cake pan I was about to throw away because of some rust, and cut it into 6 bars with a plastic knife.
I made all sorts of "trial ones" to see how well it does. Sure smells good and like I said, was SUPER FUN!!!
Posted 2010-05-28 8:28 PM (#4246 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
ALSO. I got notice 14 DAYS after placing my order, that my shipment from Soaps Buy Gone JUST shiped out today. If I were on the road, and try to place an order to get it before I left, I would have a real hard time with timing. I will have to remember this if I ever need to order here again. I wouldn't suggest it, offhand.
Posted 2010-06-11 5:13 AM (#4350 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
You might try something like Dr Bronner's, friends tell me that stuff lasts forever. I plan on trying it this year once we're on the road. You can harvest some yucca roots which are a natural soap product. I second (or is that third, fourth) the use of baking soda, vinegars, other natural products. Cleans anything!
Posted 2010-06-14 6:53 PM (#4361 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
Now that we are on the road I am also having a heck of a time finding arm and hammer washing soda to make our laundry detergent Anybody else know of a chain store out west that carries it? You can substitute any castille soap like the Bronner's Seeria just mentioned for the fels naptha or zote. I tried zote but my whole family sneezed constantly while grating it so I wasn't a real fan.
I second the baking soda for hair although my kids aren't good at it so we buy them shampoo anywayl.
Soapmaking seems like fun but in our rig there is no way I have enough counter space to do something like that. I gave away all of my soy candle making stuff due to lack of space.
Posted 2010-06-28 8:15 PM (#4456 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
Love this topic! Amypixie, if you are west, I have been able to find washing soda at Winco grocery stores. Winco is a chain store only in Washinton, Idaho, Nevada, California and Oregon.
Posted 2010-06-28 8:36 PM (#4457 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
I read a recipe for fabric softener. 2 cups "hair conditioner" and 3 cups vinegar. I tried a batch and it seemed to work pretty well. I didn't buy the organic like was on the recipe, but inexpensive and thus far, no one is scratching or itching.
Posted 2011-08-16 2:07 AM (#6897 - in reply to #4204) Subject: RE: soap making recipes???
I buy the super washing soda at Winco (a grocery store chain) www.wincofoods.com for locations... Hope that helps.
Posted 2011-08-16 2:28 PM (#6900 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
I've been meaning to update this thread.
Here it has been about 14 months since I got the laundry stuff in. I did spend over a hundred dollars when I ordered it on line, but I still have quite alot left. (Like at least 3 boxes, which should last an additional 6 months) Now given that I have it stored one place, and have run out twice while on the road, has to be figured into the factor, but also, I've washed clothes for 4-6 people ~all year~. I've since seen the 3 combinations in many smaller stores, (No wal mart, no K Mart) but the felsnaptha is on one aisle, and the borax and washing soda are usually found on the laundy aisle.
The brambleberry stuff I made I've used, and gave away to customers, friends and family, and still have at least a 1/3 of a box of soap base. Given that I can easily use a 32 jug of soap in a month, I believe this is a very economical way to go.
Posted 2011-08-20 11:46 AM (#6916 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
I make my own deodorant. Found a recipe that uses coconut oil, baking soda and cornstarch.
Natural Deodorant Recipe
1/4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup corn starch
1/4 cup baking soda
Measure all three ingredients into a small saucepan. Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until the coconut oil melts and the ingredients are combined. Pour the liquid into the container of your choice. An old, empty stick deodorant container works well. Allow the mixture to cool and solidify, either at room temperature or in the refrigerator. Apply to underarms daily. During warm weather, keep your deodorant in the refrigerator or it may melt.
Posted 2012-07-05 11:13 AM (#7518 - in reply to #4204) Subject: RE: soap making recipes???
I make my own laundry soap with the borax, washing soda and fels naptha recipe. I've also heard you can use regular baking soda, although I have not tried it due to my husband's work clothes being so dirty I would like to some day when he isn't working in such a dirty environment.
A friend of mine recently taught me how to make bar soap in a crock pot. It is so easy and doesn't take long at all. You can use the soap right away (well, the next day) the way we make it, but I usually let mine sit for a while first (I am working on a stockpile for when we do hit the road). I use a refined coconut oil and olive oil, and it produces a lovely hard bar that lathers nicely. My friend even uses this in her laundry detergent recipe instead of fels naptha and is happy with it. I haven't tried it yet but would like to.
Now, this recipe does use lye so if you don't want to work with lye (and I wonder if there would be issues trying to buy it out on the road. Because of the meth problem, at least in my area, you have to give your driver's license and they record the information.) then this isn't the recipe for you. I don't like working with lye necessarily, but love this soap so I suck it up and do it LOL.
Things you need: crock pot, stick blender (immersion blender, I recommend having one that you only use for soap), fats/oils of your choice (you can use lard, beef tallow, olive oil, coconut oil, etc.), additives such as essential oils if you like scented soaps, household lye, like Red Devil brand...or look for "sodium hydroxide" on the label), vinegar and plenty of water (probably not a boondocking kind of project!). Also, you need a mold that will hold hot soap without melting and parchment paper to line your mold (just makes getting out of the mold much easier). I use a long cardboard box that I got from an Amazon order, it's about 12 x 6 x 2" and I get 6-8 bars, depending on how I cut them.
Here is the website we use for our lye calculations http://www.thesage.com/calcs/lyecalc2.php . You have to be exact when using lye, so I recommend a digital scale that measures in grams. Also, be sure the liquid you use is NOT hot. I made some herbal tea to use as the liquid (used leftover coffee once, makes the bar brown) and it wasn't cooled completely before we mixed the lye and tea and it bubbled up and out of the pyrex measuring cup we used to mix it in, all over my washing machine and even dripped into it (had set it out on the washer on our back porch to mix it because it's stinky). Anyway, other than that we've never had problems, but you should always run the lye calculator EVERY time to be safe, even if it's the same recipe each time. I use 75% coconut oil and 25% olive oil, so if I'm making a 2# batch of soap (which is as much as my "soap crock pot" will hold - I bought an older one from Goodwill because the newer ones run too hot, even on low), then I need 24 oz (convert to grams by multiplying by 28.3495 or use this converter: http://www.metric-conversions.org/weight/ounces-to-grams.htm) of coconut oil and 8 oz of olive oil. The lye calculator will also tell you how much liquid to use. I plan on making a batch with just water to use for laundry detergent, dishwashing, etc. I'm working on a shampoo bar recipe too.
**figure your lye calculations before starting**
** you want a dishpan of warm, soapy water with LOTS of vinegar added (my friend adds about a quart or more). This is to neutralize the lye from the utensils you use, or to quickly wash off your skin if you happen to get some on you. Any time you mix or measure something with any lye in it (before it becomes soap) it goes straight into the soapy water.**
Since you've already figured out how much lye and liquid you need, simply measure out your ingredients and ALWAYS, ALWAYS ALWAYS ADD YOUR SOLID FORM LYE (DRY CRYSTALS) TO YOUR LIQUID. NEVER THE OTHER WAY AROUND. I remember it by saying to my self "liquid in the lye, you'll get it in your eye" lol. Use a container that can withstand heat, i use a 2 cup glass pyrex measuring cup placed on a hot pad, out on my back porch with the door open. A mason jar would work too. Or outside is great. Let it cool to about 100-125 degrees.
While that is cooling, combine and melt your oils if any are in a solid form (coconut oil is solid from about 75 degrees and below. This time of year you could put it in a bowl and set it outside for a couple minutes LOL. Ok well, probably more than a couple. You don't want it to get too hot, just melted most of the way.
Next, plug in your crockpot and set it to low. Add your melted oils, then carefully add your cooled lye solution. Use a spoon to stir well then use the stick blender to carefully blend everything until it reaches a stage called "trace". This is where it looks like a cooked pudding, it can take anywhere from 5-15 minutes or longer. You'll know you've reached trace when you take the blender out and a dollop of stuff will sit on the top for a bit and it just looks like pudding. Once you're at trace, cover the crockpot and let it cook. Keep an eye on it, for me it never takes more than about 15 minutes or so to completely cook. You'll start to see glycerin forming around the edges right before it's done, it just looks clear, and it starts looking like a volcano. It won't explode though. When it all looks glycerin-y it's done. Quickly pour it into your mold (it's usually pretty thick so I have to spoon it in with a big spoon) and smooth and level it out. Let it sit for about a day, then cut into bars. You can use it right away, but I like to let it sit just to be sure all the lye has saponified so there is no chance of irritating our skin.
The last batch I made I put in 1 oz each of peppermint and rosemary essential oil. Oh did that smell good! You add your oils at the very end, right before it's done. Be aware that peppermint oil is hard to breathe! You don't want to stand too close while adding that. Your whole house will smell minty for some time, too!. I use this soap on my face, now that it has "cured" for several weeks, and have no problems. I would caution against using it while cleaning your "nether regions", that mint is quite a sensation LOL. I might cut back on the mint next time. I hope to have a rosemary mint shampoo bar perfected before we hit the road. I love that combo...have a spray bottle in the bathroom with water, rosemary and peppermint oils for spraying down hair or on hot days I spritz my face and it feels great.
Now, all this being said, PLEASE be careful if you use this recipe...you don't have to be afraid, just use common sense and wear gloves and even glasses to protect your eyes. There's lots of soap making advice on the internet, and the lye calculator site will give you basic instructions with your calculations if you choose that option. always wash everything well and be careful with the lye. And, I am not responsible for any mishaps Just sharing my recipe and experience. You can also search youtube for videos showing how it's done if you are a visual learner and need to see it. I had my friend help me a couple times, but now feel confident I can make it on my own.
I like to make my own things, for one, I know what's in it (I also make my own taco seasoning, ranch dressing mix, etc. because my son is super sensitive to chemicals in foods) and often it's cheaper than buying it at the store. If you have room to store bulk spices, or you only spend part of the year traveling, you could easily make your own mixes for lots of things and save $ on food while on the road.
I even make an orange cleaner that works well: put the peels of a few oranges in a mason jar, fill with vinegar, and let it sit for about 2 weeks. Strain off the vinegar and use full strength or dilute. The first time I made it I stuffed the jar FULL of peels, so I have a very concentrated orange cleaner and dilute 5:1 (5 parts water, 1 part cleaner) and it does a good job of cleaning up the kitchen or whatever. Also make my own "fantastic" which is 2Tb vinegar, 1 tsp borax 1/8 c mild dish soap and enough water to fill up the fantastic bottle. Dilute the borax well in the vinegar before mixing the rest of the ingredients. Love it!
Posted 2012-07-06 3:47 PM (#7521 - in reply to #4204) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
Really. Orange peels and vinegar. That is ON THE LIST! I just coupon shopped and got vinegar for .50. GOTTA TRY!!! Thanks for the tips.
I haven't made any real soap in a while. I used to make it up while seasonally in a "permanent" sticks and bricks house and then have enough really concentrated soap to last me 3-4 months on the road. I have lucked out and gotten Tide soap on sale with a coupon for $3.00 a container. (and a mail in rebate for 5.00 off my order) Not as inexpensive as making my own, but no as bad as 8.99.
Posted 2012-07-06 10:34 PM (#7528 - in reply to #7521) Subject: Re: soap making recipes???
That's a pretty good deal! I never got the coupon thing to work for me. It was really frustrating - I'm a reasonably intelligent woman, and yet the whole process was just overwhelming LOL. But, I always shop clearance racks (I simply can NOT walk past an orange sticker....) and have come across some really good deals (my wedding ring, for example...paid $35 for it when Target moved from one location to a new one in the next town over. It's not fancy, but I don't like big fancy rings anyway. It's white gold and has a small diamond. I ended up paying twice as much for the band to go with it at a regular jewelers LOL), have gotten some stuff from Freecycle (entire 8th grade curriculum from Alpha Omega for free!), and always try to stock up on things when they're super cheap. I like being frugal, it's a challenge!
You can also make the cleaner with lemon peels...I've thought about just making a "citrus cleaner" with orange, lemon, lime and grapefruit peels. I know, I couldn't believe how simple it was! It's not overly orange-y and barely vinegar-y smelling. Just a nice, light fragrance. Basically, if I can make something instead of buying it, I do. Sometimes I get lazy and buy detergent (I do miss the smell of laundry detergent, but I don't miss spending a ton of money on it!). I used to always make the liquid, but started making the powdered version (same recipe, just no water) because it's easier. I think it will travel better too, not as heavy. I was concerned about using it in cold water but haven't had any problems so far.