Natural and Thrifty in 365: #66 Homemade Soap

Sultry Orange Soap

Body wash comes in containers that contribute to landfills every year. According to the Clean Air Council, 2.5 million plastic bottles are thrown away every hour, including those from body wash. Think of how much waste we could reduce just be using soap instead of body wash! For a more environmentally friendly household, use soap instead of body wash.

And to reduce even more waste, choose soap that comes in minimal packaging, or make your own. Check out this list of 14 different homemade soap recipes.

I’ve already ordered my Lye on Amazon (I searched for a week and found that they have the best deal), and plan on making soap for Christmas presents. Do you make your own soap or buy handmade soap from someone? Let us know what your favorite recipes or sources are!

Photo courtesy of elegantroseboutique. WARNING: Lye is very hazardous and even deadly, so use caution if you make your own soap.

Read more: Pollution Facts About Body Wash Bottles Vs. Soap Bars 

Natural & Thrifty in 365 is a year-long series of 365 tips for living more green, natural and healthy while saving money. Do you have a natural and thrifty tip that you would like to share with The Thrifty Mama readers? Contact me here and let me know about it. You just might get featured as one of the 365 tips!

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19 Comments:
  1. I purchase bars of chemical free “soap” with all natural ingredients and turn it into my own liquid hand/body soap! I love it! And one bar of soap to about 1 gallon of water…show me anywhere else I can get 1 gallon of all natural soap for around $3!

  2. I too have thought about trying to make some homemade soaps as gifts this year. Never made homemade soap before, but willing to give it a try. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to share them.

  3. I can’t write on your wall or send you a message… but this summer did you try natural bug spray? if so can you tell me what you used? I leave for Haiti in 3 weeks… bug spray is a must… I am not sure if im going to try “natural” or go buy deet and bathe in it! LOL I like natural things however I dont want to risk it medically… know any tips?

  4. Crystal, just a thought and an offer, might be totally unrealistic:

    if you are doing anything with rose petals, my rose bushes are full of petals and I can pull them off and send them to you. It would not be anything fantastic: probably roses in plastic bags. The only thing I have used was miracle grow last fall (about a year ago) in watering. Nothing since. If you are interested, email me (I assume you can see my email). I love your site and all you do so am happy to do this for you. Oh, they are red and nicely fragrant. Not tea roses, but the bush roses. I hope you know what I mean. I don’t know how you can keep the fragrance in them. Let me know if you want them.

  5. Been making soap for some time now, and we love it! Just be careful, do lots of research, and it helps to have someone show you first :-) Seems scary at first but it’s really quite easy and fun!

  6. Thanks so much!!! I thought you would say that but I just wanted to make sure!! :) let the count down begin! I cant wait to see how your soap turns out! What a fun christmas gift!

  7. I’ve been trying to make soap from our goat’s milk, I even rendered my own lard and tallow to make it. i’ve had 1 failure, still trying to re-work it, but I’m determined to make it work!!

  8. I think goat’s milk is much harder, and more likely to fail … I’ve had several batches that I had to “rebatch.” I’ve done coffee, tea and beer soaps (and regular with water, also) with great success! Amanda, did you use *really* cold milk? My batches work best when it’s partially thawed (slushy) AND I use an ice bath. Good luck, I hope it works out for you!

  9. I think goat’s milk is much harder, and more likely to fail … I’ve had several batches that I had to “rebatch.” I’ve done coffee, tea and beer soaps (and regular with water, also) with great success! Amanda, did you use *really* cold milk? My batches work best when it’s partially thawed (slushy) AND I use an ice bath. Good luck, I hope it works out for you!

  10. We make our own bar soap using the traditional soapmaking recipe from “Old Lye Company”, with minor updated methods. Fat, Lye and Water. We have a hardware store that still carries “Lye” (drain cleaner – that is made with lye). I would call and check your local hardware stores to see if they carry it.

  11. Looks both fun & scary. I’ve never made soap. Seems like some of the ingredients would be expensive. I’ve smelled homemade soaps at flea markets & they’re always so pricey but smell so good. I just walk away.

  12. I love soap I get some as gifts every year. I’ve made soap in the past, you are inspiring me to do it again

  13. If using lye sounds to scary at first, you could try using the melt and pour soap from craft making stores. Wait for a 40% – 50% OFF coupon to save money. ^_^

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