How To Make A Gallon Of Liquid Hand Soap from One Soap Bar


Liquid hand soap can be made from any bar soap you’ve got lying around the house, including leftover, mushy slivers and half-used bars. It’s an easy process, and cheaper than buying a bottle of hand soap. You’ll only need a few ingredients, and the whole project will take twenty minutes at most. Jars of liquid soap make pleasing gifts, especially when presented in attractive containers.


  • Bar of soap (natural is best for this project)
  • 1 tsp glycerin
  • 1 cup water
  • few drops of essential oil (optional)
  • few drops of honey or lotion (optional)
  • You’ll also need a grater, a bowl, a pot for boiling the water, and a blender.
  1. Pick any bar of soap you like; facial soap is usually gentler (as it’s used around the eyes), antibacterial soap is good for bathroom use. Start with an unscented bar of soap if you’re going to add essential oils or lotion.
  2. With a fine grater, grate the whole bar into a bowl—the finer the teeth, the smaller the pieces and the faster the melting time. Cutting the bar into chunks sometimes helps grating. You’re aiming for a cup of soap flakes; if you fall short, grate a little more—skimping on the soap will yield a slimier liquid later.
  3. Boil the water. Pour the soap flakes into the blender, followed by the boiling water. Whip up the mix until it looks like paste. Some folks prefer to mix manually (it’s hard to get the soap residue out of the blender), adding the flakes to the boiling water on the stove, and stirring it with a whisk. You can also use a microwave instead of a stovetop; boil the water in the microwave, then add the flakes and let them melt. Return the (microwave safe!) container to the microwave for 30-second additional rounds, if the mixture needs more heat.
  4. Add a teaspoon of glycerin—this is a moisturizer, added to most liquid soaps to make them milder than bar soaps), stirring it well (use a low setting on the blender).
  5. Add in the essential oils of your choice, and the honey or lotion to add moisture. 10 to 20 drops of tea tree oil will make the soap naturally antibacterial.
  6. If you like, stir in a few drops of natural food coloring; do not use commercial chemically based food coloring—you don’t want to absorb that into your skin.
  7. Keep whipping the mix until it’s completely cooled. If it’s too thick, add more water. You’ll end with
  8. With help from a funnel, pour the liquid soap into jars or pump containers. Soap keeps for years; if you’ve made more than you can store in small containers, keep the rest in an old milk jug or mason jar.

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