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Making soap can be complicated. Don’t get me wrong, it can be done at home as a DIY project, however, I would recommend getting some guidance, taking a class or two, or watching some tutorials before you attempt it. I personally avoid working with lye (very dangerous if mishandled) and it’s not something I want around the home, but that’s me, and you’re you.

Soooo, I use the ‘cheat’s’ version aka melt and pour soap base; it requires chopping, melting and pretty-ing up. I love that there are so many variations to try. This here is a citrusy, zesty, summery soap, and as you can see by the pic I took, it packages gorgeously as a gift!

Simple Melt & Pour Soap with Lemon Zest

Makes: 255 g | 9 oz Prep Time: < 15 min. (plus setting time)

Ingredients  

250 g | 8.8 oz melt and pour soap base – roughly chopped (see recipe notes)

30 drops of essential oils

1-2 tbsp lemon/lime zest (finely chopped and dehydrated)

1 tbsp clear alcohol (in a spray bottle)

My choice of essential oils…

My favourite essential oils in this recipe are lemon and orange, but don’t be limited by my suggestions. Use oils that fit your budget, or those that you already have in your collection. Read here for more information. 

Extra equipment required…

Silicone moulds

Method

1. Add soap base to a glass bowl and heat until completely melted. (Double boiler method– place bowl on a pot of gently simmering water and stir frequently; Microwave method– heat in short bursts on low, stopping and stirring frequently). Remove from heat.

2. Add essential oils and zest and mix until combined.

3. Pour soap mixture into moulds.

4. Spray the top of soap with clear alcohol (this removes any air bubbles from the surface), and allow to set in a cool, dry place (not the fridge – this causes soap to sweat) for a minimum of 3-4 hours. Once set, it may help to place the moulds in the freezer for 5 minutes before unmoulding them.

5. Allow to dry for 24 hours on a tray or sheet of baking paper, before storing in container of choice.

Thermal Appliance Method

1. Add soap base to thermal appliance bowl and melt: 7-8 minutes | approx. 60˚C (140˚F) | low speed. Extend time if required, until soap has completely melted. Keep checking and scrape down if needed.

2. Add essential oils and zest and mix for 5-10 seconds on low speed, or until combined. Scrape down sides and repeat if required, until ingredients are combined.

3. Pour soap mixture into moulds.

4. Spray the top of soap with clear alcohol (this removes any air bubbles from the surface), and allow to set in a cool, dry place (not the fridge – this causes soap to sweat) for a minimum of 3-4 hours. Once set, it may help to place the moulds in the freezer for 5 minutes before unmoulding them.

5. Allow to dry for 24 hours on a tray or sheet of baking paper, before storing in container of choice.

To Use

Massage onto wet skin and rinse with warm water. Keep soap dry between uses.

Recipe Notes

It is important not to heat the soap to a very high temperature (60˚C | 140˚F is perfect) or it has a tendency to sweat once set.

Be sure to fully dehydrated zest to prevent mould and slime from forming.

Any chocolate moulds work as soap moulds; Kmart & IKEA have cheap and funky designs.

Krissy Ballinger

Krissy Ballinger

Author, Advocate & Founder

Krissy wants to see a world where people make conscious, educated decisions that honour both humans and habitat. With a background in education and health promotion, she devotes her time to passionately increase awareness on common and avoidable toxins, in everyday items like washing powder and deodorant, and to educate individuals on how they can easily reduce their daily exposure, through simple and realistic do-it-yourself ideas and recipes.

Krissy has sold over 30,000 copies of her natural DIY recipe books, including her latest, award-winning book, Naturally Inspired - Simple DIY Recipes for Body Care and Cleaning, and offers honest and gentle guidance, education and 100+ natural DIY recipes on her website The Inspired Little Pot.

 

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