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DIY Liquid Hand Soap

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I have a confession to make: I hate bar soap. It gets dirty, is annoying to handle, and takes too long to use up.Then it occurred to me that I might be able to convert the bar soap into liquid hand soap. Why didn’t I think of it before? I did some research and found out that it is easy to do. All it takes is melting the soap with water, adding a little vegetable glycerin, and  you have liquid hand soap.


So I tried it and was thrilled to find that it works great! From one bar of soap, I made close to 2 liters of hand soap, which will last a long time. The only thing I purchased for this project was a $2 bottle of glycerin at my local drug store:


Glycerin is made from plant oils and is commonly used in soaps, shampoos, and moisturizers. Since bar soap already has glycerin in it, I tried this experiment both ways, with and without the added glycerin. I found that the below recipe worked fine without glycerin, except that the soap tended to clump and didn’t have as smooth a texture. It made enough of a difference that I would recommend adding the glycerin, but you can also try the recipe without it, if you want.

Ingredients:
  • 1 c soap flakes
  • 10 c water
  • 1 Tbs glycerin

Equipment:
  • Cheese grater
  • A large pot
  • Measuring cup and spoons
  • A spatula for stirring
  • A soap container with a hand pump
  • A container to hold excess soap
  • Funnel

Directions:

First, grate the soap. Get out your cheese grater, grab the soap, and get grating. I found this to be surprisingly easy, although the soap particles tend to float in the air as you grate. You can wear a mask to avoid breathing it in. When you’re done, the soap flakes look like grated Parmesan: 


One bar of soap yielded a little over 1.5 cups of flakes. The recipe only uses one cup of soap flakes, so I put the remaining soap in a jar for later use.

In a large pot, combine 1 cup soap flakes, 10 cups water, and 1 Tbs glycerin. Turn on medium-low heat and stir until the soap dissolves. This happens fast, about a minute or two.

Let the soap cool completely, then pour into containers using a funnel. That’s all there is to it!


As I mentioned, this recipe makes a lot of soap, about 6 bottles worth. I put the excess in a large bottle and am storing it under the sink until I need more.

You can also use this soap as body wash. To make it smell nice, add a drop or two of essential oil to the mix. 

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