Sunday, July 19, 2009

Soap Making: An Introduction

Savons, fabrication savon, glycérine

Why make your own soap when there are already all types of soaps available to buy? Quite simply, for the pleasure of imagining unique creations, creating your own take on trends, playing with the materials and indulging your senses…but also because it’s easy!

In fact, there is no need to transform yourself into a chemist to reproduce the saponification process which turns fat into soap with the aid of caustic soda. It’s enough to use base soaps and remodel them: customize them with colors and aromas but also add different materials such as dried flowers, coffee grains, or even seaweed.

Now it’s your turn to see what you can come up with!

You will also find soap recipes in our "Tips & tricks" section.



  • Pure block of glycerine soap, opaque or transparent according to your desired effect
  • Food coloring: these are very well tolerated by the skin and you can mix them to create your own shades of colors.
  • Essential oils, for their smell as well as their cosmetic and medicinal properties
  • Materials to add to the soap: orange zest, chamomile flowers, coffee grains, etc.


  • For melting: a microwave, a traditional oven, or a simple stovetop (for bain-marie)
  • Plastic or rubber molds: soap molds as well as yogurt pots, ice-cube trays, etc.
  • Knife, for cutting soap


  • Cut the glycerine soap into pieces.

  • Melt the glycerine in microwave. You can also use an oven or a bain-marie, but they're less efficient.
    ! - Never let it boil!

  • Perfume it with some drops of essential oils.

  • Color it with some food coloring. Keep adding it gradually until you achieve the desired shade. You can also combine several colors, mixing them gradually to create nuances of color.

  • If you want to add things to the inside:
    • Pour a layer of the melted glycerine into the mold.
      ! - If you want to see your decorations, use transparent (not opaque) glycerine!
    • Add your decorations, keeping in mind that the bottom of the mold is the front of the soap (when removing it from the mold, the base will correspond to the top of the soap).
    • Let cool for about 10 minutes.
    • Add another layer of glycerine.

  • If you want to create layers of different colors, proceed as explained above: pour in the first layer, leave it to cool for about 10 minutes, then add another layer, and so on.

  • In all cases, let soap dry (not in the refrigerator!) for a whole day or even a week, according to the composition and thickness of the soap.

  • Remove soap from mold by applying light pressure to the base. To take out a soap poured into a glass mold, heat it for a few minutes in a bain-marie until the soap in contact with the sides starts to melt.

  • Feel free to re-work your soap:
    • You can cut it into slices.
    • You can glue on decorations using melted glycerine to stick them to the soap and then cover them with a fine layer of glycerine.

Translation: Emma-Jane


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