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  • Posted December 7th, 2022

    Looking for a simple cold process soap recipe without palm oil? Look no further, here’s one of our favourites!

    Looking for a simple cold process soap recipe without palm oil? Look no further, here’s one of our favourites!

    This cold process soap recipe is moisturising and creates a good lather, you’ll love it!

    We use a 5% superfat in this recipe to increase the moisturising effect. Read more about what superfat is in soap making


    180g olive oil

    144g coconut oil

    90g shea butter

    36g castor oil

    135g water

    63g sodium hydroxide

    13.5g peppermint essential oil

    This palm free soap recipe will make around 6 x 100g bars.




    Weighing scales

    Hand blender

    A 6 cell silicone rectangle bar mould or line a small, cardboard box with greaseproof paper

    2 x 1 litre plastic measuring jugs and 1 smaller jug for the essential oil

    Silicone or stainless steel spatula

    Digital thermometer

    Safety Note: When working with sodium hydroxide you must wear gloves and goggles at all times. In the event of getting it on your skin, rinse well with plenty of plain water. If it is splashed in the eyes, wash with water and seek urgent medical attention. Keep away from pets and children at all times.

    1. Weigh and mix your water and sodium hydroxide

    Weigh your cold water into one of your jugs and place to one side

    Pop your safety gear on

    Weigh the sodium hydroxide into one of your jugs.

    Pour the sodium hydroxide into your water jug, not the other way around. Do this in a ventilated area as it will give off fumes for a few seconds once you begin to stir.

    Stir for around 10 to 15 seconds until completely dissolved with your silicone/stainless steel spatula.

    Place safely to one side. It will be too hot to use at the moment.

    2. Weigh and heat your oils

    Weigh out the olive oil and castor oil into a 1 litre jug.

    Weigh your coconut oil and shea butter into your remaining 1 litre jug

    Melt your coconut oil and shea butter in the microwave (or on the stove top in a saucepan) until they are at 40°C.

    Weigh your peppermint essential oil into a separate jug

    3. Check the temperature of your oils and water

    Test the temperature of your sodium hydroxide solution with your thermometer, you need it to cool down to around 40°C. Please note – do not reheat your sodium hydroxide solution if it is too cool, heat your oils a little more to compensate instead

    Pour your melted coconut oil and shea butter into the jug that contains your olive and castor oils and mix.

    Test the temperature of your combined oils. They need to be around 40°C. If they need to be warmed a little then pop them back in the microwave.

    Pour your essential oils and then your sodium hydroxide solution into your oils.

    4. Blend until trace

    Be prepared to work quickly, our mixture reached trace quickly. You can see a heavy trace in our picture above. Ideally you want to stop before it reaches this stage.

    Stir gently with your hand blender and then blend until it reaches a light to medium trace. This means you have a mixture that has thickened up a little and when you drizzle a little of it across the top of the jug of mixture it sits on top for a moment. You are looking for a pourable mixture but not a thick blancmange like texture.

    5. Pour into your moulds

    Pour into your mould. Top tip – if it’s a cold day pop the mould in a cardboard box and wrap in a towel to keep it warm to aid the saponification process

    Leave for 2 days before unmoulding.

    Place somewhere with a good airflow between bars so they can cure. You can put in a cardboard box just make sure they are not touching. Your cold process soap will be ready to use within 4 to 6 weeks!

    The views expressed in our blog are those of the author and not necessarily lowimpact.org's


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