This soap recipe will take you places!
Deserts: those starkly stunning arid expanses stretching as far as the eye can see. There are so many different kinds of these natural wonders, but our favourites are the warm-toned, windswept mounds of dune fields. These Ochre Oceans are what inspired our new homemade soap recipe; its captivating pattern recalls the beauty of repeating sandy terrain.
Does the desert remind you of dryness too? Rest assured, this cold process soap recipe gently cleanses your skin without drying it out. That’s in large part thanks to the apricot kernel oil, used here as our superfatting oil, which makes this soap protective, emollient, and softening. This homemade soap nourishes and softens your skin, guaranteeing you an extra-pleasant shower. With its delicate fresh scent, lovely lather, and superb colours, it’s a real pleasure for all your senses!
We hope you enjoy the Ochre Oceans of this homemade soap as much as we do. Don’t forget to tell us what you think of it!
How to make cold process soap
Sodium hydroxide solution
Oil and butter mixture
- 476 g (36.90%) macadamia oil
- 204 g (15.81%) coconut oil
- 68 g (5.27%) castor oil
- 102 g (7.91%) kokum butter
- 85 g (6.59%) apricot kernel oil
- 18.5 g (1.43%) petitgrain essential oil
- 10.5 g (1.05%) Virginia cedar essential oil
- 13.5 g (0.81%) honeysuckle aromatic essence
Colourants and decoration
- 3 g (0.23%) titanium dioxide
- 2 g (0.16%) yellow oxide
- 2.5 g (0.19%) orris root powder
- 1 or 2 spoonfuls Himalayan pink salt (optional)
- 1 large Pyrex cup or high-density polyethylene (HDPE) jar for the sodium hydroxide solution (minimum capacity of 500 ml)
- 1 jar for weighing the sodium hydroxide
- Components to make a double boiler
- Two large stainless steel bowls
- 1 small stainless steel bowl
- 1 small silicone spatula
- 1 silicone spatula
- 2 scales, accurate to 1 g and 0.1 g
- A few pipettes
- A few spoons
- A few ramekins
- 1 immersion blender
- 1 thermometer
- 1 measuring funnel pitcher, 900 ml
- Personal protective gear
- 1 silicone loaf mold
- 1 tea towel
Good to know!
- The orris root powder fixes scents in your homemade soap, so its beautiful fragrance will last longer.
- This homemade soap is composed of two coloured layers. It’s important to work at medium, or even thick, trace, so that the two colours don’t mix.
- The apricot kernel oil was chosen as the superfatting oil because it’s protective and softening. It’s perfect for dry skin, especially in winter.
- The saponified oils imbue your homemade soap with wonderful properties:
- Coconut oil hardens your soap, cleanses, and provides great lather.
- Kokum butter hardens soap and provides a silky, creamy lather.
- Macadamia oil makes this soap very mild on your skin.
- Castor oil makes the soap milder and adds stability and creaminess to the lather.
Steps to follow
- Prepare and disinfect your equipment and workspace.
- Take the necessary precautions for handling sodium hydroxide safely.
- Prepare the sodium hydroxide solution: weigh the water in a Pyrex measuring cup or HDPE pot, weigh the sodium hydroxide, pour the sodium hydroxide into the water, mix well, and set aside to cool.
- Weigh the coconut oil and kokum butter in the first large bowl. Melt on the double-boiler.
- Weigh the macadamia oil and castor oil in the second large bowl.
- When the coconut oil and kokum butter have melted, remove them from the heat. Add the macadamia and castor oils and mix with the spatula.
- Weigh the yellow oxide in the measuring funnel pitcher. Add one tablespoon of the oil and butter mixture from step 6 and disperse the colourant throughout using the small spatula.
- Add the titanium dioxide to the remaining oil and butter mixture from step 6. Mix with the immersion blender.
- Weigh the scents in a ramekin, then add the orris root powder. Mix and set aside until step 12.
- Weigh the apricot kernel oil in a small bowl and set aside until step 12.
- When the oil and butter mixture and the sodium hydroxide solution have both cooled to 35–40°C, pour the sodium hydroxide solution into the melted oils and butter. Mix with the immersion blender and the spatula until homogeneous.
- At light trace, add the scent and orris root powder mixture along with the superfatting oil. Mix well with the immersion blender.
- Don’t wait for the batter to reach trace again. When it’s homogeneous, pour one third of the soap batter into the measuring funnel pitcher. Mix using only the spatula to colour the batter evenly.
- Mix the white soap batter in the large bowl with the immersion blender until it reaches medium-to-thick trace. Pour into the mold. Shape the batter into a wave-like formation by using the small spatula or a spoon to push the batter up towards the right side of the mold, lengthwise
- Mix the yellow soap batter using the immersion blender until it reaches medium trace.
- First make sure that the white layer is thick enough to hold its shape, then pour the yellow batter over it. Shape the yellow batter into a wave-like formation using the small spatula or a spoon, by gently drawing the batter up towards the left side of the mold, lengthwise.
- Gently sprinkle the Himalayan pink salt on the crest of the wave (optional).
- Wrap the mold with a tea towel to keep the warmth in and let the soap harden for 24–48 hours.
- Unmold the soap while wearing gloves. Cut the soap and leave it to cure in a cool, dry place for four to six weeks.
Use and conservation
This homemade soap is formulated for all skin types but its 8% superfatting makes it particularly suitable for sensitive and dry skin.
When made in optimal sanitary conditions, it will keep for at least six months.