Using your leftover soymilk and tofu cartons was never this fun! The environmentally conscious can now recycle in a new and creative way using handmade soap or pre-made organic oil melt and pour base. This project can transform even the most novice crafters into mini, environmentally-friendly Marthas.
What you need:
Herbs, oatmeal, coffee, spirulina, clay, or food-grade charcoal
1 pound (16 ounces)Bramble Berry melt and pour soap, organic base
1 ounce essential oil (we used lavender, orange and eucalyptus)
“Soap mold” (a clean, used plastic food dish, like an empty yogurt
1. Prep your herbs and make sure they are the right size for exfoliating gently. Sharp herbs may be too abrasive on the skin.
2. Cut the organic melt and pour blocks into 1 x 1″ cubes.
3. Melt the soap in 30-second increments until the soap is fully melted.
4. Add .25 ounces to .50 ounces of essential oil. Remember, if
you use a yellow or orange colored fragrance, your soap base will look less
clear and look more yellow/orange.
5. Mix in your herbs or additives. Stir until the herbs seem mostly suspended. The cranberry seeds are very light and will float to the surface of your soap so make sure you keep stirring until the soap is thick enough to suspect the seeds.
6. Pour your scented and herb’ed soap into the make-shift mold
7. Tip: Don’t fill your make-shift soap mold all the way up. It helps for easy release to fill 85% of the way to the top and not the entire way.
8. Do one finishing touch of rubbing alcohol to finish off your soap and give it a nice smooth surfaceWait for the soap to harden, get the soap out, wrap with saran wrap, label and enjoy the compliments you get on your innovative way to help save the earth.
I’ve never made any kind of bar soap before…what do you mean by “finish off with rubbing alcohol”? Pour it on top of the melted soap? I know it’s such a basic question but I don’t want to mess up this seemingly basic project lol.
Becky with Bramble Berry says
Hi Jessica! When you “finish off with rubbing alcohol” you spray the soap to prevent bubbles and separation.
If you are brand new to soaping, we’d suggest watching these videos to get yourself oriented to all the soaping terms!
Fragrance and Essential Oils – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c5ouJZfluMY&feature=plcp&context=C44121e4VAvjVQa1PpcFMMklomFfMZPwDqF2CU0WRLDBxFoZ1pCeY=
Herbs and Colorants – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3VbeNl1Nqg&feature=plcp&context=C48b78b5VAvjVQa1PpcFMMklomFfMZP-Jnj48DNrVeh-yeuB0oRFk=
Swirling Melt & Pour – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jcf9l5Wc44&feature=plcp&context=C473b3a4VAvjVQa1PpcFMMklomFfMZP3xugeYV3MjeSNHKnEH29I0=
Embedding in Soap – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMYygHyUrzY&feature=plcp&context=C4f9d089VAvjVQa1PpcFMMklomFfMZP5lAWwH7Q1x7R6niEFYPkLU=
Happy Soaping and Good Luck!
-Becky with Bramble Berry
What a great eco friendly idea. Love your blogs.
Thank you so much! It so fun to get creative and try out different reusable items as soap molds. =)
Jan Hickling says
this was GREAT! I have been looking for a easter break kid project and I love this. Fun and teaches about the environment too
This would be a perfect Easter Break kid project! Totally kid friendly and you’re right, it teaches about recycling and resource use.
Thanks LooksGood! I appreciate the helpful press.
I’ve featured your eco-chic soap!
Hi Amy –
A half pint is pretty thick so it will probably take a few hours to harden on their own. You could put them in the fridge or freezer but be sure to pull them out as soon as they are hard. If you put them in there too long, the soaps are prone to form (and keep) condensation on them as they heat back up to room temperature.
This will be a fun project with your students!
About how long does it take for the soap to harden? I would be doing it in half-pint milk containers with my students. Would putting them in the fridge or freezer hurry them along?
Molly Dee says
Thank you for the reply. I WILL find it! The hunt is on.
MollyDee, Thanks for popping in for a read and a comment. The tofu is called SOGA and it’s the twin pack. They make particularly fetching bars – nice shape and size.
Anne-Marie do you remember the name of the tofu you used for the soap? I love the pattern on the spirulina soap you made. I have purchased a few different containers but haven’t had a pattern I like half as much.
Frozen Orange Juice containers are great – I just find that I have to freeze my soap to get it out of those containers. =)
I found that frozen orange juice containers work well. Half gallon milk cartons work well also, you just have to slice the bars in half.
For making cold process soap I use a pyrex rectangular container that has a lid while it is between trace and setup to keep it warm.
Teresa R says
What a great idea to reuse those cartons and containers! I can’t throw containers out without feeling superbly guilty, so now I can use them at least one more time. I’m smacking my forehead for not thinking of it myself, but that’s why I come here – to be inspired by your ingenuity! 🙂
Pringles cans make a nice sized round soap.
Irena, The colors came out shockingly nice actually. The charcoal capsules that I used in a few (not pictured) soaps were a nice black.
Rita, I totally know what you mean about looking at everything like might be soap worthy. =) Me too!
Quart cartons were part of my first cold process soaps for quite awhile, until I got real molds. Keeping the tops on helped the soap to gel. After 11 years, I still can’t help looking at packaging containers as if they might be a viable source as a soap mold. A hazard of the craft, I guess.
Ginger's Garden says
Thank you! What a great idea! The color came out pretty nice too.
Aw thanks for the sweet comment! I am so happy that you like the tutorial =)
Now I know what I am making my Mom and Sister for Christmas now! I love that you sell the melt and pour in bulk *and* 1lb sizes. I can get a small amount for a great price and keep the costs down. Thanks for this great tutorial!