Natural soap is much better for your skin than the mass-produced types commonly found in supermarkets, as they’re free from artificial chemical substances. When you use a natural, mild soap your skin will reap the rewards of greater dermatological benefits – things such as better hydration, more nutrition because of the natural oils, a proper pH balance, suppleness, elasticity and an amazingly antioxidant and toning effect!
Perhaps you’ve already had a go at making natural soap at home with oils, lye and glycerine. No? Well, if you have never tried and would like to know how to produce a handmade soap that will brilliantly enrich your skin, bookmark this article now. You won’t regret it. This deliciously scented, healthy soap would make a great gift for your friends and family, too. Eager to try? Let’s go!
Which soap is right for you?
There are thousands of types of natural soaps. Each one has certain specific properties, making it easy for you to know what you want to use it for. Let’s do a small review first. Natural soaps can include:
- Oat-based soaps: exfoliate and, yet, are quite gentle on delicate or sensitive skin.
- Bamboo charcoal soaps: detoxify and sooth irritation and acne. Are anti-fungal, anti-viral and antimicrobial.
- Orange or lemon-based soaps: recommended for oily skin, but also hydrate and refresh.
- Aloe vera (aloe) soaps: protect, soothe, hydrate and regenerate your skin. They can help clear spots, too.
- Calendula soaps: extremely comforting to dry and delicate skin, so are excellent for babies and children.
- Rosa rubiginosa soaps: heal and repair damaged skin.
Aloe Vera and Agave Nectar Soap
Here’s a simple recipe for aloe and agave soap to get you started. You’ll love it because it’s not too difficult to make and it’s very gentle for your skin. When you combine these two nutritional powerhouses – aloe and agave – you get an unbeatable team for dermatologic regeneration. They work together to keep your skin healthy, hydrated and glowing. This soap will also suit the entire family!
Now, for the recipe. We use glycerin in this soap because it’s easy to incorporate and makes a high quality, moisturising soap. There are other, more complicated methods involving ingredients such as leftover oil you may have round the house. However, this normally also requires that you add caustic soda, or lye (sodium hydroxide), which – as the name suggests – is quite a dangerous element and can harm you when you handle it. For the purposes of this instruction, we’ll stick with the easy way to ensure your complete success and safety.
You will need:
- the pulp from four aloe vera leaves
- two 250 grams of glycerin soap bars
- four spoonfuls of agave nectar
- 100 ml of olive oil
- lemon zest
Tools you’ll need
- a glass bowl
- an electric beater or stick blender
1. Put the two glycerin soap bars into the glass bowl and place it in the microwave straight away. Melt it on a medium-high setting, but keep a watchful eye on the mixture. It shouldn’t take more than 3 or 4 minutes.
2. Next, put the aloe (aloe vera) pulp in the bowl with the four spoonfuls of agave nectar and the lemon zest.
3. Heat a small amount of olive oil, but only to lukewarm. It shouldn’t be burning hot, as it will lose its beneficial properties when overheated.
4. Time to blend! Whisk the mixture with your electric whisk or blending wand on low whilst adding the warm oil bit by bit as you go. You’ll soon see the mixture become a lovely-smelling, brightly-coloured dough.
5. Now, put the dough in a pre-prepared mould. The mould you’ve chosen should be plastic and should be the shape that you want your soap to be. A square or a rectangle would be the most obvious choice, but you can let your imagination run wild here. Pour in the dough until there are a few extra centimetres remaining in your container. This will make the removal of the finished product easier.
6. Next, put your mould (with the dough in it!) in the refrigerator so that it can set. How long does it need to stay in the fridge? One day should be sufficient. Once it’s set, you can remove it from the mould and cut it into smaller bars for daily use. Don’t forget:
- our recipe uses lemon and olive oil as essential oils, but you can experiment with others if you’ve got a favourite scent. Try rose, orange, lavender oil or cinnamon, for instance.
- Gift giving? For a dazzling presentation, it’s quite nice to cut your soap into an attractive shape. You might want to try a heart or an oval shape. Then, you can wrap it in lovely paper and bind it with ribbons. The attention to detail is sure to impress any friend or loved one. Your handmade soap’s fragrance and remarkable skin benefits make a great gift for anyone and just about any occasion. You can be sure that your thoughtfulness will be much appreciated!