For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to make soap from scratch. By that, I mean making soap using only the basics of water, fats, and lye. Yes, lye. As much as I had the desire, I was scared of the process and the perceived dangers. I had visions of suiting up in a sick room outfit suitable for treating a patient with Ebola. That said, with some time on my hands, I decided to do some in-depth research, mostly to get up the nerve to try. I read blogs, ordered some books, and watched dozens of YouTube videos. I convinced myself and I could do this and so I did. The rest is history.
Something I learned right away was that making soap can be a useful, budget-friendly hobby or it can be a money pit, especially at first. As a matter of fact, I used over $30 worth of essential oils in my first 3-pound loaf of soap, and that does not include the cost of the various fats I used, all of the highest quality.
My very first batch of soap made with lye turned out fantastic, but clearly, as a hobby, I could not afford to continue to spend that much money when making soap just for the fun of it. So, after a few months of experimenting, I came up with foolproof recipe for making a budget-friendly soap using commonly available, grocery store ingredients. This is a basic soap. It cleans well, is sufficiently moisturizing, and pleasant to use. The use of fragrance is optional and honestly, there is a simplicity in pure, unscented soap that I find attractive.
With that, let me introduce you to crafting homemade soap using the hot process method.