“Go wash your hands, you’ve been in public!”
These are the words my siblings and I heard from our mom every day as soon as we walked in the door. I respected the almighty “antibacterial” soap as my invincible protector from all sickness. I can remember the shocked feeling I had for an entire day when I learned that triclosan may not be good for you.
Did you know that the chemical triclosan is thought to cause birth defects, reproductive issues, and hormone disruption? It is a known endocrine disruptor and is also suspected to be a carcinogen. It can also weaken the immune system and has been associated with increased asthma, allergies, and eczema in children exposed to it at a young age. And we just thought we were washing our hands!
So many things I’ve never given a second thought to all my life, such as the soap I wash my hands with, have turned out to not be so great for you. Who knew? Thus began my quest for better (and cheaper) hand soap. There are dozens of ways to make your own liquid hand and body soap, but this is the easiest I have found so far. And it’s SUPER CHEAP and ridiculous easy!
What you’ll need:
- 1 bar of good quality soap
(preferably organic and very pure, such as olive oil soap where the ingredients are saponified olive oil and sodium chloride. Kiss My Face has a good one and you can get 3 bars for $6 on Amazon. Bonus…Olive Oil soap is a terrific face soap. It’s ok and will smell better if it also has essentials oils, just make sure they are organic)
- a cheese grater (or a food processor)
- Containers of some kind
(milk jugs or large water bottles work perfectly and if you want to use it as a body wash, I like to reuse old body soap dispensers too since they are the perfect size and shape for the shower)
- a funnel
- a large mixing bowl
- something to cover your bowl with (foil, bowl cover, tea towel, etc.)
- Grate the soap (or put in food processor). The cheese grater method is a bit slow if you have a hard bar of soap, like olive oil soap, but quicker if you use a softer soap.
- Put soap shavings in a large mixing bowl and add water. Just fill it up where it’s not so full that you can’t still your mixture. (Note that too much water and your soap won’t be soapy enough. Resist the temptation to make your soap go further and add a second mixing bowl of water from the one bar of soap.)
- Stir it a little immediately and then cover it and let it sit.
- Let it sit 24-48 hours until all of the soap shavings have dissolved, stirring a few times a day. Feel free to test it out along the way by washing your hands to see if it’s ready.
- Pour soap into your containers using your funnel.
- Note that you may need to shake your containers ever so often to remix the soap and water, but they should remain mostly mixed on their own.
Voila! You have liquid soap, sans the dreaded triclosan, great for washing your hands or using as a moisturizing body wash.
Let us all know if you try a soap that you really like using this method in the comment section below.