Sunday, November 23, 2014

Homemade Body Wash

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I have had the recipe for homemade body wash on my to-do list for a very long time. Although time hasn't been on my side lately and it got pushed to the back burner.  Well, when you're down the the last drops of shower gel and you don't want to pay the big bucks for a new bottle, you make time to cook up a batch.

The original "recipe" comes from HERE. It looked pretty straightforward.  I mean if I can follow a recipe for homemade bread I can for sure melt some soap in a pan with some water.  Haha!  I did figure out how to make it but there was some trial and error involved.  

The recipe is as follows.  

Homemade Body Wash
3 Bars of Dove soap
6 C. water
Grate the soap into the pan
Add the water
Heat on low and stir until all the soap is melted
Cool in mason jars (no lids)
Pour into body wash bottles or place lids on the mason jars

So here is where my troubles began....

"Just grate it" they said.  "It's so simple." they said. 

After 10 minutes of grating the first bar of soap my arm muscles were burning, my grater felt like it was going to break, and the soap was melting in my hot hand.  It was literally a hot mess!!  I turned to my trusty food processor.  I had read that some people grate their soap in it, so I gave it a try. 

You can't really see it in the picture, but the soap wouldn't budge and I ended up with soap all over the blade and nothing in the bowl.  I pushed the soap harder through the chute and my processor literally stopped.  I think I broke it, but I'm too scared to try and turn it on again. It got cleaned and put back in the cupboard.  (which by the way you would think soap would wash right off of kitchen doesn't!  It's so sticky!!)

 I resorted to chopping it up the old fashioned way and what I noticed is that the soap just breaks apart naturally.  I tried to cut the pieces into similar sizes so they would melt all at once.  

 After chopping all three bars of soap I added in 6 cups of water and brought the mixture to a low simmer.  I stirred pretty consistently with a whisk.  Now, I have to warn you.  If you do not like the smell of the soap in it's bar form, then you will be forced out of your home for several hours while the smell permeates your residence.  It was strong!!  It took about 15 minutes for all of the soap pieces to fully melt.  I then poured the liquid into mason jars to cool.

I filled two quart mason jars and let them sit for several hours while they cooled.  They will turn from a runny liquid to a thicker body wash type gel.  I then poured one mason jar into my leftover commercial body wash container and placed a plastic mason jar lid on the extra body wash.  

 I haven't done the math, but I am sure this is a great deal compared to purchasing Dove body wash for upwards of $6.00 a bottle.  It was a messy, soap smelling process, but I will try this again.  I learned what worked and what didn't.  I have been using the body wash for just over a week now and I LOVE it!!! I use one of those poof type spongy things and it foams up just like the store bought stuff.  And the Dove soap really moisturizes my skin.  I have not had that dry itchy feeling after my shower.  I am sure you can make this with any bar soap, I just had Dove on hand.  This was a to-do list win!!


  1. If you allow the bars to sit out and air dry till they are hard (at least a month) they can be chopped into smaller chunks and work much better in a food processor. That's what I do with the bars of fels naptha I use to make powdered laundry soap (im lazy and making liquid laundry soap was not worth the extra time to me). Hope this helps! I'm going to try making so body wash later this week while my kids are at school. We go through it way too fast.

    1. I'm so excited to try your idea!!! That was the most frustrating part of this whole process, trying to get the bar of soap cut up. Thanks for the tip!!


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