Making my own soap is something I’ve wanted to try for years. I took our first step by considering: Could our Girl Scouts make molded soaps during a meeting?
I’d gotten a Christmas ornament silicone mold on deep clearance last winter, and I had wanted to try some kind of project with them, whether it was soaps or molding candy.
It was time for a test. We opted to “rebatch” Ivory Soap into the new design. Rebatching is basically taking a soap bar and recreating it into something new. It might be melting down soap base and adding other ingredients or as simple as melting soap scraps and pouring into a new mold.
How to melt down Ivory soap
In our case, we used the extra soap pieces left over from the Cub Scouts Ivory soap carving meeting to melt down for our base. We also used our grater to grate larger pieces for faster melting.
We made a double boiler over our kitchen stove, then boiled water in the bottom of the double boiler and added the soap pieces in the top container. We kept the stove on medium and stirred the mixture constantly until it melted.
I will note: Our first batch was a bust. Why? We weren’t patient enough. The end result was a crumbly mess that we ended up remelting to redo!
Don’t have a stove available at your meeting? I‘ve seen other bloggers blow the Ivory soap up in the microwave, then add warm water for a mixable base.
Once the soap was melted, we added a bit of warm water (about 1/4 cup per bar used) and 3 drops of orange essential oil for each bar of soap used in the rebatch. The consistency felt like soap that had been sitting in your bathtub far too long.
Setting up soap in the mold
When it was all mixed, we poured the soap into our silicone mold.
After an hour, it was still really soft and we were reluctant to take the soap out of the mold. It might have held up but we didn’t want to risk it.
We let the soap rest overnight (about 12 hours) and took it out the next morning. The soaps were still a bit soft but not so soft that we were worried about damaging the bars by removing it. We’ll need to continue to let these air-dry.
So…don’t make soap at a meeting?
Not necessarily. I’ve got a couple of ideas that might work if we decide to try to make molded soaps with our Girl Scouts.
- Plan to do make soaps at a lock-in. This builds in time for it to dry. (But set the finished products in individual bowls they can take home.)
- Don’t make the soaps in large molds. Instead, buy cheap cookie cutters (that you don’t mind losing) and press the soap mixture into them to mold. Send the soap in the cookie cutters home with the girls to complete the curing process.
Have you ever made your own soaps with your older girls? Share your tips below!
Note: This post does contain affiliate links, which help support our scouting adventures and this blog.