There are so many methods for making soap. But there are basically four ways in making bar soap. Of course, each method has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, and they have variations as well.
- Melt and Pour Method
This method is probably the most straightforward of all the soap making methods, as the instructions involve:
- Buying a pre-made soap as a base
- Melting the soap and turning it into a liquid
- Adding ingredients of your choice
- Pouring the soap into a mold
- Designing and decorating the soap (optional)
- Leaving the soap batter to harden
As this method is quite simple, this is probably the best way for beginners to start out soap making at home. However, you don’t have much control over your ingredients, and the soap product will mostly be based on the soap you bought. It also won’t be as natural as the products of the other methods.
- Cold Process
Cold process method is more complex than the melt-and-pour method because this time, you will have to come up with your own recipes from scratch. The resulting soap will be a product of what is known as the saponification process, and it usually takes 4 to 6 weeks to complete. This method is highly popular among home soap makers, because it allows them to tailor their recipe according to their preferences and needs.
However, the cold process method makes use of a corrosive substance called lye, so you will need to learn how to work safely around it. It also takes a lot longer to complete before you can finally use your soaps.
- Hot Process
The hot process method is a variation of the cold process method, as this time heat is utilized to facilitate the saponification process. You stir the mixture at various times and the batter is heated at various temperatures to let excess water evaporate. This will make your soap ready for use once the batter cools. Although the waiting time is greatly reduced, soaps made from hot process method can sometimes be difficult to remove from their molds.
- Soap Rebatching
The soap rebatching method is also called the milled soap method. This method is very similar to melt and pour method but this time, the soap base is your very own soap creation. Basically, you will need to create soap using cold or hot process method first before you can create something from soap rebatching. This is usually done to reuse unsuccessful soap batches or to preserve the healing properties and scents of essential oils.