How To Make & Customize Melt & Pour Soap
You’ve got your soap supplies and you’re bubbling over with excitement! These simple, step-by-step instructions will help you make super sudsy homemade soaps.
We highly recommend reading all of the instructions below before you start making. Learning how to make melt and pour soap is easy, and fun, and you get total control of the ingredients!
One of the benefits of hot process soap vs cold process soap is that it doesn't require a long time to cure. Your melt and pour soaps will be ready to use as soon as they've cooled!
Let's get into the tools and tips that will make your sudsy dreams come true.
gather your supplies
We'll begin with the short list of supplies. Here's what you'll need to make your melt & pour soap.
- one of our melt & pour soap bases
- fragrance oil of your choice
- mica powder (optional)
- botanicals (optional)
- soap molds
If you're having trouble deciding which soap base to use, you can explore all the varieties in our soap discovery kits.
prepare your space
Ready, set, suds!!
- Prepare a clean environment and cover your workspace. If you make a mess, don't worry! It's soap...so it's easy to clean up!
- Regardless your soap type, try to create in a low humidity environment to prevent sweating or molding.
melt your base
- Cut your 1lb soap block(s) into 4-6 smaller chunks. This helps them melt faster & more evenly, and prevents any of the soap from getting too hot.
- Heat your soap base in a glass pitcher in the microwave at 30 second intervals until melted. A double boiler will also work if you do not have a microwave. Be sure your base is completely melted.
- Be careful not to overheat your soap. Overheated soap can look sticky or overly bubbly. It is still usable but it won’t look as good. Heating in the 30 second intervals suggested above will help prevent you from overheating.
- Once you've made your melted soap base, it can start to cool quickly. Be sure to plan out your design including colors and scents and desired ingredients before you start melting.
- One of the benefits of melt and pour soap is that it can be reheated again, if needed. However, do your best to limit heating it over and over to maintain the best quality of your ingredients.
- Measure your fragrance load to the desired amount ahead of time, being aware of the “skin safe” percentage for soaps.
- For melt and pour soaps, we suggest using 1-3% fragrance load. It sounds small, but trust us, it is plenty! For the skin safe percentage for all of our fragrances, see the “More Information” section on the fragrance product page.
- You can also select the IFRA data sheet, which will give you the skin safety percentages for all skin applications of a fragrance. Soap falls into the “Rinse Off” category which is section 9 on most IFRA documents.
- If you are using 1 pound of Makesy soap base, a 10 ml/.33 oz fragrance bottle will be the perfect amount.
- 1 pound = 16oz.
- Total product weight = 16.33oz
- .33oz divided by 16.33oz = 0.02 or 2% fragrance load.
- Stir your favorite fragrance into the melted base for 30-60 seconds, being careful to stir slowly and not create air bubbles in the soap.
- You can stir your fragrance into your base with a spatula or use an immersion blender.
play with enhancers
Time to get creative!
- Soap making is fun because there are endless ways to customize your soap bars. You can add botanicals, micas, eco glitter, and create whatever look you desire.
- During this step, you’ll add in any enhancers or other ingredients that you want to mix directly in your base. Once it is poured, you can also add botanicals, eco glitters, etc on the top of your soap.
- In addition to botanicals, you can also add in a small amount of specialty oils, active ingredients, or functional ingredients to your base.
- Because melt and pour soap is already technically a finished, usable bar of soap, you should be careful not to modify the base too much or it may lose hardness once cooled.
- We suggest not adding more than 5% additional ingredients to your base, including the fragrance oil. Be sure the ingredients you are adding are also oil soluble.
add something on top
- Botanicals are lovely accents on top of your soap. We recommend that you use these types only on top of your soap. All others can be mixed into the soap base and placed on top, if desired.
- rose petals
- lavender buds
- juniper springs
- organic chamomile flowers
- pomegranate flowers
- butterfly pea flowers
- chrysanthemums flowers
- rosebuds + pink petals
- jasmine flowers.
tips for enhancers
- If you are using micas, less is more. We suggest starting out with ⅛ teaspoon of mica per 1 pound of soap, and adding more as you see fit.
- You can add micas directly into the melted base, sprinkle on top of your soaps, or both. Mica and natural powders can both be clumpy. Mixing them with a small amount of alcohol (teaspoon size) before you pour into the base can eliminate clumpiness.
- When adding botanicals or eco glitter, make sure to spray your soap (while still in the mold) with alcohol before adding the enhancers on top. This will help prevent bubbles in your soap and will help prevent any color bleeding from your botanicals or eco glitter.
- When it comes to enhancers like botanicals, micas, natural powders and glitters, there is really not a set limit you can add. It is more about personal preference!
pour your soap
- Pour time! Spray your molds with alcohol to help prevent air bubbles and achieve a smooth surface on your soaps.
- Pour your liquid soap into the molds and spray the surface of the soaps immediately with alcohol as well.
- Now you are ready to add in any additional enhancers to the top of your soaps as well.
- Cure! Melt and pour soaps cure rather quickly. As soon as they’re cooled, they’re cured. Let dry for 12 hours, and then you can pop out of the mold and lather away!
- If you plan on storing your soaps, keep them in an airtight container or wrap them in plastic wrap to avoid “sweating” (this is when small beads of oil leech from the surface of your bar due to humidity).
You did it! The more you practice, the more you will learn. Soap making is both an art and a science. As you get more comfortable, try practicing with new techniques and designs. Add layers, swirls and different enhancers into your soaps.
Want to share a tip with us or have more soap making questions? Drop us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org! Happy soap making!