soap making

Soap Dough

This is my recipe for soap dough, which is still a work in progress but I am happier with it every time.  For a tried and true soap dough recipe, you can go to this page. for Bee’s recipe (She also sells soap dough already made, by the way, which allows you to play and see how soap dough should feel like.)


My accidental Soap dough recipe

I made this recipe and left it covered for another project, well, the project did not work, but the soft soap turned out to be a good soap dough, that seems to work well for me, in the city where I live where it is humid and hot!  If you live a dry climate area, perhaps Bee’s recipe (link above) would work best.  Her recipe includes full water and harder oils.  The one below has more fluid oils and less water.

When I tried making it with other colors other than Kaolin clay, it became somewhat sticky, so for me this recipe is a work in progress as I gradually reduce the water content.

***Update 6/2019:  I went from a 34% lye-to-water ratio to 40% lye/water concentration, and had better results.  I used part of the recipe oils to blend the micas prior, so that no extra oil would be added.  (If your colorant has  a lot of titanium dioxide, this might result in a dry soap dough, in which case try 37% lye to water ratio instead)

** Update 5/2020:  Depending on the colorants ingredients (titanium dioxide or any other oxide), the water amount seems to need adjustment.  A happy medium of 36 to 38% lye to water concentration seems to work in most cases.  I also run out of rice bran oil, so the below is my newest recipe.

This makes close to 1 lb soap dough, or you can split into different mica colors.  To make a smaller/larger batch, you can go to this recipe link, where you can select “Copy” and modify the recipe size.

******You should be familiar with making cold process soap before attempting this recipe.******


Recipe Totals

Distilled water 4.01 oz 113.67 g
NaOH Weight 2.26 oz 63.94 g
Oil Weight 16 oz 453.59 g
Fragrance Oil Weight (see note) 0.48 oz 13.61 g
Superfat 5%
Total Batch Weight 22.75 oz 644.81 g
Lye Concentration 36%

Recipe Oils, Fats and Waxes

Oil % Ounces Grams
Olive Oil 30 4.8 136.08
Tallow Beef 30 4.8 136.08
Coconut Oil, 76 deg 25 4 113.4
Castor Oil 8 1.28 36.29
Shea Butter 7 1.12 31.75
Total 100 16 453.59


1   teaspoon of  desired mica (or 1/4 tsp of several mica colors)


None whatsoever (especially if you are new to soap dough, but feel free to experiment if you are).  It is listed by default in the recipe calculator, which is why you see it above.


Small cavities silicone molds or silicone loaf mold (not the kind that needs wooden support, as the wood can be insulating and cause gel phase, which you want to avoid)


Deli plastic sheets or saran wrap



  1. You need to wear your safety gear.  Lye burns! Plan to prepare the lye solution several hours ahead to allow it to come to room temperature, or freeze your distilled water into cubes.
  2. In a well ventilated area (outside or by a window), add gradually the lye to the distilled water and stir it with a metal spoon. I use a drink stirrer spoon, it has a long handle.  Do not breathe the fumes (I use a respirator because I am sensitive to the fumes).   You can freeze your water ahead to avoid fumes, and weigh the ice cubes (they weigh the same as if the water was in liquid form).
  3. The water/lye solution should go from cloudy to clear once it is dissolved.  If you do not have a dedicated soap area/room and other people might come into contact with this, make sure you cover it, label it, tell everyone and keep it isolated, where it cannot be spilled or touched by accident.
  4. Wait for lye water to come to room temperature. Your lye water should be no hotter than 80°F or  26.667°C.  While you wait for the lye water to cool down, you can weigh and melt your oils.
  5. Measure, blend and melt your oils and let them come to room  temperature.  You want to work at room temperature.  Your oils should not be hotter than 100°F or 37.77°C
  6. Mix your micas with 1 tablespoon of the oil blend from the recipe.  I use a Mini mixer to do this.
  7. Once your oils and lye water have come to above temperatures, add your lye solution to the oils slowly, to avoid splatters pour it on the blender shaft.
  8. Stir with the blender on Off position initially, then blend for 15 second periods, alternating with stirring, until it is at light trace.  This should only take 1 minute, 2 at the most.
  9. Pour the batter into smaller containers to color it.
  10. Add and blend each mica color to the containers,  then pour it into a cavity of your silicone mold.
  11. Use the deli plastic or saran wrap and cover the soap, press on top to make sure the soap is not exposed to the air while it saponifies.img_3882.jpg
  12. Do not insulate the soap, if your mold has wooden sides, I would recommend a different mold or see it you can do without the wooden mold, you need to avoid gel phase.
  13. Wait 36 hours at least, or 2 days to remove from the mold.


  1. Wrap it well with deli plastic sheets or saran wrap
  2. Put it inside a plastic bag (Zip lock style works well)
  3. Wait at least two more days, a week is best.
  4. Now you can get it out and play with it, make embeds, only take out what you will use and keep the rest well wrapped with plastic, and inside a plastic bag.

If the soap dough is too sticky, wait a few more days. Or use less water next time, the temperature and humidity of where you live can affect it, as well as the titanium dioxide content of the mica.  Corn starch helps with sticky soap dough, by absorbing some of the moisture, add it sparingly as it can cause white streaks.

Here is a video:

Video of making soap dough with mica:


 Ingredientes Necesarios

Ingrediente Gramo(s) Onza(s) Libra(s) Porcentaje de aceite %
Aceite de Coco, 76 grados 78.39 2.77 0.17 25%
Aceite de Arroz (Rice bran) 100.33 3.54 0.22 32%
Aceite de Ricino (Castor Oil) 21.95 0.77 0.05 7%
Cebo de Res 78.39 2.77 0.17 25%
Manteca de Karite 34.49 1.22 0.08 11%
Ingrediente Gram(s) Ounce(s) Pounds(s) Batch %
Soda caustica 100% Pura (5% de exceso de grasa) 43.22 1.52 0.10 9.62%
Agua (34% Soda cáustica + 66% Solución de agua) 87.75 2.96 0.19 19.54%
Total de Aceites 313.55 11.06 0.69 69.81%
Peso del Jabon (Pre-Cook) 449.14 15.84 0.99 100%


1 cucharadita de Dioxido de Titanio  (u otros colorantes)


Ninguna por favor


Molde de silicone de cavidades individuales es mejor, o molde largo rectangular de silicone (el tipo que no requiere soporte de madera)


Hojas de plástico, or plástico de envolver (Saran wrap)


  1. Trabaje a temperatura ambiente.  Sus aceites no deben de estar más calientes que a  100°F ó 37.77°C
  2. El agua mezclad con la soda cáustica no debe estar a más de 80°F ó  26.667°C
  3. Añada el dióxido de titanio al agua con la soda cáustica y disperse, si está haciendo colores diferentes, evite este paso.
  4. Añada el agua con la soda cáustica a los aceites y mezcle hasta lograr la fase de
  5. Batir con la batidora de mano hasta que llegue a traza ligera.  Si esta haciendo colores multiples, divídalo ahora y añada los colores individuales y mezcle.
  6. Ponga el aceite en las cavidades individuales de los moldes o si es un solo molde en el molde.
  7. Use el plástico de deli (o plástico como saran wrap) y cubra el jabón mojado, para que no este expuesto al aire.  Asegúrese que el jabón esté en contacto con el plástico.
  8. Espere 36-48 horas y remuévalo del molde.
  9. Envuélvalo bien con más plástico alrededor y póngalo dentro de una bolsa de plástico.
  10. Espere por lo menos 3 días más o una semana.
  11. Después de ese tiempo lo puede sacar, solo tome lo que utilizará y mantenga el resto envuelto en el plástico y la bolsa, para que se mantenga maleable.

Si esta muy pegajosa, espere mas tiempo o pruebe utilizando menos agua. La humedad y temperatura de donde vive puede afectarlo.

32 thoughts on “Soap Dough”

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