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How to Make the Best Moisturizing Hand Soap

Posted on 2008-02-13 by Cherie Norquay
Category: Soap Making

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"Moisture Rich" is one of my most requested and best moisturizing hand soap recipes. I not only like to use this hand soap at my sink, I also like to use this soap in the shower because it is so moisturizing. What's the secret ingredient? Shea butter. Shea butter has special moisturizing qualities and I strive to preserve these qualities in my hand made soap. I like to think this soap is unique because the of the steps I take to create it. See for yourself below.

Best Moisturizing Hand Soap Recipe:


25 oz. olive oil

10 oz. coconut oil

10 oz. palm oil

5 oz. shea butter

16 oz. water

7 oz. lye


I make this soap a little differently than my other soaps. I melt the coconut oil and palm oils together. Then I add the olive oil. When the oils and the lye/water (or lye/milk) slurry are both at about 110 degrees, I incorporate the slurry into the oils. When the soap is at very light trace, I then incorporate the melted shea butter. I like to incorporate the shea butter at this point, hoping that most of the shea butter will not react with the lye and retain it's moisturizing properties. I know there are still lots of free lye radicals in the soap, but hopefully most of them mixed with the other base oils.

I do not use any fragrance in this soap because I like to offer a few fragrance-free soaps. You can, however, use any fragrance you wish to in this soap. I always recommend using a fragrance that has been a good seller for you if you have been selling soap for quite a while. I have been very successful keeping this soap fragrance-free however (and this cuts the cost of producing the soap in half).

I like to use LIGHT olive oil so I get a very light (almost white) color bar of soap. If you use extra virgin olive oil, the bar will not look so white. If you use pomace oil, the soap will have a greenish look -- you will also need to consult a lye calculator because you may need to adjust the amount of olive oil if you are substituting pomace.

This recipe will produce 16 - 4 oz. bars of soap. If you reduce or increase the recipe size, be sure to double check your oil and lye amounts with a lye calculator. It always pays to be on the safe side. I usually make this soap in a large loaf mold that makes 64 bars of soap at a time.

Any soap maker would benefit from adding this best moisturizing hand soap recipe to their soap making repertoire.

Author: Cherie Norquay < dot >

Compliments of Cherie Norquay
If you are new to soap making you can check out my website at How to Make Soap where I have an on-line or DVD video soap making tutorial. You can watch me make soap right in my own kitchen.

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