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How To Make Your Own Herbal Soap Without Handling Lye

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How To Make Your Own Herbal Soap Without Handling LyeHow To Make Your Own Herbal Soap Without Handling Lye – Image To Repin / Share
Image – thenerdyfarmwife.com

Soap making is a rewarding hobby but it carries the danger of working with lye (sodium hydroxide or Caustic Soda) which is a strongly alkaline chemical typically used to produce hard soaps. We discovered a simple tutorial which will guide you through an alternative process where you won’t have to take the risk! There are some good recipe ideas and clear instructions – you will also find helpful links to shop for your ingredients or to find more tips and ideas.



Now it’s possible to work with a ready made soap base that can be melted – all you have to do is add your own scents, herbs or flowers! It’s the perfect way of avoiding unnecessary chemical additives that can be harmful to sensitive skin and to the environment. Natural soaps are often expensive so you could save some money too!

Lye has many other uses, in the manufacture of chemicals, food, paper and textiles to name a few. It is a reactive substance that will burn the skin as it absorbs water and gives off heat in the process – it is very dangerous because it continues to burn on contact with the skin and can even be fatal if swallowed.

During the saponification process, lye is converted into chemicals that are safe – homemade soaps which are not properly cured or mixed can still have traces of lye in them and using soaps with even a trace amount of lye may lead to irritation and even burns.

Releasing lye into the environment can have severe consequences – as an example, there is the practice of “caustic washing” to remove impurities in low grade crude oil. This has been banned for many years because it results in some very toxic substances being produced. There is a reported case from 2006 of illegal dumping of this toxic waste in Africa – it’s here if you want to know more:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2006_Côte_d’Ivoire_toxic_waste_dump

Soaps and detergents work by breaking down the surface tension of water – please keep them away from aquatic environments as this property is crucial for all the creatures that live in water! Natural soap will soon combine with fats and minerals in water to become relatively harmless but non-biodegradable detergents will continue to affect water when released into the environment. Here is a link that will tell you more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/151779-environmental-impacts-of-detergent/

If you’re keen to take further steps towards natural products or you have an interest in the magic of herbs, we found this link that gives a list of plants that have a lot of naturally occurring saponins and tells you how to make shampoo with them! http://www.ehow.com/how_6138645_make-shampoo-using-soap-plants.html





OK, here’s the link to the full lye-free soap making tutorial: http://thenerdyfarmwife.com/making-soap-without-lye/

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Graphic – off-grid.info. Image – thenerdyfarmwife.com


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