Basic and Easy Homemade Soap Making Recipes

jasmine soap
Floriana Barbu / Getty Images

It's important to understand the qualities of soap making oils in order to create your own basic recipe, but it's often times quicker and easier to use someone else's recipe to get started.

We've compiled several ​basic recipes from our library of classic soap making books. They're all "tried and true" very basic recipes...and are good starting places for learning the art of making your own soap.

  • 01 of 04

    Basic 4-Oil Soap Recipe

    Bottles of Palm Oil for Sale
    Cultura RM/Philip Lee Harvey - Getty Images

    Here is a basic soap recipe with simple ingredients that make great soap. This is a basic recipe used in soap making classes

  • 02 of 04

    Basic Olive Oil (Castile) Soap Recipes

    Bars of soap in a bowl
    altrendo images / Getty Images

    Olive oil was one of the first vegetable oils used to make soap and forms the base of most high-quality soap recipes. Whether the recipe is a "Castile" soap using mostly only olive oil in it, or just uses olive oil as one of its many ingredients, olive oil makes great soap.

  • 03 of 04

    Sandy Maine's Basic 3-Oil Soap Recipe

    handmade white soap
    chizu / Getty Images

    Sandy Maine of SunFeather Natural Soap Company has a "basic" recipe with just three oils that she uses for all the varieties of soap in her book The Soap Book. It consists of:​

    • 48% Crisco
    • 25% olive oil
    • 25% coconut oil

    It doesn't have quite the heavy, creamy lather that castor oil's a lighter lather...but quite plentiful. It's a great recipe to get started because these oils should be readily available at your grocery store.

  • 04 of 04

    MMS Basic 3-Oil Soap Recipe

    Overhead view of spoonful of cold coconut oil on jar
    RUSS ROHDE / Getty Images

    Here is a super-simple recipe (inspired by a recipe at Majestic Mountain Sage) that just uses 3 oils. Would adding some other oils like castor oil or cocoa butter improve the soap? Yes! Is this a perfectly good recipe to get started with? Absolutely! It's basically:

    • 50% olive oil
    • 25% coconut oil
    • 25% palm oil

    This recipe will make about 3 lbs. of soap.

Start Now, But Learn More

You can use these recipes forever and always have great soap. But we encourage you to learn more about the oils going into your soap recipes. Learn how coconut oil will give your soap a different quality than olive oil. Learn some of the subtleties of the liquid oils. Make your recipes your own unique creations!