How to Make Liquid Soap

How great would it be to add a product to your line that takes virtually no time to make, has very low investment costs, and produces a great profit margin for you? We’ve got your business covered with the ingredients to make liquid hand soap and shower gel. Our Natural Liquid Soap Base + a small amount of fragrance oil + our pump bottle is all you need to be up and running. It’s so easy to produce, boasts low COGs, and your mark-up is excellent. Here’s the deal…

  • You only need to use about 2% fragrance oil for optimal fragrance load, (hello savings)!
  • Just pour our Natural Liquid Soap base into our reusable/recyclable glass bottles, add 2% fragrance oil of your choice, and shake well. In 24 hours, your soap is ready to go.
  • Doubles as a shower gel! Our 16 oz bottle is perfect for shower gel, while our 8 oz bottle is ideal for hand soap.
  • Our exclusive, in-house-crafted fragrance oils elevate your hand soap from ordinary to extraordinary, so you can say ‘bye to boring’.
  • BONUS! For even lower COGs, make our Foaming Hand Soap, which uses 80% less soap and 80% less fragrance oil.

Vanessa’s Favorite Soap Recipe:

For formulation nerds, like me, at the bottom of this blog is a proper dork-out on the why/what/how. But for the TLDR crowd, here’s my fave hand soap recipe to get you making and selling in 24 hours.

  1. Add 7.84 oz of Natural Liquid Soap Base to our 8 oz glass bottle (choose the pump color of your choice).
  2. Add 0.16 oz of Egomaniacal Green to the mix.
  3. Shake vigorously and let it sit for 24 hours.
  4. Wash your hands, then send us an email and tell us how absolutely fantastic this soap smells and feels!

(Why 2% and why Egomaniacal Green?)

            You can easily add 3+ percent fragrance load to our soap base, but I don’t like being overwhelmed by fragrance in cosmetics. I desire to be left wanting more. And as far as fragrance choices are concerned, while I love Egomaniacal Green in candles, it’s not necessarily my go-to. But in soap, it is MAGIC! Don’t take my word for it; try it yourself. It’s fresh, clean, and always my first choice.

This is for the formulation nerds, like me, who want to know all the details. TLDR WARNING!

  • How Fragrance Effects Soap
  1. Each fragrance can affect the soap differently. Almost all fragrances will thicken the soap. You may have noticed that prior to adding fragrance, the soap is almost too liquid. The viscosity increases once the fragrance is added, so we don’t want the soap to be too thick prior to adding fragrance oil.
  2. Additionally, soap can cause fragrance to ‘morph’. This means that the original fragrance profile is changed once the soap and the fragrance have combined. You may love a particular 16/17 fragrance in a candle, out-of-bottle, or in a perfume, but hate it in a soap. The good news is that it’s easy to test in very small batches to see what you like best for your brand, or home use.
  3. Fragrance can discolor soap, but we think it looks pretty. Usually, the discoloration results in an amber hue and can take up to 48 hours to fully settle down. Our Calle 23 fragrance oil initially turned the soap an awful green, and took 48 hours to become a gorgeous, clear amber color. Most fragrances will not result in a change of color.
  4. Liquid soap can only hold so much fragrance before it begins to separate. Some fragrances can be added at higher loads without separation, but truthfully, over 3% can be overwhelming to the end user. My preferred fragrance load is 2% with most fragrance oils, although I encourage you to experiment and find what you like best.
  • Adding Moisturizing Oils to Liquid Soap
  1. You can add free oil to the liquid soap base if you would like, but it must be calculated into the total amount of free oil the base can hold. Remember that fragrance oil is also an oil, so the amount of fragrance + the amount of moisturizing oils = your total oil load. Different moisturizing oils will affect the soap differently, as will fragrances. So, if you add apricot oil, for example, you may experience a different result than if you added coconut oil. You will need to experiment with your formula to find what produces the desired result.
  2. Adding oil to the recipe is not necessary. The soap base is very gentle and mild, and requires no additions. In fact, there are only 5 ingredients in our liquid soap base, and our clients and family with skin allergies are in love with this soap. ‘Moisturizing Soap’ is a bit of an oxymoron and, while some soaps are more oil-stripping than others, the very nature of soap is that it is cleansing, (and therefore drying). Some oils are more moisturizing than others. If a soap is made with a heavy olive oil component, for example, it will be more moisturizing, (but it will also feel slimy). If a soap is made with a larger amount of coconut oil, it will have excellent bubbles, but it will be more drying.
  • Adding Goat’s Milk (and other things that can spoil)
  1. Goat’s milk soap is great, and I like making it, but goat’s milk cannot be added to soap that is already saponified. It will spoil, and quickly.
  2. Goat’s milk soap is created by using goat’s milk as part of the water/lye component prior to adding the oil to the mix. Once combined, saponification takes place and the goat’s milk will not spoil. Our liquid soap base is already saponified, which means that you cannot add goat’s milk, or any other ingredient that will spoil.
  • What is Alkalinity and Why do I Care?
  1. Have you heard people talk about pH and wondered what the heck they were on about? Soap is naturally alkaline, versus acidic. A neutral pH is 7. The scale is 0-14. Coffee is acidic, having a pH of 4-5, while soap is usually between 9-10, making it alkaline, (or basic). If a soap is too alkaline, it can be very harsh on one’s skin. Our liquid soap base is 9 to 9.5 in alkalinity, which is right about where you want a soap to be.
  2. The high alkalinity of soap is why a preservative is not needed, unless the soap is significantly diluted.
  • When to Use a Preservative
  1. You do not need to use a preservative when making regular hand soap or body wash using our liquid soap base, unless you are making a foaming hand soap.
  2. Foaming hand soap requires a specific pump to get that awesome foaming action, and a significant dilution to the soap base. We prefer a 4:1 ratio of water to soap. This means you will use 80% distilled water and only 20% soap in your recipe. Water is the perfect environment for nasty bacteria to grow, so in this case, we advise that you include a preservative in your recipe for foaming hand soap. You may use any broad-spectrum preservative of your choice that works well with recipes that include a lot of water. There are many preservatives to choose from, so it’s just a matter of finding what is best for you and your brand.

If you’re still reading, you are my people! Thanks for powering through, and as always, if you have questions, please email us at

---Vanessa McGee

June 09, 2023 — Vanessa McGee