How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap

How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap
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Creamy White & Moisturizing Goats Milk Soap

Some years ago when I first began teaching myself how to make soap, I tried a recipe for Goats Milk Soap. I tried and failed abysmally. The bars I cut at the end were yellowy-brown and crumbly and I couldn’t figure out what I did wrong.

I’ve made a lot of soap since then and understand now that my temperatures were too hot. I’ve had similar crumbly disasters when I’ve used too much honey in recipes or when I’ve made honey soap at too high of a temperature. You’ve got to be mindful when using sugars in soap and that includes milk.

How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap

Soaping at Room Temperature

This recipe is a little different from many of the others I’ve shared in that the temperatures are low. They’re low so that the milk in the recipe doesn’t scorch and change colour, and they’re low to avoid any strange crumbly messes.

The lye-water will be at room temperature when we mix it into the oils, and the oils themselves will be just twenty degrees (°F) above that. I don’t usually soap at these temperatures but it needs to be done to avoid your milk soap turning brown. Oh, and you’re going to need both space in your freezer and refrigerator for this recipe too.

How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap

Goats Milk Soap Recipe

Makes 8 bars

For full information on soap making safety and equipment please head over here. It’s important to read it before trying to make soap the first time.

Lye Water
109g/ 3.8oz Sodium hydroxide (also called Lye or Caustic Soda)
100g / 3.5 oz Water in a heat-proof jug
100g / 3.5 oz Goats Milk

Solid Oils
200g / 7oz Refined Coconut Oil
150g / 5oz Shea Butter

Liquid Oils
400g / 14oz Olive oil Pomace (it’s lighter in colour than virgin olive oil)
50g / 1.76oz Castor oil

Add at Trace
8 drops Grapefruit Seed Extract

Special Equipment needed
Digital Thermometer
Digital Kitchen Scale
Stick (Immersion) Blender
Silicone Soap Mould

How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap

Step 1: Freeze the Goats Milk

Pour the goats milk into an ice cube tray and freeze.

Step 2: Make the Lye-Water

Set yourself up in an area with good ventilation — on the doorstep or outdoors is perfect. Pour the Sodium Hydroxide into the water and stir with a stainless steel spoon. Be careful not to breathe in the fumes.

Stir until the lye is completely dissolved and then set the jug aside to cool to 100°F (38°C).

Step 3: Add the Milk Cubes

When the lye-water has cooled, add all of the goat milk ice cubes to the jug. Allow the cubes to melt and for the lye-liquid to lower to room temperature — that’s between 68-72°F (20-22°C)

How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap

Step 4: Heat the Solid Oils

As soon as you add the ice cubes to the lye water begin melting the solid oils. In a stainless steel pan, heat the coconut oil and shea butter on very low heat until just liquefied. They’ll melt quicker than you think so don’t be tempted to turn up the heat.

Step 5: Add the Liquid Oils

When the solid oils are melted, take the pan off the heat and pour in the liquid oils. Being already room temperature, they’ll cool the hot oils down. Stir well and keep an eye on the temperature. You want the oils to cool to 90°F (32°C).

How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap

Step 5: Mixing

When the lye-liquid is fully melted and the oils are the right temperature, pour the lye-liquid into the oils. Immerse a stick blender into the pan and use it (turned off) to stir the contents together. Then bring the stick blender to the middle of the pan, hold it still and pressed to the bottom of the pan and pulse for a couple of seconds.

Repeat the stirring and pulsing until the mixture begins to thicken. It will take a couple of minutes.

Step 6: Add the Anti-oxidant

When the soap batter has thickened to the consistency of warm custard, stir in the drops of Grapefruit Seed Extract. It works as an anti-oxidant and helps prolong the shelf-life of your bars of soap. It’s not a preservative but rather an agent that helps stop oils from going rancid.

Step 7: Mould and Cool

Pour the soap into your mould, whether it’s the Silicone Soap Mould, an empty paper milk carton, or something else. Now line the exposed part of the soap with plastic wrap and pop the mould into the refrigerator. Leave it there for 24 hours.

Step 8: Cut & Cure

Take the soap out of the refrigerator the next day but leave it inside the mould. Set it someplace on the counter and leave it there for three or four days to harden up a bit. This soap is very soft when it comes out of the mould and could break or get stuck if you try to cut it too soon.

When cut, leave the bars someplace airy and out of direct sunlight to cure for 3-4 weeks. The soap is safe to touch 48 hours after making it but it needs the extra time to allow the excess moisture to evaporate out.

How to make Natural Goat Milk Soap

Using your Soap

The lather and feel of these handmade goat milk soaps is fluffy and silky. The scent is softly milky and making the recipe just as it is will create bars ideal for sensitive and dry skin. If you’d like to scent these, you may add essential oil at the same time that you add the Grapefruit seed extract.

Read more about scenting soap with essential oil here — the article also provides recommendations on how much to use of each when making handmade soap.

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16 Discussion to this post

  1. Joyce Blake says:

    Hi Tanya, I tried making Goats milk soap a few days ago, and it turned to mush, none of the other recipes say to put it in the freeer, I have sodium lactate, i think that is what it is called, should I use that instead of putting in the fridge. I really enjoy your videos, and all that you do. I just want my cold process soap to turn out. LoL any advice is good.
    Thanks
    Joyce

    • lovelygreens says:

      You don’t put your soap in the freezer Joyce — you put it in the fridge to cool. If your soap turned to mush it could be a couple of things: the recipe isn’t good (check a recipe’s values in the SoapCalc before using it), you haven’t waited long enough before cutting it (don’t unmould for 3-4 days with softer soaps), or your soap false-traced meaning the oils cooled and hardened in the pan before they could be bonded with lye. I suggest you use my recipe instead and follow all the steps to the T. You mention substituting ingredients in a previous recipe in a Facebook comment — please don’t do that. It’s the surest way to fail when making soap.

  2. Karen Rink says:

    Great looking soap mold! Where can I buy one?

  3. Mary says:

    I have been making goats milk soap for years and it’s always the light brown color. I am thrilled to give this recipe a try. Thank you.

  4. leatrice gulbransen says:

    Thanks so much for the recipe ! My first time to your site. Very detailed, easy to follow directions. You don’t get all scientific with us. I used to make soap. Back in the hippie days. LOL ! My how things have changed ! This will be my first time trying again. The thing I want the most is lather. Have you any suggestions to make that happen ? Thanks again.

  5. Nichole says:

    Best recipie I’ve seen!! Thanks for sharing!
    -HappyWifeyHappyLifey.com

    🙂

  6. Terri Sidell says:

    Tanya, Love your instructions on how to make soap. Do you have a receipe to make Goats Milk soap without lye?

  7. Otilia says:

    I’m following your posts and thank you for sharing with us what you create. I love soap with goat milk and I think I will try as soon as possible this way to make it. I have tried several times to put the goat milk to the trace, up to a maximum half of the amount of liquid, and the result is quite pleasing. The advantage of this method is that milk should not be frozen, but just brought to room temperature. Thank you again.

  8. carolyn says:

    Hi there, I love this site. Have just made my first batch of lemongrass soap and it has turned out quite brittle and crumbly. Am I able to reheat and repour? Thanks.

    • lovelygreens says:

      Brittle and crumbly doesn’t sound right — check to see if the soaps are lye-heavy (with a PH test) before rebatching. You might have mis-measured the ingredients. It’s happened to us all!

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