Beeswax and honey make a sweet smelling soap
Honey soap smells of caramelized honey and will usually turn a golden brown color. By adding a little beeswax into the mix you’re making a truly bee-autiful soap that is also hard and smooth. Be careful with how much beeswax you use in soap though, using more than 2% of your recipe can stop it from lathering up.
Honey, Oats and Beeswax Soap
700g batch – makes approx. 6-7 bars
98g (3.5oz) Sodium Hydroxide
200g (7oz) Water
210g (7.4oz) Refined Coconut oil
301g (10.6oz) Olive oil
105g (3.7oz) Castor oil
70g (2.5oz) Sustainable Palm oil
14g (0.5oz) Beeswax
1 tsp Honey
1 tsp Rolled Oats
9 drops of Grapefruit Seed Extract
1. Make sure there are no kids running around and that all pets are locked out of your work area. Lye can be very dangerous if it’s spilled on the skin, splashed into the eyes or is accidentally ingested. Put on your safety goggles, apron and plastic gloves to continue.
2. Measure all your oils into a pan and your water into a heat resistant, tall container.
3. Begin heating up the oils on the hob until just melted. Put the hob on the lowest heat — the oils will take less time to melt than you think.
4. While the oils are heating up, measure the lye into the water in a well ventilated area, stir well and try not to breathe the fumes. The mixture will get very hot and may even begin boiling so keep your face well away and if you can. Add the honey if you want your soap to be a darker brown colour.
You can then place the container of lye in a tub of water to help it cool down a bit but keep an eye on its temperature to make sure it doesn’t get too cold. Cold lye water can cause your beeswax to harden on contact creating a false trace and ruining your soap.
5. When both the oil and lye water are around 120°F (and within 10 degrees of each other) you can mix them together.
Start by pouring in about two tablespoons of lye-water into the oil and stir well before pouring in the rest.
Stir thoroughly and then dip your stick blender into the mixture at an angle, so as to not get air into your soap. Alternate short blasts of whizzing with stirring the mixture gently until you reach a light trace.
Trace is when the oil and lye are less a liquid consistency and more like a light pudding. To make sure it’s traced, take a little of the mixture up in a spoon and dribble it on the top.
If your dribble holds its form and doesn’t immediately sink down into the soap then it’s ready. Using beeswax in a soap recipe does cause trace to happen quite quickly so you might only need to whizz and stir in as little as 30 seconds to a minute.
6. Now pour in the honey (if you haven’t already added it to the lye water) and grapefruit seed extract and mix very well – you don’t want streaks of honey in your soap.
When that’s all mixed in, add in your oats, stir well and then pour the soap into your moulds. Cover optionally with plastic wrap to reduce the chance of soda ash.
7. Cover the mould lightly with a towel and let it sit on the counter until the next day. Alternatively, you can pop the mould into the fridge if you’d like your soap to be a lighter color.
8. Wait at least 24 hours before un-moulding and if the soap doesn’t come out easily, just pop it in the freezer for 45 minutes and try again. After un-moulding you can press more oat flakes into your soap for a nice effect. This soap needs four weeks of curing before it can be used. For full instructions on how to cure handmade soap head over here