13 May 2014

Make: 11


Lately I've been leaning towards my inner-hippie. At the start of the new year, I stopped shaving my armpits. Last month, I tried oil pulling for a few weeks. I've switched to hypoallergenic makeup, and have replaced my body and face moisturizers with coconut oil. Oh, and now I'm making my own soap.

My love affair with soap probably started last year when I lived near the Merz Apothecary and worked nearby their satellite location in the Loop. I remember the first time I visited the store, I was overcome by the smell of it. It smelled good, not in the sweet Lush sort of way - but there was an earthy homey scent to the place. Age-old shaving creams, soy based candles, organic bath salts and balms, nestled into dark hand carved wood built-in shelving, for me the experience was likened to that of a kid in a candy store. I spent my money in a calculated manner. Spending minutes in front of the soap display smelling over and over the various $9 handmade soaps from Italy, debating over which bar was just right for me. Was I a fig and goats milk girl, or a bergamot grapefruit? From the first bar I purchased, I was addicted.

Though I relish in these moments and purchases, a $9 bar of soap habit isn't admittedly sustainable. Which is where I got the idea to try my hand at making my own soaps. I know what smells I like (floral and citrus), I know what bases I like (goats milk all the way), and I like to DIY things. So when A Beautiful Mess posted a really accessible tutorial, I knew I had to try it. All in all, I love the way the soap smells and feels. It doesn't give me quite the kind of lather I like, but I might just need to find a different soap base to work with. For $15 I was able to purchase two pounds of soap base, making about twelve full-size bars of artisanal soap. Yeah, that's a bang for my buck.


10-12 oz of goats milk soap base
2-3 tbsp of coconut oil
2 lemons zested
A few drops of lavender oil
A handful of lavender pods
A handful of poppy seeds

  1. Zest your lemons into a small bowl, combine with poppy seeds and lavender pods.
  2. Cut your soap base into smaller chunks for even melting. Place in a microwave safe bowl, add in coconut oil, and microwave for thirty second stints, stirring in between. Make sure soap is melting evenly, and be careful so that it doesn't burn.
  3. Once evenly melted, stir in lemon zest, poppy seed, lavender pods, and lavender oil. 
  4. Pour into silicon molds, and wait for three hours until it is hardened completely.
  5. Smell your soap, use your soap, love your soap.


  1. first lavender honey comb tequila! now lavender soap! delicious!

    1. Lavender is one of my favorite scents/tastes! I put lavender pods in my black tea in the morning too. I'm an addict!