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How to Make Foaming Hand Soap

How to Make Foaming Hand Soap

The cost of commercial hand soap is highway robbery.  Most places charge the same price for regular and foaming soap, even though the foaming version is diluted with over 75% water!  Fortunately this is one of the easiest products to make at home.  For less than $1 you can make a 10 oz bottle of soap and use essential oil to customize the scent however you please.  It cleans beautifully, takes about 2 minutes to make and my toddler thinks it’s super fun to wash your hands with “bubbles”.  Once you realize how simple this is, you’ll never buy the commercial version again.

How to Make Foaming Hand Soap


  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup liquid castile soap (I recommend Dr. Bronners)
  • 20 drops essential oil (see below for recommendations)


  • 10 oz bottle with foam pump (I clean and reuse a bottle of commercial foaming soap)


  • First fill your bottle with water (if you put the soap in first it creates way too many bubbles when you mix it)
  • Then add the liquid castile soap and essential oil and shake to mix.  That’s it!!


  • Container – I’ve had a hard time finding empty foaming hand soap bottles.  So instead, I bought a couple filled bottles from the store which I used until they were empty then cleaned and filled with my own recipe.
  • If your soap bottle is bigger or smaller than 10 oz, this is an easy recipe to adjust.  Just stick to the ratio of 4 parts water to 1 part liquid castile soap.  Then add 2 drops of essential oil for every ounce of total liquid.
  • Essential oil – the essential oil in this recipe is optional but it makes a big difference.  The oil you choose can actually boost the cleaning power of the soap and they smell fantastic.  My personal favorites for this recipe are lavender, peppermint and any of the citrus oils – sweet orange, lemon and grapefruit.  Here’s an overview of my favorite essential oils for skincare:
  • Castile soap – I recommend Dr. Bronners unscented liquid castile soap because it’s a good quality and it smells the best of the soaps I’ve tried.  Some of the other unscented brands I’ve used smelled musty and the small price difference is worth the increased quality.  Dr Bronners also sells scented castile soap which also work great in this recipe.  If you go this route, just choose a scent you like and omit the essential oil – it couldn’t be simpler!

For additional DIY bath and body recipes, please see:

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