I've always been intrigued by the world of soap making. Choosing your own ingredients to make your own special scent, adding colors and textures to make it aesthetically pleasing, and then getting to share those goodies with friends and family just sounds like the best thing ever. I'll admit that I've been an admirer for some time, but the thought of taking on another hobby that can be very involved was pretty intimidating ... until I heard about melt-and-pour soap bases, that is. Craft stores sell soap bases that you literally heat up in your microwave (or on your stove top) and then add whatever ingredients you want to customize your own soap bars. Now THAT I can get on board with.
-10 oz goat's milk melt-and-pour soap base (sold at local craft stores or on Amazon)
-1 grapefruit (only zest half the grapefruit)
-1 tbsp poppy seeds
-10 drops of grapefruit essential oil
-4 drops of mint essential oil
-plastic bowl for heating in microwave or pot and glass bowl for double boiling
-grater (for zest)
Step Two: Zest your grapefruit and have your poppy seeds and oils handy.
Step Three: Melt the soap base in the microwave (in a plastic bowl) or double boil it on the stove top. I used a wooden coffee stirrer to stir as I went. It's really important not to burn the soap while melting, so I microwaved in 30-second increments.
Step Five: Pour the soap into the silicone mold and let harden. I transferred mine to a glass measuring cup with a pour spout for easier pouring. Mine took about 2–3 hours to harden completely, but I let it sit in the molds for longer just to be sure!
The poppy seeds in this soap are great for exfoliating the skin, the goat's milk is great for moisturizing, and the grapefruit oil is said to balance skin discolorations and keep skin glowing. I love any sort of citrus scent, so paired with a small amount of mint this is one of the best soaps I've ever smelled. So fresh!
I have to admit, I was a little nervous about adding fresh ingredients to soap since it just sits on a shelf, but the glycerine in the goat's milk base that I used is supposed to act as a preservative and keep the grapefruit rind from molding. Whew. That's good news because no one wants a moldy bar of soap as a gift, no matter how sweet the gesture! Happy soap making! xo. Katie
Credits // Author: Katie Shelton, Photography: Sarah Rhodes. Photos edited with Piper from the Signature Collection