There are few all-natural, Earth ingredients as potent as the combination of raw honey and beeswax.
Science — in all of its glory — has yet to recreate nature’s most amazing ingredients!
Raw honey and beeswax provide a super effective, germ-killing barrier that improve the health of our skin and hair by locking in moisture and protecting against environmental contaminates.
I love combining these beauties in salves, balms, ointments, and now…soaps!
Created out of pure ingredients — this bar is scented only by the beeswax and raw honey it contains. It is handcrafted using the hot process method. And when used as a shampoo and/or body bar, it is extremely luxurious and healing.
Experience the nourishing and conditioning properties of honey!
Raw Honey Soap
- 8 ounces coconut oil
- 10 ounces olive oil
- 6 ounces tallow
- 3 ounces Shea butter
- 4 ounces castor oil
- 10 ounces water
- 4.37 ounces lye (7% excess fat)
- 2 ounces raw beeswax
- 1 ounce jojoba oil
- 2 tablespoons raw, unfiltered honey
*Thanks to the Internet and amazing people who are willing to share their wisdom so freely…I was able to learn the skill. I primarily use the hot processed method…however, choose the method you feel most comfortable with:
- Wardeh, who runs Gnowfglins, on her personal blog Such Treasures gives the clearest, most easy to follow directions ever! This is the exact post that got me started. She uses the hot processed method and I highly recommend that you read her recipe if you are even the slightest bit interested in making your own soap.
- Renee of Fimby was also very inspirational and such a great resource! Watch her awesome video that describes the cold processed method for making a simple soap by clicking here.
If you are new to soap-making, I strongly suggest you read through these very informative articles and find what will work for you:
I would also recommend borrowing a few of these books from the library if you really find yourself wanting to know more:
- Handcrafted Soapby Dolores Boone
- The Soapmaker’s Companionby Susan Miller Cavitch
- The Natural Soap Book by Susan Miller Cavitch
Hot Process Method
*Remember…there are 2 different methods for soap-making — hot and cold process — this is the Hot Process Method.
- Measure both the lye and water – each in separate bowls — using a kitchen scale. Note: Always run your recipe through a lye calculator to be sure that you are using the proper amount of oils, lye, and liquid.
- Carefully combine the lye and water by pouring the lye into the liquid (never pour liquid into the lye) and stir liquid until lye is completely dissolved. The liquid is caustic and not to be touched in any way. The outside of the bowl will be extremely hot as well. Be careful when working with lye and follow all of the recommended precautions. Note: What I’m trying to say is, I can not be held responsible for any craziness, mishaps, explosions, etc. that may happen when making this recipe.
- Allow the lye mixture to stay under a vent and cool down while you prepare the oils.
- Measure the oils (withholding the jojoba…we’ll add that later) and beeswax – by weight – and then place in a crock pot to melt on low heat.
- Once melted, add the lye/water mixture to the oils in the crock pot and stir. Note: Any equipment the lye touches needs to be neutralized in a mixture of white vinegar, soap, and water.
- After a brief stir, grab your stick blender and get to work! Blend the oils and liquid in the crock pot for at least 1-2 minutes. We are working toward “trace.”
- Continue stirring and blending for 2-3 minutes more – until the mixture becomes a thick, pudding like consistency.
- Once the mixture is pudding-like, cover the crock pot and “cook” the soap, on low heat, for approximately 1 hour.
- Prepare your mold. Note: I just use a standard loaf pan lined with parchment paper and it’s always worked perfectly and this recipe is enough to fill one loaf pan.
- Once the soap is done “cooking” remove from heat and add the honey and jojoba oil.
- Stir until well combined.
- Spoon soap mixture into molds.
- Allow soap to cool and harden for 24 hours.
- Remove from mold on to cutting board and cut into bars.
- Place bars on a tray with good airflow so that they can harden further.
-The beeswax and honey used here is harvested from happy, healthy bees in Arizona’s Northern high country, from a beekeeper that I know personally. Purchase beeswax here. Or find your own local source with www.honeylocator.com
-Likewise, the tallow used in all of my products is hand-rendered by me and comes directly from a small grass-fed, pastured meats farmer — that I also know personally — in the high mountains of Southern Arizona. *Please use only grass-fed tallow. Click this link for localharvest.org to find a local source and render your own. However, if you are unsuccessful in locating a farmer close to home…purchasing high-quality, grass-fed tallow from U.S. Wellness Meats is a brilliant option!
Where Can I Get This Stuff?
–Mountain Rose Herbs…It’s your one-stop-shop!
-I also just love the people over at The Soap Dish. You can purchase lye and other ingredients necessary for this recipe.
–Get raw, unfiltered, still-smells-like-honey beeswax here.
–Starwest Botanicals also has a beautiful selection of Bulk Herbs, Nourishing Oils, and All Manners of Natural Products for Healthy, Natural Living!
Anna@ antibiotic soap says
Unbelievable..!! I like this recipe it’s very easy and definitely I will try to make it at home. Awesome, Awesome, Awesome..!!
Is lye 100% necessary? Seems toxic/dangerous?
Yes, the lye is a must in making soap. You can’t make soap without it! After the cooking process, the lye is gone. There is none left in the finished product.
Hi Lorie! There’s absolutely no way to make handcrafted soap without the use of lye (sodium hydroxide). Sodium hydroxide is the catalyst for saponification (turning oils into soap). When following recipes and the lye calculator correctly there is no lye that remains in the final product.
Our ancestors discovered this ability (soap-making that is) when they made their soap by extracting lye using wood ashes. Handcrafted soap is FAR less dangerous/toxic that commercially-prepared stuff you find in the stores. Just ask anyone who has seen dramatic improvements in the health of their skin!
All that to say lye is to be respected and handled with care…but not feared 🙂
Laura C says
Lye is not not toxic or dangerous if you are careful and follow instructions. Like she said never add water to lye, I can tell you from experience never use aluminum products in soap making. Be careful not to get any on your skin or in your eyes. It’s not possible to make soap without lye. And like Andrea said above, properly prepared homemade soap is so much better for your skin than store bought.
Do you add the jojoba after cooking? It looks like it, just wanted to clarify. I ran this recipe through a lye calculator and came up with 4.37 using the oils and the beeswax, but NOT the jojoba. Thank you for all you do, this website of yours has become a go-to!
Hi Tammy! Yes…I do add the jojoba after cooking the soap. I add it when I add the honey. I see that I wasn’t clear on that in the directions so I’ll fix that now. And thank you for your readership 🙂
Thanks for the great recipe! I began hot process soap making this past Spring, and let me tell you, I am in love with the soap I make. Handmade soap is so rich, creamy, and moistuizing, and the hot process method is lots of fun. Keep up the good work….love your posts!
Thank you Michele! Awe…soap-making 🙂 I do love it so much! Isn’t is a wonderful way to express creativity!?! Not to mention, there really is NOTHING like the soap made at home! I rarely have to use lotion, the blemishes on my face are long gone…it’s just a beautiful thing 🙂
Great timing Andrea, I’ve got the itch to make some more soap. Time to start a supply for holiday gift giving and hostess gifts. Thanks for the recipe.
Hi Wendy! Oh my goodness! This would make a wonderful and very unique gift for anyone on your list 🙂
This recipe sounds so yummy Andrea! I sort of want to eat it 🙂 I am still nervous about using lye but maybe one day…
I understand your nervousness. But if I can encourage you by saying…you have nothing to fear so long as you’re careful…then I hope you are encouraged 🙂 One day for sure!!!
Laura C says
Mindy – I was intimidated too when I was lookin into trying it the first time. I suggest you look up MistyPrepper – homemade soap on youtube and she walks you through the entire process. Watch it several times so you understand what to do. And try a small batch – you’ll be proud. Lye is not that big of a deal if you respect it.
XOXO Andrea! Will place an order soon as I just don’t have time to learn how to make soap! I <3 your products, and that you share recipes!
Thank you Lisa! And many, many thanks for your support!
Would it be okay if I added some dried lavender to the soap, or maybe rosemary? Or would this throw the balance out of whack? Also, can I assume that you can’t use the crock pot for cooking food after you use it to make soap, or is it okay? Doesn’t the soap gunk up your stick blender? Okay, I know these are probably stupid questions, but I have never made soap before and am a bit curious. Thanks Andrea!
A lot of people use dried herbs when making soap, especially to sprinkle on the top. You can also infuse it into the oil and then use the herbs in the soap. Once you use something for soap, it should remain a soap only item after that. So, no, don’t use your crock pot for anything else if you soap with it. The soap doesn’t gunk up the stick blender (unless it’s seizing). I always start to fill my lye container with water after I’m done with it and then I put the stick blender in that water and whirl it around for a bit. Takes it right off!
I forgot to say…if you use rosemary in the soap…be careful. It can be quite scratch and rough on your skin. Maybe grind it down like a powder if you use it. That’s what I’d do anyway.
Hi Vickie! These are not at all stupid questions! The only stupid ones are the ones never asked, right 🙂
1. The beauty of soap-making is the freedom in creativity that it allows. I love experimenting with new herbs, oils, and essential oils in my handcrafted soaps…I say give it a go. Lavender and Honey soap sounds just lovely!
2. On the use of the crock pot…because I make and sell soap to others I have my own separate soap-making equipment. However, when I first started out making soap just for the family and a few friends I purchased an older crock pot from the thrift shop for super cheap and I loved that thing! That was my soap-making crock. One great aspect of making soap the hot processed way is, once it’s done “cooking” you can use the left over soap in the crock to clean it 🙂
3. I’ve NEVER had a problem clean my stick blender. And it works perfectly every time.
I hope you decide to soap soon Vickie! It’s super empowering and once you start using your own handcrafted soap you’ll never go back to store-bought 🙂
Sue Sandgren says
Do I have to use a lye calculator if I use the above recipe as is?
No not necessarily (I ran it through a few times just to be sure). But I get so anal about using it every single time I make soap…even on recipes I’ve made hundreds of times 🙂
Hi Andrea I’d like to omit the tallow so how would I best adjust the othe oils to accommodate this? I don’t have access to tallow here but have used lard before and didn’t like the smell, so would prefer to stick with veg oils. If love to do this but have no idea how to change the other oil quantities. Thanks!!
I would suggest substituting the tallow for organic, sustainably-sourced palm. It’s the palm/tallow/lard that gives the soap it’s hardness making it last longer 🙂
Make sure you run your recipe through a lye calculator every time you change out an oil or butter.
Great resources. I have put off making goat milk soap for weeks now. I gotta buckle down and do it. these tutorials are so helpful. Thanks.
That’s so great to hear Janine! You CAN do it…but be careful…I can almost guarantee you’ll fall in love 🙂
Can lard be substituted for tallow? Grassfed Tallow will not be available from my local farmer for a month or so and I wanted to try this recipe over the weekend… If lard an be substituted, will the substitution affect the smell, consistency, etc.
Hi Vanessa! Lard is a wonderful substitution! I’ve used lard before and didn’t notice any difference in the quality of my soap. However, please be sure to run the recipe through the lye calculator at http://www.thesage.com with the lard instead of the tallow…your amount of lye needed for the recipe may change.
I am also curious if there is a substitute for the tallow?
Thank you for all your lovely recipes!
Tallow’s purposing the soap-making process is to create a hard, stable, long-lasting bar. Oils/fats that accomplish this include: palm (look for an organic, sustainably sourced palm oil), lard, and tallow.
renee @ FIMBY says
Thanks Andrea for linking to me! I want to try this luscious looking recipe! I’ll substitute crisco for the tallow I think (I’ve never made soap with tallow before). Pinned and FB’d this page.
Thank YOU Renee! You’re amazing 🙂 Crisco’s a great substitution and I really appreciate the social media support!
Janette Tidwell says
Can you use the crock pot for both hot, cold and melt and pour soap making? Going to do this when I get some lard! Didn’t realize you could use lard or crisco in place of tallow!! Thank you!
Here is another question – can you used coconut water instead of plain water?
Is there another oil that can be used instead of coconut? I have a severe reaction to anything coconut…we’re talking anaphylaxis, so I have to avoid it.
I’d love to try this recipe cold process with goats milk for a lovely milk and honey soap. Could you tell me how I could do that?
I’d love to try this recipe cold process with goats milk for a lovely milk and honey soap.
I make cold process soap, but would like to try hot process in a crock pot. does anything need to be adjusted from a cold process recipe to make hot process soap?
You may have to use more liquid as some evaporate when you cook the soap. I’ve used hot process recipes as a guide for oil to liquid ratio to get a general idea to see if I need to add more liquid to a cold process recipe. I hope this helps.
I love your article and, I am going to reference this one for my upcoming beauty rituals for a elegant woman. I hope that you make some more glorious beauty recipes so, I can share with my followers. Its amazing on how such simple things each day make a difference in our skin’s appearance.
I love your blog! I am getting started with soap making, so feeling rather intimidated. Is this recipe too hard for a beginner?
I will substitute palm oil for the tallow, so I ran this through soapcalc.net. I get this amount of lye if I include the beeswax in my calculations. I’ve read that you should mix the beeswax in with your oils. Is there a specific reason you add it after cooking the soap? (Will it make it cook too fast or overheat or something?) I would think it would be easier to melt in with the oils at the start than wait and have to melt it and try to mix it in evenly at the end. I’m guessing there’s something I’m missing here!
Soapcalc also says I should use 12.5 oz of water. One of the comments above said you should use more water with HP soap, so now I am thoroughly confused and wondering if I should be using a different calculator! 🙂
Thank you for any help you can offer. I am simultaneously excited and terrified to try making my own soap! (It was your shampoo bar recipe that pushed me over the edge from just contemplating it to actually buying lye and figuring out recipes!)
Laura, I saw your comment. I think you were referring to me re: adding more water for HP vs. CP. Looking at Andrea’s recipe, she uses 10 oz of water and your calculations with your changes are 12.5 oz so I wouldn’t add more than 12.5 oz. As far as the beeswax, I’m wondering the same as you as to when you add it as in her recipe she has it under the “add ins”, but in the process, she only mentions adding the jojoba oil and honey. I guess I’ll run the recipe through the lye calculator with and without the beeswax and see what the lye calculations are that match up with the recipe. Also, I’ve made another of Andrea’s shampoo bars and the beeswax is included before with the other oils.
Do you have to use a stick blender? Can you just stir it by hand?
great information keep update it