How to make liquid soap without using potassium hydroxide

Updated November 21, 2016

One of the most common ingredients used in soap making is lye. Lye is a chemical ingredient that comes in two forms, sodium hydroxide and potassium hydroxide. Potassium hydroxide is the form of lye most commonly used in making liquid soap. However, it is simple to make up your own liquid soap at home without using lye at all. Making liquid soap without lye is safer, too, since lye can cause skin irritation or even skin burns if not used carefully.

Combine the dried lavender and yucca root to the 1/3 cup distilled water in a small cooking pot.

Bring the ingredients to a boil, allowing them to boil for 15 to 20 minutes before removing from heat.

Pour the liquid through a strainer into a mixing bowl and add 2 tbps. vegetable glycerine. Set aside.

Grate the bar of soap and add it to the large cooking pot along with 1 3/4 cups water.

Bring these ingredients to a boil, then turn the heat to low until every piece of soap is dissolved.

Add the liquid soap mixture to the herb mixture in the mixing bowl.

Add 15 to 20 drops of lavender essential oil to the liquid soap.

Stir the mixture to combine ingredients.

Carefully pour the liquid soap into your soap pump using a funnel. Use your liquid soap for up to one year before discarding and making a new batch.


This recipe can be made using any dried herb or essential oil, so experiment as much as you like.


Always exercise caution when working with hot liquids to avoid burns or messy spills.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 tbsp dried lavender
  • 1 tbsp yucca root
  • 1/3 cup distilled water
  • Small cooking pot
  • Strainer
  • Mixing bowl
  • 2 tbsp vegetable glycerine
  • Bar of soap
  • 1-3/4 cups distilled water
  • Large cooking pot
  • Lavender essential oil
  • Spoon
  • Funnel
  • Soap pump
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