How to Make Soap and Sell it for Profit

Make soap with this old-fashioned recipe for your family, or to sell to family and friends.

| June/July 1993

  • soap
    You can make soap at home for your family's use, or to sell for extra income.

  • soap

Soap is practically the easiest thing in the world to make and everybody uses it, so why not make your own specialized soap and start a profitable business?

Make Up A Batch of Soap  


1 pound package of lard, available at grocery stores
4 tablespoons lye crystals, available at grocery stores
6 1/2 ounces of cold water, soft or distilled  

1 container of lye, available in plumbing department of hardware stores 

fragrance, perfume, cologne, potpourri, etc. (optional)  


4/2/2009 8:54:19 AM

On a daily basis we have to pretty much talk people out of making soap when they have the idea that they can just mix things together like a cake and go and and sell it. I made over 100 batches of soap before I even thought of selling it. And I used accurate measurements, I did not measure by using teaspoons! I am rather disgusted by this article and I think that it needs to be pulled as soon as possible before someone hurts themselves, their children, or gets sued for making any soap with this horrendous instructions. If you are looking to learn how to make soap, buy a soap making book, join some soap making forums, practice, practice practice. And goodness, get yourself a scale that is accurate and precise, because you are going to need it. Soap is NOT like baking a cake, you cannot just add a dash of this and a dash of that. Do yourself a favor and ignore this article and get on google and do some real research. I guarantee you that this article is not the way to go.

a wild soap bar
3/28/2009 7:02:39 AM

As an experienced professional soapmaker of 14 years, I have to agree with Peggi. This article is full of misinformation and terribly bad advice! I am appalled that Mother Earth News is encouraging someone to make their first batch of soap using these shoddy directions and then go out and sell it. This is irresponsible journalism and this type of inexperience is what gives our profession a bad name. If you follow the instructions in this article, you're going to have inferior best...and you may have a dangerous disaster on your hands. I'm normally a big fan of this magazine, but this article should definitely be removed for safety reasons.

Peggi Dial
3/24/2009 11:02:55 PM

As a soapmaker, I find this recipe to be, well, dangerous and foolhardy. The first rule of soapmaking is research, research, research. And one of the first things learned is the use of measurements, not eyeballing stuff. You do not use wood, and you don't measure lye like that. You do NOT use perfume, cologne or potpourri, as perfume/cologne disappears rather quickly (being alcohol based), and potpourri would not contain skin safe ingredients. There are too many regulations broken with this recipe, and give soapmaker artisans a very bad name, which is unfortunate to us all. Please PULL this article...

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