Laundry bars come in very handy when a few articles of clothing are in need of a quick wash, instead of doing a full load of laundry in the washer. They are frequently used by travelers who pack light and need a speedy cleaning that can be easily done right in the bathroom sink.
You can also grate your laundry bar and combine with other ingredients to create your own laundry soap to use in the washer. We will share our laundry soap recipe using this bar in our post next week!
- Prepare the lye. While wearing safety goggles and neoprene gloves, combine solid lye and water, stir well with a wooden spoon. This is safest when done outside while you are standing upwind. Once mixed, set aside and allow to cool, about 15-20 minutes.
- While lye mixture is cooling, heat coconut oil gently in a double boiler. Once the oil is melted, allow the temperature to drop to 100° F to 125° F. Combine lye solution and melted oil. Be careful not to splash while combining the mixtures.
- Stir until the mixture traces. Tracing looks like a slightly thickened cooked custard and will support your stir marks for several seconds.
- To prepare the wooden soap mold, assemble and ensure it is tightened properly, then line mold with freezer paper.
- Once mixture begins to trace, add fragrance or essential oil. Mix well and pour raw soap into your prepared molds.
- After 24 hours, the soap can be turned out of the mold. If the soap is very soft, allow it to cure for a few days to firm the outside.
- Cut soap into bars and set the bars out to cure and dry. This will allow the bar to firm and finish saponification. Place the bars on something that will allow them to breathe and cure properly.