With store bought soap and dried herbs
It is not necessary to know how to make your own soap while creating this acne fighting bar. Just purchase your favorite brand of plain soap and you are ready to turn them into something special.
I’ve given you recommendations in the supply section below for the 3 soaps that I have given me the best success.
The addition of herbs to this mix really does make all the difference. So, while you could rebatch the soap with plain witch hazel, the addition of Plantain and calendula make it super healthy for you. All three are famous for soothing and repairing skin.
For a thorough discussion see: How to Make Hand-Milled Soap
Gather supplies for hand-milled acne soap:
- 3 or 4 bars of pure castile soap. Choose something like Dr. Bronner’s, Kirk’s or Kiss My Face. You do not want to use a commercially prepared soap like Dove or Ivory. It does not melt well.
- 8 ounces of Witch Hazel
- 2-4 tbsp of dried plantain leaf
- 2-4 tbsp of dried calendula petals
- a large bowl and cheese grater
- a double boiler
- a prepared mold
Infuse the Witch Hazel
Infuse the Witch hazel with either fresh or dried plantain and calendula. The process is simple. Place 8 ounces of witch hazel into a jar with a tight-fitting lid and add 1-2 tablespoons of each herb.
Shake up the mixture and let it sit for at least 4 hours, shaking every so often. This can steep for up to 2 days. The longer you let it infuse, the more potent your herbs will be.
Once it is fully infused, strain out the herbs and place them in the compost bin.
Ready the Mold
How pretty does your soap need to be?
You can use any appropriately sized container as a mold as long as you cover it with plastic but it will leave “creases” on the soap.
I suppose you can take the time to rub those out with water, but I never do. It’s just not important for me to have pretty bars.
My mold is an old glass pan approximately 3 by 4 inches. I’ve covered it with plastic wrap so the soap will easily release once it is set.
If you are giving these as a gift and a rustic acne bar bothers you, consider purchasing silicone soap molds for a better look. It is completely optional.
To Make Hand-milled acne soap:
- Grate the soap into the double boiler over medium heat
- Add 4 ounces of witch hazel to the grated soap
- Add 1-2 tablespoons each of dried plantain and calendula
- Slowly stir the mixture until the soap had melted to the consistency of cookie dough. It should not be so wet that it can be poured like gravy.
- Add additional witch hazel as needed to achieve the desired consistency
Once the soap has melted (and you can see that in mine I left a few small pieces – impatience!) scoop it into your prepared mold and let it cool. You can speed it along by placing the mold in the refrigerator.
After the soap has hardened, remove it from the mold and cut it into bar sizes. Leave these to sure for a day to further harden the soap.
That’s it! Once the bars have set you can begin using them for your daily face washing routine. I asked my daughters how well this acne soap works for them and they completely sing its praises. After 3 days you should see a dramatic reduction in the amount of inflammation and breakouts.
I would love to hear your results with this recipe, so please leave a comment below.
If you are looking for a terrific book for making your own soap and other skin care products, consider 101 Easy Homemade Products by Jan Berry. You can find my review and other recipes here.