Easy Homemade Soap Recipes

Homemade Exfoliating Soap Recipe with Rosemary and Lavender

A recipe for a very fragrant herbal soap, with exfoliating properties. Rosemary and lavender, two of the most well known and used herbs in natural cosmetics, provide with the most natural and wonderful scent to this soap. Poppy seeds are added, turning this soap into a mild exfoliant, where you can rub it directly against skin for a gentle exfoliation.

Lavender and Rosemary

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) and rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) have been well introduced in two previous recipes: Homemade Lavender Soap Recipe and Homemade Rosemary and Eucalyptus Soap Recipe. They are wonderful herbs, easy to grow in a small home garden, both with good medicinal properties like being anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic. Lavender is also known to be relaxing, while rosemary is scientifically proven to treat and regenerate your hair.

Both help to lighten dark spots and blemishes on the skin resulting in an improved skin complexion. They are also good for treating acne. The anti-inflammatory properties of rosemary extract help to reduce swelling and puffiness of the skin. It also helps to heal burns and soothe the skin. Lavender oil has antibacterial properties that helps to kill acne-inducing bacteria and clogged pores. By unclogging pores and reducing inflammation when you put it on your skin, lavender helps prevent acne from developing while treating existing blemishes.

If for nothing else, lavender and rosemary essential oils blend give a very fresh herbal scent to any soap.

Blemished Skin

Associated with a mild exfoliant like poppy seeds, this soap is perfect to cleanse blemished skin. A thoughtful regimen of appropriate skin care, healthful diet, and exercise can make a world of difference. If your skin problems are persistent, consult a dermatologist.

See Calendula, Aloe Vera and Lavender Plants… and an apple tree! for more information on the lavender plant itself.

Other Ingredients

This recipe uses a mixture of oils to complement with the skin properties of lavender and rosemary. Olive oil turns any soap into a conditioning and very mild one, and coconut oil gives fluffy lather, while sunflower oil contributes for stabilizing the lather. Skin loving shea butter adds fatty acids and vitamins to tone, soften and soothe your skin, as well as add more anti-inflammatory properties.

It’s colored with a ultramarine mineral, considered a natural colorant, but if you wish to turn this into a more natural soap, or are just afraid of colorants as skin irritants, you can skip it.

More Herbal Soap Recipes

Watch this video for Soap Making Safety instruction

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Watch this video for the Cold Process Soap Making tutorial

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Homemade Exfoliating Soap Recipe with Rosemary and Lavender

Sofia Matias
A wonderful recipe of a homemade exfoliant herbal soap with rosemary, lavender and poppy seeds! Poppy seeds are used in soap making to make mild exfoliant soaps.
Difficulty: Easy/Medium
Weight: 454g (16 oz)
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Curing Time 30 d
Total Time 30 d 1 hr 20 mins
Servings 6 soap bars
Cost $18,00 / 15,12€
Cosmetic Soap Bar


  • Immersion blender
  • Pyrex or stainless steel bowl
  • Heat-resistant jug or pitcher for lye solution
  • Pitcher
  • Digital scale
  • Digital thermometer
  • Measuring spoons
  • Rubber spatula(s)
  • Cup / bottle for after trace ingredients
  • Soap mold
  • Safety goggles, gloves and mask


Lye Water

  • 115 g distilled water (4,05 oz)
  • 62 g lye (100% sodium hydroxide) (2,18 oz)


  • 225 g extra virgin olive oil (7,92 oz)
  • 112 g refined or organic coconut oil (3,94 oz)
  • 90 g sunflower oil (3,17 oz)
  • 27 g refined or organic shea butter (0,95 oz)

After Trace Ingredients

  • 10 drops grapefruit seed extract (GSE) or rosemary extract (RSO) (anti-oxidant) (0,02 oz)
  • 1/4 tsp ultramarine violet – CI 77007 (optional)
  • 1 1/2 tsp poppy seeds to exfoliate
  • 13 ml essential oils blend (optional)

Essential Oil Blend

  • 4 ml essential oil rosemary (1 tsp)
  • 6,5 ml essential oil lavender (1 + 1/2 tsp)
  • 2,5 ml essential oil cedarwood Atlas (1/2 tsp)


Get Ready!

  • Wear goggles and gloves! Look at “Safety Recommendations” in the video above or in How to Make Soap From Scratch
  • Watch the video above or read the post How To Make Soap by Cold Process Step-by-Step for instructions on cold process. These are generic steps for all recipes.
  • Assemble everything: ingredients, equipment, safety equipment. Prepare your workstations. Measure all the ingredients. Don’t start the recipe without having everything ready!
  • After measuring the oil, put a tablespoon of the measured oil into a small bowl. Add the ultramarine colorant with the oil, mix well, and put aside.

Heat the Oils

  • Heat the oils until the solid oils are completely melted (it is not necessary to heat all the time).

Make the Lye Water

Make the Soap Batter

  • Use as a target temperature 40ºC for the oil-solution mixture. If necessary, you can reheat the oils, but not the lye solution.
  • When adding the lye water to the oils, strain the water to avoid lye crystals in your soap batter.
  • Reach light trace with the immersion blender.
  • Add the oil with the colorant and mix well. Use the immersion blender to avoid clumps of colorant, but be careful not to reach heavy trace (creamy batter). If needed, use a whisker.
  • Add the rest of after trace ingredients: extract, essential oil (s) and poppy seeds. Stir with just a spoon. Lavender essential oil usually turns the soap batter from liquid to solid instantly. Be careful and be fast with the next step.

Molding and Curing

  • Pour the dough into the silicone molds and sprinkle with alcohol or witch hazel.
  • Optional step – Pre-heat the oven with 40ºC. Turn it off then place the molds inside: the color will be brighter if the molds are heat insulated.
  • Wait 48 hours, keeping an eye on the hardness of the soap.
  • Let the bars cure for 4 to 6 weeks. See How To Cure and Store Handmade Soap.
Keyword exfoliating soap recipe, homemade exfoliating soap, rosemary and lavender soap, rosemary and lavender soap recipe
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