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This is another easy one-fat homemade soap recipe, this time made with an animal fat: lard. Lard soap is very moisturizing, makes a good hard bar, and has light foam.
All the soaps I have made use vegetable fats (be they oils or butters). Not only are they accessible fats, they also give rise to very moisturizing and mild soaps of superior quality.
Why an animal fat soap, like lard?
1- For economic reasons. It may be easier in some cases to use animal fat than vegetable fat, or it is simply cheaper. In addition, lard alone creates good bars of soap, requiring no fat mixes.
2- For sustainability reasons. Lard, or animal fat in general, requires simpler resources to obtain, and can even be processed at home, unlike oils! Normally, animal fat is a by-product of meat production, and instead of being thrown away, it can be used to make soaps, thus making it a sustainable process.
3- Lard soap will not smell like meat. The fat will have to be treated well and have no meat residues; the lard sold in supermarkets is perfectly acceptable. You can also try the one that is sold in butchers. At most, the soap may have a very faint scent of lard that is masked with essential oils.
4- Lard has a composition very similar to palm oil, resulting in a long lasting soap with a light and creamy foam. In addition, it is similar in composition to human skin fat making it a very moisturizing soap. And this, like olive oil and coconut oil, is another exception of a fat that, by itself, is able to produce a nice soap without the need to use oil mixtures.
This time it didn’t go well for me
I had to try this recipe for handmade lard soap. Especially after hearing so much talk that our grandmothers used to make soap with animal fat.
I tried to make this recipe with lard bought at the supermarket. It is true that the lard, when I made this recipe, was already about 2 months old despite being within the expiration date and that can make all the difference.
What is certain is that the soap, despite having added the anti-oxidant (rosemary oleoresin extract), started to smell a lot of rancid and lard after 3 months of curing … By this time the lard expiry date had already been exceeded.
But my experience in using lard did not end there, nor was it always bad. I used lard in soaps, mixed with other oils which I made for Christmas gifts, of which I tried one of them. This one went very well, the soap was good and smelled a lot of lavender.
Maybe the secret is right there: the expiration date of a soap that contains lard has to be respected by the expiration date of the lard itself.
Why you should try it!
This recipe for natural lard soap with a superfat of 5% results in a moisturizing soap for the skin and very economical due to the price of the ingredient itself. Just be careful to buy fresh lard and mark the expiration date of the soap coincident with the expiry date of the lard.
But I assure you that the soap does not smell like lard after the saponification process. You can also add an essential oil for a special aroma, as suggested in this recipe. Try it and enjoy !!
More Single-Oil Recipes
- Homemade Coconut Oil Soap Recipe
- Homemade Castile Soap Recipe
- Homemade Natural Rose Soap Recipe
- Homemade French Green Clay Soap Recipe
Watch this video for Soap Making Safety instruction
Watch this video for the Cold Process Soap Making tutorial
Homemade Lard Soap Recipe
- Immersion blender
- Pyrex or stainless steel bowl
- Heat-resistant jug or pitcher for lye solution
- Digital scale
- Digital thermometer
- Measuring spoons
- Rubber spatula(s)
- Cup / bottle for after trace ingredients
- Soap mold
- Safety goggles, gloves and mask
- 137 g distilled water (4,82 oz)
- 60 g lye (100% sodium hydroxide) (2,11 oz)
- 450 g lard or tallow (15,84 oz)
Add After Trace
- 8 drops grapefruit seed extract (GSE) or rosemary extract (RSO) (anti-oxidant)
- 13 ml essential oil eucalyptus globulus (1 tbps almost full)
|Handmade Lard||Lye||Grapefruit seed extract|
|Essential oil eucalyptus globulus|
|Rectangular soap molds||Pretty shaped soap molds||“100% handmade” molds|
|Buy Immersion Blender Set||Buy Pyrex bowl (4lt)||Buy easy pour pitchers|
|Digital scale||Digital thermometer||Measuring spoons|
|Safety gloves||Safety goggles||Safety mask|
- Wear goggles and gloves! Look at “Safety Recommendations” in the video above or in How to Make Soap From Scratch
- Watch the video above about "Cold Process Soap Making tutorial" or read the post How To Make Soap by Cold Process Step-by-Step for instructions on cold process soap making before starting. These are generic but important 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!
Heat the Oils
- Melt the lard as it remains solid at room temperature.
Make the Lye Water
- Make the lye solution according to How To Make Lye Water. Mix it until the vapors start to dissipate.
Make the Soap Batter
- Use as target temperature 38ºC for the oil-solution mixture. If necessary, heat the lard a little.
- Reach trace with the immersion blender.
- Add the extract and essential oil after tracing. Mix with a spoon.
Molding and Curing
- Pour the dough in the molds with a pitcher and sprinkle with alcohol or witch hazel. You can put in pre-heated oven for gel phase.
- Let it set for 48 hours.
- Unmold and let the bars cure for 4 to 6 weeks. See How To Cure Soap.