Try this easy recipe of a homemade natural pink clay soap, a olive oil soap scented with rose geranium essential oil and colored with french pink clay and red clay, making a very gentle, conditioning and wonderfully scented soap.
Rose Geranium Essential Oil
Rose geranium essential oil is distilled from Pelargonium graveolens, grown for essential oil production mainly in Egypt, China, Morocco, Crimea, Ukraine, Georgia, India, and South Africa. It is a type of geranium plant with leaves that smell strongly like roses. This species of geranium is native to certain parts of Africa. The plant has velvety, plush leaves and flowers that bloom pale pink or almost white.
Pelargonium species (probably P. sideoides) have been used medicinally by the Hottentots and Zulus of South Africa for hundreds of years for dysentery, coughs, upper respiratory irritations, gastritis, tuberculosis, and other problems.
Rose geranium oil is an active ingredient in some cosmetic products, like lotions. A 2017 review of studies demonstrated that antioxidant properties in rose geranium oil may help reduce the signs of aging. It has also demonstrated anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antiviral properties. Still, clinical studies are lacking to prove its effect.
However, rose geranium essential oil is famous in cold process soap because it is a great and relatively cheap substitute for the very expensive rose otto essential oil, the true rose essential oil, with its trong rosy scent.
The essential oil rosy scent goes better in soap than if you smell it undiluted. Mixed with patchouli essential oi makes for a almos-perfect rosy scent blend.
A word of caution: although rose geranium essential oil is safe for most people, it is very potent and may cause reactions to very sensitive skin. If you plan to make this soap for sensitive skin, or you have allergy to this essential oil, you can use a smaller quantity than the one on the recipe, or skip it entirely. Unscented olive oil soap still smells great :).
French Pink Clay
French pink clay is one of the mildest of all the clays and works well for normal, sensitive and mature skin types. This pink illite clay works as a natural colorant, helps with its mild cleansing properties, and works as a “scent fixer”.
Red illite clay is also used, mostly for coloring purposes. Red clay is stronger than pink clay, being more effective at cleaning oily skins. The difference is due to the amount of red iron oxide, bigger in red clay and smaller in pink clay.
So, if you have oily skin, pink and red will be a very good combination for your soap. With more sensitive skin, only pink clay is preffered.
If you have really sensitive skin or skin with conditions, consider using white kaolin clay, or skip the clay in this soap. Afterall, is mostly used as a colorant, it will still be a worderful olive oil soap without it.
Depending on the strenght of the clay you purchase, namely it’s iron oxide content, this soap might have a stronger or softer pink shade. As the soap is fresh and while curing, the soap will look more cream/skin colored than pink, due to the olive oil color. As the olive oil color fades away and the soap turns whitish, the pink hue will be more prominent. In summary, the more the curing, the more pink/less creamy the soap will become.
Still, handmade natural soap is beautiful even if it doesn’t have the desired pinky-pink color.
Pink Clay Soap Recipe
With rose geranium essential oil, french pink clay, and the mildness and conditioning properties of olive oil, this soap recipe provides a very gentle cleansing, conditioning and wonderfully scented soap to enjoy at home. A great alternative to the French Green Clay Soap Recipe if you have oily skin, but more sensitive.
Find Where to Buy Handmade Pink Clay Soap
If you’re not yet ready to try to make this recipe at home, but you still wish to enjoy natural soaps, you can find handmade soap at the following links:
- Rose Geranium and Pink Clay Soap
- French Pink Clay Soap
- Bella Rose Shampoo Bar
- Other Soaps – Apple Valley Natural Soaps ReviewApple Valley Rosemary Mint Shampoo Body BarApple Valley Rosemary Lavender Coconut BarApple Valley Rosemary Mint Shampoo Body Bar
- More about Vegetable Oils: Soap Making Oils Chart
- More about Essential Oils: Essential Oils for Soap Making
- More about Cold Process Soap and Soap Recipes: Cold Process Soap Recipes
- Recipes for Beginners: Homemade Soap Recipes For Beginners
Watch These Videos Before Starting Your Recipe
- 450 g extra virgin olive oil
Add After Trace
- 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!
Make the Lye Water
- Make the lye solution according to How To Make Lye Water. Add the french pink clay and the sodium lactate to the solution and stir well. Mix it until the vapors start to dissipate. The solution will take a dark pink/brick red color.
Make the Soap Batter
- Use as a target temperature 38ºC for the oil-solution mixture. If necessary, you can reheat the oils, but not the lye solution. Strain the lye water to catch all clay lumps and lye crystals.
- Reach trace with the immersion blender.
- Add after trace ingredients: the extract and essential oil (s). Stir with just a spoon.
Molding and Curing
- Pour the dough into the rectangular molds with a pitcher and sprinkle with alcohol or witch hazel. As the clays give a very soft color, the olive oil color will be predominant when the soap is still fresh, looking more cream than pink.
- Let it set for 2 to 7 days, keeping an eye on the hardness of the soap.
- Unmold and let the bars cure for 4 to 6 weeks. See How To Cure Soap. The pink color will come out with additional curing (around 2 months), when the olive oil looses its color.