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Soapmaking is a practice that sort of fell to the wayside when commercial products began to emerge as a common household staple. Thankfully, it has begun to make its comeback.
When you make your own soap, you have the benefit of whatever ingredients you used along with the complete knowledge of exactly what’s in it. As a result, the majority of homemade soaps are lacking in the harmful chemical irritants often added to commercial soaps, such as sodium laurel sulfate, or SLS, and are much better for your skin.
However, soapmaking has received a stigma that it is too dangerous to be undertaken by someone who is not a professional, or has had some training. While the lye used is a caustic substance and should be treated with the utmost care, the process is not something to be feared. It can be fun and, who knows, you could find you’re quite skilled at it!
This concise guide offers a soap recipe that uses a no-boil method and demonstrates a process using animal-based fats. Other fats can be used (i.e. vegetable-based fats) but your average soap recipe can be very precise in its steps and many soapmakers say that only certain vegetable fats will yield quality soap, so be warned and informed. Oh, and be sure to enjoy your new soap!
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