Sandalwood & Patchouli Castile Soap

I’ve decided to give Castile soap another go. This is similar to the first Castile soap I made, but I’ve readjusted a few of the ratios. Last time, the soap reached trace extremely slowly, which is typical of pure olive oil soaps. This time, I thought I’d try using the last of my Honey & Patchouli fragrance oil, which seemed to accelerate trace the last time I used it. My soap riced right away, but other than this cosmetic defect, I think it will be fine for using (based on this resource).


Whoops. I was going to swirl this soap, but that was going to be too tough to do once it had riced. Essential oils are so much better behaved than fragrance oils.


And afterwards, I was looking up soap mishaps, and it turns out my soap could have been much, much worse. For instance, it could look like this.

Next time, I think the better way to make soap using this Honey & Patchouli FO is by stick blending the olive oil + lye solution to trace, then pouring the FO into the base, and stir by hand slowly. As soon as it looks like it is about to rice, pour it in the mold.

This recipe is for five pounds of soap.


*All measurements are weight measurements, not liquid measurements.

  • 56 oz Olive Oil
  • 17 oz water
  • 7.1 oz lye (Sodium Hydroxide)
  • 1 oz Honey and Patchouli FO
  • 0.5 oz Sandalwood EO
  • 0.5 oz Chamomile EO
  • 1 oz Lemon Peel Powder + 4 oz warm water

Base Oil Composition:

  • 100% Olive Oil


Make sure you follow all the general safety precautions for making soap before you start.

  1. In a heat-safe container, add lye to your water, stir, set aside to cool. Be very careful not to spill, as this is a highly concentrated solution of lye. Keep some white vinegar nearby for an emergency neutralization.
  2. Mix the lemon peel powder with the warm water. Stir well and set aside. Make sure this container is about half as large as the main mixing bowl. We will mix half of the soap base with the lemon peel powder.
  3. When the lye solution is close to 110F, set up a double boiler. Gently heat the olive oil to about 100F.
  4. Combine the scented oils and olive oil. Carefully pour the lye water into the oils. Gently stir with a heat safe rod.
  5. Pulse the stick blender in the mixture a few times, and then gently blend until just before you reach trace.
  6. Mix the lemon peel powder with the soap base.
  7. Pour in the mold, and wait 1-2 days before cutting.
  8. Cure for 6-8 months.