Hot Process Soap Making

Step-by-Step Instructions for Hot Process Soap Making.

 Hot-Process Soap Tutorial:

As Presented by: Candles By Shannon.


Before we begin, you want to make sure you have everything you need at hand. Once things get going you will not have time to go looking for stuff? ok here is my list of tools:

  • Wooden Spoon
  • Glass pyrex measuring cup
  • Digital scale
  • Mold (mini-loaf pan from wal-mart)
  • Rubber gloves (wal-mart)
  • Face mask (wa-lmart)
  • Crockpot  (has low & high setting)
  • Hand blender (this will be your best friend
  • Plastic or ceramic bowl


NOTICE: there is nothing aluminum here. Aluminum and LYE do not mix!! Please do not try to use one of your candle molds for soap!! They will come out ugly and tarnished. Don’t even ask me how how I know!



Step 2:

 Now you turn your crockpot to high. Weigh all your hard oils & soft oils and throw them in your crock pot.

  • Hard oils – oils like, shortening, lard, Shea butter, Cocoa butter
  • Soft oils – oils like, almond oil, sunflower oil, castor oil

Then we wait until everything melts, it helps to put the top on the pot and walk away for about 10 minutes.


Step 3: 

03mdAfter all the oils are melted, put on your rubber or latex gloves and face mask (if you don’t you might get some lye on you and it will burn, or your may cough and gag, your choice). Use the plastic or ceramic bowl to weigh your lye. Next use your glass pyrex cup to weigh your cold water (I use the glass because it can withstand high temperatures).


Next pour your lye SLOWLY into your water while stirring. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, do not pour your water into your lye. Ever seen a volcano? Well you will if you do this. The water will get hot, the temp will get near 200 degrees so please use cold water. You will want to stir long enough for the water to be almost clear again, it will be kinda cloudy, but all the lye needs to be dissolved.



Step 4:

Now you don’t have to wait on a certain temp, just pour your lye/water mixture into your crock pot with the oils. Take out your stick blender and let’er rip. (now you can take off the gloves and mask)* You will just stir with your blender for about 5 -10 minute s, or until your reach trace.

Trace is when your oils and lye are mixed and it starts to thicken up.


This is a thick trace. You will be able to make patterns like this. You will notice that my mixture is rather white. Remember when we let all the oils melt? Well I added a soap colorant called Titanium Dioxide. It’s a white pigment – but that’s a different topic.  At this point you put the top on and leave it alone.

*Note: Removal of gloves and/or mask is optional. You should continue to proceed with caution, as spattering can still occur and can result in serious injury. Always use caution when working with lye.


Step 5:

Now we get our colors and fragrances ready. I use the ceramic bowl for this. I use crayons or candle color for my soaps. I haven’t broken out yet,  so they seem fine to me. I shave some in the bowl and measure about 3/4 to 1 oz of FO per 16oz of oils I used. In this batch I used 3lbs of oils, so I will use 2.5 oz of FO.

editorial note: readers may wish to consider dyes and pigments specifically intended for soap making.


Step 6:

It has been about 5-10 minutes, back to our pot — it’s very thick now, I couldn’t stir if I wanted to. So we put the top back on and we wait….





Step 7:


10 more minutes pass and now we’re cookin! Now the oils are startin to separate and its breaking up again. You just stir this down and put the top back on.  Don’t leave!




Don’t leave your soap alone for too long. If you wait too long to stir, this is what you will get.






So, just keep stirring, if you leave it now, it may boil out of the pot. After stirring for a few minutes you should get something that looks like applesauce.





Keep stirring and it i will change to the consistency of mashed potatoes at this point turn off the crock pot. If you can, take it out of the base.






Keep stirring and in less than 1 minute you will have thick mashed potatoes.




Step 8:


At this point add your FO to the pot and mix well, then take out a few blops and put it in the ceramic dish with the color.





Mix it up good.






Then add your blobs back to the big pot.







Don’t stir it up good, just stir it up a little. (I stirred too much here.)









Then plop in into your mold. A little hint, if you plan on using bakery stuff from WalMart, please use Pam in the bottom or some sort of bakers release, your soap won’t come out if you don’t. Don’t ask me how I know that either.





One comment on “Hot Process Soap Making
  1. Emma says:

    How long does it need to cure?
    Is it hard enough within an hour that my clients could make it at a workshop and carry it home with them?

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