Carrier Oils for Soap Making
Discover the best carrier oils for soap making, including their unique properties and benefits for skin.
Carrier oils are sometimes referred to as vegetable oils or base oils and are crucial in soap making. Carrier oils for soap making will contain a variety of nutrients - from vitamins and minerals to antioxidants and fatty acids.
Carrier oils need to be used in soap-making to dilute essential oils. Neat essential oils can cause irritation on the skin and need to be mixed with a carrier oil - like sweet almond oil, avocado oil, or jojoba oil - in order to be safe for application.
Many carrier oils are incredibly nourishing and good for the skin, so you’ll be able to find a carrier oil that compliments your chosen blend of essential oils perfectly.
What carrier oils are good for making cold-pressed soaps?
If you want to start making your own cold-pressed soaps, you’ll need to find a carrier oil that works for you. Some of the best carrier oils for cold-pressed soaps include:
You can also use sunflower oil, sustainable palm oil, sesame oil, canola oil, or macadamia nut oil as a viable alternative for your handmade soap.
Frequently Asked Questions
There isn't a single "best" carrier oil for soap-making, as it depends on personal preferences and desired properties.
Common carrier oils used in soap-making include olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil, sweet almond oil, and avocado oil.
Each oil brings unique qualities to the soap, such as hardness, lather, or different moisturising properties.
Experimenting with different oils or creating blends can help achieve desired soap characteristics.
The number of drops of carrier oil needed for soap making varies based on the recipe and the desired outcome. In soap making, carrier oils are typically measured in weight rather than drops.
The recommended usage rate for carrier oils is usually expressed as a percentage of the total oil weight in the recipe.
For example, a common guideline is to use around 5-10% of the total oil weight as carrier oil. This percentage can be adjusted based on personal preference or specific requirements of the recipe.
As long as the carrier oil has a published saponification value, you can use any carrier oil to make soap. The best base for soap making are carrier oils that contain high proportions of saturated fats or essential fatty acids. This includes carrier oils such as coconut oil and olive oil.
If you want to use essential oils in your soap making, the use of carrier oils is an absolute must. Not only will carrier oils add more skin-nourishing qualities to your bar of soap, but they’re also a step you can’t miss if you’re looking to add essential oils to your soap mix. Essential oils can’t be applied directly to your skin and so to get all the benefits of your essential oils, they need to be mixed with a carrier oil.
Should you use fragrance oils or essential oils when making soap with carrier oils?
The choice between fragrance oils and essential oils for soap making depends on personal preference and desired outcomes.
Essential oils are derived from natural plant sources and offer potential therapeutic benefits, but they can be more expensive and have a limited scent range.
Fragrance oils are synthetic or blended fragrances, often offering a broader selection of scents at a slightly lower cost.
What other products do I need for soap making?
Most kinds of soap will also require some sort of natural butter base or liquid wax on top of the nourishing carrier oils.
Some of the more popular choices include shea butter and cocoa butter, which can easily be found without the use of palm oil.
You can also refer to our beginner's guide to soap making for more information on which products you might need.