These Soap Dough Bars are simple to make at home! It’s a fun summer activity for kids and teens to improve their creativity. When your soap dough bars are finished, they are fun to use and have around the house!
I’m a last-minute kind of gal; I only start thinking about Fourth of July decorating ideas when it’s actually July. But you clever planners are correct; if you want your 4th of July party to be remembered for years to come, it’s best to be prepared!
I’ve been collecting my own ideas here and there, like a red, white, and blue pom pom garland (so easy and cute!) or no-effort fruit skewers (yum!). But, of course, in addition to all of these creative patriotic ideas, I had to come up with some sort of bath product craft. Last year, I shared a bath bomb recipe with stars and stripes. I wanted to try something new this year.
I’ve been experimenting with bubble bath bar recipes recently. I haven’t found the perfect recipe yet, but it has provided me with the ideal party favor/activity idea: these little solid soap bars in various shapes and colors.
To make these bars, simply make a simple “clay” or dough. The best part is that you only need two ingredients. The first ingredient is soap, and the second is corn starch. That’s all there is to it!
I chose castile soap because I prefer to use natural and organic products whenever possible.
Other types of body wash, as long as they’re liquid, should also work. Alternatively, you can use a melt and pour soap base. Because castile soap does not foam as much as other types of soap dough, you may even get a better lather! Depending on the type of soap you use, you may need to adjust the ingredient ratio slightly, so you may need to add more or less corn starch as you go.
When corn starch is mixed with liquid soap, it forms a clay-like consistency, similar to play dough! You can shape it into whatever shape you want, color it, and form these adorable soap dough bars. These are so simple to make that anyone can do it!
- 1 Cold Processed Soap Instructions
- 2 What I use:
- 3 How to make your own Soap Dough Bars:
- 4 what is soap dough?
- 5 Soap Dough can bring life to your soap creations!
- 6 Important information
- 7 Frequently Questions
Cold Processed Soap Instructions
Soap dough is nothing more than cold-processed soap. All CP soap making guides and videos can be used to make soap dough! This video from Brambleberry’s The Soap Queen is a classic. It covers a lot of groundwork and will guide you through the process of making your first batch of cold-processed soap.
What I use:
1/2 cup corn starch – Purchase here
1/4 cup liquid body wash (I use castile soap) – Available here
Colorants for food or soap, as well as essential oils
With this recipe, I was able to make about 6 individual soap dough shapes.
ALTERNATIVE VIDEO: HOW TO MAKE SOAP DOUGH
How to make your own Soap Dough Bars:
In a mixing bowl, combine 1/2 cup corn starch.
After that, add 1/4 cup of body wash (I use castile soap).
I started by combining both ingredients with a spoon. As you stir it, it will begin to resemble a dough.
You must get your hands dirty in order to truly transform it into moldable clay.
Knead the mixture in the same way you’d knead dough for a pizza base or bread (or, as in my case, how you’d knead dough if you’d never done it before).
Transfer the mixture to your work surface once it begins to feel dry to the touch. Continue kneading until a ball of dough can be formed. When you hold it in your hands, it should be smooth and dry on the surface.
I’m going to try adding some melted coconut oil to the mixture next time for extra moisture and smoothness. More to come!
With a sharp knife, I cut my soap dough into three separate pieces. You can also pull the dough apart or use another tool.
Then I colored one part blue and another red. To do this, stretch out the dough and place a drop of soap or food coloring in the center. Fold the dough so that the drop is trapped inside. Then fold it a few more times to evenly distribute the color. Just a heads up: no matter how carefully you do it, it will stain your hands!
Because I DROPPED my red soap coloring bottle on the floor the other day, I colored the blue dough with soap coloring and the red dough with food coloring. Can you imagine the shambles? My floor resembled a crime scene from a horror film, minus the severed hand.
Anyway, I like to use soap dough coloring because it’s designed for this purpose, but I’ve noticed that food coloring washes off your hands better (and I’m pretty sure it scrubs off floors and furniture as well!).
When you wash your hands, most of the soap dough coloring is removed, but some may stubbornly adhere to your nails. When you use food coloring, your hands will still be stained, but once you wash them, there will be no trace of the dye (at least, there wasn’t in my case).
If you are concerned about staining or want to make this with children, I recommend using food coloring or leaving out the color entirely. You can also protect your hands from the color by wearing gloves.
Remember that these soap bars are not edible, especially if you’re making them with small children.
You can now make whatever shapes you like/need/want with your (colored) dough!
I chose stars for my patriotic 4th of July theme. I didn’t have a star-shaped mold, so I cut out a star-shaped shape and molded it by hand. These soap dough bars truly have the consistency of play dough! Consider how many different shapes you could make with this recipe. You can really mix it up with each theme!
I also made these spiraling soap bars in a round shape. First, I rolled out all three colors of dough flat. Then I stacked them on top of one another. I rolled them all together, beginning with one side, until I had one large roll of dough. After that, I cut it into equal slices.
Last but not least, I combined the leftovers from all three colors and made two more stars, which resulted in this adorable colored marble effect. This was a spur-of-the-moment decision, but I think I like these the best!
If you want them to stay’squishy’ and soft for as long as possible, store them in an airtight container. After a while, they will dry out.
Place the bars on a flat surface to dry once you’re satisfied with their shapes. Instead of storing these in an airtight container, let them air dry until the outside becomes as solid as possible.
They will soften again if you hold them under running water.
When you’re ready to use your soap bar, I recommend pinching off a small piece of the bar to preserve it as much as possible.
Just so you know, once you use the soap bars, the soap coloring will no longer rub off on your fingers!
what is soap dough?
Soap dough, also known as soap clay, is a moldable soap that can be used in the same way that clay is used to form small embeds and figures for embedding on soap.
Sarah Chapin of Whimsical Soap Works was the first to show me how to make soap dough. She wrote an article for Soap Collaborative (a soap magazine that is no longer in print) about how to make adorable nests out of robin’s eggs.
Soap Dough can bring life to your soap creations!
- 1/4 cup liquid body wash, I used castile soap
- 1/2 cup corn starch
- Food or soap coloring, optional
- Essential oils, optional
- In a mixing bowl, combine 1/2 cup corn starch.
- Mix in 1/4 cup of body wash. Stir with a spoon until it begins to form a dough.
- Apply a light coating of corn starch to your work surface.
- Transfer the dough to your work surface and knead it into a ball.
- Continue kneading the mixture until it no longer sticks to your hands. When you hold it in your hands, it should be smooth and dry on the surface.
- Using a knife, cut the soap dough into several pieces.
- Stretch the dough out and place a drop of soap or food coloring in the center. Fold the dough in half to keep the drop inside. Fold it a few more times to evenly distribute the color.
- You can now make whatever shapes you want/need/want!
- There are no recommendations for oil substitutes because any changes will alter the recipe and cause it to perform differently.
- Please do not purchase this recipe if you do not want to use Palm Oil.
- There are no refunds available for digital products because they cannot be returned.
- This recipe has not been submitted for approval in countries where such approval is required. If you live in a country that requires this, you must purchase this recipe at your own risk, as well as the cost of getting approved. There are no refunds available if you are not approved.
How long after making soap dough can you use it?
Exact measurements are critical, as opposed to making actual cookies, which can be off by just a smidgeon. When making soap dough, I’ve discovered that 1 pound or 2 pound amounts leave little room for error. Use within 3 to 5 days. You should be able to use your soap dough right away.
How long will soap dough last?
If you keep the soap dough sealed when not in use, it should last you 4-6 weeks. Some soap dough recipes claim to keep their pliability for twice as long! You should be fine as long as you keep the soap dough in an airtight container. Experiment to find out what works best for you.
Can you make soap dough with melt and pour soap?
When you add cornstarch to Melt and Pour soap, it transforms it into a play dough fantasy land! Allow your children to sculpt soap into any shape they want and then let it air dry. These hardened shapes can be used in the bath or embedded to create a one-of-a-kind soap look.