How to keep soap from getting mushy or soft is one of the questions I get about natural soap. This is also one of the problems with natural soaps, and why some people may not buy them. Over the years I have used quite a few different methods for keeping bars harder and lasting longer. One way to keep soap from getting mushy is to use older bars.
Natural soap can be used in a couple of weeks at the earliest, but this is also when the water can wear away your bar in a week. Keep your bars in a cool (not hot) place, out of the sun, to continue to cure. Depending on the ingredients, your bar should keep its fresh and aromatic scent for months. The biggest factor, after cure time, is to keep your bars out of the water, or from sitting in any water.
The following are ways that could help keep soap from getting mushy:
1. without a soap dish, place your soap on end and keep the wide sides off a damp surface. Less soap sitting in water, less will get mushy. I did this for years, but then again, I had a non-stop supply of soap
2. again, if no ‘proper’ soap dish, fold up a face cloth and place your soap on that. This is the method that I found to actually work the best. It’s been 15 years and I still use this high-tech face cloth method.
3. ceramic type dishes – they look nice and keep your soap in a bowl-like container, but make sure that water can drain through the bottom of it. Some have 2 parts like the one at the top of the page.
4. wire rack types – yes they work but if your soap is mushy or soft the wires may cut into your bars. A good method to really allow the bottom of bars to air dry
5. soap dishes with slats – these work well too, depending on the slats. I found that wooden dishes with wide bars did not dry the bars enough between uses. Also, I had one of these and although they are so pretty, the wet soap and water leave water marks and damage fairly quickly.
6. almost any method will work as long as the bars get to dry between uses. I’ve found that with my family, my children insisted on using the latest toxic body wash and left my soap alone. But with age comes wisdom, and now that my bars are getting used more often in a 24 hour period, these bars are not getting the drying time they need to ensure a longer life. I have since had the kids all pick their favorite natural bar and set up a ‘station’ for their soap. This has helped all bars dry between uses.
And when those soap pieces get really small, here are ideas on how to use them up.
Here’s a super easy to make-it-yourself soap dish – with rocks!
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