Sunday, June 2, 2013

Salt Bars

Salt bars and spa bars, I've been seeing quite a few of these around lately.  In all my soap blogs I follow and in a couple Facebook groups I belong to, everyone is raving about salt bars.  So naturally, I wanted to know what all the fuss was about.  I've done a lot of research on these. At first I thought I would just use my favorite recipe and throw in a handful of salt and voila! Salt soap!  But the more research I did I found that it was not going to be that easy.  Most of my research came from Amy Warden of and Amanda Griffin of Fellow soaper's blogs have proved very helpful.  For instance I learned that salt is a lather and bubble "killer" and coconut oil is the only kind of oil that will produce a lather in salt water.  So that means the majority of the oils in a salt bar have to be coconut oil or you won't get a lather.  And who wants soap without a lather? Also, salt bars set up very quickly.  Normally you have to wait 24-48 hours before you can cut a log of soap.  Salt soap MUST be cut within the first few hours or else you will have a crumbly mess.  In order to avoid this, I made my first test batch in individual molds so I wouldn't have to worry about when to cut.

Salt bars create a unique, rich and creamy lather.  Well to me that just sounds delightful, I definitely want some of that.  I have read that your salt bar, after being used will be like a smooth polished stone, not a rough exfoliating bar.  Again, I need to know these things for myself, thus the creating begins.  I used a recipe from Amy's blog that consists of coconut oil, avocado oil and a bit of castor oil, salt, water and sodium hydroxide.

Here are my oils all combined together

Here is my colorant mixed into my melted oils.  I used a teal.  That seemed spa-like and my fragrance is Coconut Lime Verbena.  I then stick blended until I reached a light to medium trace.

Once desired trace is achieved, I add my salt.  This is a 1 pound test batch so I used 14 oz of salt.  You can use up to equal parts salt to oils.  I hand stirred in the salt until I reached a thicker trace so that the salt would stay suspended, but still liquid enough to pour into my molds.

Here the salt is completely incorporated and is ready to be poured.

And here is my salt soap poured into individual molds.  I let these set up for 24 hours, and...

Here they are all set up and sitting pretty.

Sounds like salt bars get better with age and perform best after a nice long cure of at least 6 weeks.  One soap maker said she doesn't even start to test hers until 12 weeks, but I'm too impatient for that.  I will use one of my sample salt bars at 6 weeks and will post a blog about the results and what I think about them.  I'm anxious to see if they live up to all the hype!  With this recipe, I got 8, four ounce bars out of my test batch plus a little extra for some smaller bars for me to use.  If they are as glorious as I'm hoping they will be then I will list them!  Otherwise family will be getting salt bars as gifts. :-)



  1. The salt bars came out beautiful! I have not tried salt bars myself but it seems like everyone is making them. I just may try too :) Thanks for your blog!

    1. Thanks so much! I haven't even had the chance to test them yet. I need to get that done so i can do a follow up post!!