Soap Sponge DIY: An Easy Way to Exfoliate Skin & Reduce Plastic Waste
Learn how to make a soap sponge to use as part of your daily skin care routine. These soaps are dual purpose with an exfoliating sponge and a soap in one product. With proper care, your homemade soap sponges will last about two months. And they offer a number of benefits, not just in skin care, but for the environment as well. Keep reading to discover the benefits of soap sponges, plus how to make your own with just two simple ingredients and a sponge.
The first time I saw a soap sponge in a soap making group on Facebook, I was intrigued. Was it a solid bar of soap with a sponge inside? Would that even be comfortable to use? How do you make one without making a mess?
Since I love playing with all things soap, I decided to take on the challenge and teach you how to make a DIY soap sponge without making a mess.
I was pleasantly surprised that a DIY soap sponge wasn’t messy or hard to make. It was actually one of the easier melt and pour soap making projects that I’ve done.
Unlike DIY loofah soap, which is a loofah embedded inside melt and pour soap, a soap sponge is a sponge that is infused with soap. It’s still soft and squishy, so it feels like and works like, well, a sponge.
Why Use a Soap Sponge?
First off, you may be wondering, what is a soap sponge? A soap sponge is exactly what the name implies. It’s soap in a sponge. So like body wash on a loofah, soap sponges lather and cleanse skin when used. But what are the benefit of using a soap sponge over traditional body wash?
They help reduce plastic use.
Going completely zero waste is nearly impossible. Everything comes in packaging even if it’s just the supplies for production. While bar soap and even syndet shampoo bars are a great way to reduce waste in your daily bath and beauty routine, not everyone loves bar soap.
There are a lot of body wash fans out there. This can make reducing plastic waste even more of a challenge. However, an easy way to ditch your plastic body wash bottle is by using a soap sponge! What makes this even more amazing, is that you can make your own DIY soap sponges yourself, at home.
Once the soap is gone from your soap sponges, you can reuse the sponges for household cleaning, such as tackling your grungy toilet or shower door.
They offer gentle skin exfoliation.
Another benefit of soap sponges is that they offer the added benefit of daily skin exfoliation without any extra steps.
Every day, skin cells die and rise to the surface of your skin before they eventually fall off. These dead skin cells make your skin look dull and sometimes feel itchy. The sponge I used exfoliates the skin to remove this top layer of dead skin cells.
Unlike a body scrub, this sponge is a gentle exfoliant. It’s safe for both kids and adults, even for sensitive skin. It gently removes dead skin cells without causing redness or irritation.
You won’t notice a big difference the first time you use it, but after several uses your skin will start to look brighter and healthier.
How to Make a Soap Sponge
The Best Sponges for Making Soap in a Sponge
I bought a set of 5 soft sponges to make my soap sponges. They are made with natural fibers and soft to the touch. They also have a rope in them so you can hang the sponges to dry after you use them.
These sponges are shipped in a vacuum sealed bag. As soon as I cut open the bag, they puffed up but they were deformed. I soaked them in water and squeezed them, and they looked great. Let them dry completely before dipping them in the soap.
The sponges I used measure 5.12 inches x 3.5 inches x 2 inches. If you use smaller or larger sponges, you may need to adjust the amount of melt and pour soap that you use.
Choosing Your Melt and Pour Soap Base
Since my sponges were multicolored, I decided to use a clear melt and pour soap. I didn’t add any colorant, but you can if you use a solid color sponge.
I used Crafter’s Choice clear melt and pour soap. Their clear soap is very clear and doesn’t set up too fast. It gives a decent lather for a melt and pour soap, so it makes a good soap for the bath. This brand also offers a number of options, including all natural options as well as bases with additives like aloe, shea butter, goat milk and even oatmeal.
While Stephenson’s also offers natural melt and pour soap bases, their bases tend to cool and set up more quickly. Therefore, I do not recommend their bases for this particular project.
Add a Natural Essential Oil Blend
Because I shower in the mornings, I wanted a fresh scent that would lift and lighten my mood. What better way to start a day, right? So I used the Happy Joy blend from Simply Earth. (It’s a recent, and one of my favorite additions, from their monthly essential oil recipe box.)
A blend of geranium, sweet orange, grapefruit, and ylang ylang, this natural essential oil blend works wonders at helping to get me motivated to start my day! It’s a light and fun scent. Plus, it’s also a synergy that can help boost your mood and uplift your spirits. I have a roller with this blend as well, and I keep it by my desk so I can use it while I’m working.
The Happy Joy essential oil blend is only kid safe for children over 10. Therefore, if you’re giving your DIY soap sponges to a child, try a kid safe essential oil blend. Alternately, you can also use a fragrance oil instead.
Ready to make your very first soap sponge? You can find the tutorial for making soap sponges below. But first, I wanted to share a few soap making tips before your get started.
Tips for Making Soap Sponges
I used sponges with a rope in them. The rope got dipped in the soap with the sponge, and it was fine. It got firm, but it wasn’t completely hard. The soap will dissolve the first few times you use it anyway.
You should be practicing safe soap making even with melt and pour soap. Always use heat proof gloves and eye protection when making a soap sponge because the soap is hot and can splatter. These gloves are PVC coated and liquid and heat resistant.
I put a clothes hanger on my cupboard knob and used S hooks to hang my soap sponges after they were done. They didn’t drip much, but I had newspapers on the counter to catch drips.
You will have some soap left over. Pour it into a small mold to use as a hand soap or save it for the next time you make soap sponges.
Unlike cold process soap, melt and pour soap doesn’t need time to cure. It’s ready to use as soon as it’s cool.
Soap Sponge Recipe
Use a digital scale to weigh out the melt and pour soap base. Then, using a sharp knife, cut the melt and pour soap into one inch cubes.
Next, combine the melt and pour soap cubes in a heat safe container. Melt the soap in the microwave in 30 second bursts until melted. You’ll want to stir the soap between each interval to help the soap melt faster, and ensure even heating.
Once the soap base melts, carefully remove the soap from the microwave. I recommend using a tea towel to handle the container as it may be hot.
Then, add the essential oil blend to the melted soap base. Stir well for at least 30 seconds to combine.
Now, while wearing heat resistant gloves, dip each edge of the sponge into the melted soap. Then dip the top and the bottom.
Squeeze gently to remove excess soap.
Repeat the process until the sponge will no longer hold any additional soap. Each sponge should soak up about 4 ounces of the melt and pour soap base.
If necessary, gently reheat the soap if it starts to solidify during the process.
Once you’ve completed making a soap sponge, hang to dry.
Your DIY soap sponge is ready to use once it’s cooled and hardened completely. However, I recommend waiting a day prior to use.
How to Use A Soap Sponge
The soap sponge isn’t a solid piece of soap, so it feels more like a sponge than a bar of soap. To use, just wet it and squeeze it to make a lather. Then use it like you would any soap.
How to Care for Soap Sponges
Water is the enemy of melt and pour soap. If you let this sit in water, the soap will dissolve quickly. To help it last longer, set it on a soap dish or hang it where it won’t get hit by water.
If you hang it up between uses, it should last about two months.
Love this easy melt and pour soap making project for making DIY soap sponges? Then be sure to pin this recipe to Pinterest for later. And check out my Pinterest board for Easy Melt and Pour Soap Recipes for Beginners.
More Melt and Pour Soap Projects
If you enjoyed this tutorial and recipe for making DIY soap sponges, then you may also want to explore some of these other easy melt and pour soap recipes for beginners.
- Snickerdoodle Melt and Pour Soap Cupcakes
- Rubber Ducky Soap Tutorial
- Dachshund Melt and Pour Soap Recipe
- Easy Seashell Soap Tutorial
- DIY Cactus Soap with Biodegradable Glitter
- DIY Glitter Galaxy Unicorn Soap
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