Homemade breastmilk soap.
Yep, you just read that right. If you are anything like me, you are very attached to your stash. Pumping breastmilk is a true labor of love (let’s not even talk about spilling it – now, that’s a tragedy!) and that freezer stash is worth its weight in gold. We have recently learned that my son has an egg allergy, so I’m sure you can imagine how heartbroken I was that all 300 ounces of my milk were no longer an option for him. Silly as it may sound, I did a bit of mourning over it and then decided that the very best option was to donate it to other babies. It is a high honor to be able to bless other moms in need. So far Elliott has shared his milk with a mama who has low supply, a mama who needed emergency surgery and a mama with a very sick baby. Every time someone posts online that they need milk, I open up our deep freezer and gratefully say goodbye to more. I have decided to keep just a few for when my big kids get sick AND this little project: homemade soap.
According to La Leche League, “Human breast milk may aid healing,” so this could also be great for people (children and adults) dealing with skin issues.
I didn’t want to use lye (aka sodium hydroxide), so our soap turned into bath bombs instead. If you want them to cure and last more than one use add it to your batch (lye is caustic, so be sure to wear gloves and eye-gear when handling). So far, all of the kids and myself have used this soap and it feels and smells AMAZING! No need for coconut oil afterwards (we normally use that as lotion) because we were all so soft. I didn’t even bother offering some to my husband (cue his eye-roll). That man puts up with all sorts of crunchy endeavors, but you won’t catch him lathering up with my homemade breastmilk soap anytime soon. – Krystle K
(Breast)Milk & Honey Essential Oil Soap
*Adapted from traditionalmidwife.com
- 15 ounces coconut oil – to produce good lather (buy it in bulk here )
- 17 ounces olive oil – which makes a hard and mild bar
- 18 ounces almond, grapeseed, sunflower or safflower oil
- 12 ounces lye– also called 100% sodium hydroxide (find it here or at local hardware stores)
- 1 ounce Borax (only added if using lye)
- 15-20 drops of your favorite essential oil (optional)
- 2 tablespoons raw honey (optional)
- 6 cups frozen breastmilk
*If this all sounds WAY too involved, check out our 3 ingredient diy soap recipe!
Method (cold process):
Combine oils (coconut, olive and safflower) in a pan. Bring temp up slowly (do not scorch the oils).
Plug your sink, fill it halfway and fill with ice cubes.
Put thawed cold breast milk in a sauce pan and place into the water. You MUST keep the milk cool when you add the lye to it or the lye will burn it.
Slowly mix in the lye. Stir it constantly (you should be wearing your safety gear by now).
Adding the lye should take at least 5 minutes. If you accidentally splash any on yourself, rinse immediately!
Once combined, continue to stir the milk/lye mixture for 3 more minutes and then remove from the water bath (You will notice that the mixture has become a yellow).
Add the raw honey and borax to your melted oil which should still be warm but not hot (115 degrees or so).
Pour the milk/lye mixture into the pan of oil and stir constantly until it’s completely mixed.
This mixture must now be whipped in a blender (2/3’s full at a time for safety sake). Run the blender (with the lid on) at whip speed for 60 seconds each time. Pour off into a clean pan.
Repeat the blender process an additional time. This is when you will add your essential oils (I used lavender and it smelled divine!).
Pour into molds. At this point I also mixed in lavender buds and espresso grounds for added scent and texture.
Soap will saponify and be ready after 24 hours (if you aren’t using lye they will remain quite soft and need to be stored in the freezer).
*If using plastic molds instead of silicone, pop in the freezer once hardened for about 5-10 minutes and they should come right out.
I’m missing a few pictures of using the blender and adding the oils, forgive me. Kids are distracting.
If you change an oil in the recipe, you must always run the recipe through a lye calculator to calculate the new amount of sodium hydroxide that will be needed.
Use only stainless steel pans – not aluminum
To cure soap made with lye: cover with a towel and store for an additional 2-6 weeks. During this period excess water evaporates and the process of saponification will be totally complete.
To store ‘bath bomb’ soap: keep in freezer
Unless you are making your own breastmilk soap or are getting the soap from someone you trust- we recommend you use caution when obtaining breaskmilk soap.
Click HERE for more info on soap making
Click HERE for a soap making essential oils guide
Click HERE to read the difference between the cold vs hot process methods