How to Make Homemade Foaming Hand Soap

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In addition to eating more organic and natural foods, our family is incorporating more natural products as well.

One of those is changing from antibacterial hand soap to natural, homemade foaming hand soap.


It is really easy to make your own hand soap.

What you will need:

I added a few nice squirts (probably about 1-2 tablespoons) and then slowly filled the container with water. Slowly filling will keep it from foaming up too quickly, thus causing you to have more foam than water.

That’s it!

Why would we do this, you might ask.

Well, other than it being super-cheap and extremely easy (it took about thirty seconds from start to finish to make this soap), homemade hand soap is much healthier than antibacterial soap.

Regular antibacterial soap contains a chemical called Triclosan. Triclosan kills both bad AND good bacteria… and that’s just the start of our problems with it. Triclosan also contributes to “bacterial resistance” because bacteria who are naturally resistant to the chemical survive, then reproduce’. source


I’m also not big on “smelly” soaps and perfumes, and this soap has a nice, light, clean scent to it. Nothing overwhelming; just a hint of a scent.

Homemade, natural hand soap is just one (easy!) step in our journey to living better.

:: Resources ::

:: Live Renewed (Simple Steps)

:: Live Renewed (Change Challenge)

:: Kitchen Stewardship (Get Out the Antibacterials)

:: Kitchen Stewardship (Triclosan)

:: Wikipedia (Triclosan)

:: photo credit ::


  1. Roni says

    What scent of Dr. Bronner’s do you use? I’m wanting to try it and am not sure which to get. How does Swag Bucks allow you to get it free on Amazon? I use Amazon a ton but am not sure how to use Swag Bucks.

    • says

      Hi Roni!

      I use the lavender. I also have the peppermint, but have not used it yet.

      You can redeem Swagbucks for Amazon Gift Cards. Swagbucks is a search engine (like Google, or Ask, etc), but rewards you for your searches. You randomly get “bucks” for your searches. You can also download the Swagbucks toolbar, and they give codes through it, as well. You can sign up for Swagbucks (it’s free!) here, and then download the toolbar here.

      I do have a post about Swagbucks, but I need to update it: It covers the basics of searching and winning.

      After you get 450+ Swagbucks, you can redeem those Swagbucks for many things, but I prefer the Amazon gift cards!

      If you have any other questions, or this does not make sense, please do not hesitate to let me know!

      Thanks for commenting!

  2. says

    just be very cautious, as Dr Bronner’s can clog up the dispenser if it gets gooked up in the nozzle, and if it squirts all over, be sure to not get it in your eye. I actually irritated my eye badly one day in the shower cause it splashed up straight to my eyeball. had to do eye rinse very thoroughly and use the Bauch & Lomb eye wash several times before it was back to normal. cost me a day off work. boo- however I use Dr Bronners almond or citrus in the shower a lot and it’s wonderful. Their bar soap is also a great base scent for the homemade laundry soap recipe.

    • says

      Oh no! I’ll bet that really did hurt. 🙁 I haven’t had a problem with it clogging up, but I will definitely watch out for it. Maybe cleaning the tube between refills will help?

      I haven’t ventured into making my own laundry soap, but I’ll keep their bar soap in mind if I ever do 😀

      Thanks for commenting!

      • Bernell says

        Thanks for this recipe…
        I have 2 small bottles of Dr. Bronners castile soap I purchased from GNC for about $1.00, and I usually wash my hair with it….it contains all organic oils which I love for my hair!!!I buy the 18-1 Hemp Lavender Pure-Castile Soap and I love it!

        • says

          Wow! I guess I didn’t realize all of the wonderful uses of the Dr. Bronners. I’ve not thought of washing my hair with it. I’ll bet your hair smells fantastic! Thanks for sharing 🙂 -Amy

  3. Shana says

    We have been doing this exact same thing for over a year now and we love it! I do notice it leaves a bit of ‘greasy’ film on my ‘not so new’ sink basins. Do you have any great tips for cleaning this off? Thanks!

  4. Brianna says

    I love to make my own foaming soaps!
    I use Bath & Body works shower gels to make mine – I love all of the fun scents!
    So what I do is stock up during the big sale they have every year after christmas and then I have hand soap for (atleast) the rest of the year!
    3/4 water 1/4 body wash makes the perfect foaming soap and it never seperates!

    • Maggie says

      Can I try this wth any bodywash? I have tons of bottles of body wash (Huggies, Gerber- baby brands as well as Olay, Dove, Softsoap, Caress, etc) and don’t want to spend money in anything that might not work for us…

      • Brianna says


        Hi Maggie –
        My experience has been that the creamier types of bodywashes don’t work well for homemade foaming soap because it seperates at then always seems to be clogging the dispenser.
        You could always give it a try though, its worth a shot if you have some empty foam soap dispensers that you could refill, why not?!
        Good luck!

    • says

      Awesome, Brianna! I know their soaps are very popular, but oh-so expensive, lol! Your method is a great, frugal way to make it work 🙂 Thanks for sharing! -Amy

    • says

      Lol! Thanks for commenting, sweet friend. Great minds think alike… I bought those just for this purpose, as well, and anxiously awaited for them to be emptied so I could experiment. Ha!

  5. Steph says

    Can you purchase the unscented, then use oils to make it the scent you wish? Or would that change the consistency? I have a three year old that washes her hands non-stop it seems!! 🙂

    • says

      Hi Steph! I have not used oils with the unscented before, but I don’t think it would change the consistency at all. My friend combines Dr. Bronner’s with tea tree oil in her homemade cleaner, and it works great! My two-year-old is the SAME way… she is ALWAYS washing her hands. Guess that’s better than the alternative! {giggle}

  6. Nicole K says

    Dr. Bronner’s in almond smells wonderful! I have found it a bit drying to use in the shower, but it might be softer on our hands if diluted, so I’ll give this a try!

    • says

      Hey Nicole 🙂

      I will have to try the almond flavor! The hand soap is not drying (to me) at all. It probably does help that it is diluted as, compared to being full-force in the shower. It could be our different water (hard/soft), too. Hope it works out for you! Thanks for commenting! -Amy

      • liz says

        @Amy Norton, I’ve been using Almond at my kitchen and bathroom sinks diluted in old Dial foaming dispensers for the last 2+ years. I think I might have bought soap maybe only once each year! My kids love it and I enjoy the mild yummy smell. I’ve even been able to find it on sale at Kroger

  7. Tonya says

    I too make my own foaming soap. I use anything I have on hand. My favorite is to use dish soap (not dishwasher detergent ) I think it’s more concentrated so I do 4 parts water to 1 part soap. My kids have requests to what type of scents they want. Makes washing hands easier and fun for them. They are sure to get all the washed off easy, when they use regular soap it can be hard for them. They are 3 (twins).

    • says

      Hi Tonya!

      I have used dish soap, too. The Dawn Hand Renewal was always super-soft 🙂 I agree that involving the kiddos makes it easier to get them to wash up! Whatever works, right? 😀

      Thanks for commenting!
      – Amy

  8. Kathie VanDeraa says

    I love the foaming soaps, too. And love the fact we can use so much less soap. I saved dispensers, also.

    But is Swagbucks like MyPoints? Where you do your online shopping, etc through them and earn points? That worked out pretty well last Christmas. Got $100 free to spend at Amazon – the online merchant of my choice.

    Do not understand the brand of soap you buy. Can you please tell me more about it? And do you make any sort of label for your foaming soap labels? I decorate at church and provide the soap for the restrooms there, also.


    • says

      Hi Kathie!

      Swagbucks is a search engine where you are rewarded randomly for your searches. You do not have to buy anything to get your “bucks.” Once you earn enough bucks, you can trade them in for things like Amazon Gift Cards, Starbucks Gift Cards, etc.

      I purchased the Method brand of soap, which is a natural hand soap. It can be found online at or in stores like Target. After it was emptied, I used Dr. Bronner’s castille soap to refill it. Here is more information on what castille soap is, and how Dr. Bronner’s is made 🙂 HTH!

      I am a label nut, but no, I have not labeled my soaps 🙂 Love that you make soap for your church! That is so awesome!

      Thanks for commenting! -Amy

  9. Jen says

    This is great! I cannot wait to try it. I actually happen to have the bath & body works foam soap, but will not be buying their soap anymore because of the ingredients. I wonder if I could use my biokleen dish soap in place of the Dr. Bronners for now.

    • says

      Yay! That is one reason I am making my own soap now… to avoid all of those bad ingredients. 🙂 I would bet the biokleen would work just fine for now. Thanks for sharing! -Amy

  10. says

    I came across your site as I used a search engine looking for a picture. I have been searching everywhere for a soap foam pump and it never occurred to me to just by one with soap already in it and then dump it. Wow!! 🙂 Thanks. I use the Dr. Bronner’s also but I add distilled water instead of the tap. Just a personal preference. Thanks for the no brainer idea! 🙂 Looking forward to looking at your blog more.

  11. Yomi Osho says

    I just made an handmade soap(bar) but at the end I discover it does not foam well as I wanted. I use the following: 10litres of PKO, 20litres of water,2 kilo of caustic soda,2 1/2. Kilo (Soda Ash), 2 1/2 kilo (Soldium Sulphate). What can I do to make it foam very well.

  12. says

    I discovered my kids will willingly wash their hands properly with foaming soap…it’s “funner” apparently. I’ll be using this from now on since I have 3 boys who tend to get extra dirty! Thanks for keeping it simple!


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