Warning: For adventurous soap- types only… some swearing and music by Cake may be involved. Not meant for beginner soapers!
Here’s another popular recipe that men love. A soap brewed up with Irish Cream Ale. The best part of making beer soap is that my recipe only takes 4 beer, so if you buy a six pack, then that leaves two for you!
I like to swirl it with activated charcoal to make it look nice and manly and add some other men type oils like clove and lavender with a splash of patchouli. The trick with beer soaps is boiling out the alcohol. I boil 3-4 beer at a low temperature the night before. Also try different beer types. Stouts give a nice dark colour to your finished bar.
I set it in the refrigerator for the next day when I am planning on making the batch. This recipe is for the advanced soap maker… for the more adventurous types…as using any additives in place of the water should be done carefully.
I love using the online soap calculator, Soapcalc…. It gives you a great detailed account of what your oils do for your batch… for instance this batch tells me it is 42 in the range of hardness and 56 for conditioning…
Some of this will change when you consider the great skin care properties of beer. Feel free to interchange whatever oils or butters that you have on hand, and run through the calculator to make sure you have the correct amount of lye and water, etc. I am very experimental! I love to try new ingredients all of the time and encourage you to do so.
SoapCalc © Recipe Name: Beer Soap
Total oil weight 2860 g
Water as percent of oil weight 38.00 %
Super Fat/Discount 10 %
Grams— I weigh out everything in grams.
Beer/Water mixture 1,086.80 g
Lye – NaOH 384.26 g
Apricot Kernal Oil 200 g
Coconut Oil, 76 deg 1,000 g
Olive Oil pomace 1,400 g
Castor Oil 60 g
Beeswax 100 g
Cocoa Butter 100 g
essential oils 114 grams…of your choice
Here is my combination… sometimes I might put in a little bit of cinnamon or rose geranium… but don’t tell the guys… they seem to like it!
Lavender essential oil-50 g
Patchouli essential oil-24 g
Clove essential oil-40 g
Activated charcoal for swirling…you may also use orris root to anchor the scent if you have some kicking around
Soap Bar Quality Range of Your Recipe
Hardness 29 – 54 42
Cleansing 12 – 22 23
Conditioning 44 – 69 56
Bubbly 14 – 46 25
Creamy 16 – 48 19
Iodine 41 – 70 55
INS 136 – 165 158
Additives Notes— Boil up 4 bottles of beer in an open pot on a low simmer for about 25 minutes. Do not leave this unattended, as you don’t want it to boil over. Put in a sealed container in the refrigerator over night and use in place of distilled water. Top up with distilled water if you have lost too much to evaporation when boiling… to make up the 1086 grams. Add the lye slowly to the beer/ water mixture try to not let it bubble up like a volcano. But if you have boiled out the alcohol and set out overnight, you should be fine. I do this in the sink and have lots of protection!!! Set in a safe place to cool down for a few hours while you melt your oils in your soap pot. Have all of your molds greased and towels ready to throw on top. Measure your essential oils, cut out your wax paper for the top of your soap. Now go and do your laundry while you are waiting… or dance around the living room singing to Cake’s version of I will Survive, it’s up to you— as the fun part is about to begin!! Ie, stirring it up, getting to trace, adding the essential oils, and then swirling in the molds. Click on the link for I Will Survive… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7KJjVMqNIgA
I stir up the lye and oils at about 100 degrees. A quick note on charcoal. I have a nice clean container set out for when the soap comes to a light trace and because I am using clove oil, I try to work fast as clove oil can be a “bitch” to work with. It may cause your batch to curdle or seize. Pour about 1\8th of your batch into the Rubbermaid container, stir in the charcoal so there are no lumps. Do a nice fun swirl of the black lovely charcoal through the rest of your soap batch. Although it is difficult to clean up afterwards… ie. your gloves will be black and gritty, the look of it in your finished bar will be well worth the cleanup. I use papertowels to wipe up the sludge before cleaning out with water. And charcoal really is a lovely ingredient for your skin. You can google up the skin benefits of a soap made with beer. Internet lore tells me there are many skin softening benefits. But really my take on it is this—this is a bar of soap made with lovely natural ingredients. Why wouldn’t your skin feel great afterwards? Because I didn’t use palm oil… which I will explain in a long blog post on another day, set these bars out to cure for at least 6 weeks.