DIY foaming hand soap

I’ve been using Dr. Bronner’s liquid Castile soap as liquid soap for hand washing and in the shower for many years now.  It’s non-toxic and just a super easy swap.  I admit, some DIY projects take some time and it can be tempting to go back to buying commercial products and sacrifice a clean product for convenience.

This foaming hand soap is not one of those projects though.  It only takes a minute to do; just about as long as it would take to refill a soap dispenser like you would normally do when you run out.

If you’ve ever used Castile soap before, you know that it is a highly concentrated product and it is best to use in a diluted form.  Full strength is very strong and can be a bit harsh on the skin.  Diluting it, however, lends a very watery product, which is fine, but when you have kiddos it can mean a lot of mess and wasted hand soap in the bathroom.  I personally don’t need another excuse for my kids to make a mess.  They do that just fine on their own without me helping them create another one.

A foaming dispenser has been a gamer changer in our house for this very reason.  The kids can work the pump themselves, and they don’t make a huge mess anymore with the watery liquid soap.

I also like that this foaming hand soap is very similar to a conventional product, so when others visit your house, they aren’t off-put by the “weird” soap in your bathroom.

The ingredients are simple and can be found in a regular health food store.  You might even be able to find them at Target or another mainstream store.

Feel free to use essential oils of your choice.  For mine, I used Germ Destroyer, an essential oil in Plant Therapy’s new KidSafe line.  My family likes the smell of it and I like the fact that it is effective on viruses and bacteria.

Just to note, even if all you have is Dr. Bronner’s, you can still make foaming hand soap as long as you have a foaming pump.  The other ingredients are optional but recommended if you use essential oils in your recipe to disperse the oils.  They definitely aren’t deal breakers.

Here’s a funny story about this soap.  I went to my local grocery store and bought a commercial foaming hand soap just for the foaming soap dispenser.  It was a popular brand that is supposed to be “greener” than others on the market.  We used it for one day and the scent was so strong that none of us could use it anymore.  We hated it.  My daughter was practically begging me to dump it and fill it with our regular hand soap recipe.  I finally did without her knowing, and when she went to wash her hands again, she exclaimed, “Yay!  Our old soap!  This smells so much better!”  I guess we have become more sensitive to chemical fragrances than we thought.  We were all happy to be back to our normal soap lightly scented with essential oils.


DIY Foaming Hand Soap
Prep time:
Total time:
A simple non-toxic foaming hand soap that takes just a minute to make.
  • 1 foaming pump soap dispenser
  • 3/4 cup distilled or boiled water
  • 1/4 cup liquid Castile soap
  • 1 T. vegetable glycerine (optional)
  • 15-20 drops Germ Destroyer essential oil (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp vitamin E oil (optional)
  1. In an empty foaming pump soap dispenser, add all ingredients and tighten lid.
  2. Swirl gently to combine.
  3. Use as you normally would foaming hand soap.

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