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Castor Oil

Castor Oil For Soap Making


Castor Oil (Ricinus communis)

Pretty much all soap makers who use castor oil for soap making confirm by its effectiveness for adding an amazing lather and great moisturizing properties to the finished product.

Incorporating castor oil into your soap making recipe will add the following characteristics to your finished product:


Bubbly lather Yes
Creamy/Stable lather Yes
Cleansing Mild
Conditioning Yes
Hardness No


The lather that castor oil produces is what really makes it such an appealing ingredient for soap making. You need to actually try using castor oil soap to truly appreciate how wonderful the lather is… we can guarantee you won’t be disappointed!

In addition to the wonderful lather, the conditioning and moisturizing properties that this ingredient adds is a great bonus for using castor oil for soap making.

Keep in mind that you don’t need to use a huge amount of castor oil in order to see the benefits in your soap. Caster Oil will add richness and mildness to hand milled soaps, and has great conditioning qualities in solid shampoo soap. You can use at 3-5% of your total fats and oils, it will give a rich, fluffy, long lasting lather, which is crucial to shaving soap and shampoo bars. We recommend keeping it at around 5% – 10% of the total oils used in your batch. While using the right amount of castor oil will reap incomparable benefits in your soap. Some recipes will call for more than 10-30% caster oil, If you incorporate too much, they will have very long curing times about 6 months minimum and your soap may feel a bit sticky and soft. You definitely don’t want that!

Using castor oil for soap making also seems to speed up trace somewhat. For this reason, it’s a good idea to adjust your soaping routine accordingly. You can soap cooler to slow down trace. When using castor oil, we combine the lye and oils at around 90 degrees to avoid an overly quick trace. Also, if you are the type of soap maker that uses a stick blender, you may want to cut down the amount of time that you use the device and stir more manually. This, however, is not really necessary for most soap makers… especially those who have some experience.

When using a stick blender for too long when making castor oil soap, trace could potentially sneak up on you and your soap may quickly become too thick to pour into a mold. When stirring manually, there will be less risk of accidental seizing that some beginners experience.