In DIY on
May 3, 2013

DIY: How-to Turn Bar Soap into Liquid Soap

hotel bar soap into liquid soap

I have always been the girl that takes all the soap, the body lotion, and the travel sized shampoos and conditioners from hotels when we are on vacation. So much is free in hotel rooms! Did I use them? No. I just kept them in a box for years. Stupid! Since I started my Learning to Live Minimally resolution I’ve been working my butt off to make sure I get my use out of everything I own, including my stupid hotel soap collection.

After some researching, I found the answer to my hotel soap collection problem. You see, I hate bar soap. Liquid soap on the other hand, I love it. has a recipe on how to turn bar soap into liquid soap so I took that recipe and tweaked it after some trial and error.

Here is what I came up with!


Ingredients and Supplies:

  1. 2 tablespoon glycerin
  2. 1 cup soap flakes (approximately 4 – 6 small hotel soap bars or 1 – 2 traditionally sized soap bars)
  3. Essential oils for fragrance (optional, I used 1/2 teaspoon of orange oil)
  4. 10 cups of water
  5. Measuring utensils
  6. A large container to store the soap (I used an empty olive oil container) and a normal soap dispenser (I’ve been reusing one from Bath and Body Works for years)
  7. A large pot
  8. Cheese grater

how to make liquid soap out of bar soap easy

Instructions (as demonstrated in video):

  1. Make one cup of soap using a cheese grater. It needs to be grated so that it will dissolve in the water. Add to a large stove pot.
  2. Add 2 tablespoons of glycerin and 10 cups of water to the pot.
  3. Turn the stove on to high heat. Add the essential oils.
  4. After the soap particles dissolve turn off the stove and wait for the soap to thicken up slightly. I put my pot in the fridge to speed up the process but it still took 2 hours.
  5. Find the soap a home to live in (Everyone needs a home!) and store it there. It’s easier to put the soap in it’s container before it is totally done thickening because it can be a pain afterward. The reason why I didn’t just put the hot soapy water from the stove straight into the container was because I was worried about dealing with a big pot of hot water. Safety first!
  6. Wait more. A few hours after that it will be ready to use. My soap didn’t look entirely ready until 5ish hours later. That night I was able to pour some into my bathroom soap dispenser.


  1. If you don’t like how the thickness of the soap, put the soap back into a pot on high heat until it turns liquid again. Then add more grated soap. The more soap you add the thicker it will be.
  2. If the soap becomes too thick then you can heat it up again and add more water. That will help thin it out.
  3. Any scent is possible! Lavender would be lovely if you have that around the house.

I really love this project because those small pieces of soap finally got to be used. It felt like a miracle too me.

Are you re-using anything of yours in a new way?

P. S. I’m happy to report I only have two travel sized shampoos and conditioners left in my collection! We are in the home stretch!

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  • Emir

    Is it not possible to just mix bar soap with water, swish it around, and then use it as normal liquid soap? That’s what I did with some of my soap. However I have no idea if this method decreases the effectiveness of the soap, so I haven’t done it again. I have a vague feeling that storing it like this decreases the effectiveness but I couldn’t say why.

    October 12, 2013 at 10:52 am Reply
    • Mark

      No I do not think that it decreases the effectiveness. Just adding water is fine the glycerin acts as a binding agent and coagulant for the soap. Glycerin also helps moisturize your skin so it is an added bonus.

      April 29, 2015 at 5:16 pm Reply
  • Ericka smith

    Recently I was given a bar of soap from lush which I know cost around $20 pretty ridiculous in my opinion but I would love to make it last by turning it into liquid soap. I was curious if the quality of the soap really comes through once you’ve turned it to liquid soap though I would hate to waste such an expensive bar on an experiment that didn’t work. Also the soap from lush is extremely soft would that affect the quality of the liquid lotion? Thanks!!

    October 13, 2013 at 8:50 am Reply
  • Subas Bhandari

    Please send me some process of making organic sampoo

    November 14, 2013 at 10:29 am Reply
  • Subas Bhandari

    Please send me some process of making shampoo

    November 14, 2013 at 10:32 am Reply
  • su

    rebecca, never put hot items in your refrigerator. it does not significantly speed up cooling
    the item. it can spoil what is in the fridge and waste electricity. convection is a much more efficient way to change temperature (vs radiation) so the best way to cool something down : put a fan in front of it, blowing at it. i usually put the item on a cooling rack as well. you will be amazed how quickly this technique will cool something down

    March 7, 2015 at 10:37 pm Reply
  • Rene

    Hi Rebecca. I just watched your bar liquid soap recipe on youtube and you hovered briefly on popcorn cookies. I cannot find the link to the recipe? I have to find it. ? Can you direct me to it please? Thx so much!

    November 20, 2016 at 2:04 pm Reply
  • Rene

    Hi. I just watched your bar liquid soap tutorial in youtube and you hovered over popcorn cookies. I cannot find the link. Please help. Thx

    November 20, 2016 at 2:07 pm Reply
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