Know Where to Get Your Ingredients
Unlike before, a lot of supply stores are now stocking a lot of ingredients for soap making.
Hardware stores now sell fragrances and colorants for the said hobby. For those who want to go the traditional way,
the supermarket and specialty shops are good places to find these ingredients.
Animal fats are easier to find as a lot of butcher shops and supermarket meat sections have excesses of them.
The best time to go is in the afternoon where a lot of meats have already been shaved off their fat. Fat drippings
when cooking can also be saved. Pig lard or Cow Tallow, usually called hard fat, produces a course and hard type of
soap that produces little suds. Still, it'd be nice to experiment with the effect just for curiosity's sake or to
increase one's knowledge in soap making.
Vegetable or plant based oils can usually be found at the supermarket. Vegetable oil, coconut oil and olive oil
are readily available. If not, specialty stores or organic stores also keep them in storage. Healthy Options have a
wide variety of selections when it comes to oils. Even the hard to find Castor oil is usually in stock at organic
stores like Healthy Options.
For ingredients which aren't readily available, hobbyists should not be dismayed. Oils can easily be substituted
with other oils. For beginning hobbyists, you might not be able to tell the difference but professionals will note
the change in quality. Still, substitution is good for purposes of practicing the craft. Coconut oil can be
substituted with Soybean or Canola oil. For Sunflower oil, canola oil can be substitute.
Sodium Hydroxide, although corrosive, is usually an easy chemical to find. Since it is largely used in a lot of
food or soap products, it can be found in chemical stores or specialty craft stores. It is usually known as Caustic
Soda (or 100% Sodium Hydroxide). Since it can irritate the skin and can prove fatal for those who don't know how to
use it, some stores will usually ask for identification or ask questions concerning the purposes of purchase.
Hardware stores carry lye.
Fragrances, essential oils and colorants are easy to find. They can be found at the local chemical store, drug
stores, craft stores, aromatherapy stores or even groceries. Food coloring used as colorant can be found in the
For serious hobbyists, the most effective tool for finding ingredients is the Internet. Google in 'Soap Making'
ingredients and over 10,000 results will pop through. Online forums with other hobbyists can help you find prior
discussions on where to find these things in your local setting. Mail order companies usually have a website now
anyway so these things are made more convenient to find for hobbyists.