Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Budget Luxury

A few years ago I became addicted to Dove body wash... the expensive kind. Now I didn't pay the $6.00 or more per bottle because I was extreme couponing. I think I paid around $2.50 a bottle. Life became a little less wonderful when I ran out. Since then I've been buying the cheap stuff at Walmart that still costs over $3.00. Boo.

Today my life became a little more sunny. I am back to using dove body wash. But, again, I didn't pay $6.00. I figured out how to make it myself for only $1.72 a bottle! I know you may instantly be skeptical of how you could replicate the lavish liquid but really it's the exact same thing! How?...

All you do is reconstitute dove bar soap. That's it. Really. I bought a six pack of the Dove Go Fresh Burst Beauty Bars ($6.88). I grated three of those bars into six cups of water in a pot on my stove. Then I turned it on to medium and waited for the soap to dissolve (be patient). I transferred the resulting liquid into a glass bowl with an airtight lid until it was cool enough to pour into plastic bottles (it thickens as it cools). It is a little thinner than the real stuff but works and feels the exact same! I promise.
In the end it made twice as much as a normal bottle for half the price! (48 oz. for $3.44) And just in case you are not convinced this is worth it... this makes body wash for $0.07/oz. Even the cheapest Walmart body wash is $0.18/oz. No brainer people.

Next I'm going to make some yummy boy soap for Joe. I HATE the little pieces of bar soap left all over the shower and the residue that you have to scrape off.
Now I just need to find a manly loofah!

UPDATE: I've been receiving a lot of pinterest traffic so I thought I'd mention something. This works wonderfully for DOVE bar soap. If you are trying it with another non-moisturizing bar soap this recipe will be way too thick! That doesn't mean you can't figure out your own amount of water for the kind of soap you like. Just start with only one bar of soap if you are not using Dove.

82 comments:

Janelle said...

This is awesome! Did you find it on pinterest? I'm finding that pinterest might just be one of the best things ever. So many ideas!

believinginsomething said...

I'm so pinning this!!! Seriously. You are genius! What a great idea! I'm copying it and people may just get it as Christmas gifts in fancy jars/containers! :) Thanks for sharing!

Stacy Brady said...

No I didn't find it on pinterest.. I've been making homemade laundry soap and as I was looking through different recipes online I found a lady who accidentally came up with something kind of like this but the proportions were way off. I had to experiment to come up with the thickness I like but if you want it thicker you just grate in more bars of soap. Even if you use the whole pack of six, it's still cheaper per ounce than most body wash.

Mom and Dad Brady said...

I'm impressed. You do a good job with your 'homemade recipes'. Glad you found this one-and that it works so well. Nice of you to share it. Hope all is well, and you are feeling as good as possible for 8-plus months pregnant. Love you!

breathie said...

I tried 4 bars of coast 'eye opener scent' and 6 cups of water.I used 4 bars because you said it may be a little thinner than the normal. It was way too thick. So I added three more cups of water (total of 9 cups) and when it cooled it was still to thick - so I added three more cups of water (total of 12 cups of water - it cooled and still way too thick. What would you suggest? Does this only work with certain kinds of soap?

Stacy Brady said...

breathie, I've only ever tried it with Dove because that is my favorite kind. My guess is that Dove ends up so thin because it has a ton of moisturizer in it. When I make laundry soap I use one bar in 2 GALLONS of water and depending on the soap it will thicken with only that much in it. So if you did 4 bars you could be looking at a LOT of body wash. I would say save what you have, put one cup of your mixture into a pot, heat it and add water one cup at a time until you are satisfied with the thickness. Then just remember the amount of water you added and dilute the rest of your mixture as you need it. Also make sure that in the end your body wash lathers enough. You might have to leave it a bit thicker just so it will lather well. Hope that helps!

breathie said...

Thank you so much for the response. I will definitely try that. I might have enough body wash to last me a year by the time I am finished adding all this water! lol. That would be fine with me, though. :)

Sandy Horner said...

I followed this exactly. And this is so awesome. Never had Dove before because I always thought it was to expensive now I can...thanks so much for the idea

Stacie said...

Found you through Pinterest of course, and I just made this early today. I used a small 3.15 oz Dove bar (had one laying around) with 1.5 cups of water and it worked out great! Also, it perfectly filled an old empty St. Ive's body wash bottle I had. I've used the Dove body wash once before and LOVED it but couldn't bring myself to pay that much again. Now I can make it for ~$2/bottle instead of $6. Thanks for the perfect proportions!

Joel & Teresa Linn said...

This is such a wonderful idea! I can't wait to try it! Perfect timing - we just ran out of body wash. Have you experimented with different scents?

Stacy Brady said...

I've done it with one of the guy scents for my husband and it worked great. My sister-in-law uses the plain white kind and that works, so I'm assuming that all the Dove bars would work unless there is one that doesn't have moisturizer in it. I also have wondered, but haven't tried, if another brand of soap would work if you add lotion or shea butter to it. I'll try it someday but for now I still haven't run out of that 6 pack of soap I bought last August. The first half lasted me six months!

theapett said...

Great idea! I am definitely going to try this. I am an avid Dove body wash user (even at the cost) but can always save a penny! On a side note, my sister has been buying the plain white Dove body wash and mixing in a few drops of her favorite essential oil (lemongrass is great!) for scent. Thanks for this!

MTB0012 said...

Found you on pinterest! I just love that site. We've made body wash with Ivory soap after my children and I heated a bar of Ivory in the microwave as science experiment (found on pinterest). We recycled a peanut butter jar and put the expanded soap (1 bar)in it and then covered with hot water. My daughter loves this body wash. I'm a loyal Dove bar user and am defiantely gonna try this.

Shawna Rae said...

I have been doing this for awhile now I found it on pinterest. I actually use a little less water because I like mine thicker. It makes it a little more expensive per ounce but still way cheaper than buying Dove body wash!

JayNisa said...

This is awesome, I use dove moisture on my daughter. She has eczema & this works beautifully for her. I was very excited to find this, her bottles are very expensive! All be she guys thru 1 bottle every two months or so, cuz she's a peanut but this means I can use it too.

Thank you so much! Fund you via pinterest.

Esthetician Beth said...

Do you think this would work with a face wash bar to make a facial cleanser?

Stacy Brady said...

@ Esthetician Beth... I'm sure it would work with face wash but I'm guessing it would be a different ratio depending on the bar. You could experiment and you can't really ruin it unless you add way too much water. If it's too thick, heat it back up and add more water. Just remember that it thickens overnight. Good luck!

Nukapai said...

This is a very clever idea (and actually, you might be on your way to making your own soaps, too if you really get into this sort of thing. You can just melt & pour and add your own extras). I would like to just warn people generally: when making any kind of cosmetic product at home, there are quite a few risks involved, one of the biggest ones being the use of tap water. Water grows bacteria very rapidly and if you get unlucky, you could get a rash, food poisoning or other symptoms from using an unpreserved product. You'll find that most liquid soaps and shower gels contain some form of preservative (or have been carefully formulated to be a hostile environment to bacteria with the use of alcohol, etc). So if you get unlucky, making this at home could actually cause more problems than it solves.

Sarah said...

You may just be my lifesaver! My husband refuses to use anything but Dove bodywash. The stuff is expensive, especially when he lathers up twice in a shower!! I'm definitely trying this out.

jperr said...

Thanks for sharing the great idea on making the body wash.
Jocelan

Ani S said...

Howdy, and thanks. How long did it take? I and going to love doing this

Linda said...

What about using distilled water or other bottled water?

Anita said...

humm thinking of trying this though I may do one bar at a time that way it wont have time for alot of bacteria to grow like a previous commenter said. 3 bars Dove per 6 cups water divides down to 2 cups per bar. Thought of using Olay they have moiserising bars of soaps.

Veronica Anderson said...

I love this. I've been trying to save money by making stuff like this rather than buying it. I'll have to try it out.

Alexandria Myhre said...

I've made body wash before and it came out, for lack of better words, boogerish. Does this come out like regular body wash or a little boogerish?

Stacy Brady said...

@Alexandria... For me it comes out exactly like body wash! Good luck!

Alexandria Myhre said...

Thank you thank you thank you!!! I'm trying it this weekend! You're awesome!!!

quotesbykevin said...
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Michelle said...

I just made this using two bars of the Dove soap (just to test it out) and it turned out great. It made between 1 and 2 full size bottles of body wash. Also, a two-pack of this soap was still over $3 at my Walmart, but Sam's Club usually has Dove bar soap in a huge pack (I think of 14 bars), making each individual bar of soap only about $1.

Kia Fuller said...

I would like to make this for my daughters pink spa party. Can iuse Dove pink, to make the body wash pink?

Stacy Brady said...

@KiaFuller... Any dove body bar should work! Good Luck!

emily sasha said...

if its really true then i am going to do the same for sure. thanks for saving my penny.Cleaner Jobs

Pat Summer said...

I love love LOVE this DIY Dove body wash recipe!! You also say you make your own laundry soap, where can I find your recipe, I'd like to try that as well.

Pat Summer said...

I really love this DIY recipe for body wash, I love Dove too, but it seems like the bars don't last at all. I can't wait to try this, thank you so much!! P.S. I'd also like to try your laundry soap recipe, where can I find it? Thanks again =)

Erin Colantuoni said...

This is great! But I had a hard time figuring out when the soap was all dissolved, how long do you usually leave it on the stove for? Thanks!

Carolyne Wanjiru said...

This is awesome!I am so glad you shared this.I will give it a try and see how it works.Interesting!

George Rowden said...

I made a batch of this last night. I used the Dove body soap with Shea Butter and distilled water. 3 bars and 6 cups of water. Woke up this morning and went in a stirred it with a wire wisk and it came out really creamy and made one full large bottle and one full smaller bottle. My husband tried it out in the shower this morning and LOVED IT. thanks for the recipe. i love saving money. I make my own home made laundry soap, and now i am going to try home made dishwasher soap too.

Val said...

I wanted to post this recipe on my blog along with the pictures. I always ask permission before I do something like this. I will credit you and have a link posted on my blog to send them here if that is okay.

Stacy Brady said...

Go ahead! Thanks for asking!

Stacy Brady said...

Until there are no more soap chunks. It's pretty hard to mess this recipe up because even if you left soap chunks they would eventually dissolve. You actually don't have to melt it on the stove at all but it makes it faster. Without it could take 24 hours or more.

Stacy Brady said...

I can't remember the website but it's a common recipe... Grate one half bar Fels Naptha soap. Dissolve in one gallon of water. Add one cup borax and one cup washing soda. Once those dissolve add another gallon of cold water. Pour into milk jugs. Shake well before every use. Use 1/2 cup per load. I also fill the softener section with vinegar.

Simplified said...

I have tried over five different DIY body washes, with reconstituting different soaps... Oil of Olay, South of France, Yardley, Ivory, and Dove. Dove is the only one that has turned out creamy, sudsy and has not separated! It is as good if not better than the cream oil body washes they sell. I do take it an extra two steps with my version, for the water version I use water that I boil about a 1/4 cup of oatmeal in, then strain the oatmeal out before adding it to the soap... works great if you suffer from excema... I also add a couple of teaspoons of coconut oil or glycerine so I don't have to lotion as much! This stuff is the bomb!

Cin~ said...

Wow i made this last night with 2 bars of soap and 4 cups of water. It came out great. It comes out thick and feels just like the real stuff. Thanks for this tip. I also love the dove body wash but hate the price, this is a great alternative.

Kit said...

If you want to make it thicker add a little bit of coconut oil in with i it makes your skin even softer

Staci Musselman said...

Did you buy a separate pot to melt the soap mixture? I'm asking b/c I used my food processor to grind up soap for my laundry detergent and I don't think I will use it for food again!

Stacy Brady said...

I do have a "soap pot" and wooden spoon that I use for my laundry soap but I usually use a regular pot for body wash. I soak it with vinegar after along with my food processor pieces. I think the key is not to let it sit with the soap in it for too long. I wash it immediately after and put it through a pots and pans setting on my dish washer and it has always come out with no residue or smell of soap. I wouldn't use any pot with a non-stick coating.

busy Mom RN said...

My Husband uses the Dove for Sensitive skin. Which Dove Bar soap do think would work for this? We all have allergies and the scents bother us.
Also, could you please tell me where to buy the washing soda for the laundry soap recipe? I would love to try this to save money!

Stacy Brady said...

Any kind of Dove should work. My sister in law uses the plain white and I use any of the men's kind for my husband. I use the go fresh scents. All of them have worked. Oh and I get washing soda at Walmart in the laundry isle. Good luck!

Carmen Key said...

Love this!!! Thank you so much. I just added one more bar of soap, 2 tsp of glycerin and 2 tsp of Coconut oil. Only because I like it thicker, and the glycerin makes it richer so you use less. Will use this from now on. Love the smell too!!

Nik said...

Great idea. Thanks for the useful tips. If only I knew if it worked for Olay bars...

Misfit Michelle said...

Love Love Love this :) i just got done makeing some cant wait ti=o try it

Shellie said...

I just made this, and I am so excited!! Thanks for doing all the research for the rest of us. Can't wait to try it in the morning. I made some for the males in the house out of the Men's Dove. Hopefully it will work as well as the regular. Thanks Again!!

Rebecca Groth said...

I tried this with Castile soap. I used 2 bars and 8 cups of water, let it sit over night and it is wayy too watery this morning. Suggestions?

Rebecca Groth said...
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Unknown said...

that's a fantastic idea, except when you do that to a bar of soap or liquid soap, it will actually start growing a fairly large amount of bacteria and fungus. You're breaking down the ingredients that prevent this from happening so you're actually washing yourself with a bottle of bacteria after about a week. sorry :(

Steph PinBuster said...

love this! found it on pinterest so I had to try and feature and link on my blog http://pinbusting.blogspot.com/2013/03/pin-36-make-body-wash-from-bar-soap.html
Thanks for figuring the math!

lacy phillips said...

did you do a male soap? and if u did what did you do and use?

Jackson Family said...

Ok, So I strictly use body wash because one of the things I HATE about bar soap is that it leaves so much soap scum. I just have to know... do you get lots of soap scum because you are reconstituting bar soap???

Jessica Woodard said...

Thanks for sharing, what a great idea! I started once to post "people need to READ before asking the same questions over and over..", but instead, I'll just give you kudos for answering so patiently!

katiekeltnerstudio said...

This would be awesome... I am just not sure if I would have the patience for it. But I do LOVE the Dove Body Wash!

Katie

Unknown said...

I made this a week or so ago and am just waiting to finish the last of my body wash to use this. I bought some bars for the hubby too, so hopefully it will work for him. :)

janice brewer said...
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janice brewer said...
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Gia Lagomarsino said...

For the other soaps you use a gallon of water to dissolve the grated bars but then you add another gallon of water after you take the dissolved mixture off the stove.

You can also add 2 Tbls of Glycerin for added moisture & skin protection, before you add the second gallon of water

Lori S said...

For the leftover slivers of soap, I have two suggestions: the easy solution is to "glue" the soggy sliver onto a new bar of soap when both are wet. The more inventive solution is to felt a bar of soap. (There are tutorials on youtube how to do that.) Then you have soap and a washcloth all in one. It will last twice as long as a plain bar of soap. Once the soap is used up, you can cut a slice in the remaining felt and stuff it with soap slivers.

Amanda Armstrong said...

I have been using this one for some time now, it's great. Finally it was time to make new. So I thought I would address some small issues commenters were having with slime, or hardness! And Yes I used other bars. Thank You for the inspiration this WORKS. Here is the link to my post:
http://thecherrymama.blogspot.com/2013/05/make-body-wash-from-any-bar-of-soap.html

Jenny White said...

If my Husband would let me try this and be patient with me! Id love to try making some of this!! Ive read so many positive outcomes! Its exciting to save money, and make everyone happy :) Thankyou for sharing!!

Jenny White said...
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irish sumagaysay said...

Just letting mine cool right now, thanks for this pin I love using Dove too :)

donna rickman said...

The .99 cent store has dove pink and white for.99 per bar. Going to try this tomorrow!

NJ Fam said...

Just came across this and so glad I did. I can only use Dove Sensitive skin and it is way too expensive! I've tried the Wal-Mart brand, but it is NOT the same. I plan on trying this the next time I need soap. Thanks a bunch!!!!!

Angela Williams said...

I have made this a few times with the oil of olay bars and it turns out great!!

Emily Gore said...

I am SO excited to have found this on Pinterest today! I got 3 - 2pk Dove Men's bar soap today free with coupons even though my husband hates bar soap. I can't wait to try this and surprise him tomorrow!! YAY! Thank you SO much!!

leticia Bayona said...

I tried to make liquid soap with a different brand of bar soap and the end result, once it started cooling down, was asuper gelly thick like soap. I want to do this but I don't know what I could be doing wrong. Any suggestions or advice? Thanks.

Stacy Brady said...

Leticia- It only works with Dove soap or possibly one with the same amount of moisturizer. Any other soap would require a ton more water. Not sure how it would even turn out.

Mosaic Kids said...

Wonderful, we have a family of 10 and this worked great. Thank you so much.

Peggy Kovach said...

I just cameacross this on Pinterest today. I'm going to try it soon. Also, my husband loves Dove Men's Care soap. Do you think I could use the same ratio of water & bar soap to make a Men's version??? Also, Axe has a men's loofah.

McFeisty said...

The ingredients for Dove bars and for Dove body wash are completely different, the bars have actual soap in them, the wash does not. This preparation might be a fair substitute, but it is NOT the 'exact same' as the body wash.

I get 20 ounce bottles of shampoo plus conditioner (Silkience, from Dollar Tree, $1) and use that as body wash, great softening for my skin, use as bubble bath, too, plus it's 5 cents an ounce and not a smidge of work. No soap in it, either, so no soap scum anywhere. :)

Baybeebor said...

The water is first boiled so any harmful agents will die.

kissy said...


i tried making my own hand soap and it was meh...i can only use one kind of soap (learned the hard way that any OTHER soaps are a no-go =/ ) so i have been using pink dove (bar soap) but it seems like my husband and i go through it soooo fast. and when you get down towards the end of the bar, it seems less effective. luckily the bar doesn't split or break like other bar soaps (cough cough ivory...) and it leaves my skin feeling great! i definitely notice a difference when i use any soap other than dove. this is a great recipe that i cant wait to try.

Nicholas Lynn said...

People have been asking about scents in your homemade Dove soap. I think if you added some essential oil to the cooled mix you would able to have a variety of smells to your particular tastes.

Leighanna said...

I made this tonight with 2 Dove Unscented bars and 4 cups of water. Everything looked great. I let it cool down then poured it into my pretty little decorative bottles. 1 hour later and it's completely gelled!! It won't even budge. SO disappointed! :( Now what do I do?? It's in my pretty little bottles and I can't get it out to reheat it and add water!!?? Please help!