Recycling small bar soap

keepitlowFebruary 22, 2009

Heard there is a way to grate soap and recast small soap into larger bars or balls. Anyone try soap recycling?

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I just put the old almost spent bar on top of a new one - moisture melds them together. It's an ongoing forever process with nothing wasted. I've also seen "soap mitts" showing up in stores' cosmetics aisles. Those might be handy for the oddly shaped, small guest-type soaps which tend to be more pretty than practical.

Or (found this on the internet)... "To recycle your soap scraps into new bar soap, place 2 cups of grated soap scraps in a saucepan and cover them with water. Let them soak for 24 hours, giving them a stir every now and then. Next, bring the pan to a boil, remove it from heat and add a tablespoon of vegetable oil for each cupful of soap soup. Pour the mixture into moldsÂmilk cartons work great. After theyÂve hardened, you can cut them into smaller bars, but let them cure for two weeks before you use them."

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 2:28PM
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I take the small bar and put it in my gardening bag. If I am getting into a particularly dirty task,I drag my fingernails over the soap bar and get the soap under the nails. When I finish, I can wash my hands and the soap goes away, leaving my nail clean. Now, if only the cuticles didn't get grungy . . . .

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 4:32PM
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I have a soap saver - picked up at a flea market..think small wire cage that can hold a few slivers inside. You are supposed to swish it around in warm/hot water and it will produce a lather. I never bothered. I use a cheap grater and grate down the slivers into bits and use them when collars or the bottoms of socks need a little extra rub before washing - I have also added them into the regular wash if I have a huge amount but that rarely happens. I grate the bits and use them like I said. No waste and cuts down on the purchase of all those stain removal products.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2009 at 6:54PM
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Great ideas. Thanks!

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 8:48AM
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Your can tie them into the feet of old socks or pantyhose to use in the bath.

I grate mine and use them in laundry.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 3:09PM
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Just put the small bars in a dish with a little water and when it liquefies, put it on a wet wash cloth. A lot less trouble.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2009 at 5:58PM
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I believe the simpler, the better. I have always just pressed the wet sliver onto a new bar. It only takes a few seconds and I don't have to grate or melt anything, don't have to have anything extra to put it in. I find those mitts to be kind of wasteful as the cloth gets filled with lather and using it more than once or twice seems like it would get kind of unsanitary.

I find a little drop of dish detergent, rubbed in with an old, soft toothbrush, to be a good pre-treating product for collars and small soiled areas. The 'grease-cutting ingredients' in the dish detergent really attacks oil-based spots.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 7:41AM
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To each his own, ilene it doesn't take but a few seconds for me to do the grating as I do it as soon as I have the bar down to a point where it is breaking into bits.... at which point others in my family would just toss it out. My DH does the glue on method but I hate it when they continue to come apart.... for me, grate and use works best. But as I said, to each his own.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 1:55PM
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I quit buying most bar soaps because the watered down pump soaps are easier to use with kids. I need to remember the soap in the pantyhose trick for the back yard. My kids love to dig. If they'd wash their hands before they come in the house, it'd be so much easier.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 11:17PM
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I too prefer liquid. Even when I travel I bring liquid most of the time rather than use the motel mini bars.

Tried the sticking the bars on and most of the time they'd fall off for me too.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 7:45AM
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I could never get the bars to stick together either! Maybe it's because we live in a dry climate? When we buy soap, I immediately take it out of the packages and store them in the open air so they can dry further. Commercial soap is way too wet when packaged and won't last nearly as long as if it's allowed to dry for a while longer- maybe that's why they never stick together?

I make a version of homemade laundry soap to use as a laundry additive, which is where our grated leftovers end up (mixed in with laundry bar soap).

    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 4:51PM
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I find that sticking the old bar to the new one works fairly well ... when one washes only about once in three days it gives the bars a chance to dry out and I think that helps with the sticking.

Also - as it dries out in between uses ... the soap lasts forever!

Those little motel bars come in handy to wash one's small finger ... but are a bit hard to manipulate.

ole joyful

    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 4:10AM
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When my bars of soap get small, I just let them dry out and break them into pieces and toss them into my washing machine along with my detergent to get rid of them.


    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 7:29AM
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I realize this is an old thread, but just came across it.. this being a Garden Web I was surprised not to see the following suggestion. There are to uses for soap in the Garden, as a Deer Repellant, and a Wetting Agent. If foraging Deer are a problem in your garden, soap, particularly perfumey soap can help to repel them from foraging on your plants.. In addition as the soap dissolves the Surfactants will aide water penetration and utilization within the soil profile, conserving water and lowering the watering requirements of your garden.

While I have yet to try Grated soap in the Garden,, I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work equally well, particularly as a wetting agent.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 8:03AM
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I put Irish spring on my plastic container to keep the squirrels from chewing their way into it to get to the bird seed. It worked, but also kept the birds away. I tried a few pieces in my berm for rabbits, might have worked but it would take far more than I would want to spend or have in my berm to stop them.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 3:57PM
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I sometimes use them to rub on an especially dirty shirt collar and cuffs, after wetting them, before putting them into the wash cycle.

The ex-'s washer, now stored in my basement, and in use, has a suds-saver, so I get to use the wash water twice (or three times, usually including for the dirty gardening clothing, at this time of year).

ole joyful

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 4:51PM
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I, too, press the sliver onto the new bar. Have been doing that for over 30 years. The trick, of course, is to do it at the END of the last shower of the day, so that it has at least overnight to dry. I've never ever had one 'fall off'.

Also unwrap soap as soon as it comes home from the grocery store, giving it at least 3-4 months to dry out so it doesn't dissolve as quickly. It's also a good idea to use a soap dish where it won't be sitting in 'wet'. The more the soap dries out between uses, the longer it will last.

Marilyn Sue--hope you're still around and reread this thread. Soap and detergent are NOT compatable. Put most simply, soap sees detergent as dirt and vice versa, so they FIRST react with each other, using up their cleaning power, cancelling each other out. Combining soap and detergent, you actually have LESS cleaning power instead more. You might want to save the soap chips for another use, so your clothes come out cleaner.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2011 at 9:22PM
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Well my mom shared this idea with me and i hope it sounds of use to you.You know if you buy some soap dispensers(i know seems kinda odd.) and once u finish them off clean them with hot water and remove the label.Now the fun part...for any small bars of soap you got(no matter if it's medium sized or almost gone and barely of use or little soap scraps) put them in the bottle and add hot tap water to it.Shake it up and thus there you go!Soap mush or soap liquid!Except the pain is sometimes it gets clogged but constantly soak it in hot water if it does to start it again. Look at link for an example of the soap Dispenser versions i am talking about plus you can use even bigger ones for a ton of it.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 10:07PM
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