Ways to save money on soap

 I am now embracing the fact that I am a crunchy mama. I have a cabinet full of essential oils, I buy organic snacks for my kids, I make my own cleaning supplies, make a lot of our own food items, and try to be natural in every aspect of my life. I am okay with this lifestyle, even though I never would have thought I would be "that" woman. It is not a bad thing, but just never saw myself getting to this point.

It is daunting at times because moving to a more natural way of living can seem overwhelming and expensive. For some reason, we live in a world where it can be more expensive to buy fresh unprocessed foods than to pick up a frozen dinner. Some day I may have ideas on how to save grocery money, but right now I want to talk about soap. Yes you read that correctly, soap.

We used to buy the cheap, giant bottle of refillable hand soap. Then, I became more aware of what household items we were using and decided to try out some more "natural" products. Some of them totally dried out my hands and made them hurt so bad I could not use that soap anymore. Other brands I did like, but they are not very cost effective when you have a lot of people washing their hands, multiple times a day in your house. So, I kept looking. After some trial and error, and more Googling, I finally found what works for us and only costs a few cents per batch.

My secret:
Dr. Bronner's castile soap and a foaming dispenser.

I have tried this a few times, but finally found the secret weapon. A foaming soap dispenser. You need the foaming dispenser because otherwise you will shoot liquid soap all over your counter and have a watery mess. Trust me. 

The recipe is so simple, one part soap to three parts water. I like to use the citrus scented one, but there are a few other scents (be aware the peppermint is strong!) or you can use unscented. You could also add some essential oils to the soap, if you want your own unique scent. I use a pint size mason jar, with a foaming dispenser (made for mason jars). If you try it, you may find you need to adjust the ratio a bit. If I use too much soap my hands break out in a rash, so don't give up the first time you try it. 

Now there are MANY uses for castile soap. You could spend all day reading the label on the bottle of all the uses. I will share another one of my favorites, shave soap. I have tried multiple different soaps and foams for shaving, as I'm sure many other women have too. I put some castile soap, undiluted, in a regular soap pump. All you need is one small pump in your hand, make sure your hands are a little wet to help the lather. I use one pump of soap, or about a penny size in your hand, for each leg. Rub it on your skin and you should see it lather up. It will seem thinner than typical shaving soap, but trust me, it is the best and cheapest soap I have ever used to shave with. You can also use it as a body wash!

A couple other uses are an all purpose surface cleaner, mop solution, or dish soap. I have tried all of these and honestly, I only have had good experience with the all purpose surface cleaner. If anyone else loves the other ways I would love to hear about it! The mop solution was good but on our laminate floors it seems to leave a film, making the floors look dirty still so I switched to another homemade cleaner. The dish soap does not seem to clean well, in my experience, my dishes still seemed greasy/oily. Just search Pinterest or Google for recipes and dilution ratios for these items if you want to try them too. 

A bottle of this castile soap is about $13-$15 depending on where you buy it. A bottle will last a while, since you only use a small amount each time or for a recipe! Let me know if you try any of these recipes or have other ways you love to use castile soap.