Learn how to make DIY turmeric soap and enjoy the many skincare benefits turmeric has to offer! This homemade turmeric soap recipe cleanses gently and may improve acne, dark spots, and hyperpigmentation. The prep is easy and simple, thanks to a melt and pour soap base.
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DIY turmeric soap
Turmeric is one of the best skincare ingredients and has been used in cosmetic formulations for years. The spice plays an essential part in Ayurvedic traditions and has become a popular addition in homemade skincare recipes, like this homemade turmeric soap.
Whether you are a seasoned soap maker or a beginner in the soap kitchen, you cannot mess this DIY up. You pretty much melt a soap base and then swirl in turmeric powder and essential oils. Pretty simple, right?
Benefits of turmeric soap
Here’s a quick overview of the potential turmeric soap benefits for skin:
- Gentle cleansing: Handmade turmeric soap cleanses your skin of excess sebum, pollution, and acne-causing bacteria.
- Mild exfoliation: Turmeric powder is gently abrasive and sloughs off dead skin cells.
- Clear acne: Turmeric soap can help fight pimples + body acne, calm breakouts and improve the appearance of acne scars.
- Soothing: The anti-inflammatory properties of turmeric are said to calm redness and itching.
- Fade dark spots: DIY turmeric soap can help to even out your skin tone, brightening hyperpigmentation and dark spots.
- Improve signs of skin aging: Turmeric is loaded with antioxidants, compounds that protect your skin against collagen-damaging free radicals.
- Slow hair growth: A study found that curcumin, a component of turmeric, reduces and slows the growth of body hair.
Turmeric soap ingredients
Creating natural turmeric soap bars at home is easy, and I bet you already have all of the ingredients stocked in your beauty pantry. You’ll need:
- Soap base: Like any melt and pour soap recipe, this turmeric soap starts with a premade soap base. Choose a shea butter or goat’s milk soap base to get a light-colored turmeric soap (like you see in the photos). Transparent soap bases like glycerin or aloe vera will result in a darker-colored turmeric soap.
- Turmeric is the ground-up root of the curcuma plant. Turmeric powder is the best way to infuse the soap. Be sure to use organic turmeric for the best effect.
- Essential oils provide a natural fragrance and infuse the soap with additional skincare benefits. I’ll share a few essential oils blends for homemade turmeric soap below.
Please refer to the how-to box to see the full ingredients list and measurements.
What is the best turmeric for soap?
Raw turmeric, turmeric paste, or turmeric powder – which is best for soap making? I recommend turmeric powder for melt and pour soap. Turmeric paste adds too much liquid, and raw turmeric root won’t properly disperse in the soap.
I used the organic turmeric powder from Simply Organic. Not sponsored, just a fan.
How much turmeric should I add to my soap?
Turmeric lends the soap a gorgeous golden hue. You can tinker with the exact quantities to achieve different shades. To color 1 lb / 450 g soap base, you’ll need:
- 1/8 tsp for a pale shade
- 1/4 tsp for a light shade
- 1/2 tsp for a light-medium shade
- 1 tsp for a medium-dark shade
- 1 1/2 tsp for a saturated shade
I don’t recommend going higher than 2 tsp because the turmeric powder will sink to the bottom of your mold and look uneven.
Essential oil turmeric soap
The best part of making turmeric soap at home is that you get to customize the recipe with essential oils. Create your own blend or try one of these ideas:
- Refreshing (gives a fresh scent): 70 drops blood orange + 50 drops rhododendron
- Soothing (ease skin irritation): 65 drops blue tansy + 35 drops palmarosa + 20 drops petitgrain
- Balancing (balance sebum production): 50 drops lavender + 35 drop steam-distilled lime + 20 drops clary sage
- Clarifying (improve body acne): 65 drops germanium + drops 25 cedarwood + drops 15 rosemary
- Brightening (fade dark spots): 60 drops steam-distilled lemon + 30 drops blue yarrow + 15 drops turmeric CO2 extract
These amounts are enough to scent 1 lb / 450 g, which is approximately 4 soap bars. The dilution rate is less than 1%, which is perfectly safe for skin care.
Tools to make turmeric bar soap
Let’s go over the tools and supplies you need to prepare this turmeric soap recipe:
- Paring knife and cutting board to chop the soap base into small cubes for easy melting.
- Large glass measuring cup or double boiler to melt the soap base.
- Soap mold to pour the soap. I used a square soap mold with a decorative pattern.
- High-proof alcohol in a spritz bottle (optional) to remove bubbles from the turmeric soap bars. This is optional. You don’t have to spray the soap with alcohol if you don’t mind a few bubbles at the back of your soap bars.
How to make turmeric soap
Whit its warm sunset color and fragrant scent, I have a feeling this turmeric soap recipe will be your new favorite soap. And making the project is quick and easy, too! Let me show you what to do:
Step 1: Melt soap base
- Cut the soap base into small cubes.
- Put the soap pieces into a microwave-safe container or glass measuring cup. Melt in the microwave in 30-second intervals. Stir the soap between each burst and be careful not to burn it.
Step 2: Dissolve turmeric powder (optional)
- While the soap is melting, add the turmeric powder and 1 to 2 tbsp high-proof alcohol into a small glass jar.
- Stir until the turmeric powder is fully dispersed in the alcohol.
- Pre-dispersing the spice in alcohol helps the turmeric better dissolve into the soap base. This step is optional. You can stir the turmeric powder directly into the soap base as well.
Step 3: Add turmeric and essential oils
- Once the soap has fully melted, add the turmeric solution and essential oils.
- Mix thoroughly until everything is well distributed, and the soap has a uniform color.
Step 4: Pour soap
- Pour the liquid turmeric soap into the mold.
- Optionally, spritz the top with alcohol to dissolve any bubbles.
Step 5: Let harden
- Allow the soap bars to cool and harden in the mold.
- You can let the soap set at room temperature, which will take 1 to 2 hours, or in the refrigerator, which will shorten the cooling time to 30 minutes.
Step 6: Unmold
- Once hard, release the soap by gently pulling back the mold to break the airlock. Then pop each piece out of the mold.
Step 7: Package and store
- Wrap your turmeric soap tightly in plastic wrap to protect it from absorbing moisture. Enjoy!
Tips for the best turmeric soap
I’ve tested this turmeric soap recipe repeatedly, so I know exactly how to get the best turmeric soap every time. Follow my tips below:
- Melt the soap in short intervals and stir between each interval. Melt and pour soap, especially goat milk, like to boil over. So be sure to watch the soap closely as it melts and turn off the microwave immediately if you see the soap rising to the rim of your melting vessel.
- Put on oven mitts to protect your hands from burns. The soap base and melting container get very hot. Please don oven mitts avoid burns.
- Let the soap cool for a few minutes before adding essential oils. Essential oils are heat-sensitive and will evaporate if added to boiling soap.
- Place the mold on a cutting board so you can lift and transport the warm soap to the fridge.
- Rewarm the soap if it sets too fast. Sometimes, soap cools before you have time to pour. The beautiful thing about melt and pour soap is that you can rewarm the bases as often as you need.
Turmeric and honey soap
Honey is stock full of components that are incredibly beneficial for skin care. Raw honey has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial qualities, which balance bacteria on your skin and reduce blemishes. The ingredient also speeds up cell renewal and skin healing.
- For a turmeric and honey soap, swirl 1 tsp unpasteurized, raw honey into the soap after melting.
Turmeric and ginger soap
Ginger promotes healthy, glowing skin and helps to combat acne and breakouts. The antioxidants in ginger are helpful to preserve collagen, making it an excellent addition to anti-aging skincare products.
- To prepare turmeric and ginger soap, add 50 drops ginger root CO2 extract to the soap. Ginger essential oil is very potent, so don’t exceed the suggested amount.
Turmeric and neem soap
Neem oil is packed with fatty acids, vitamin E, and other nutrients beneficial for your skin. The oil is said to stimulate collagen production, moisturize dry skin, and improve acne. It may even ease symptoms of eczema and psoriasis.
- To make turmeric and neem soap, stir 1 tsp neem oil into the melted soap base.
How to use turmeric soap
You use your DIY turmeric soap like you would use any other soap. The soap is best suited for hand washing and cleaning your body.
- Rinse the turmeric bar soap quickly under the tap before washing your hands.
- Then rub the soap with your hands to create lather, circling the bar between your hands and fingers. If using as body soap, cover your body in soap lather.
- Rinse off with plenty of water.
- Keep the soap dry between uses.
Can I use turmeric soap on my body?
Yes, you can use this turmeric soap recipe on your body. It’s perfect for cleansing your body while you are showering or taking a bath.
How long does it take for turmeric soap to work on skin?
Hard to say because everyone’s skin is different. Depending on the current condition of your skin, it will probably take at least 1 to 2 months before you notice the positive effects of using turmeric soap.
Turmeric bar soap storage instructions
How to package turmeric soap bars
Melt and pour soap tends to absorb moisture from the air, especially in humid climates. After a while, you might see tiny droplets forming on your soap. This effect is called glycerin dew. It’s harmless but not aesthetically pleasing.
To avoid glycerin dew, wrap each soap bar tightly in plastic wrap. You can also use shrink wrap.
Gifting homemade turmeric soap
To gift your DIY turmeric soap, wrap each soap bar in a piece of parchment paper and add a decorative ribbon (I used white lace) and a printable gift tag. You can download the gift tags at the end of this post.
How to store this turmeric soap
Store turmeric soap bars that aren’t in use tightly wrapped in a cool, dry place like a drawer, cabinet, or lidded box. Room temperature is fine. Make sure the soap isn’t exposed to moisture or direct sunlight.
Turmeric melt and pour soap might discolor and fade under sunlight. So, it’s best to keep your turmeric bar soap shielded from light.
This turmeric soap recipe will keep well for at least 1 year. After a year, the soap base will begin to dry out, and the scent will fade. Therefore, I recommend you use your turmeric soap within 12 months of making it.
Turmeric melt and pour soap FAQ
Turmeric soap for dark spots?
The soap can reduce dark spots and hyperpigmentation, according to research. One study showed that hyperpigmentation was decreased by 14% within 4 weeks of using skincare products with turmeric.
- A homemade turmeric face mask is your best option to tackle discoloration on your face.
Turmeric soap for acne?
If you’re suffering from body acne, you’ll be pleased to know that turmeric soap not only lessens breakouts but can improve acne scarring, too. Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties soothe the skin and ward off acne-causing bacteria, helping to clear up acne breakouts.
- To use turmeric soap for acne, scent your soap with the clarifying blend I describe above. Alternatively, swirl 60 drops tea tree essential oil into the soap.
Does turmeric soap help with inflammation?
Yes, turmeric contains anti-inflammatory constituents that may alleviate skin inflammation, itchiness, and redness. Curcumin, a major component of turmeric, calms inflammation and is said to speed up wound healing.
- Be sure to fragrance your soap with the soothing essential oil blend I showed you above. You can also add 75 drops German chamomile oil to increase the calming characteristics of your homemade turmeric soap.
Is turmeric soap antibacterial?
Yes and no. Although turmeric soap isn’t itself antibacterial, it effectively washes off bacteria and germs from the skin. Curcumin also has antimicrobial properties that aid with this.
- Boost the antimicrobial qualities of your soap by adding 45 drops eucalyptus essential oil.
Does turmeric soap exfoliate the skin?
Yes, turmeric soap exfoliates the skin. Turmeric powder has a mild exfoliating effect. The spice particle polishes the skin for a subtle glow.
- Add 1 tbsp rose clay to the turmeric soap recipe in case you prefer a stronger exfoliating effect.
Turmeric soap for face?
Although it might seem like a great idea to use turmeric face soap to remove dark spots, I don’t recommend using soap to wash your face.
Soap is alkaline, and the high pH will disrupt the pH levels of the delicate facial skin. A gentle, pH-balanced turmeric face wash is a much better and safer option.
Does turmeric soap stain?
No, turmeric soap doesn’t stain your skin. It washes off completely. Keep the soap bar in a soap holder to ensure it doesn’t stain your sink, shower, or bathtub.
Turmeric soap for skin whitening?
When I researched for this article, I noticed that some want to know if turmeric soap can assist with skin whitening. Skin whitening is a highly problematic topic because of its negative racial implications.
Hand to heart, I feel uncomfortable talking about it because I don’t want to promote this practice in any way. I believe that every skin tone is beautiful and deserves to be celebrated and appreciated.
But with so much misinformation floating around, I want to address the misconception that turmeric soap may whiten the skin.
Turmeric soap doesn’t whiten skin and won’t change the shade of your skin. It can help to improve discoloration and dark spots, creating a more even skin tone, but nothing more.