How to Make Foaming Hand Soap

This is one of those super simple, why haven’t I been making this forever sort of DIY recipes. With just two ingredients it’s easy to mix up and extremely economical. You might recognize it from my first book, The Organically Clean Home.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • foaming soap dispenser(s) – reuse one you have or you can find the ones I used here
  • 1-2 tablespoons castile soap (choose a scent that you love – citrus is my favorite!) – I use 2 tablespoons for 8 ounces of water (experiment with how foamy you want your soap to be
  • 8 ounces of water (or whatever size your foamer is) – we go through soap really quickly so I use filtered tap water but if you don’t go through the soap quickly you’ll want to use distilled water
  • funnel
  • measuring spoons

Place the funnel in the container.

Measure 1-2 tablespoons castile soap into the funnel.

Pour water over the soap.

Place the lid on the dispenser and shake to combine.

Wash up!  My kids love this soap and I love how foamy it is – it does a great job cleaning hands. Feel free to add 10-20 drops of essential oil to the liquid if you’d like a make a custom scent or amp up your germ-killing capabilities.

Curious what you can do with castile soap?  Click on the link or the image below:



  1. Do your bottles hold up to essential oils?? Some bottles don’t.

  2. Would the two drops or so of essential oil be ok in the plastic?

  3. Rolande Fortin says:

    Hey Becky, How are ya? Just received your book and love it! Also thanks for the post on hand soap, it will be very handy , love it!…

  4. Shannon says:

    Question…can you use non-castile soap? I have a few bottles of “regular” hand soap that I’d love to make last longer!

  5. Katrina says:

    I am a big fan of foaming hand soap but had decided to switch to regular to save a little money and then just found this post and — perfect timing!
    A couple of questions though. How is “castille” soap different from other soaps and where do you find it? I’m not funding it at any of my go-to stores.

    • Castile soap is a natural, vegetable-based soap. You can find castile soap on Amazon, Target, Wal-Mart, Costco….look in the beauty aisle if you can’t find it where other soaps are found.

  6. Why filtered/distilled water?

  7. Amanda says:

    Do you know if this recipe can be used in an automatic soap dispenser (e.g. Lysol automatic dispenser)?

  8. Melissa says:

    Love this!

  9. CarrieH says:

    I recently “discovered” you after buying your book, Simply Clean. I love this book–it has changed the way I think about cleaning and has totally changed the way I think about cleaning products. I have tried a few of your recipes for cleaners and so far am finding them to be much better than what I have been buying, and so much cheaper. Thanks so much for sharing.

  10. I hate to be a party pooper but I have just used the bottles from foaming hand soap and just replaced the soap with another brand of soap and VUELA! it is foamy too! (Soap I purchased from like the Dollar Tree or General Dollar store…so my thoughts are this……..the magic of the foam is in the bottle itself

  11. Kristen D. says:

    This is genius! I don’t know why I thought foaming hand soap and containers in the stores were somehow “magic”… Hahah!! Thanks for this! One question: Any way to make it “anti-bacterial”? Or is the Castile soap that kind?

    • Hi Kristen! Thank you! Just the soap is killing the germs – the most important thing is to scrub for 30 seconds and you’ll be rinsing the germs down the drain 🙂

      • Kristen D. says:

        I just made this! I haven’t had that much fun in a long time… kinda sad. Haha! I did a happy dance in my kitchen and my boys thought I was nuts. Then they couldn’t wait to try it…. 😉
        This is AWESOME stuff!! Thanks for the tip above. 🙂 I’m glad to know that. I’m making this and sending it to my married kids… Thank you!

  12. I have found that adding essential oils prevents the foaming…..we just get a very watery mix that smells nice.

  13. Hi Becky,
    I love your books and recipes. With this hand soap do I need to shake it before every use or just when I make it?

  14. Ann Gloria says:

    This post is great! I was made and currently using a chamomile foaming soap but am excited to try this one, after finish my last soap. Thanks so much 🙂

  15. Michele Heiting says:

    I made soap using Castile soap before and I found it left like a film in the bathroom sink. Have you experienced this with your recipe?

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