If you love loofah soap but it’s a bit to harsh for your skin, try this exfoliating loose loofah soap, instead. It’s super refreshing and not so coarse.
A while back ago I made some loofah soap and it did really, really well. Even though it’s been well loved in this house, the thing is it was way too scratchy for me.
I’ve got super sensitive skin and I have to be careful what I use on it. Sometimes I’m surprised that this thing over here works well and isn’t too harsh and I’m astonished when something that seems gentle enough really messes my business up. Because I can DIY up alternatives and since I really enjoy soapmaking these days, I’ve been on a mission to find something that works well for me.
Those loofah soaps sure were pretty, though, weren’t they? No worries. Even though I didn’t personally use these guys, they got used the heck UP and that’s all a crafter can ask for, right? The things you make actually get used. That’s a win in my book!
But on with my search for the perfect way to exfoliate to a lovely smooth set of skin, let’s bust out that loofah and see what’s up…
Want to make a more gentle loofah soap? Let’s whip up some loose loofah soap bars!
For this project you will need:
- Melt and pour soap base
- Microwave-safe glass measuring cup
- Sharp craft blade
- Fragrance oil
- Soap colorant
- Alcohol in a spray bottle
Until I started making soap at home I was positive that loofah came from the ocean. It does not. I know what a sponge is because I’m not a moron, but I guess I figured a loofah was a sponge’s coarser cousin or something. Meh. As it turns out a loofah is a vegetable, a gourd, in fact, that is grown on a vine. Interestingly enough, it’s actually a part of the cucumber family. In fact, while it’s still very young they can be eaten like a cucumber. After it has matured it’s dried out and we have the loofah we all know and love for some serious shower exfoliation. The more you know…
I have seen online where you can purchase already shredded loofah, but I can score good quality loofah for cheap at my local farmer’s market. As it turns out, shredding it isn’t all that difficult. With a really sharp blade very carefully and thinly slice at a large piece of loofah to pull away fibers and shred it away from the bulk. Sometimes you might get a knot of loofah and you can use that, but after using the bars I really prefer the very shredded stuff that looks like shredded wheat when you break up the biscuit.
For each bar you don’t need a ton of loofah, about a tablespoon or 2 of the loose business is perfect per bar.
Loofah prepped and ready to go, melt your soap base in a microwave-safe measuring cup in 30-second increments until mostly melted. While just a few chunks of soap remain, stir the liquid to melt your chunks. This is a good, safe way to ensure you don’t overheat your soap base.
Now nothing says bay rum quite like neon colors, right? Haha. This is a strong and masculine scent and the bright neon colors I used don’t really seem to match up but these guys are still getting used so no worries! :)
Add color and scent to your soap and stir gently to incorporate. Don’t go crazy or you’ll whip up a bunch of bubbles in your soap.
Add a small amount (1-2 tablespoons) of shredded loofah per bar and stir to coat.
Pour into a mold after it has cooled enough that it won’t warp it (if using clear plastic, silicone molds are not so much trouble).
Right after pouring you might have a bit of loofah peeping out over the top of the bar. Simply use an implement, like a chopstick, to shove it under the surface of the soap.
FYI, It doesn’t seem to matter if you use suspending melt and pour base for these bars, or not, everything floats up to the top of the bars regardless.
Spray the top with rubbing alcohol to pop any bubbles and allow to sit flat for at least 15-20 minutes while it begins to set up. After the soap firms up on the top a bit, you can transfer your mold to the fridge for a quicker set up.
Pop your bars out of the mold once completely cooled and they’re ready to use. See how all of the loof is on one side of the bar? This is the very shredded business and it just floats right up to the backside of the bar, and gives it kind of a loofah ombre thing, and it doesn’t seem to matter what kind of melt and pour base you use, suspending or not.
I have no clue why this is BUT as I used the bars found that I liked having one smooth side and one coarse side that I could flip back and forth as I liked when using so it isn’t a huge deal as far as function.
Even the chunkier loofah will still rise to the top, but you’ll have a nice, smooth bar on one side with that lovely exfoliating scrubby side on the other. In the end, I think I’m happier with how it turned out over how I had hoped and expected it would.
While these aren’t exactly my favorite way to exfoliate and I fully intend to try some other things here at home, they are decent and now I’ve got some nice smooth bars that I flip over for a good scrubbing and I don’t have to switch out soap when my scrubby soap starts to irritate my sensitive skin. Sometimes things work out all wrong for all the right reasons :)