One of the questions I get asked quite often either in classes or by email is how do you clean up after a soap making session.

There are two schools of thought.

  1. Clean up right away or
  2. Leave the dishes sitting around until the next day when they will have turned into soap.

I often do several batches in a row so I tend to clean up right after a batch.  I also don’t really like dirty dishes sitting around.  If you’re cleaning up right after a batch you want to wipe as much raw soap as you can from containers, utensils…mixing buckets…etc.  You really don’t want the raw soap to go down your drain.  At this point…it’s really oilly and you know you’re not supposed to pour oil down the drains.  I simply use paper towels and wipe out/off as much as possible.  I’ve read some people use cloth towels, let them sit overnight and then wash the next day.  I don’t really like this idea because if you superfat your soap it’s gonna get your washing machine a bit gunky.

If I leave my dishes to sit overnight to turn to soap I still wipe out as much raw soap as possible so I’m not having to scrape off thick layers of soap the next day.

I know some people use vinegar in their cleanup efforts.  I don’t unless I’ve spilled raw soap on a surface.  But I don’t tend to douse utensils or containers with it.  I simply rinse well with water and then wash with dish soap.  No need for vinegar.

To help clean your stick blender fill up a container with hot water and run the blender in it.  Sometimes the blades can be a pain to clean so this helps with that.  This is also a good tip if your stick blending different colors of soap in a row for a multi-colored design.  Between each color, dip your stick blender into the hot water and blend for a couple of seconds and move on to the next color.

I tend to use plastic cups when doing multi-colored swirls so I can just throw them away instead of having to wash.  Although I guess that could be a bit wasteful.  It does cut down on the cleaning.

Do you have any tips for easier cleanup?  Please leave a comment!

Happy Cleaning!