I received an email the other day asking how to make a nice black bar of soap. This person had tried using black oxide but it came off on the wash rag.

How to Make Black Cold Process Soap

My #1 advice for making black soap? Use charcoal powder!

I’m not a fan of black oxide or black mica. Usually when I make a black soap with either, it lathers gray. Charcoal never seems to lather gray.

I LOVE charcoal powder! I use nothing else when making my soap gray or black. You can find it from many soap suppliers including Bramble Berry (affiliate link) here. If you have a local natural health food/herb store, they probably have it.

You also get the added benefits of using charcoal. It is drawing and cleansing, great for acne or oily skin!

black soap

How much should you use?

Do you want gray or black soap?

For gray soap, start with 1 teaspoon charcoal per pound of oils.

For black soap, start with 1/2 tablespoon charcoal per pound of oils.

If your soap goes through gel phase, it will help make it dark black!

Add it to the oils before adding the lye solution, or if you are swirling, add it to lightly traced soap.

Here are two blog posts where I used charcoal.

Charcoal and Sea Salt Acne-Busting Face Bar Cold Process Soap

Charcoal Facial Bar with Mango, Avocado and Babassu

For other recipes using natural colorants and essential oil blends, check out my recipe book!


What is your favorite black colorant? What experiences have you had with making a black soap?

Leave a comment to be entered to win a free eBook. We’ll draw a name from the comments tomorrow at 1 pm (central time).

Yesterday I asked “Have you ever had a soap seize? Did you panic? How’d you fix it? I’d love to know!”

The winner of the drawing for a free eBook is Sheila Peoples!  Congrats! I’ll be emailing you.


Happy Black Soap Making!

-Amanda Gail