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2 in 1: Dish Liquid & Hand Wash

Wash your hands & dishes  with the same product - it's that safe, natural & green! Learn what you need & how to make your own 'dishwashing detergent' & 'hand wash' with this simple recipe. 


-   1/4 cup Liquid Castile Soap

-   1 3/4 cups distilled water 

-   1 teaspoon Xanthan Gum 

-   1 tablespoon Vegetable Glycerine 

Optional but recommended: 

-   20-25 drops Essential Oil


-   Mixing Jug (approx. 1 litre capacity)

-   Small bowl/cup

-   Measuring spoons/cups 

-   Whisk

-   Pump bottle


Approx 500ml (can multiply recipe for bigger batches)


1.  In the small bowl add the glycerine, xanthan gum & essential oils . Using a teaspoon mix well until it is free of lumps & forms a gel.  

2.  In the larger mixing bowl, add the distilled water & Castile Soap. Using the whisk gently mix & try to avoid making bubbles.

3.  Add the xanthan gum gel into the soap solution in the larger mixing bowl & whisk until it is fully combined. Keep whisking (for up to 5 minutes) & slowly the mixture with thicken up.

4.  Once you have the desired consistency, pour into your pump bottle & it's ready to use. Store any leftovers in an airtight bottle. 

FAQ's - great stuff to know!

What is liquid Castile Soap?

This is a pure soap that is made from olive oil, water & lye (caustic soda). Depending on the type of lye you can make liquid or hard soap.

Can I just use Castile Soap as is?

Yes, yes. yes! It's the most simplest non-DIY, ready to roll replacement for detergents in many ways. You can simply use it direct from the bottle & not do a thing.  It will give you a lot more lather (because its not diluted) however it may be a little runny & has you may want to add some fragrance with essential oils.  Good news is you can thicken pure undiluted Castile Soap with saline solution see here for details 

Can I add other ingredients to this recipe for hand wash?

Absolutely! You can also experiment by adding other skin cleansing ingredients like Vitamin E, Shea Butter & Glycerine.

Can I use this in a foaming soap pump?

You sure can & the recipe is even easier! You only need the distilled water, Castile Soap & essential oils. Do not add the xanthan gum gel! You may still like to add glycerine for its moisturising qualities.

Does this make lots of foam & lather?

The more diluted Castile Soap is the less foamy bubbles it will produce, but please do not let this fool you into thinking its not doing its job - for extra bubbles in the sink add a pinch of the Dish Powder or Coconut Soap Flakes or  lather up a wet sponge instead.

What does Xanthan Gum do?

It has a few functions but the main one is to thicken liquid solutions naturally. You will find it as a thickening agent in shampoos, conditioners, detergents & a lot of cosmetics.

Can I add the xanthan gum without glycerine?

Yes, but you will need to be extremely patient as it will be very lumpy & can take some time to whisk. If you do it this way, you may want to use a stick blender. Bearing in mind if you use a stick blender the mixture will foam up & almost double in size, so make sure your bowl is big enough. You may need to let it 'rest' overnight to reduce back down.

Why do you mix glycerine with xanthan gum?

It acts like a ‘roux’ (a mix corn flour & butter) used to thicken a soup, the butter helps spread the flour more evenly through the soup so there are less lumps. The glycerine works the same way with the xanthan gum as it does not react with it like water does. It's amazing really. 

Do I have to used distilled water?

We totally recommended using distilled or demineralised water as there are no minerals to interfere with the soap & free of any contaminants/bacteria. Tap water contains minerals  - the harder your water the worst it is. If your fortunate to have soft tap water, then you can use this, but you may want to boil it first.

Is this safe for septic tanks?

The ingredients are mild, safe & biodegradable which should not affect the bacteria in septic tanks like harsh chemicals can.



Have you tried this recipe? Please share your comments & let others know about your experience - thank you!

* This recipe has been updated on the 23/8/2020. It still has the same ingredients but the instructions have been simplified to reflect 'best practice' . Please read the FAQ for additional methods & variations. Thank you!

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