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Cold Process Charcoal Soap

This cold process charcoal soap is a family favorite. A tried-and-true recipe favorite using six different natural oils and butter. There are many articles out there that express the benefits of using charcoal for skin care. Read this article for a little convincing, Charcoal For Your Skin: What Is It And Is It Good For You? ( For instance, not only will charcoal naturally remove toxins, it adds beautiful natural color to soap making. I am always searching for new and interesting ways to add natural color to my soaps without extra dyes or chemicals. Activated charcoal it is!

Adding charcoal to soap is an easy way to add a bit of rustic feel to soap. Depending on how much you add to the batch, your soap can have a light shade of gray to a deep gray like pictured below. Also, you probably notice the final soap pictured below doesn’t have perfectly shaved edges or a smooth finish on every inch. I prefer the raw look and feel to homemade soap, so I am leaving my example exactly as I use it. A light powder of gold mica on top and this cold process charcoal soap looks fantastic!

cold process charcoal soap

Cold Process Charcoal Soap – Modest Wildflower Home Favorite

The recipe below is for your soap making journey. I have labeled this recipe as intermediate because of the amount of fresh oils used, otherwise it is pretty simply to make. The mix of oil provides luxurious results in the end. You have the option to add scent with essential oils or, if you are like me, let the oils do the work for you. Natural is best! I prefer to keep my soaps in raw form and smelling fresh. Give this recipe a try and be sure to let me know how you like it.

**Disclaimer – I am sharing my personal recipes for use. Although I make every effort to provide accurate calculations, it’s recommended that you verify this information for yourself before attempting to make anything with (NaOH) Lye. Lye is a dangerous product if not used in correct ratios or with proper personal protective equipment. Remember to mask and glove up! For two free and trusted soap calculators, start with SoapCalc Home and Lye Calculator and Fragrance Calculator (

Oil Weight: 30 oz Batch Size: 46.47 oz Super Fat: 5%


  • 4.50 oz – Avocado Butter
  • 4.80 oz – Avocado Oil
  • 7.80 oz – Babassu Oil
  • 8.70 oz – Olive Oil
  • 2.10 oz – Mango Seed Butter
  • 2.10 oz – Kukui Nut Oil
  • 2 Tbsp Pure Activated Charcoal Powder
  • 11.40 oz Distilled Water
  • 4.13 oz Food Grade Sodium Hydroxide Lye (NaOH)
  • 0.90 oz Fragrance or Essential Oil** Optional
  • 1/2 tsp Cosmetic Grade Mica** Optional


  1. Adding more or less charcoal after gaining medium-light trace can create different shades of gray – mix well with stick blender
  2. Try this essential oil blend for a rich nature inspired scent – Cedarwood and Frankincense **note – never over 3% in a batch as essential oils can cause skin irritation or burn
  3. Alternative Oil for Babassu is Coconut Oil at same percentage
  4. Always check Lye calculations through a trusted calculator source

Do you have any unique ingredients to add color to your soap? Did you make this recipe? Let me know in the comments.

Rannae D

An artisan and writer.

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