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Essential Oil in Soap Making – Juniper Berry

Soap making has endless possibility when adding essential oils. Whether it’s included for scent or skin loving properties, essential oils are fun to mix and match or leave one to stand strong on its own. The Juniper Berry adds a nice woody scent in soap making. Clean and earthy!

Essential oil is not the same as fragrance oil and is slightly more expensive. However, even if we did not use the Juniper Berry essential oil entirely in soap, chances are good that it can be used in a diffuser or as massage oil. Yah nature!

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What is Juniper Berry?

Juniper Berry, or Juniperus communis, is actually not a berry. The berry-like appearance is that of a modified cone that grows on the juniper tree or shrub belonging to the cypress family. The berry is where the sweetest juniper oils comes from. Beyond soap making, Juniper Berry essential oil is non-toxic or irritating when diluted and said to be good for a few other uses:

  • Balances skin tone and improves hair
  • Reduces water retention
  • Relieves mental tension
  • Reduces pains
juniper berry essential oil in soap making
Image by Bronisław Dróżka from Pixabay

Essential oil in soap making

Any essential oil is dangerous if used in the incorrect amounts or if mishandled. Be sure to wear gloves when handling essential oils to protect yourself from its potency in soap making or any other purpose. By industry standards, a good ratio for any essential oil in soap making is no more than 3% of the total batch. Whether your recipe is a 16 ounce of 48 ounce total batch, the ration remains the same. Most soap calculators keep the essential or fragrance oil anywhere from 2-3%. Here’s an example:

  • 16 ounce soap batch and 3% essential oil maximum = 0.48 ounce of essential oil
  • 48 ounce soap batch and 3% essential oil maximum = 1.44 ounce of essential oil

The 3% ratio may seem too small or not enough for the amount of soap, but it truly is enough!

Essential oil blend

Juniper Berry essential oil is great on its own. However, if you’re looking for an additional blend with this woody scent, you certainly can’t go wrong with the essential oils below. The sky is the limit and you can always experiment with other scents for your own unique twist! Keep in mind that when mixing essential oils into your batch, the total amount should be no more than 3% to avoid over scenting or causing skin irritation.

  • Tea Tree
  • Egyptian Geranium
  • Lavender
  • Cinnamon
  • Chamomile
  • Rosemary

Essential oil purchase and care

The Juniper Berry is a steam-distilled essential oil and will typically have a shelf life of 2-3 years with proper care. Keep essential oils away from direct sunlight and extreme temperature changes. Keep it away from pets and children. Most all essential oils are flammable and should be guarded. When purchasing, be aware of manufacturers that may dilute pure essential oils in other liquids for cost savings. This unknown mix could be problematic and can mask the true scent of the plant. Essential oils are naturally undiluted and pure oil should have a potent scent. If not, consider further research into the manufacturer.

When shopping, look for terms such as a therapeutic grade rating, Non-GMO, Organic, and read the reviews. If a true organic oil is important to you, look for the official seal, not just the word ‘organic’ in the details of the product page. Only oils that have gone through the official USDA Agricultural Marketing Service are allowed by federal law to display an organic seal.

Essential oils are a wonderful addition to soap making. There are hundreds of different plants available and blends are endless.

Happy soaping!

Have you tried Juniper Berry essential oil? What is your favorite scent in soap making? Let us know is the comments! Look at our favorite scents at Handmade Soap by Modest Wildflower for a little inspiration ( is one of them).

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