How To Make Cannabis Infused Soap
We are lucky to be living in a time when we have more choices than ever when it comes to consuming cannabis.
We are no longer limited to smoking pot in order to reap its myriad of benefits for the human body: choose from topicals, edibles, sublinguals, sprays, what have you. But did you know you can also enjoy its therapeutic effects when you use it in your soap?
Using cannabis-infused soap is a great and easy way to add the benefits of cannabis into your daily routine.
What is cannabis soap?
The skin is the largest of our organs, it keeps toxic substances out and lets certain substances pass through. The cannabinoids in marijuana can be absorbed through the skin when cannabis products are used topically.
The skin can become inflamed for a number of reasons, causing it to become dry, itchy, and red. Skin inflammation can be chronic (caused by a recurring condition such as eczema or psoriasis) or acute (caused by temporary exposure to irritants like UV radiation, allergens, or harsh chemicals) – the anti-inflammatory properties in cannabis soap offers soothing and healing benefits for your skin. Cannabis has also been found by researchers to be a powerful antioxidant, and can reduce the development of lines and wrinkles.
Cannabis soap delivers only a small amount of marijuana and it’s unlikely to get into your bloodstream, although it may reach your brain through your nasal passages – the pleasant smell and it’s aromatherapy applications are numerous and make using cannabis in this way an interesting alternative.
How to make Cannabis Soap
Making cannabis soap is no more difficult than other homemade soap. Soap is a chemical reaction that occurs as a result of mixing an animal or vegetable fat with a base (sodium hydroxide). This chemical reaction is called saponification.
The most basic ingredients you need are water (distilled is best), lye (sodium hydroxide), some type of animal or vegetable fat (such as coconut oil or olive oil). Then there is your choice of cannabis oil, you can use CBD, THC or a combination of both in a carrier oil – find out why cannabis-infused coconut oil is the ideal choice and how you can make it here.
There are many different soap recipes and methods you could follow, depending on what types of oils you are using, the superfat percentage you want to achieve, and if you choose hot or cold process. It is wise to use a lye calculator to accurately determine the ratios needed for proper saponification.
The following recipe is made using cold process method, with 100% virgin coconut oil (and cannabis-infused coconut oil) and it is superfatted by 10% to make a very luxurious soap that lathers and moisterizes well.
Lye safety measures
Lye is necessary to achieve saponification, always follow proper safety measures when using lye. Wear long sleeves and protective gear including safety glasses and rubber gloves. When the lye and water are mixed it will create fumes. Do this step in a well-ventilated area or even outside.
Caution: Always add lye to the water. DO NOT add water to lye. It will create a caustic eruption!
- Carefully add 5.5 ounces of lye to 12 ounces of water, avoiding inhaling any lye or splashing it on your skin. Use a heat-resistance container made of glass or metal since the lye will heat up quickly. Allow your water-lye solution to cool to 100-120 degrees.
- This step will vary depending on the concentration of your cannabis oil and how much cannabis you want in each soap. Combine your cannabis-infused coconut oil with virgin coconut oil to make a total of 34 ounces of oil. Gently heat your oils to 100-120 degrees.
- Slowly pour the lye-water solution into the mixed oils. Blend with a hand mixer/stick blender until it reaches trace – you can tell when you have reached trace by lifting your blender up out of the mixture and observing how the drips behave. They should leave a trail or “trace” on the surface.
- Pour the mixture into molds. Cover the soap and let it sit for 24 hours. When it’s set, you can cut it into pieces and let it cure for a few weeks to allow the soap to complete the saponification process. The soap will also lose some of its water during this time making the bar harder. The harder the bar, the longer it will last.
You can experiment by using different types of cannabis oil and try mixing in some cannabis flower or leaf. You can also add essential oils after trace to give your soap a lovely scent, select oils with relaxing or invigorating properties according to your goals for the soap.