I am tried to make soap using cold process saponification.

I used 25% coconut oil, 25% olive oil and 50% sunflower oil (what I had in my kitchen for this first try) and used a lye calculator to define the amount of lye and water for a 7% superfat.

To try to give it some spice, I infused the sunflower oil with sage leaves.

After 3 days in the molds the soap is still very soft, more like a paste at the bottom, and cannot be unmolded without tearing.

Any idea on what can make a soap keep soft?

2 Answers 2


As hlg said, cold process takes 4 to 8 weeks to dry. Also, each oil sets differently and gives the soap a different hardness.

I don't have a link in English, but here's a good one in French (that you may translate using Google): http://www.soapacadabra.fr/archives/2011/08/10/21768903.html

It says that:

  • Coco oil dries fast and makes a hard soap.
  • Olive oil dries slowly and makes a very hard soap.
  • Sunflower oil dries very slowly and makes a soft soap.

Good luck.


Cold process soap usually needs 4 weeks minimum to set up completely. You may just need to give it more time.

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