I’d been wanting to try soap making for a while and I’d seen people taking classes before at the Soap Ministry shop at their old location in Orchard Central shopping centre so I finally got around to taking their Basic Soap Making Workshop last month at their new and much bigger store in Liang Court shopping centre near Clarke Quay.
The Soap Ministry shop sells a lot of cute handmade soaps made from natural ingredients as well as soap making supplies at their store. They also conduct several different soap making workshops for all levels.
Their Basic Soap Making class costs $48 for a 1 hour session and is ideal for beginners. They hold classes throughout the day every day and my friend and I went for the first session of the day on a Saturday which started at 10.30am. As it was quite early the shop was very quiet and we were lucky to be the only people attending the class at that time.
For the Basic Soap Making Workshop, you are given 250g of soap base to use to make your soap (makes around 5-7 soaps) and you can choose one herb and one essential oil that you’ll infuse into them. If you wish to make more soap and have a bit of variety, then you can opt for the Basic Upsize Workshop which gives you 500g of soap base to play around with and 2 choices of colours and herbs and you can make layered soaps with the different colours too.
Our workshop was carried out on some tables near the back of the store and we were first given an explanation of the 3 different types of soap base that we could choose from (either Centella Asiatica, Goat’s Milk or Premium Baobab) and the benefits of each. I chose the Centella Asiatica because I wanted to make soap that is transparent and it also has good anti-ageing properties and boosts collagen in the skin.
After choosing the soap base we cut up our 250g piece into small cubes using a blunt metal cutter and transferred the pieces to a stainless steel container which was put into a hot water bath to melt the soap base.
Whilst waiting for the soap base to melt, we measured out amounts of vegetable glycerine (8g) and vitamin E (1g) using a weighing scale into a heatproof plastic jug. The vitamin E helps preserve the soap for 1 year.
We then chose the herb that we wanted to use to colour our soap. They have several different herbs available that you can choose from.
I chose Rose Otto so that the soap would turn out red and Rose Otto is hydrating, moisturising, helps to even complexion and is anti-aging. 2g of the Rose Otto was measured out into the same container that held the glycerin and vitamin E and a wooden stick was used to mix it all thoroughly.
Next we chose an essential oil to give the soap a scent. They have a whole basket of essential oils that you can choose from and I chose lemongrass as I love the smell and it’s also a great mosquito repellent! I measured out 8ml of the lemongrass essential oil into a small plastic measuring cup so it was ready for mixing into the soap base later on.
We then proceeded to chose our designs of silicone soap moulds from the ones available. They have a lot of cute moulds and for some of the designs there were more than one of each. On average you can probably make around 5 medium sized soaps but if you choose smaller moulds then you could make around 6 or 7 soaps.
The soap base was left for around 15 minutes to melt and it shouldn’t be stirred whilst melting as this can cause bubbles. After it had completely melted I poured it into the plastic container that held the glycerin, vitamin E and Rose Otto herb. This was then mixed well and then the lemongrass essential oil was added after and mixed again. It’s important to stir from the top to the bottom of the container in order to make sure that the essential oil is properly mixed in as it can float to the top. All the stirring was done carefully so as not to create bubbles in the mixture and it was also done quickly so that the soap base wouldn’t set.
After it was all properly mixed I poured the mixture into each of my chosen silicone moulds. Whilst pouring, bubbles can rise to the surface of the soap so an ethanol spray was used to gently spray the surface to get rid of the bubbles.
The soaps were then left to set in a fridge (usually they would set at room temperature but since the class is only 1 hour, it is left to set in a fridge). After around 10 minutes they were taken out and the soaps were pushed out of each mould. We were then given the option to have them dusted in some gold dust just to accentuate the design and then our instructor wrapped each soap in cling film and sealed them with a Soap Ministry sticker.
Overall the class was a lot of fun and very interesting. It’s also great for kids as it’s very simple to do and their workshops are also available for birthday parties. Our teacher Maria was very friendly and knowledgeable and answered all our questions clearly. The finished soaps make great presents – I gave the Singapore Merlion soap to a friend that was visiting at the time and I exchanged soaps with the friend that I was attending the class with (the yellow soap in the photo above is hers). I’ll definitely be back again to take their intermediate workshop and I’m also interested in trying out their Cold Process Soap classes which are carried out at their shop near Pioneer MRT. Soap Ministry also allow you to use the space in their shop and their equipment to make soap for a fee of $10 per hour. You have to have attended at least one basic workshop with them though and all soap making ingredients must be purchased from them. They even have lockers available so you can store all your supplies there.
Address: Liang Court, 177 River Valley Road, #02-33A, Singapore 179030
Opening hours: Daily 10am – 9.pm
Hope you’ve enjoyed my Soap Ministry Basic Soap Making Workshop review, please feel free to leave a comment below with your own review or if you have any questions!