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What to Do with Leftover Soap Bars

July 19, 2021 3 min read

a set of soap bars sitting on a couple of wooden soap dishes

Whether you’re trying to clean up your beauty routine, reduce your carbon footprint or save money, switching to plastic-free soap bars is a no-brainer. The fact is, liquid soap products typically come packaged in plastic, contributing to microplastics in our oceans. Soap bars, on the other hand, require little to no packaging and are often formulated with nutrient-rich ingredients that are good for you and the planet. They also last much longer than their liquid counterparts — and even more so if you use a wooden soap dish to extend their lifespan.

But there is one downside to soap bars. They get smaller and smaller with every use. Eventually, they turn into tiny slivers that stick to the tub and are notoriously difficult to hold. 

Most people toss their soap slivers in the trash. But why let them go to waste when there are smarter ways to use leftover suds? If you want to save money and help the planet, here are a few ideas on what to do with your leftover soap bars.

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1. Stick the Old Bar onto the New Bar

Let’s not overcomplicate things! Using up every last bit of your soap bar could be as easy as pressing the remnants of the old bar onto your new bar. If you’re having trouble getting them to stick together, be sure to run both bars under water before placing the smaller bar on top of the bigger bar. Let gravity take care of the rest. 

2. Use a Soap Saver Bag 

Another easy way to save your precious soap remnants is by storing them in a soap saver bag — like our Sisal Soap Saver Bag. Made from natural Sisal fibers from the agave plant, this reusable bag extends the lifespan of your favorite bars while doubling as a natural exfoliator for smooth skin. Simply pop the leftover soap shards in the bag, run under water and start lathering. Remember to hang the bag in your shower so it can dry out in-between washes.

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a soap saver shower bag hanging from a shower handle

3. Turn Your Bar into Liquid Soap

Got an empty soap dispenser you’re not sure what to do with? Fill it back up by turning your soap slivers into liquid soap. Here’s how:

  • Step one: Gather soap scraps equal to four ounces.
  • Step two: Grate the soap bars into flakes with a cheese grater.
  • Step three: Heat the shredded soap pieces in a saucepan with eight to nine cups of water.
  • Step four: Remove the pan from the stovetop and let it sit for 12 to 24 hours.
  • Step five: Stir the mixture with a whisk. If the mixture is too firm, add more water and blend once more. 
  • Step six: Use a funnel to transfer the liquid soap to your soap dispenser.
  • Step seven: Enjoy your low-waste liquid soap!

4. Freshen Up Your Dresser Drawers

Ever notice how your clothes take on a musty smell after they’ve been in your dresser for too long? Use your leftover soap bars to keep them smelling fresh and crisp. Simply wrap a scented soap bar in a washcloth and stuff it in the drawer for added freshness. 

Got a pair of stinky sneakers? This trick also works great for smelly shoes!

5. Never Buy Shaving Cream Again

Shaving creams are often riddled with toxic ingredients that are bad for you and the environment. Why not use your leftover soap bits to make your own shaving cream? Toss your soap bits into an old coffee mug, add some hot water and use a shave brush to create a nice lather. It couldn’t be easier! 

6. Make Soap Balls from Scraps

Looking for a fun project to try this weekend? Utilize your leftover soap slivers to make your own soap balls. These decorative little balls are easy to create and make great low-waste gifts for family and friends. Learn how to make soap balls with this simple tutorial from SavvyHomemade.

7. Take a Relaxing Bath

Who doesn’t love a good bath? If you’re trying to ditch plastic in the bathroom, consider using your leftover soap slivers as a bubble bath. All you need to do is place your leftover soap slivers in a mesh bag and hang it from the bathtub faucet. Want to make your bath feel extra luxurious? Try adding skin-healthy ingredients to the tub — like lavender blossoms and coconut oil. 

Take Good Care of Your Soap Bars

If your favorite soap bar doesn’t come cheap, finding ways to make your bar last longer is well worth the time and effort. To stretch the lifespan of your bar, we recommend keeping it stored in a cool, dry place — preferably, on a wooden or silicone soap dish. Once your bar turns into a teeny-tiny sliver, try one the tips above to get the most out of your soap bar.


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