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Handmade 101
How to Naturally Color Soap
Author: Wholesale Supplies Plus
Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Consumers are more conscience of what they buy, and increasingly educated on ingredients. Questions such as ‘Is this natural?’ and ‘What is this ingredient?’ are becoming much more commonplace. It’s only natural that many soapers are moving to more natural products. So the question comes, how do I naturally color soap? This article will touch on some issues, and go into some detail on coloring soap naturally.

Naturally Coloring Melt & Pour Soap

The FDA considers Melt & Pour Soap with added detergents “cosmetics” (Detergent Free Soap Bases may be classified as soap), and so FDA regulations need to be followed for these cosmetics. They strictly regulate Colorants, and only colorants on the approved list can be used to color soap. You might be surprised to hear that Clays and Herbs are not approved cosmetic colors. Don’t freak out!

While Clays and Herbs cannot be used to color soap, they can be used for their other beneficial properties. These additives may end up coloring the soap, but as long as they are added with the intention of the other properties they can be used. For example, if you want to add Pumpkin Powder, add it for its rich source of exfoliating enzymes and beneficial vitamins versus for its golden-yellow color.

So why does is matter if the additive is coloring or adding other properties to soap? It matters when it comes to labeling. According to the FDA, “color additives of any concentrations may be listed in any order after the listing of ingredients which are not color additives [§ 701.3(f)(3)].”  Since Clays and Herbs are considered additives and not colorants, they need to be listed in descending order of predominance with the rest of the ingredients in the recipe. Basically, Herbs and Clays cannot just be added to the end of your ingredient list because they are technically not Color Additives. There is also the option of always listing every ingredient in descending order of predominance all the time too. This eliminates having to wonder if certains colors are really classified as such.

In our Pistachio Cardamom Cake Soap Recipe we used Pumpkin Powder and Parsley Powder for their wonderful beneficial properties. The two powders happen to resemble a lovely natural pistachio color. Read the Pistachio Cardamom Cake Soap Recipe for more information on how we incorporated the natural powders and for an example of how to order the ingredients.

Ready to create soap with Natural Powders? Buy the Pistachio Cardamom Cake Soap Bars Kit to learn how to make the pistachio and cardamom scented soap pictured on this page.

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