Lye Calculators for Cold Process Soap

If you're creating your own soap recipes from scratch, and even if you're using a recipe from a book, a  website, or one you've gotten from a friend, it's crucial to run your recipes through a lye calculator to make sure that your ratios of water, oils, and lye are correct. Doing so will help ensure that your batch of soap will come out just right.

In theory, the cold process—mixing set amounts of oils with an alkali (or lye)—is easier than heating your ingredients and dropping...MORE them into molds. In this case, easy doesn't mean skimping on your finished product

  • 01 of 06
    Homemade Lye Soap
    Michael Westhoff / Getty Images

    The folks at Soap Calc continue to improve and streamline their online lye calculator. It continues to be one of the best and most comprehensive online lye calculators, plus it offers helpful suggestions and hints whether you are new to soap-making or an experienced producer.

  • 02 of 06

    If you're really serious about soap making and creating recipes, you'll want to invest (it's not that much) in SoapMaker Software. The "Lite" version provides everything the hobbyist needs, while the "Professional" version includes ways to track your inventory and supplies list; and a comparison of the costs of various recipes among other things anyone running a retail business might want. The versions use the same lye calculator. If cost is an issue, start with the...MORE Lite version; you can always upgrade.

  • 03 of 06

    Bramble Berry's calculator is a great simple calculator—and has been revised to include liquid soap. You can only superfat up to 10 percent, but that's just fine. The Bellingham, Washington-based company has staff available to answer your questions, too. Of course, it's not averse to selling you a product, either.

  • 04 of 06

    One of the very first online lye calculators was at Majestic Mountain Sage. In its earlier versions, the company's offerings got a reputation for having too much water in the recipes, but the Utah firm has corrected that flaw and now offers a range of water usage in the recipes.The company also has updated the calculator for sodium lactate. Plus, for the math-challenged among us, this calculator does the calculations for you in ounces, pounds, and grams.

    Continue to 5 of 6 below.
  • 05 of 06

    Miller Soap, one of the oldest soap-making websites on the net, has a collection of Microsoft Excel spreadsheets to use to create your own recipes. The spreadsheets allow you to customize and save your recipes however you want. Keep a watchful eye on the spreadsheets: Many individuals have contributed to this site, so you'll get some repeat calculators.

  • 06 of 06

    This is another very basic calculator, which makes it a good measurement site for those new to soap making. Like many sites, this one performs calculations in grams and ounces, so there's no need for you to do the conversions. That means you can concentrate on customizing your scents and sensibilities.