One day I was going through some things at my mother's house when I came across a foam pump bottle she hadn't used. I remembered I had seen an article on SafeMama.com about using castile soap in a foam pump to save money. Individual organic hand soap bottles are extremely expensive so I wasn't purchasing them but I wanted to use something safer. My mother said I could take her foam pump home since she wasn't using it. She purchased it at a Pampered Chef party, set it aside, and forgot it existed. That couldn't have worked out better for me!
Dr. Bronner's Liquid Castile Soap is definitely my castile soap of choice. The larger the bottle I buy, the more money I save. I'm happy with the ingredients and you can get it almost anywhere. Not all castile soaps are equal though. It's still important to read ingredient labels. Whole Foods now produces a USDA certified organic castile soap but I have yet to check it out.
As far as the Dr. Bronner's castile soap goes, the Citrus is my favorite for hand soap. My husband, mother, and grandmother love the Peppermint. I did try the Rose before when I couldn't find the Citrus but it didn't dawn on me at first that the Rose contains ethanol (grain alcohol). It smelled very nice but was too irritating for my hands. Good thing I could still use it for cleaning. Castile soap has lots of uses. That's another blog post for another day though.
Let's get back to the foam pump. When you use a foam pump for soap, you add very little soap and a lot of water (filtered, boiled and cooled, or distilled depending on how much you wash your hands and how long a bottle will last in your household). If you look at the photo to the right you can see the measurements of how much soap is needed versus how much water. As you can see, I filled the bottle a little too much with water. When that happens I just add another squirt of soap.
If you buy a foam pump with markings on it, refilling the bottle is quick and easy. It is more expensive though. I've used a few different foam pump bottles. The one I've liked the best is from The Pampered Chef. It comes with one marked bottle but two foaming tops. That way you only have to switch the top when the first pump wears out. Keep in mind that foaming mechanisms eventually wear down on all foaming bottles. In order to extend the life of a foam pump, flush the pump with warm water before each soap refill.
I've found that it's very difficult to find foam pump bottles with markings on them in stores. If you want to avoid the cost of a marked bottle (and added shipping), you can purchase an organic soap that already comes in a foaming bottle. Once you use the soap you can reuse the bottle. Also, look around your home to see if you already use a product that comes in a foam pump. You may have a bottle already that you can reuse. For the soap/water ratio to use in unmarked bottles or ideas on how to mix your own soap scents, please visit SafeMama.com.
Special thanks to Kathy at SafeMama.com for her great article, Sunday Morning DIY: Lavender & Sweet Orange Hand Soap. Kathy, you have saved me so much money on soap!!!
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