Red clay facial soapThis is a soap that has a lot of success between my friends and colleagues. It is supposed to be good for face cleansing, because it contains red clay (argile), which is a recommended for cleansing of sensitive skin.

I am not saying that facial soap should contain red argile. Honestly, I am not even sure what is the official definition of a “facial soap” .

I believe such a soap should be gentle, therefore:

  • have the lowest ph possible (low alkalinity)
  •  contain too much of oils giving a too highly cleansing soap (such as coconut or palm kernel oil)
  • could profit from higher e.g. 10% superfat

Then, it depends on what type of skin we have:

  • Acne-prone or oily skin can benefit from tea-tree oil and charcoal, or green clay
  • Sensitive skin might benefit from purely olive oil soap without any addition of essential oils.  Adding red or pink clay can help cleansing without stripping of the sebum.
  • Normal skin – can use any sensitive skin soap

I have personally a very good experience with soaps made of a high percentage of shea butter.


This is supposed to be normal-sensitive skin soap. Without any further comments, here is the recipe:


300g olive oil

300g coconut oil

200g palm oil

200g peanut oil


138g NaOH

380g Distilled water


At trace – should be thick, so that the argile does not settle

30g red argile clay mixed with 5 TBSP of oils from the recipe

15 ml EO Geranium

15 ml EO rosewood


Temperature of oils when mixing: 42°C

Temperature of lye solution at mixing: 55°C

Mold type: Silicone for baking, rose form


Before unmolding:



After unmolding



Let cure for 4 weeks – the longer, the better, the soap gets milder with time!


And what is your definition of a facial soap? Do you have a favorite recipe?