Castor Oil: 5% or 10%???

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Cherry Pit Soap Works

Well-Known Member
Jul 31, 2013
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Hi all! So I'm a little torn when it comes to the castor oil. I absolutely love this oil and what it does for lather and feel. I need opinions and advice about the percentage that goes into a recipe. 5% is good, but I've done as high as 10% and I love that too! Does anyone here think that's too high? The lather is amazing, but yes, they are a little "waxy and tackier" than a bar with less, or none at all. Do you feel that a higher amount makes THAT much of a positive difference, or is 5% or there abouts the way to go? Just looking for experienced opinions on this, as I'm up in the air and need a bit of guidance:) Thanks!
I have tried both and only use 5% now. I really don't like a tacky feeling and since I know this can lend to that, I tend to stay clear of it. Each bar I make always has 5%.

Now my shampoo bars are higher at around 20%.
TeriDk, do you feel like the sugar gives you a lot more lather and noticable difference? I've added it in a few batches, but haven't been able to use it yet because of cure. So I have yet to know how I feel about it.

Soapsydaisy, I know, I love a bit higher lather, I've done 7% as well and LOVE it.

Overall, it seems like most of you are leaning towards lower percentages, anf for good reason. I think I'll adjust some recipes and see how it goes. Thanks everyone! I love it here, everyone is great.
Hi there!

High amounts of Castor do make a softer bar of soap, but I think it also depends on what other oils/waxes are in the recipe. My main, basic recipe uses Castor at 12.5%; the bars are hard after a 1 week cure, don't get slimy, and lather like clouds from above. However, in most of my other recipes I use Castor at around 6% (it fluctuates because I hate long decimals and round when needed) without issue. Haven't gone below that. I also am strictly Hot Process and almost always use yogurt, which factors into it too.

If you like the results, there's nothing wrong with Castor at 10% or more--but there's a point where there won't be much difference in the benefit. I don't think 15% will lather or bubble any better than 10%.
Hi! My main soap recipe is with 10% Castor oil. BUT...I also have a high percentage of hard oils and fats such as lard, tallow, coconut oil and some PKO. My other soft oil is Olive but over time it becomes 'hard' when soaped. My bars are very hard when cured and dried plus the lather is outstanding - like that of the best shampoo. It's the truth. Sorry but I will occasionally 'toot-my-horn' to stress a point.

When I did experiments testing my main recipe on lather production using cold, hard water the one with the 10% castor oil was tops - so I stuck with it.
I've never used more than 10%. I only use high amount when I have a large amount of hard oils though. Otherwise I use a very small percentage. Usually about 2% to 5%.