I’m new, so sorry if I’m posting in the wrong section.
Is there a close substitute for palm oil? I’m finding that it’s a little expensive.
Are you looking for a non-animal fat substitute? Or does it matter? If cost is your only concern, then the animal fats are probably your best sub for palm.
If animal fats are out, then butters are probably just as or more costly than palm, but that really depends on your sources. I used to buy shea butter for really low prices, but haven't bought any in quite awhile, so not sure if that's still possible.
For the best price of oils and your location, I'd suggest ordering from Soapers Choice
(or Columbus Foods) in Des Plaines, IL. To get the best shipping deals, play around with the size of the order, as when ordering a bit more to fill the shipping box you end up paying the same shipping cost for only one item, so I find the price per ounce or pound of oils is lower when I order more than less. Apparently shipping is based on the size of the box, rather than the weight of the product.
Also look for sales locally on other oils to offset your bottom line costs of making soap. For example, many people here find sales of Coconut oil at Smart & Final that are really very good. Sometimes lard is quite inexpensive at some Walmart stores (but this can really vary from state to state, I have noticed.) Riceland sells Rice Bran Oil on their site and often have really good sales, although I haven't bought from them since CoVid, so not sure if free shipping happens anymore.
Some folks find good prices on oils at Restaurant supply stores, but depending on what's available in your area, you may not be able to shop in one, as some require membership or that you are linked to a restaurant in order to purchase. So do a little research to find out if you can take advantage of what they may have to offer if there is one near you that you are able to utilize. We have one near us but the oils they carry are quite limited. I can get more variety of oils at Costco.