Easy DIY Foaming Hand Soap




About: I like to take things apart and see how they work.

This is my first Instructable and I hope you like it!

I don't know about you but I love the Foaming Hand Soap when washing my hands. It takes very little effort to get my hands all lathered up and feeling good while washing. Only thing is it eventually comes to an end and runs out. So normally when this happens I generally will pick up some more on my next trip to the store. I don't like to waste plastic and throwing this nice little dispenser in the trash was just not going to happen, so I decided I would just buy some refill liquid soap on my next shopping trip.

Well, the refill liquid for the foaming hand soap dispenser was kinda pricy and I didn't purchase it, I decided to try a little experiment of my own and it worked out great. It took a few tries until I finally got the mixture the way we like it. We have been using it this way for several months now and use it at all sink locations in our home. (You can see one in the background of Step 1 at my kitchen sink)

I hope you enjoy this neat little trick and re-use your dispensers over and over again!

Things you will need:

  • Empty Foaming Hand Soap Dispenser
  • Concentrated Dishwashing Liquid (You could use regular just add more during Step 1)
  • Water from your faucet

Step 1: Creating Your Mixture

In this step we will pour some dishwashing liquid into the Foaming Hand Soap dispenser. Depending on the type of soap you use, you may need more or less to create your mixture.

I used Ultra Concentrated dish soap but you can use whatever you have.

  • Pour the soap in until it's about 3/4" from the bottom of the dispenser. (Again, this amount will be different if you use normal soap vs Ultra Concentrated like I used. Just experiment with it until you get it the way you like it.)
  • Fill the rest of the way up with water (slowly) leaving about a 1/2" from the top so the dispenser pump can be installed without spilling over the side.
    • For the sake of making this instructable, I poured the water in last, but normally I will pour the water in first to avoid any bubble mess when filling up from faucet.
  • Screw the cap back on the dispenser and shake up the mixture.
  • Vialo.. You're done!!

Extra Step (not needed)

I took a hair dryer and heated up the outside of the soap dispenser until it became warm enough for me to remove the labels on the front and back, since it had a logo and the scent information printed on it which I was now changing. This is not in the steps and is totally up to you if you want to remove. The hair dryer helped to remove the label without leaving a sticky film, although where I initially started peeling the label back had left some residue but it easily came off with a little rubbing alcohol and a cotton ball.



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    8 Discussions


    2 years ago

    I saw another tip that is slightly different. It called for the
    water first. Then add the soap. That tip also called for 4/5 water and
    1/5 soap. I think it might depend on the brand of soap.

    I'm going to try again soon. I tried before and didn't have any success. Best of luck to us all!!


    4 years ago on Introduction

    You know, I tried refilling a foaming liquid hand soap pump bottle with diluted, regular liquid hand soap, and it wouldn't produce a foam. This is interesting. But I'd be concerned that the dish soap would result in dry skin issues.

    2 replies
    spark masterTomV4

    Reply 3 years ago

    I just did two of them they worked fine for me. I did 1:3 ratio of soap to water by volume. I used a soap destined for standard pump bottle, national brand.

    A year when I use up the quart of soap I have will open the next bottle of Peppermint Castile Soap. Castile was a way of describing soap made in Spain, a long time ago in the UK, made from olive oil. PalmOlive Soap company, here in USA was made using palm/olive oils. Castile soap is also processed better then the typical soap made in Spain at the time. Castile soap was higher quality . The brits used whatever fat they had, beef/mutton tallow pig fat, whatever was around. It was coarser probably smelled a tad and was probably a tad caustic.


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    You make a good point, but I have been using it for months and so has my family with no issues. We wash our dishes with it as well with no dry skin issues, but that could vary depending on the person. You could choose your own dish soap and be sure it includes a moisturizer, just may require a different dilution ratio. depending on your soap. Thanks for commenting!

    spark master

    3 years ago

    used the soap from old dispenser water it down to 3 parts water 1 part soap. FABULOUS, cheap cheap cheap

    to you and all those who did their version of this instructable, it works great!

    I went to target and bought their branded cheapest clear soap for the dispenser. I have a half bottle of refill soap from my old annoying dispenser, (95 % of the soap goes down the drain with that type.

    I mistakenly had my kid buy me a jug of castile soap, (no big deal), and unfortunately I now have a 50 year supply of hand soap. It uses so little at 3:1, I will break down and get another dispenser, for bathroom and kitchen.

    1 reply
    Challonspark master

    Reply 3 years ago

    It's the simple things. ;) Glad it could help you.


    4 years ago on Introduction

    This is great! I love seeing new people posting really handy things like this! I'm looking forward to more great things from you!

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks tomatoskins! I do plan on creating more. I have lots of nifty projects currently going on and will have to remake some as I go in order to get pics and post materials and such.