How to Refill a Foaming Hand-soap Container





Introduction: How to Refill a Foaming Hand-soap Container

About: In a world where the blind leads the blind, who do you follow?

This is a method to expand the lifespan of your foaming liquid hand soap (and container).

The foaming hand soap containers in question have a little disclaimer on them stating not to refill them with regular hand soap or they will clog. This is indeed true, however I've noticed a lot of people either throwing away the empty plastic container (what a waste!) or refilling it with regular hand soap, after which they just don't work.

The process is incredibly simple - the foaming pump works because it injects a bunch of air into a small amount of soap as it pumps. Most hand soap is too viscous to accept this air, and it just causes problems. Solution? Make a solution! Water down the soap!

Step 1: Choose a Soap

I went with whatever we had around - apple body wash. It's hard to make out in the picture, because of the colour - but I've filled the pump container with about 1/5th soap, then fill to about an inch from the top with water (to prevent overflow when the pump is inserted)

Tip: Add the water slowly, so as to not agitate the soap too much - if it mixes while you're adding water, you will have a hard time getting it to fill without overflowing with suds everywhere.

Step 2: Agitate

This is up to you - freedom for the masses:

Agitate slowly, or violently, however you prefer. Just mix until all the soap is 'dissolved'.

Step 3: You're Finished!


Now you're on to using less soap, and wasting less plastic!

Behind the scenes: Soap itself doesn't really clean your hands. Soap merely makes most dirt more happy to mix with water than it is to stick to your hands. Hence why this product is so great. You can start with the foam (already 4:1 mixed with water) and do most of the hand cleaning with that, then simply use a LITTLE tap water to rinse off. Water savings too!

Downside - its more work. Alternately, you could prepare some watered-down hand-soap in a spare 4L jug, and keep that handy to refill your pumps.




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    92 Discussions

    I make my own soaps and foaming soaps, doing this recipe I find that the soap still settles, then won't pump out again until it's shook up, which makes it very annoying. I do this with my dawn foamy soap though in the kitchen using about 1" of dawn in the refill soap dispenser then hot water, be sure to leave a good 1" from the top free or more, as it needs air to pump too. I wish hand soaps stayed mixed as well

    So are u saying basically that we r being ripped off by the foam soap cos. since it is diluted, watered down soap, which btw, they charge more 4?!

    2 replies

    The cost of shipping things depends on two variables: Volume and weight. The "foaming soap refill" stuff is just soap (detergent, really) diluted with water. Remove the extra water and you have both less volume and less weight. So when you buy that refill, you're mostly paying for someone else to ship a larger container that weighs more simply because it has extra water. You're not really being ripped off, but what you're paying extra for is not necessary.

    Soap plays very important role in our life. Soap prevent fro m germs.

    4 parts warm water into the bottle (warmth aids mixing)

    1 part soap into the bottle (soap 2nd prevents foaming)

    1 to 4 ratio of soap (Softsoap) to water was perfect. The trick is to shake it so the soap mixes with the water and becomes uniform. Saving money on every squirt :)

    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 read somewhere else to use baby wash and then add the water. Love DIY <3

    I have found that watering down Dr Bronners liquid castile soap works great diluted in an old foam soap dispenser. No SLS, makes the soap go further, and my kids find it much easier to rinse off than conventional hand soap. :)

    4 replies

    Yes, I too use Dr Bronners peppermint soap in my foamer. The result is soooooo nice!

    Thank you for this! I just made it today. My method:

    4 parts warm water into the bottle (warmth aids mixing)

    1 part soap into the bottle (soap 2nd prevents foaming)

    Lid on, then shake vigorously to mix

    Works great!

    I know this is an old post but here is my suggestion,

    a triple batch , make it in a separate container, make it before you
    need it, and shake it up 4 times a day for a few days or until it is
    thoroughly mixed. I do this to thin out regular hand soap as it is too
    thick and kids just waste it.

    I wish I had seen this when it was first done. Off to find a bottle now!

    Method has the best pump mechanisms. They also sell foaming dishwashing liquid, with a trigger-type pump. The dilute solution cleans better and rinses off easier than regular dishwashing liquid.

    I have had the same foaming hand soap bottle for 3 years - one of the Method brands from Target. I just bought the gallon refill of hand soap and have been using that one refill bottle for just as long - 3 years - because I only have to use so little of the soap to refill the bottle. I mix 1 part soap to 2 parts water. You can even play with the amounts to achieve thicker or thinner foam.

    I should've looked for an instructable before trying my hand at this. Mine came out too thick as I used 1:2 soap to water when I should've used 1:4.

    Ok. I just bought some refill soap for the Dial foaming hand pump. I refilled it, and now it will not work like it did before. The solution sputters and comes out in squirts; not the smooth foam like before. Is there any way to fix this?