This beautiful cream-coloured White Chocolate Peppermint Shampoo Bar delivers oodles of bubbles and a wonderful minty-chocolate scent in one elegant package (so to speak—shampoo bars are packaging-free!). I’ve called it a shampoo bar, but it also makes a beautiful body wash bar, helping reduce the number of products (and plastic bottles) in your shower. This is easily the simplest shampoo bar formulation I’ve shared so far, too!
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So, how simple is this formulation? So simple that you don’t need a press or even a mould! There’s no stirring and smashing a stiff mixture into compliance, and the ingredients used are pretty simple. When made as-written the pH lands right around 5, so you don’t have to worry about adjusting the pH, either. This shampoo bar is hand-smooshed and hand-moulded, so all you’ll really need are a pair of disposable nitrile or latex gloves and you’re off to the races!
The bulk of this White Chocolate Peppermint Shampoo Bar is a blend of two different gentle solid anionic surfactants—Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (SCI) and Sodium Lauryl Sulfoacetate (SLSa). That powdery mixture is then moistened with some amphoteric Cocamidopropyl Betaine and hydrolyzed quinoa protein, plus a touch of fresh peppermint essential oil and some Optiphen Plus to preserve the whole lot. We’ll mash all that together with gloved hands to create a moldable dough.
Up next, we’ll squish in a healthy dose of chocolatey cocoa butter to make the bars more gentle, firm them up, and bring that delicious cocoa-y scent to the table. Once the melted cocoa butter is thoroughly incorporated we’ll have a workable dough that can be smooshed into whatever shape you like; I went for a stubby log shape, using a sheet of parchment paper to roll it up a bit (watch the video to see what I mean!). Freeze, and then age. I checked the weights of my experiments over the course of 2.5 weeks; they lost about 0.5% in 1 day, 1% in 3 days, 1.8% in 11 days, and 2.3% in 19 days. Generally speaking the longer you leave them to dry, the better, but I’d say 3 days is the sweet spot for the amount of water lost vs. the time it takes to evaporate off.
The finished, aged bar is very firm and lathers up like a dream in the hair or a loofah. The chocolatey minty scent is wonderful first thing in the morning to get you pepped up to face these dark, winter days (it may also inspire minty hot cocoa cravings!). I hope you enjoy making and using this shampoo as much as I have!
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White Chocolate Peppermint Shampoo Bars
7.5g | 15% cocoa butter
24.5g | 49% powdered Sodium Cocoyl Isethionate (SCI) (USA / Canada)
12.5g | 25% Sodium Lauryl Sulfoacetate (SLSa) (USA / Canada)
2.25g | 4.5% Cocamidopropyl Betaine (USA / Canada)
2.25g | 4.5% hydrolyzed quinoa protein
0.5g | 1% peppermint essential oil
0.5g | 1% Optiphen™ Plus (USA / Canada)
Prepare a water bath by bringing about 3cm/1″ of water to a bare simmer over low to medium-low heat in a small saucepan.
Weigh the cocoa butter into a small heat-resistant measuring cup or beaker and place it in the prepared water bath to melt through.
When the cocoa butter has melted, add that to the mashed surfactant mixture and blend with your hands until uniform. Once you have a smooth, workable dough, shape it into a rough puck/log shape and freeze for 20 minutes before leaving to age for at least 72 hours before using.
To use, work into a rich lather in wet hair or on a wet loofah. Use as you would any sort of bar soap or shampoo.
Because this shampo bar will regularly come into contact with water, you must include a broad-spectrum preservative to ward off microbial growth. This is non-optional. Even with a preservative this project may eventually spoil as our kitchens are not sterile laboratories, so in the event you notice any change in colour, scent, or texture, chuck it out and make a fresh batch.
As always, be aware that making substitutions will change the final product. While these swaps won’t break the recipe, you will get a different final product than I did.
- As I’ve provided this recipe in percentages as well as grams you can easily calculate it to any size using a simple spreadsheet as I’ve explained in this post. As written in grams this recipe will make 50g, which is enough for one good-sized bar.
- To learn more about the ingredients used in this recipe, including why they’re included and what you can substitute them with, please visit the Humblebee & Me Encyclopedia. It doesn’t have everything in it yet, but there’s lots of good information there! If I have not given a specific substitution suggestion in this list please look up the ingredient in the encyclopedia before asking.
- Please don’t substitute the cocoa butter or peppermint essential oil; they’re integral to the theme of the bar.
- If you don’t care about the theme you could try tucuma butter instead of cocoa butter.
- If you’d like to learn more about the surfactants used and compare them to ones you might already have so you can make substitutions, check out this page. Remember that you may need to test and adjust the pH of the bars if you use different surfactants.
- You could use a different liquid hydrolyzed protein.
- If you’re like to use a different preservative, please review this page. Liquid Germall Plus would also work.
The hydrolyzed quinoa protein was gifted by Essential Wholesale.