Simple Living – Make your own ‘dirt-cheap’ handwash

Over a whole year it can cost quite a lot of money to provide handwash at sinks and basins. Since it really is quite literally ‘money down the drain’ it makes a lot of sense to cut the cost of it if possible. I found a way that works for us.

Here’s how…

Take one empty liquid soap container…


Purchase one bottle of  ‘economy brand’ bubble bath. Mine cost only 18p for a Litre bottle. It says 21p on the bottle, but even that was reduced (so i bought 3 or 4 more!).


Slowly pour the liquid into the empty bottle.


Fill as many empty liquid handwash containers as you have!


A 1 litre bottle of bath foam’ fills 2 x 500ml bottles, so whereas i would ordinarily pay £1 per 500ml bottle of handwash (minimum), the 1 litre of bath foam fills 2 x 500ml bottles for only 9 pence a bottle each.

Now that is what i call economy! It might not be everyones cup of tea, faffing around like this, but it suits me fine and helps me to cut the cost of expenditure on toiletries/cleaning products, so i thought i’d share it with you.

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13 Responses to Simple Living – Make your own ‘dirt-cheap’ handwash

  1. Adrienne says:

    I’ve been filling my bottles with dish washing soap (an organic kind from Costco). You need about 1/4 of the amount to get some great suds (just a bit of a pump on the bottle), and it costs waaaay less than those over-priced hand washes.

    • ukok says:

      Adrienne, i wish there was a Costco nearby where i live but unfortunately there isn’t. I just knew you would be one of us thrifty non nonsense don’t pay over the odds ladies!

  2. Moni says:

    You can take it even one step further and fill it half bubble bath and the rest water 😉
    Only when I work I insist on using the ‘real’ anti-bacterial soap. I am a nurse / health visitor going from home to home and last thing I want is spread little nasties among an already vulnerable group of people.

    For lots of cleaning jobs I keep a spray bottle with either some all purpose cleaner and water, or white vinegar and water. Use it with a rag and at times a bit of elbow grease, cheap and works like a dream! You really do not need as much of the soap as the manufacturerers like to make you believe.

    • ukok says:


      Last week i tried having half water and half bubble bath but it just sprayed out all over the place and i ended up using it to clean the sink woth, i think i better find one of those foam dispensers which use only a tiny bit of liquid and a lot of water!

      I use vingear for windows too….and i used to dry them off with old newspapers to bring up a nice shine but nowadays i use kitchen towel or a microfibre cloth!

      Keep sharing all your wonderful tips and advice Moni!

  3. Suzanne says:

    You know, I think what you are doing here is wonderful and any of us that might not be willing to try these different ideas..well, I’d call us purty stupid!
    So, you go, lady! There are all kinds of ways to cut back.
    One thing that I am trying to do is cut back on meat consumption by making casseroles that are very tasty and contain some meat and but little and yet are filling.
    We just don’t need as much as we think, but it is hard because many of us like it so. My family hasn’t complained yet and nobody looks too skinny, with the exception of Shane and Danny and they just happen to have this slender type build anyway and Shane is not a big meat eater except sometimes, so, I think it is not a bad thing as long as I’m trying to fill them in
    a basic nutritious way and if he wants more meat, he is always free to have it if its here!
    I also look at the clearance items on sale for clothing on the internet and there are plenty. We also go to
    used clothing stores to get lots of bargains on those things, books, and videos, etc. There are if I would just quit having the urge to eat out. Good thing Lent is here!

    • ukok says:


      as i tried to write in an earlier comment (i think i somehow lost it), even if it were not necessary for me to tighten my purse strings, i still would. I totally agree with you about reducing the meat content of famly meals and also of haveing vegetable or fish based meals. Sometimes me and DD will just have jacket potates with cheese and beans or with a tuna salad. It isn;t necessary to have meat in every meal and the cost of meat really adds to the grocery bill!

      I sympathise because i know all too well about the urge to eat, it is my ain area of sinfulness and i hate that about myself. In fact one of the reasons i want to learn to look at myself with the eyes of God, is in the hope that i will learn to love myself…thanks for sharing your thoughts on this Suz!

  4. GetteNM says:

    Very clever! I wonder if one can make one’s own “anti-bacterial” hand soap by adding a bit of rubbing alcohol (hospital “spirits” it might be called in the UK?)or maybe hydrogen peroxide?

    You’d have to try just a tiny bit first, I imagine; I wouldn’t want you to have a science experiment gone terribly wrong! LOL

    • ukok says:

      That’s a good idea Gette, i was wondering how i could make an antibacterial version, because that is the liquid soap i usually purchase up till now. I’m going to do a spot of googling and if i find out what we Brits can add to the liquid soap, i will let you know. Thanks for this!

      Got to go and collect the kids from school/college, will respond to more comments soon!

  5. Sarah says:

    I use these soap suds pumps – about a quarter inch of regular soap, fill with water, shake and it pumps suds (not soap). YOu can reuse the ones in the store or you can buy one from Pampered Chef (in-home type sales, like Tupperware). The foaming soaps? That’s what I meant. A very large bottle of washing up liquid for $5 goes a very very long way in this manner. In fact, I may have to give more than half that large bottle away when we move (movers won’t pack and ship that kind of stuff)

    • ukok says:

      Sarah, I had heard about the foam pumps, but the only ones i can find here either cost a fortune or tey are the bright purple Kandoo kids ones! I think it’s a great idea to use the foam dispenser since it uses even less soap 🙂

  6. Barbara says:

    I would suggest that you make it anti bac by adding a few drops of tea tree oil to the soap mixture…

  7. kim says:

    You can make bacterial liquid soap out of bacterial bar soap. Just put it into a small chopper and make soap chips. Save your old pump bottles that become empty. Fill one with hot water, add the chips enough to dissolve after shaking. Buy the generic bar soap. That’s where the savings come in.

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