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Soap Cubes

Go ahead: Wash your hands with these colorful cubes. They're actually glycerin soaps easily made using a plastic ice cube tray as the mold.

soap cube in glass container

Photography: Petrina Tinslay

Source: Martha Stewart Living, June 1999


Like cubes of ice, they'll also melt—getting gradually smaller as each pair of hands is washed. We arranged these in a glass apothecary jar for a beautiful display in the bathroom, perfect for houseguests. Experiment with ice-cube trays of various shapes and sizes, and mixing different colors. If, in the soap-making process, you find that the glycerin soap base produces bubbles, give the cubes a spritz of rubbing alcohol between pouring layers. 


For more ideas, scroll through our entire collection of Soap-Making Projects and Ideas.


  • Clear glycerin soap base (Pictured: Clear Organic SFIC Glycerin Melt and Pour Soap Base, $5 per pound,

  • Liquid food coloring

  • Petroleum jelly

  • Cotton swabs

  • Ice cube tray

  • Heatproof glass measuring cup


  1. Glycerin is usually sold in large blocks; to melt it, cut it to a size that will fit in a microwavable bowl or measuring cup.

    soap cubes materials
  2. Smear a dab of liquid food coloring into the bowl or measuring cup with a cotton swab. Food coloring is very concentrated, so only use a dab; try mixing different colors.

  3. Heat the glycerin in a microwave on high, stirring at 15-second intervals, until it's completely melted.

  4. Use a cotton swab to coat the inside of the ice-cube tray with petroleum jelly. Pour the melted glycerin into the tray, filling each section almost to the top.

  5. Cool for about 2 hours; the soap cubes will pop right out.

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