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Tutorial: Stamping Soap with a Custom Soap Stamp from LaserCutz

stamping-soap-tutorialOne of the major challenges I faced when I started offering a package-free option for my soap was retaining brand identity, and that was easily solved with a custom soap stamp. With a custom soap stamp, I could stamp my cold process soap with my logo and not worry about any extra materials.

There are a large number of options for custom soap stamps out there, and it took me over a month to find one that would work. Why? Many of the stamp making companies told me that because my text logo contained so many fine intricate lines that it would be impossible to get a clear stamp without thickening the lines.

Then I found LaserCutz, thanks to a recommendation from a fellow soaper. I sent an email to Dave at LaserCutz to inquire what he thought of my logo and if it would work. Within 24 hours, he got back to me and said he’d love to give it a shot. I had my order placed and paid for within the next 24 hours, and a shipping notice in hand a day later. Talk about a speedy turnaround! Plus, LaserCutz’s custom soap stamps are extremely affordable in comparison to other options I looked at!

LaserCutz Custom Soap StampI was worried it would take a bit for my stamp to get here since LaserCutz is in the UK, and we’re right here smack dab in the middle of the US. However, less then a week later, I had my stamp in hand. Heck, I had my custom soap stamp from Dave before I even made it to the hardware store to buy a rubber mallet!

Once I gave stamping a shot on freshly sliced bar of cold process soap, I fell in love instantly. It was the perfect touch to my soaps, giving me the ability to keep my branding consistent, and begin offering the eco-friendly option of ditching packaging on retail orders. My customers love being able to ditch the packaging, both for environmental reasons and for cost reasons. I love keeping my company’s image consistent without a huge investment of time or money.

One thing I hear from many soapmakers is that they have trouble getting a clean impression with soap stamps, so here’s a mini-tutorial with some tips and tricks to how I get a nice clean imprint when I’m stamping soap.

Stamping Soap with a Custom Soap Stamp

Using a Rubber Mallet to Stamp SoapThe very first thing I do is lay out a huge grid of my soaps so I can stamp each soap in quick succession. I always stamp my soap immediately after cutting it, however, I use a high hard to soft oil ratio in my formula and discount my water by a significant amount. If I want to stamp a soap that does not have a water discount or has more soft oils, I wait 8 to 12 hours before stamping. For castile, I wait a couple of days after unmolding.

After centering the stamp on the soap, I apply even pressure on both sides (left and right) of the stamp, and give the stamp a good clean smack with a rubber mallet. Sometimes, I don’t hit it hard enough and will do it again BEFORE moving the stamp off the face of the bar. I find I get an even impression by holding both sides of the stamp secure.

Cleaning a Custom Soap Stamp with a ToothbrushIf the impression isn’t crisp, I immediately stop stamping and clean my soap stamp. The best way I have found to do this is with warm water and a firm toothbrush. The toothbrush bristles can get into all the little crevices of the stamp, and since any residue is soap itself, you just need water!

If the soap is lifting up with the stamp, try using a piece of plastic wrap over the soap/under the stamp or wait longer after cutting to stamp. Every formula has an ideal time frame for stamping, and that’s definitely a factor of trial and error!

A fun trick with soap stamps is dusting them with shimmery mica before stamping, which transfers the mica to the soap and colors the impression with sparkle-filled color. I find this too time-consuming for everyday soaps, but it really adds a nice pop to special soaps!

Are there any tips or tricks you have to share for using custom soap stamps?

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34 Responses

  1. Very nice. Thanks for sharing. Here’s my tip/trick. Another well known website recommends spritzing the stamp with rubbing alcohol. I *DO NOT* recommend using rubbing alcohol! Last year when I got my first stamps, I followed that advice and had a sudden occurrence of DOS in several batches. After some research and going back over production notes, the only common denominator I could come up with was the rubbing alcohol. If the soap is acting tacky, my suggestion is that you wait another 24 hrs and try again.

  2. Mahalo nui loa for sharing the knowledge & experience. It’s very much appreciated & incredibly helpful. After reading this post I experimented with stamping a few bars from a batch I unmolded & cut yesterday & following your advice. It worked out really well, thank you, unlike previous times where I followed advice found on other soaping sites that said to wait till it’s cured to stamp it. That never worked for me. Best Wishes & Aloha nui!

  3. Your stamping is a great addition to your beautiful soaps. Thanks for telling us about LaserCutz. I’ve been waiting forever to hear back from a different highly recommended overseas company and nothing. Two emails and nothing back. I just emailed LaserCutz! Can’t wait to get going on my stamping 🙂

  4. I followed your advice and got a soap stamp from LaserCutz. Those folks are very helpful, cheerful, and prompt. My soap stamp is BEAUTIFUL–just what I wanted. Can’t wait to try it! Thanks for saving me a ton of research time!

  5. Great little tutorial!

    I do have one more suggestion that has worked like magic for me: laying some stretch wrap over the soaps before stamping them. The impressions are very clean and it eliminates having to clean the stamp.

    Try it and let me know how it works for you!

  6. Great post. I also posted about Dave at Lasercutz as I am thrilled with their stamps. I have about 10 now, for various clients. I already follow most of what you suggest here. Adding sodium lactate to my soaps has improved ease and clarity of stamping even more. Love following your progress of your new project. xox Jen

  7. Thanks for the tutorial and the stamp resource info.

    I’ve attempted to leave impressions on my soap from objects and it’s only marred the surface.

    A personalized stamp is such a great finishing touch, informative too!

  8. Any advice on how to stamp soaps using mica without making a mess of the soap ? Any tips on ‘sealing the mica to the soap so it doesn’t rub off? Frustrated!

    1. Hi Christine! I typically tap off the excess mica on a stamp before stamping the soap. Then I use a barely damp microfiber cloth (with distilled water) to wipe off the face of the bar gently, if necessary. Hope that helps!

      Kenna

  9. Hi Kenna, I’m just curious….you said that you wanted to start stamping so that you could “ditch packaging”. So do you do no other labeling? Do you sell just naked stamped soap? Do we (for sales) not need to label ingredients and wt? I would also love to get rid of packaging, but I thought that we had to do these things. Please advise. Thanks so much!!!

    1. Soap does not require ingredients labeling, if it’s true soap. There are separate FTC regulations for unpackaged product that need to be followed (like a POS label), but the raw material cost of that version of “packaging” is much more time and cost effective for production instead of a full box or cigar band, in my personal experience. I highly recommend Marie Gale’s book on soap & cosmetic labeling. 😉

  10. Hi, thank you for this article. I have been wanting to get try soap stamping for awhile now. Will this technique also work with melt and pour soaps too?

  11. I LOVE my stamp from LaserCutz as well! Since I have 3 recipes that I routinely use, I have to adapt to stamping them at different times. I can’t seem to do much of a water discount, especially when using more than 2 colors, so I generally do not stamp the day I cut. One of my recipes has goat’s milk, buttermilk and greek yogurt in it, and even with sodium lactate they take quite a while before I can stamp them. I was in a hurry for a big show a couple of weeks ago, so had to stamp anyway, and the first couple were awful, with soap coming off with the stamp. I remembered hearing to use a bowl of water, and just dip the stamp in each time before stamping. It works great!!

  12. Hi Dear,
    I love how your soap look like. Specially your soap stamp. Can you provide me with the contact? I would really appreciate.

    Naline Heilbron
    Tanki Leendert
    Aruba
    Contact: naline1@gmail.com
    Greetings from Aruba

  13. I have found by pressing my soap stamp firmly and evenly down by hand and then lightly tapping with my rubber mallet leaves a perfect impression of my logo. I buy my custom soap stamps from 3dstampers on etsy and it is alot less money. Less than fifteen dollars. The quality is amazing.

  14. fatanstic l have been searching for were to learn standard soap making and cosmetics. l greatful l found one today please l need proper training from Nigeria help

  15. One thing to keep in mind is that it depends on where you live for labelling requirements. Here in Canada we do have to label the ingredients on our soap.
    I have also used Dave at lasercutz and stamp is great!

  16. I’m in the process of ordering everything I need to make soap. I have to admit, I’m very scared! I don’t want to mess up. I have my own little goats and all I want to make is different types of goats milk soaps, lotions, etc. I’m trying to think of everything I will need to get to make each bar complete. I want to stamp my soaps also. Is there any certain place that did your original design? So any thoughts or help you can provide is greatly appreciated!

  17. Thanks so much for this info. I’m making a soleseife soap and was told that you can’t use a stamp on that.
    Your article seems to make it sound like I only have to find the sweet spot of timing before it’s rock hard.
    Do you have any encouragement for a newbie on stamping soleseife? My logo is fab and I’d love to order a stamp or two from your recommended maker.
    Thank you!

    1. Karyn,
      I’ve not tried to stamp brine soap, but I suspect you have a very small window…if it is even possible. You might check in with LaserCutz to see if they know of any customers using their stamp on soleseife.

  18. Hi
    This has been quite helpful. I’m in the process of making hotel sized bar soaps and would like to know what type is suitable for all skin/age types types

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