How to Start a Soap Making Business

How to Start a Soap Making Business

Starting a business is not rocket science but not to mean it is for the faint hearted. Being a business man is not a natural talent you were born with and it can be done by anyone who has the ability to spot business opportunities, passion for business, grit, patience, willingness to learn and adaptability to changing situations. These are some of the few traits of an entrepreneur and they don’t have to be inborn but can also be acquired. If you feel you have some of these traits then you are on the right person we are addressing in this article on how to start a soap making business.

How to Start a Soap Making Business - SME Resource CentreHow to start a soap making business step by step

Type of soap

The first thing you need to have is what type of soap you want to produce. Are you interested in bar soap or liquid soap? Whatever type of soap you are interested in there are different types of soap depending on the intended use. For example, you can go for liquid soap used as shower gel, hand wash, floor cleaning, car wash, utensils etc. you can also opt for a bar soap and also in this case you have many options like beauty soap, laundry soap, general purpose soap etc.

Type of equipment needed

After settling on the type of soap, you will now need to choose the right machinery and equipment to use for mass production. These are things like mixers, moulds(which you can get affordably from SME Resource Centre), thermometers, safety gear like gloves, masks, googles etc.

Raw materials

Different soaps require different raw materials. You need to know what are the right and quality raw materials you need to use. Getting this right has many advantages and some of them include;

  • High quality products,
  • Safe to use products,
  • Approval by KEBS,
  • Competitive advantage over your rivals etc.

During training we will teach you where you can get the best raw materials for your products which brings us to the next point.


Depending on the type of soap you want to produce, you will need professional training from a qualified person. At SME Resource Centre we have well trained, qualified and experienced trainers who can train you in acquiring the right skills and knowledge in soap production and other business skills like marketing, business expansion, financial management, business management etc. after training you will receive a certificate and we will also commission your business so it can start running. We will also walk with you the journey of entrepreneurship until you become an established entrepreneur.


Choosing your business location is very important because it determines how convenient it will be to access raw materials and reach the market. A bad location will hinder easy access of both the market and raw materials and a good one will make it easier to access the two. It is therefore very important that you choose wisely.

Licenses and permits

In Kenya, it is required for any business to have the relevant operation licenses and permits. You need the following documents:

  • Certificate of registration either as a business name or a company
  • County council business permit
  • NEMA certificate
  • KEBS certificate

Once you have the above, you can be assured you will not find yourself on the wrong side of the law. The good thing is that these days it’s very easy to acquire the necessary documentation when starting a business because most if not all can be done online and paid through the mobile money payment options.

Distribution channels

The final step is establishing the best distribution channels for your products. You can opt to establish relationships with supermarkets and wholesalers who will distribute your products or you can distribute them personally to retailers, kiosks and shops in estates and other urban centers.

The information above on how to start a soap making business is not exhaustive but a general guide on how to go about it. We encourage you to do some research on this type of business and engage people who can mentor you in entrepreneurship.

You also need to check out our earlier article on the 7 deadly risks that can kill your business to know things you need to avoid while doing business.

At SME Resource Centre we offer you all the support you need in terms of skills training and sourcing the right machinery for you. Get in touch with us today for more details.