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This article is about the current version of DF.
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Soap sprite preview.png

Soap is a particularly useful type of bar used for personal cleaning, which increases happiness ("recently took a soapy bath") and lowers the chances of an infection in case of injury, and for cleaning wounds in hospitals, preventing infections from developing. It is thus a vital commodity in dwarven health care, and one not traded in caravans: you're going to have to make soap yourself.

Stockpile soap is filtered under bar/block -> Bars: other materials.

Unlike most other items, bars of soap have a "durability" level which allows jobs to partially consume them – each bar starts with 150 units, and cleaning jobs consume varying quantities of soap before ultimately using it up.


Soap is made of two components, lye and fat (either tallow or oil), and requires a dedicated workshop, the soap maker's workshop. It has a somewhat complicated production process; lye must be produced at an ashery from ash, which in turn must be created at a wood furnace from wood logs that must first be cut down. Tallow is rendered from the fat from butchered animals at a kitchen, requiring either livestock or hunting activities, while oil must be pressed from seeds or rock nuts at a screw press, which first requires gathering or growing crops and then processing them at the farmer's workshop. One unit of tallow or oil plus one of lye creates a single bar of finished soap.

Soapmaking procedure
Chop wood Butcher an animal Mill seeds with a quern or millstone Press oil from olives (fruit) in a screw press
Make ash in a wood furnace Render fat in a kitchen Press oil from seed paste in a screw press
Make lye at an ashery Tallow Oil
Lye Tallow or Oil
Make soap at a soap maker's workshop


Dwarves do not require soap to clean contaminants such as mud and blood from themselves – if necessary, they will use murky pools, artificial pools of water, brooks, or a well. However, using soap will often generate the happy thought "recently took a soapy bath". It is possible to construct bath-houses (rooms containing pools of water, a soap stockpile, and perhaps a few nice statues) so dwarves living deep underground need not venture to dangerous cave pools or surface brooks to clean off a little mud or some bloodstains. For cleaning wounds and preventing infection after surgery, however, hospitals should be kept stocked with a small amount of soap. Soap will get used up as dwarves wash themselves, and dirtier dwarves consume soap more quickly.

Dwarves have an internal "dirtiness" level, which slowly builds up over time, gets lowered when they have a bath, and lowered further when they have a soapy bath. This "dirtiness" value is connected to the chance of getting an infection if the dwarf is injured, making soap useful as a preventative as well as treatment.

Soap is stored in bar/block stockpiles with the "soap" option enabled.

Some important notes when setting up work orders for soap is that the generic material type is not located in materials. When you set up the work order, you need to add all the recommended conditions from the bottom but then for the material, make sure this is set to bars (there are types of soap in here for material but no general one) by using the Mat button with the red arrow as in the image below. Then go to the Adj button shown with the green arrow and choose Soap items. This will change your bars to say soap bars now and will be generic to any type of soap in the stockpile.
Soap WO.png

Image below is what you see when using the Adj button and searching for soap.
Soap2 WO.png

"Soap" in other Languages Books-aj.svg aj ashton 01.svg
Dwarven: uben
Elvish: dathe
Goblin: snubez
Human: kamven

More: GemsMetalsStones
BloodBoneBrainCartilageCheeseChitinEggFatFeatherHair (WoolYarn) • HoofHornIchorLeatherMilkMuscleNailNervous tissueParchmentPearlScaleShellSilkSkinSpitSweatTallowTearsToothWax
Fiber (PaperSlurry) • FlowerFruitLeafOil • Plant powders (DyeFlour) • Seed (Press cake) • Wood
AmberAshCoralFilthFuelGlassGrimeIceLyeMagmaMudPearlashPotashSaltUnknown substanceVomitWater
See also: Material science
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