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Mason Jar Soap Pumps DIY Project

Updated on November 30, 2012
The pump on the right is my dish soap pump, the left one is my bathroom handsoap pump.
The pump on the right is my dish soap pump, the left one is my bathroom handsoap pump.

Handmade Soap Pumps Using Old Mason Jars

I have been wanting to try this crafty little project for months now, and finally I gave it a shot. What a success it turned out to be! I always seem to have jars of some sort (Mason jars or other random glass jars) and I just hate throwing them out because it seems like such a waste. Now that I know just how easy and rewarding this little DIY project is I think I'll be making lots and lots of soap pumps for Christmas gifts! I plan to make a set of two pumps for each person, one for soap and the other for lotion.

So, to get started with this project I rounded up any glass jars (with lids) that I had in my house. Many of the jars were left over from empty pickle jars or other glass jars that I just held onto and kept in a spare cupboard in my kitchen. I also purchased a set of Mason jars from the store which were somewhere around eight dollars. These jars included lids as well. I believe there were twelve jars in the set that I purchased. If you can't find Mason or Ball jars at any of your local stores, don't worry, they can also be purchased online. Once I had the jars I headed down to the local dollar store and bought lots of cheap handsoap. I needed the plastic pumps out of these in order to complete the project, and I figured I could transfer the soap into the soap pumps that I made as well.

Before you start your project make sure you have all of the following supplies:

  • Glass mason jars (any size your prefer), with lids
  • Plastic soap pump tops
  • Soap (dish soap, hand soap etc.)
  • Craft glue
  • Scissors
  • Exacto Knife (or box cutter)
  • Spray paint (I prefer bronze or nickel colored)
  • A hammer
  • A screwdriver
  • Ribbon or other decorating elements for your soap pump jars

Let's Get Started!

Okay, now that you have all of the materials you can begin the project. Make sure all your mason jars and lids are clean and dry. If you have mason jars that have the lids that come in two pieces (the rim and the actual flat center lid part) take some craft glue and line the inner lip of the rim with glue, then place the flat lid inside against the glue and push down. Let it dry completely before proceeding to the next steps. If you have lids that are already intact you're all set to proceed.

Screw the lids onto the jars. Get your screwdriver and place the sharp edge of the screwdriver in the center of the lid. (You can also use a large nail if you do not have a screwdriver). Take your hammer and gently pound on the end of the screwdriver handle until it breaks through the lid and creates a small hole. Now that you have your small hole, take your Exacto knife and start cutting the hole a little bigger. Take your time with this part and be very careful not to cut yourself. Small precise motions are best for this process. The blade should be very sharp or it will not cut through the metal lid. Keep your plastic soap pumps handy and keep trying to fit it into the hole you are making until it is able to slide all the way through and still fit nice and snug.

Once you have the plastic pump assembled onto the lid take your craft glue and flip the lid over. Put a bead of craft glue around where the plastic pump and the metal lid meet (on the bottom side of the lid). Use more glue if necessary to secure the plastic pump to the lid. Allow the craft glue to dry completely before proceeding to the next step.

Now you will need your spray paint. You can use any color spray paint that you wish, but I chose to use brushed bronze and nickel to keep with the rustic look. For kids' bathrooms a brigther color would also be cute! Carefully spray paint the entire top of the lid. The best way to do this is to apply several thin coats to prevent runs and drips. This also ensures that it is completely covered. You don't need to spray under the lid or the tube that goes down into the soap. Allow the paint to dry completely.

While your spray paint is drying you can fill your glass jars with soap. Once the lid is completely dry you can screw it onto your jar. At this point you can embellish or decorate your jar as you wish. Get creative with this part! If you're making these as gifts try to tie in some elements that will appeal to the person receiving the gift. You can decorate the jars with buttons or gems, or you can simply add some ribbon and bows to make them simple yet decorative. The possibilities for decorating these are endless.

Some of my homemade soap pumps with "floating words" in them.  Check out my other Hub article on how to get the "floating words" effect!
Some of my homemade soap pumps with "floating words" in them. Check out my other Hub article on how to get the "floating words" effect!

Just a few tips...

Like I mentioned before, you don't have to use mason jars. Pickle jars, jelly jars, and any other glass jars that you have will work for this project (as long as they have lids). My dish soap pump is actually made using a pickle jar (see picture above). I used the pickle jar because it was larger than my mason jars and would hold more soap.

You can also spray paint the glass portion of the soap pump if you prefer a solid color instead of the clear jar. Use painters tape to create neat designs on your jar before spray painting, then just peel off the tape and voila, a unique decorative soap jar.

You can use the jars for things other than soap. I made one for lotion as well, so now I have matching soap and lotion pumps in my bathroom.

If you have a power drill you can also use that to make the hole in the metal lid for the pump. Next time I make a set of these I'm planning to use my husbands power drill, which I'm expecting will be much easier than the Exacto knife.

Here's a helpful video I found on this DIY project...


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    • velzipmur profile image

      Shelly Wyatt 

      4 years ago from Maryland

      this is an awesome hub! I love this idea, thanks for sharing.

    • kmaskreations profile image


      6 years ago

      Great idea! I love jars and like to repurpose them. Definitely going to make a soap dispenser out of one. Thanks for sharing.

    • Rosie writes profile image

      Rosie writes 

      6 years ago from Virginia

      This is a great upcycling idea. Pinned to my Pinterest board.

    • Ninasvoice profile image


      6 years ago from England

      Fabulous idea! I'm saving every glass jar i find from now on. Great to give as a little gift :-)

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Great idea you have for making soap and lotion dispensers with Mason jars...I am hoping I will have time to make a few of these for my family and friends!

    • alisharenee profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from New York

      @Tina Truelove- So glad you found these helpful! I'm really loving the idea of homemade x-mas gifts this year. Good luck with your project, I always have lots of fun making these! :-)

    • profile image

      Tina Truelove 

      6 years ago

      This is a fantastic project idea! I love it. I am going to try this and hopefully present them for a few Christmas gifts as well. I will make a few for myself too. A cute jar with some sort of rooster theme will replace the plastic Palmolive container I have been refilling with less expensive Ajax dish detergent for months. :)

      Thank you for sharing this! Now, off to my local craft store for spray paint and a bag of those soap pumps!

      I also saw your hub on personalizing them. I am bookmarking both of your hubs, then voting them up and sharing them.

    • alisharenee profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from New York

      I'm glad that you all liked this idea as much as I do! @VirginiaLynne- I recently found several simple DIY soaps on Pinterest that I might try. These DIY mason jars would definitely make excellent containers for some homemade soaps. I think that majority of my close friends and family members will be receiving a set of these mason jar soap pumps for Christmas, one for lotion and the other for handsoap. Plus I can personalize them to fit each personality, yay!

    • VirginiaLynne profile image

      Virginia Kearney 

      7 years ago from United States

      This is a terrific idea. I think it would be a lot of fun to make up your own scented lotions and soaps to put in a jar like this. After hosting a spa party for my daughter's 11th birthday, I've been looking at different recipes to make your own cosmetics. This gives me a great idea of how to package them. One thing I'm thinking of is taking Bath and Body lotions and mixing them with shea butter--which is a nicer but cheap ointment. That would be great in this jar! Voted up and pinned.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 

      7 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      What fascinating tips on re-using mason jars. I have saved a few just hoping to find a good use for them. Thanks so much for these great ideas and for the videos. Voted up and away with sharing!

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 

      7 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Good idea. Very clever. Voted up, interesting useful and shared.

    • mpropp profile image

      Melissa Propp 

      7 years ago from Minnesota

      Great idea! I have lots of jars and I'm always looking for something to do with them. These make very nice yet practical gifts and the kids can help with the decorating portion. Nice hub!

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 

      7 years ago from Texas

      I love anything to do with mason jars... this is a great idea! Thank you for sharing :)

    • alisharenee profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from New York

      They really are great! I love that they can be personalized to make a great gift for anyone.

    • faythef profile image

      Faythe Payne 

      7 years ago from USA

      These are great


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