Sodium lactate is the sodium salt of lactic acid, and has a mild saline taste. It is produced by fermentation of a sugar source, such as corn or beets, and then, by neutralizing the resulting lactic acid.
Sodium lactate is a liquid salt that can be added to cooled lye water in order to speed up unmolding time. Using sodium lactate produces harder, longer-lasting bars of cold process soap.
Sodium lactate is commonly used in cosmetics as a preservative, exfoliant, and humectant.