verb. become converted into soap by being hydrolized into an acid and alcohol as a result of being treated with an alkali.
verb. convert into soap by hydrolizing an ester into an acid and alcohol as a result of treating it with an alkali.
Example sentences of the word saponify
1. Verb, base form
A heated lye (strong alkaline) solution is used to break down or saponify the warm fats or oils into components that then thicken into a pudding-like mixture and recombine to form soap.
2. Noun, singular or mass
Alkaline chemicals taste bitter and feel slippery to the touch because the oils on human skin saponify, or become soaplike, when they come into contact with a base.
3. Verb, non-3rd person singular present
To make soap that lathers better, use a ratio of 4/5 base oil (usually olive oil) to 1/5 richer oils that saponify well.