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Thread: Soapmaking

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    Soapmaking



    Orange Soap

    30% olive oil
    30% paprika-infused olive oil
    20% coconut oil
    20% almond oil
    threw in some 10x orange + eucalyptus essential oils
    dried calendula petals blended in & as topping

    superfatted 3%

    NOTES
    i'm using an old scale that's not very precise so i accidentally used more olive oil and lessened the amount of coconut and almond oils to compensate. it ended up being about 16.8% almond and 16.8% coconut, in a 16 oz. total of oils. (i've only been doing this for a few weeks so i haven't used any more than 16 oz. of oils. my test batches come out to about 23 oz. of product, which can be cut into 6 small but good-sized bars.)

    mostly it's the orange that shines through in the final scent. i wish i'd used more eucalyptus for a more nuanced, interesting scent. i wonder if i should measure out the amount of essential oils i use to have more control over the strength and quality of the fragrance, but i haven't really done that so far. i just throw in the EO at trace, kinda like how i'd throw in salt when cooking.

    before i was just using a shoebox as a mold, so this time i tried upping my game with a silicone mold-- haha. i don't think i like this at all, but i'm not sure. the silicone doesn't allow for a lot of air circulation so it seemed pretty soft still when i detached the soap and it didn't come out totally clean. the stickiness may be due to the recipe itself using a good amount (too much?) of "soft" oil (almond). i can't wait to try out shea butter. that should also make for a harder bar. anyway, this seems like a common enough problem with silicone molds and next time i'm thinking about lightly coating the sides with oil and/or just investing in a nice wooden mold.

    there was slight cracking on the surface of the soap, partial gelling and a tiny amount of bubbling, which could be seen once i cut the bars. next time i could try freezing the soap before cutting to skip gel phase altogether. it could be also the amount of sugars (?) in the orange EO contributing to the heating, and even the silicone itself which i imagine is very insulating. whatever it was, the middle of the loaf got trapped in a high temp and there's a slight visual inconsistency in the final soap.

    thinking about letting this one cure for at least a month.

    i'm still very much experimenting and figuring stuff out as i go, so yeah.
    Last edited by jigglypuff; 03-10-2015 at 11:50 PM. Reason: word
    the clouds in the sky caress my mind so tenderly

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    Vacantly Occupied rincon's Avatar
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    That's really cool. I use and appreciate handmade/artisanal soap. I've thought about trying to make some myself but haven't yet taken the plunge.

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    That looks really neat. One question, I'm reading about soap, and notice that lye is the ingrediant that makes soap soap. Are you substituting lye with something else?

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    Quote Originally Posted by rincon View Post
    That's really cool. I use and appreciate handmade/artisanal soap. I've thought about trying to make some myself but haven't yet taken the plunge.
    i've always been really into soap (that sounds weird) so it's natural that i'd learn how to make it & now i'm kinda obsessed. it takes a lot of preliminary research though to get going. i guess i'd recommend watching YouTube videos or something to see ways of handling the lye and the different stages-- that seems to be what people freak out about the most.

    i was kinda scared too cuz my equipment is really scrappy. for mixing i'm just using an old blender & i haven't been taking temperatures so far. it's just not very "fancy" but maybe i'll get there later.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lud View Post
    That looks really neat. One question, I'm reading about soap, and notice that lye is the ingrediant that makes soap soap. Are you substituting lye with something else?
    no, i'm using lye.
    the clouds in the sky caress my mind so tenderly

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    Member Ruby_Bookrose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tele View Post
    to see ways of handling the lye and the different stages-- that seems to be what people freak out about the most.

    i was kinda scared too cuz my equipment is really scrappy. for mixing i'm just using an old blender & i haven't been taking temperatures so far. it's just not very "fancy" but maybe i'll get there later.


    no, i'm using lye.
    yes, I would have to investigate how to work with the lye too.

    If the picture is one of your creations, it looks quite good. We have a wanna-be whole foods in my small town and they sell stuff like this. Yours looks just as good if not better.
    Do all the recipes you've seen take Eucalyptus or is that just some that are aroma-therapeutic?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ruby_Bookrose View Post
    yes, I would have to investigate how to work with the lye too.

    If the picture is one of your creations, it looks quite good. We have a wanna-be whole foods in my small town and they sell stuff like this. Yours looks just as good if not better.
    Do all the recipes you've seen take Eucalyptus or is that just some that are aroma-therapeutic?
    that picture is mine, and thanks. i really have to try out more/different ingredients though before i think about selling. i haven't used my own soap bars yet (beyond washing my hands with scraps) but i imagine they might have a bit of a drying effect on skin due to the combo/proportion of oils i'm using. with that sort of thing it's better to be safe than sorry-- i'd try out anything i wish to sell first. i'm trying shea butter and castor oil in one of my next batches (attempting a more moisturizing body soap) since i've seen a lot of recipes use those and i'd like to see the effects they have.

    i haven't seen all recipes use eucalyptus, but i like the scent. last week i made a lavender & eucalyptus-scented bar with oatmeal, and i really like that combo.
    the clouds in the sky caress my mind so tenderly

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    Hasta Siempre Madrigal's Avatar
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    This is amazing! I'd love to make my own soap. Do you have access to andiroba oil there? It has a wonderful fresh, earthy scent and is a commonly used in the Amazon, some cosmetic companies like Brazil's "Natura" incorporate it into their catalogue. I would probably try to find a way to include that ingredient. Dunno if I have the time to start trying this in the near future though.
    Everything under heaven is in utter chaos; the situation is excellent. - Mao

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    @Madrigal
    i just looked that up, and it seems some online suppliers carry it. i'll look into it, thanks for the suggestion.
    the clouds in the sky caress my mind so tenderly

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    Meae Musae Servus Hephaestus's Avatar
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    Hmmm. Preliminary research shows this takes a few weeks to cure...More importantly, it seems to require very little effort on my part while seeming like magic to a modern person who doesn't know it's easier (though potentially more dangerous) than making a cake. It sounds like a perfect opportunity for cheap doable Chrimmas/Birfday gifts.
    Most of time, when people ask why something terrible happened, they don't realize they are looking for someone to blame.

    --Meditations on Uncertainty Vol ξ(x)

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    Limber Member floid's Avatar
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    Years ago I made soap for fun and profit (mostly the former) using this book as a basic guide.

    The most critical part of making lye soap is in having your oil blend and lye/water mixture at precisely the correct temperatures before you mix them and commence the lengthy stirring process.
    Lye soap has to cure for at least three weeks to be safely usable and you need to periodically scrape the powdered lye off the surface of the bars during the curing process.
    One of my favorites was almond oil blended with shea and lots of cocoa butter. Smelled like you were showering in a Chocolate Shop.

    You'll also have much better luck in having the mixture set up properly if you do it on a day where the humidity is low.

    Saponification can be a finicky process.
    Society is like a stew. If you don’t stir it up every once in a while then a layer of scum floats to the top.
    -- Edward Abbey

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