Soap Making Frenzy

I am loving this cold process soap making.  I think eventually that will be all I do.  I love being able to control absolutely every ingredient I put in it.  For example in a basic bar of Dial there is:

Active Ingredient: Triclocarban
Inactive Ingredients: SOAP (SODIUM COCOATE*, SODIUM PALM KERNELATE*, SODIUM PALMATE*, SODIUM TALLOWATE*), WATER, TALC, COCONUT ACID*, PALM ACID*, TALLOW ACID*, PALM KERNEL ACID*, PEG-6 METHYL ETHER, FRAGRANCE, GLYCERIN, SORBITOL, SODIUM CHLORIDE, PENTASODIUM PENTETATE, TETRASODIUM ETIDRONATE, TITANIUM DIOXIDE

In my cold process soap there is:

OLIVE OIL, COCONUT OIL, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, CASTOR OIL

interesting in the differences huh.  I only use essential oils for fragrance and natural colorants (ex. tomato powder, french green clay).  This last weekend I made two more batches of soap.  Mint Mojito (can’t wait to try this one out!) and Star Anise.

Mint Mojito freshly poured into the mold
Star Anise freshly poured into the mold

The mint mojito has french green clay (great for oily skin), lime essential oils, and peppermint essential oils.  It smells sooooo good!  The star anise has unsweetened cocoa powder for the brown color and anise essential oil.  If you like black licorice this is your soap!  Here’s what they look like now:
on the left: Mint Mojito
on the right: Star Anise

They are curing for 6 weeks and then I cannot wait to try them out.  I am going to try a tomato powder soap this weekend I think…

My favorite supplier

I thought I would take the time tonight to talk honestly about one of my favorite suppliers, Bramble Berry.   As we all know, I am a crafting addict.  I have used Bramble Berry’s products in most of my craftiness.  Should we explore?  Lets!

Melt and Pour:  Their MP bases are amazing!  I started out trying their organic MP which was very nice.  I found it to be a bit drying but it could have been my hard water too.  I graduated to their shea butter MP and it’s AMAZING.  I highly recommend.  I usually order it in bulk.

Essential Oils:  I love essential oils in my daily life as well as in my crafts.  I am always on the look out for quality ingredients.  I am highly impressed with the quality and cost for these oils.  I have yet to find one that I do not enjoy.

Fragrance Oils:  They have so many that I always have a hard time choosing.  I tend to pick a new one or two or three 😉 each time I order.  I love the information you get on their site about each FO and the scents are amazing.  My favorite to date is Macha tea.

Waxes:  I only buy my wax from BB.  Their eco soya wax is great to work with, has a great burn time, and is very affordable.  I have made candles, body balm, and lip balm with this wax.

I would love to be chosen for their SOAP panel to try their upcoming floral fragrances.  I know the ones I use now are a best seller.  I really want to break the FO’s down into how they react in MP as well as in other applications.  Such as body balm and room sprays for example.  So what do you think?  Could I be a lucky chosen one?  Oh I do hope so!!!  You should all visit soap queen for some great projects, incite, and guidance when it comes to bath and body products.

Castile Soap

I decided to try out one more type of soap in my CP (cold process) learning.  Since I am out of coconut butter I made castile soap.  What is Castile soap?
Castile soap is an olive oil based soap that once originated from Castile, Spain.  It produces a very hard bar of soap that is extremely gentile on the skin.

I wanted to make a bar that would help with acne and was gentile enough to be used on the face as well the body.  To do this I used a blend of essential oils that have acne fighting properties (spearmint, tea tree, rosemary, and lemongrass) and french green clay (which is good for oily skin.)  I also wanted to try to not gel this batch.  Because I live in cold Wisconsin, I placed my soap out in the garage. 

In theory if this soap works out, though I am pretty sure it did.  I will have a very hard bar of soap that is gentile on the skin.  It smells fantastic and has a nice sage green color.  This batch will cure for 6 weeks so I can test out 1 bar and the rest will cure longer.  It is said Castile soap needs a longer curing time to really become wonderful.  Patients is a virtue in soap making.

The Soap Evolution

Raw soap freshly poured into the mold.  Then covered with Saran Wrap and an old towel

About 30 min later: Soap starting to go through saponification and gel phase

What is meant by the term “gel phase”?

Gel phase simply refers to a part of the saponification process where the soap gets extremely warm and gelatinous. Soap that has not gel-phased is still soap. There is nothing wrong if your soap does not gel phase. You will find slight color and shine variations in gelled versus ungelled soap. Some soapers prefer not to have their soap gel at all so do not insulate. Again, it is a personal preference.

The next day: Soap out of the mold and curing for 6 weeks.

My first batch of CP soap

I bit the bullet today and made my first batch of cp soap. It was like being back in my college chemistry class. I had on safety goggles, long sleeves, rubber gloves, and the dogs were quarantined on the deck. I used a very basic 1 lb recipe since I don’t have a lot of experience and I wanted to get this first batch down first. With all the build up I have to say it was very anti-climatic. It wasn’t scary… it was pretty easy. Now, I won’t know if it worked out until tomorrow at the earliest but hey I made something and hopefully it was soap.

Here’s my soap that’s insulated with a towel just hanging out and going through saponification.

Here’s a sneak peek.  It is a very pretty deep yellow color.  I think it will be interesting to see what it looks like in a few weeks.

 

In other news I made the 1st of many stuffed animals for all my friends and fam that are having babies.

I think he turned out cute.  I made it so when it starts to fray a bit it will give him a bit of texture.  Also I used lots of pattern because patterning is important for vision development in youngins.  Anyone else crafty today?