Friday, 4 January 2008

Ham Soap??

I made soap yesterday, cold process loaded with luxury oils and ingredients like jojoba and goat's milk. Let's just say I made an expensive mistake. Okay, LOTS of mistakes.

Number one, I am an impatient person. Very, very impatient. Mixed the lye with oils when both were not at the same temperature. Oils were too hot at about 70C and lye was about 45C. I know, I know! I bet you know what happened. No? I'll tell you.

This recipe had tons of extra virgin olive oil so as you can guess I was stirring till my arms were about to break. Added the extra ingredients before trace because yes, I'm impatient. The goat's milk powder AND the honey caramelised giving it a weird dark orangey colour and the lye probably saponified the jojoba oil which was supposed to be used for superfatting.

Finally, I got it to trace. Or so I thought. Poured the soap into the moulds and lo and behold, like magic, the mixture started separating before my wide eyes. Why? Lye and oils at different temperature. NOW I know why they need to be the same. The hard way.

I was determined NOT to let it go to waste so I dumped it back in the pot and started stirring and stirring with the stick blender until everything was incorporated. However the colour of the soap was atrocious so i dumped in some titanium dioxide to lighten it.

This morning I cut the soap into pieces. Dan looked over and said "What's that you're cutting up? Ham?"


Dan backs away slowly. "Uh, okay okay, I was just kidding. It's totally...soap."

Ham????? Okay, I admit defeat. The soap is now the colour of ham. If there is a soap god, he hates me.

Anyway! I have a question and if anyone can give me some suggestions I'd appreciate it! How do you get citrus essential oils to hold up in soap? I heard somewhere you can mix it with kaolin clay but I'm not sure how to do that.

I cannot find my camera so till then I don't have a picture of my (^&*$R%^%#^%$ ham soap. If you read my blog, you know I am in the habit of losing my camera. If there is a camera god, yes I know you know but I want to say it...he hates me too.


playing with soap said...

Hey there, sorry for not writing so long. Holidays and life got in the way and needed to get many things off my plate.

Anyway, sorry to hear about your ham soap, but it happens. I still screw my batches up, especially when I am experimenting. But wouldn't it be boring if you kept doing the same thing every day?

Okay, you mentioned about how to keep your citrus EO to hold up in CP soap. I have one suggestion, though I am sure there are many, I can only think of one: combine your citrus EO with Litsea Cubeba EO aka May Chang. The description that Brambleberry has for this eo is: "used for a lemon, or a base note in more elusive citrus notes like orange, this is a lovely, uplifting eo. It can also be used to treat acne or put into face products for oily skin." Give it a try with a 1-lb soap batch before you commit to a couple of pounds. I do that only because of the cost.

Losing cameras--I'm always dropping/breaking my cameras :(

Happy New Year!!!


Anne-Marie said...

Citrus EO's are super hard; Steph is right - an anchor might help but really, Orange goes away no matter what which is sad but most of the other Citrus oils can be anchored nicely.

Your soap sounds hilarious! I love the story. Your life will be so much better if you just invest in a stick blender - and that will probably help with the separation factor as well! =)

LoveMichie said...

Steph: Oh, don't worry about that I completely understand! You are right about the experimenting. I love experimenting :) even if I do end up with ham soap.

Thank you for the suggestion I really appreciate it and I think I will try it!

I'm sorry to hear about that. I'd cry if I broke my camera!

Anne-Marie: Really? That is a pity. Does Mandarin EO count?

Oh, I have a stick blender! I used it when I dumped the separated soap back in the pot. I've just never used so much olive oil before and underestimated the trace time.

But I do agree with you! It helped alot :)

Michelle said...

Sorry about the soap! Its no fun to lose a batch. I haven't heard of any ways of holding citris scents either except the clay. Thanks AM for the info on orange EO. Ever since I started using a stick blender life has been so much easier, I agree - use that stick blender before your arm falls off, I completely feel your pain on that one ;)

LoveMichie said...

Thanks! I'll be sure to use that stick blender from now on. I've learnt my lesson with olive oil soaps. No more hand stirring and no more being impatient!