Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Ninja Soap Take 1

Hello! So, I've been busy doing other things around my house that I haven't been able to make any soap for a couple weeks now (it's been over a month since my last CP batch, oh no!) My need to feed my soaping addiction got to me yesterday during some 40 minutes of free time before I had to run off and babysit Rachel. I thought I could get it done in that time... it caused me to be a few minutes behind schedule instead, but mainly because my stupid gas burner on the stove didn't light properly, once again. I turn it on, I see the flame, I turned to go work on pouring my oils and cutting my butters, check on the water temperature in my double burner only to find out that the flame had gone out and my stove was instead pumping out gas. So, I had to wait for the gas to dissipate before trying to turn the stove on again. Grr...

Anyway, I have been really excited to try this batch out. It's the first time that I tried some more expensive butters, ie. Shea and Cocoa. It's also my first batch with a little bit of Palm Kernel flakes, Palm oil, and Sunflower oil in addition to my usual suspects (Coconut oil, pomace olive oil, and castor oil). I also decided to try a 50/50 water and coconut milk content for my lye solution! My additives include titanium dioxide (I wanted this to be a pristine white) and bamboo extract with Bamboo Fresh FO from Nature's Garden. I wasn't partial to the scent OOB as I had a hard time being able to smell it, but in the soap it is smelling absolutely fantastic! I hope this one doesn't fade.

The whole theory behind this soap was I wanted it to look rather plain, you know, able to hide within sight sorta thing, but have the power to assassinate dead skin cells and decimate chapped skin when used!

Since, apparently, I have a tough time really being able to incorporate the FO and colorant into already traced soap, I added all my additives to my oils before I added the lye mixture. After the lye went in, the soap went from oil to heavy trace within a minute. I let it rest in the bowl for a little bit wondering if this is what false trace looks like, but it was pretty much time for me to get out the door, so I glopped it into my brand new wood mold, put a random spikey top on it, and covered it with cling wrap and a towel before hastily exiting my house with sleepy son in tow (he had been napping during all of this) and hoping beyond all hopes that nothing would go wrong while I was out.

I got home later that night and was able to check in on the soap. No separation! Whee! A successful batch! Somewhat... I assume it went through the gel phase because I was able to unmold and cut it only 6 hours after it was made! I was unhappy to discover that yet again the colorant didn't get fully incorporated. All my bars of soap have little and big TD spots on them :( Plus, it didn't turn the pristine white I had hoped for.

But, my mold makes me a happy panda- I made it myself, and it worked. I was able to get the soap out really easily which means that I had been able to get it perfectly squared with using my quilter's square, hammer, nails, and wood. Happy happy happy! All of the sides are nailed so it's not one of those fancy shmancy molds that can be taken apart to get your soap out.

So, umm... you want more pictures, right? Here ya go!

The lather :)

My wood mold. There are 3 sections (10", 5", and 6") and it's 3.5" wide and 3.5" tall. I used the 10" portion for my batch size and have discovered that I need to make a slightly bigger batch of soap so that I can get bigger sized bars. The heaviest 1" slice I got from this batch was only 3.9 oz and I was aiming for bars more around 4.0 to 4.5 oz.

With some lessons learned and some questions that still need to be researched (like why it traced so fast! The FO was reported not to really accelerate trace much, so what else could it have been?), I will carry on with my household cleaning and maybe present another batch of soap to you later this week!

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