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Soap Making Forum > The Soap Making & Craft Forum > Lye-Based Soap Forum > Speed up drying/curing time of CP soap?
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Old 12-10-2017, 08:30 AM   #91
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Kevin Dunn did a presentation ... the contaminated areas were ON the soap, not IN it... They should be used in low to moderate amounts and mixed well into the soap.
Thanks for this very informative post, DeeAnna. By that token, can fresh orange zest be added at thin trace to the soap? If yes, is there a rule of thumb on how much is acceptable, and will it retain any smell at all, if I add a little arrowroot? I plan to mix the oils and lye solution at room temperature (about 72-75 degrees F) in the hope of retaining the fragrance.

The other question I have is a most basic one -- how does one figure out that a CP soap is actually cured? In an objective rather than subjective way, I mean -- for example, if my recipe is at 38% (and 2.7 x lye weight) and I use 228 grams water and 600 grams oil, and the wet soap mixture is about 910 grams, can I assume that my soap is cured when its weight (total of all the now cut pieces) reduces by about half the water weight (about 115 grams)?



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Old 12-10-2017, 01:10 PM   #92
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Fresh orange zest will rot inside of the soap. I bought some soap early in my soaping experience with some in it. At about 3 weeks after purchase, the bar had little rotten spots all in it, followed by a fine case of DOS.

If you make a batch of soap today, then another in 6 weeks, you could test them against each other and tell one is cured and one is not. Or you could test your batch weekly and see when the lather and overall quality stops improving. That is when your soap is cured. Far more is going on than moisture loss.


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Old 12-10-2017, 01:48 PM   #93
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Fresh orange zest will rot inside of the soap.
Thanks. In that case, dried and powdered orange zest it shall be!
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Old 12-10-2017, 03:18 PM   #94
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"...In an objective rather than subjective way, I mean ... can I assume that my soap is cured when its weight (total of all the now cut pieces) reduces by about half the water weight (about 115 grams)? ..."

Cure is not just about water evaporation, so the strict answer is "no." It's also about improvement in lather quality, skin feel after washing, and longevity. I don't know how you can determine some of these qualities in an utterly objective way. Even commercial soap makers don't have that all figured out.

It is true that many soaps made with a blend of fats (and thus a blend of fatty acids) are going to be cured enough in 4-8 weeks to please most people. That also happens to be about the time when the weight loss slows substantially, so measuring the rate of weight loss is a simple, fast way to monitor soap. But this rule of thumb that does not invariably hold true -- a slowing rate of weight loss doesn't always mean the soap is sufficiently cured and performing at its best.

The soap that taught me this fact was a soap very high in lard (stearic and palmitic acids). It did not lather well a month or two after making, but was a very pleasant soap to use at 1 year. If I decided weight loss was the only basis for determining it was sufficiently cured, the soap would have ended up in the trash. It almost did anyway, but I'm glad I gave it a final chance to prove its worth.

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Old 12-11-2017, 02:29 PM   #95
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I agree with DeeAnna; curing is more than just moisture evaporation. Give your soap a good 4 weeks to cure. Six weeks is even better.
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Old 12-26-2017, 04:04 PM   #96
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I have to agree with many of the more experienced soapers comments listed throughout this lengthy thread.
I've been making soap for 6 months now. I've found using a 2:1 lye to water mixture helps the soap release from the mold quicker. However, it doesn't make it cure any faster. I've tried bars of soap after 6 weeks, and later came back another month or two to find that same soap better. For me that meant it created more lather and was more creamy.
Lesson Learned: Wait at least 6 weeks.

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Old 12-28-2017, 06:22 AM   #97
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CPOP or ITMHP is the same thing. You make the soap, bring it to trace, pour into your mold, then put in a warm oven (170 degrees) for 1 hour. Turn the oven off and leave it there overnight. By the next morning, the soap should be ready to cut. If you followed a soap calc correctly, this should be safe to sell after one week.
You really should wait longer as more water evaporates, but if you can't it's ok after one week.

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Will this be good for milk soap too?
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Old 12-28-2017, 12:00 PM   #98
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Will this be good for milk soap too?
Soapbuddy hasn't been here in some time. I personally don't do it with my milk soaps. Due to the sugars in the milk it can cause overheating and will also darken the soap a bit more than normal gel. I just insulate them well with towels and if need be a heating pad underneath (during the winter).

Some prefer to not gel their milk soaps at all.

Also, when I do use the oven, I just preheat it and turn it off when I put the soap in the oven and just leave it.
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Old 12-28-2017, 05:09 PM   #99
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Don't use that method for CPOP that Soapbuddy described. It was common a few years ago, but the soap gets too hot and that can cause problems. Shari's (Shunt) advice works better and has fewer side effects. Milk soap is likely to darken with CPOP, so keep that in mind if you want to keep the soap as light in color as possible.
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Old 12-29-2017, 03:26 PM   #100
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Will this be good for milk soap too?
I do gel my milk soaps (100% milk in lye solution, all I've made for 16 years) using heavy wool blankets, however that is only when using my 9 lb & 12 lb slab molds.

I do not insulate (or use CPOP or ITMHP) when using my log molds due to over heating.


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