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2nd /3rd Batches - And a few Questions

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NaturallyYou

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Hello everyone!

So I am happy to say that, even though for my first batches I am only doing small amounts, I have had quite a bit of success with my soaps.

Although in my 2nd batch, I did two kinds of soap - and realized I changed to many variables to really know why they turned out sooo different. But maybe you folks have had experience with the ingredients I used and know why they did what they did.

I am doing 2oz bars (3 each.)

1st Batch (Turned Out Well) 2nd Batch (Turned Out Bad)
2oz Apricot Oil /// 1oz Apricot
1oz Almond Oil /// 2oz Almond
1oz Coconut Oil /// 1oz Coconut
.5oz Lye /// .5oz Lye
1.3oz H2O /// 1.3oz H2O
.1oz Jasmine EO /// .1oz Tea Tree
.1oz Cinnamon /// 1oz Turmeric

So the brown bars cured well and the pink ones didn't. I changed the amounts of apricot and almond oil in the bar, and used different EO's and natural coloring agents. I was thinking the cinnamon and turmeric had the most effect on it, but that's just a guess.

Any ideas, comments, etc? Thanks!

Also - the white bars are my 3rd batch, which were copies of my 1st batch... Making sure I have it down before I start experimenting with colors and bigger batches. I used coconut oil, almond oil, and rose EO... Keeping them simple but useful. They smell lovely.

Thanks for reading!

Soap2ndBatchCured3wks.jpg

Soap2ndBatchCured3wks1.jpg

Soap3rdBatchAfterPour.jpg
 
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JustBeachy

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When you say they cured well, do you mean they came out of the mold easily? Cinnamon can accelerate trace or worse.

I think you had a great idea on the third batch by coming back to basics. It's never a bad idea to get the basic process down, then slowly start adding in things, one at a time. Make your basic soap. then basic soap plus a color and well behaved scent. Then you have a base of what each soap did and you can compare it with your other soaps.

I think your off to a great start.
 

IrishLass

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When you state that the second one didn't cure well, can you elaborate? In other words, did it zap when tongue-tested, or did it not lather as well as the first one, or is it softer, etc...?

I checked things out on SoapCalc and I can't see why your second batch would turn out bad since it had practically the same fatty acid profile as the first batch with just a very minor difference in the oleic and linoleic content, which I personally don't think would be enough to make or break things. Based on fatty acid profile alone, I think the difference between the two has more to do with the different additives/scents you added to each one instead of the differences in the soap formula.

IrishLass :)
 

new12soap

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Welcome, and congratulations on your successful soap! A few comments...

IMO you are making batches that are way too small for the beginner home crafter. Most good digital kitchen scales are +/- 1g, and to be accurate on such a small batch you need to be measuring to the 1/100 gram. Being off by as little as 4/100 of a gram is the difference between a soap superfatted at 5% and one that is lye heavy. Going the other way, is your soap superfatted at 5% or at 10%? You can't know unless you are using seriously accurate calibrated lab-grade equipment.

Here is a bit of a rant of mine explaining the need for superfat, but it also applies to batch size http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showpost.php?p=330685&postcount=4

I strongly recommend making batches of 1.5 to 2 lbs of oils (and you should try to use grams whenever possible for more accuracy). That is large enough to cover small discrepancies in measuring, as well as any variances in SAP values, yet small enough that you aren't wasting a lot of ingredients if things don't turn out well. It will also give you more consistent results.

You say you are using .1oz of cinnamon, is that the ground powder spice, or is that cinnamon EO? Cinnamon EO is only safe at a maximum rate of 0.5%, so if you are using the EO you are using it about 5 times the maximum. The powder can also be an irritant, but I do not know how much would be considered "safe".

Is there any particular reason you chose those oils? Apricot kernel oil and sweet almond oil are very similar in soap and are both very conditioning, just wondering what made you decide to use both of them, and no palm, lard, or tallow (which give creamy, stable, lather) or olive oil. The coconut oil should give you some good bubbles.

Sorry to sound like a wet blanket, I don't mean to be discouraging, I am just trying to save you some head-scratching down the line when this batch of soap feels really oily and doesn't lather well but this batch of soap with same recipe feels really harsh and drying and irritating.

HTH
 

KatieShephard

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Your white bars look lovely :) I'm a newbie too, and have been making anywhere from 13oz-28oz of oil...and measuring in grams. I round up for oils and down for lye...I haven't had a zappy batch yet. My newest favorite recipe has lard at 45% and olive, coconut, and a touch of castor for the rest. I think you are off to a good start! Isn't it exciting?!?!
 

Obsidian

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The only thing I see wrong with the pink batch is the ash (white powdery stuff) and that can be cleaned off. You can gently scrape it away or try using steam then wiping it away with a rag.
 

IrishLass

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New12soap makes some excellent points that I overlooked since I'm in the habit of making the occasional 8 oz. sample/test batch myself, but I only do so with my Jenning's scale that measures accurately down to 1/100 of a gram. I unwisely assumed (without confirming) that you might have been doing the same, but if that's not the case and you are using a less sensitive scale than that, please take new12soap's very wise advice to heart.


IrishLass :)
 

NaturallyYou

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Thanks everyone!

Thanks for all your comments and suggestions, they are all very helpful.

Welcome, and congratulations on your successful soap! A few comments...

IMO you are making batches that are way too small for the beginner home crafter. Most good digital kitchen scales are +/- 1g, and to be accurate on such a small batch you need to be measuring to the 1/100 gram. Being off by as little as 4/100 of a gram is the difference between a soap superfatted at 5% and one that is lye heavy. Going the other way, is your soap superfatted at 5% or at 10%? You can't know unless you are using seriously accurate calibrated lab-grade equipment.

Here is a bit of a rant of mine explaining the need for superfat, but it also applies to batch size http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showpost.php?p=330685&postcount=4

I strongly recommend making batches of 1.5 to 2 lbs of oils (and you should try to use grams whenever possible for more accuracy). That is large enough to cover small discrepancies in measuring, as well as any variances in SAP values, yet small enough that you aren't wasting a lot of ingredients if things don't turn out well. It will also give you more consistent results.

You say you are using .1oz of cinnamon, is that the ground powder spice, or is that cinnamon EO? Cinnamon EO is only safe at a maximum rate of 0.5%, so if you are using the EO you are using it about 5 times the maximum. The powder can also be an irritant, but I do not know how much would be considered "safe".

Is there any particular reason you chose those oils? Apricot kernel oil and sweet almond oil are very similar in soap and are both very conditioning, just wondering what made you decide to use both of them, and no palm, lard, or tallow (which give creamy, stable, lather) or olive oil. The coconut oil should give you some good bubbles.

Sorry to sound like a wet blanket, I don't mean to be discouraging, I am just trying to save you some head-scratching down the line when this batch of soap feels really oily and doesn't lather well but this batch of soap with same recipe feels really harsh and drying and irritating.

HTH
To answer some of your questions, I am super fatting at 5%. I also make sure to use a little less Lye than what is suggested simply because my batches are so small and I didn't want to chance excess lye in the finished product.

I used the ground powder cinnamon, and I am currently using the bar - and it doesn't irritate - but that's probably because its not the EO haha.

As far as why I used the certain oils, I was looking through some soap recipes and found that coconut oil and almond where used pretty frequently - I also was just choosing oils that were available at my local super market. I definitely want to add lard, and different oils into the mix - but I figured I had to start somewhere. All of my soaps so far have been satisfactory in the cleaning, conditioning, and suds departments :) I have been lucky I suppose.

I appreciate all your advice and you don't sound like a "wet blanket" - haha... Everything you brought up was valid, so thank you!

I need to invest in a one pound mold and purchase some lard.. Because adding in lard lowers cost right?]

Thanks again for everything.
 

NaturallyYou

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When you state that the second one didn't cure well, can you elaborate? In other words, did it zap when tongue-tested, or did it not lather as well as the first one, or is it softer, etc...?

I checked things out on SoapCalc and I can't see why your second batch would turn out bad since it had practically the same fatty acid profile as the first batch with just a very minor difference in the oleic and linoleic content, which I personally don't think would be enough to make or break things. Based on fatty acid profile alone, I think the difference between the two has more to do with the different additives/scents you added to each one instead of the differences in the soap formula.

IrishLass :)
It is softer - I haven't used it on my hands but I guess now that its cured 4 weeks I should at least try it. I don't like the way it looks or feels. as 12soap said, I am doing to small of batches and I probably did the cinnamon one more accurately (to the recipe) than I did the turmeric ones. Owell- you win some, you loose some.
 
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