8 batches this weekend! Questions!

Discussion in 'The Photo Gallery' started by GreenDragon, Sep 26, 2017.

  1. Sep 26, 2017 #1

    GreenDragon

    GreenDragon

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    Hi All!

    As I mentioned in a previous post (Mom Soap) I am making soap for Christmas presents this year. I received my order from BB and has a soaping extravaganza this past weekend. Oh, and thank you again for everyone who sent me recipies to try out! The wife and I had a ball trying them all out and formulating some of our own. She had such a great time helping me that she's decided to make some lotions and lip balms to go with the soaps LOL.

    Anyway, I made 8 batches of soap using 6 different formulas and a bag of BB's Basic Quick Mix. Some came out awesome, some very good, and some OK. Surprisingly, my most disappointing batches were the BB's quick mix! I used their suggested mixture (33 oz mix, 4.7 oz lye, and 11 oz water). They say it will make a hard bar in a few hours, but 24 hours later and they were still too soft to unmold without deforming, and once out started ashing up. I'm thinking that their recommended amounts are too generous with the H2O. Any thoughts?

    Also, how long do you usually leave you soaps covered to keep ash from forming. I sprayed my molds with alcohol and covered with plastic wrap, but for the batches that take longer to harden enough to pop out of the molds, when can you uncover them to help them start drying out?

    OK, now for the fun stuff - the pictures! Batches are all natural with ghost swirl (back right, tan soap), Grandma Soaps (Lavender and Rose scents in round mold, these are the BB mixes), Men's shaving bar (forest green from Tamanu oil added at trace for superfat), Ginger & Green Tea bar with turmeric and green mica (front), Beaches (front left blue bar with indigo and clay with ghost swirl technique), Lisa's bar - the wife's (Large black bar with green mica top scented with Peppermint with sea clay and charcoal - her recipe), and the large block is the Man Bar - 1/2 with Beau Brummel, 1/2 with Shave and a Haircut with Charcoal.
     

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  2. Sep 26, 2017 #2

    dibbles

    dibbles

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    Busy hands :) They turned out great, and you have a nice assortment for gifting.
     
  3. Sep 26, 2017 #3

    Millie

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    Lovely collection!
     
  4. Sep 26, 2017 #4

    SunRiseArts

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    wow, you made a lot, and did such a great job!

    BB quick mix has a lot of canola oil, which soap queen claims is good for swirling. Personally, I dislike canola oil in my soaps, used it once, and never again.

    Not sure why you are covering your soaps with plastic? Did I understood that right? I heard people covering with a wood cover or fabric, bur never with plastic, which might be why is still soft. Personally I never cover my soaps. What you need to do is when you are done, spray with alcohol the top, to prevent soda ash. If that does not work, you can deal with it later if necessary.
     
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  5. Sep 26, 2017 #5

    Kittish

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    How'd you do the leaf in the center of the round red one? That looks really neat.
     
  6. Sep 26, 2017 #6

    shunt2011

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    Very nicely done!! I generally keep mine covered until ready to unmold and cut. I've found that soaping at 33% and gelling certainly cuts down on the odd of getting ash. I have used plastic wrap in the past and it works just fine. As long as it doesn't touch the top of the soap.
     
  7. Sep 26, 2017 #7

    agirlhasnoname

    agirlhasnoname

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    I want to know that too. Looks like a jewellery box my other once had.
     
  8. Sep 26, 2017 #8

    GreenDragon

    GreenDragon

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    Thanks everyone. For the rose soaps I waited 24 hours for them to firm up but were still slightly soft, then pushed a rose leaf into the tops. I will probably take them off after a few more days of drying as I'm sure they will turn brown, but I was really after the impression they will make on the top. Hmmm, now you have me thinking, might be fun to make an insert out of green soap for the next batch.....:)
     
  9. Sep 27, 2017 #9

    cmzaha

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    If your wife wants to start making lotion that is great, but I would not recommend giving them for Christmas. There is just not enough time for testing. You need to have some idea of shelf life, if it is going to separate, if the preservative holds etc. I just recently had 2 lotions fail after 4 months, although I really think they got to hot and killed the preservative, but not sure. Glad they were not being taken to market. I have many test lotions lined up on a shelf to see how they do. Ironically my very first lotion is holding after approx 18 months, some have failed in 3 months.

    Your question of how long to keep in the mold before cutting has a lot of varience depending on formula and what trace you pour at. One of my go to recipes can be cut anywhere from 4 hrs to 12 hrs depending on trace. One mine are firm enough that they do not dent when I lightly put pressure on the top, I unmold and let them sit until I feel they are ready to cut. In time you will know how your recipe works.


    Not sure why you are covering your soaps with plastic? Did I understood that right? I heard people covering with a wood cover or fabric, bur never with plastic, which might be why is still soft. Personally I never cover my soaps. What you need to do is when you are done, spray with alcohol the top, to prevent soda ash. If that does not work, you can deal with it later if necessary.[/QUOTE]
    Maybe it was really not the canola you did not like. I use either Sunflower Ho or mid Oleic or Canola HO (I only changed to the HO last year) and there is very little difference in the feel of the soap. I do prefer sunflower for infusing with carrot to make carrot tissue oil. It is lovely in lotion and soap.
     
  10. Sep 27, 2017 #10

    CTAnton

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    All lovely! Who knew tamanu oil give a green color??? Heard it here first! What a great forum this is!!!
     
  11. Sep 27, 2017 #11

    lenarenee

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    I love the dimensional affect the black and white swirls has - never seen anything like it!

    You may need to rethink the "grandma" label of the lavender and rose soaps. My biggest takers of those scents are young (under 30) men and women - in that order!!
     
  12. Sep 27, 2017 #12

    SoapTrey

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    Very Nice Soaps. I think you have a great idea with the leaf impressions, please show us an after pic. I've thought of trying it in the past, but never actually put into practice because I didn't think it would create the detail I was looking for.
     
  13. Sep 27, 2017 #13

    jules92207

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    These are all beautiful!
     
  14. Sep 27, 2017 #14

    lionprincess00

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    I use cellophane (saran wrap) to cover mine for about 3 to 5 days after unmolded and cut. Of course I cut in less than 12 hrs, but if I use higher water and have to wait longer, then I cover in mold as well as afterwards. I turn them upside down too so any ash will not ruin my tops. Beyween that and cpoping them, I never get ash. Alcohol never worked for me and even at 40% lye concentration and cpop, some occasionally would still get ash. After the cellophane trick, I never do anymore. When I cover I do it loosely so there is some breathing room. It doesn't seem to take noticeable time off my cure.
     
  15. Sep 27, 2017 #15

    GreenDragon

    GreenDragon

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    Thanks cmzaha, I'll pass that along to the wife. Although, I have no qualms using my brother as a beta tester :twisted:

    As for using plastic wrap, as several have posted above, I was covering in an attempt to prevent ash after spraying the tops with alcohol. Moving forward as others have suggested I am just going to concentrate on ensuring a complete gel using CPOP, as I didn't have any issues with my larger 1 and 2 pound pours, only when using the individual molds.
     
  16. Sep 27, 2017 #16

    dixiedragon

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    Unlike most things, ash is easier to cure than to prevent. Before you slice your soap, use a wire cheese cutter and just slice off the top of the log. Then slice into bars.

    I'm gonna disagree with Cmzaha - I have no problem with you gifting these bars. They're from a kit, not from a recipe you made yourself, so they'll be safe to use. Could they be better? Probably. But assuming you followed directions, they are safe bars made from soap-safe ingredients.

    I'm glad you're having fun!

    I've said this before - but I very very rarely get ash and I think it's because I use a dehumidifier. I have a soaper who lives near me - we're using very similar recipes (tap water, lard, etc) yet I get little to no ash and she get some ash. The only difference - I use a dehumidifier.
     
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  17. Sep 27, 2017 #17

    GreenDragon

    GreenDragon

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    Thanks Lenarenee. I was really impressed how well it came out myself! The white side is natural - no pigments added and is actually slightly tan. All I did was divide the batter, add charcoal to 1/2, and poured them in at the same time, then took a thick wooden chop stick to make the swirls, going all the way to the bottom. I think the wood "grabbed" the soap more than a plastic or metal rod would, and helped make that translucent effect where the colors barely blended IMHO. :)
     
  18. Sep 27, 2017 #18

    jcandleattic

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    I cover almost every batch I make with cling wrap. I know a lot of soapers that do this. My soap is never soft because of it.
     
  19. Sep 29, 2017 #19

    cmzaha

    cmzaha

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    Apparently I missed the "kit" part so I will definately agree with Dixiedragon. Sorry, I need to learn to read... :oops:
     

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