A couple of recipe changes a mistake for me

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kc1ble

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I enjoy using my Eucalyptus Spearmint Black and White soap so I decided to make a 12 inch loaf this time with a couple minor changes. What could that hurt right?

I wanted to try adding shea butter as I haven't used this yet and i also decided to try sodium lactate for the first time. I guess I should slow down because I had a lot of problems. I also went from soapcalcs 38% water to 33%.

I added 3 teaspoons of SL to my lye water, that went ok. I decided to add my shea butter after my other oils began to react with the sodium hydroxide. I mixed to emulsion, not trace and added my shea butter. The soap was at 122 degrees when I added the shea butter. I got large clumps in my soap. Knowing I would have to stick blend to get rid of the clumps, I quickly added my FO and began to blend. Now I have ricing from the FO...trace is getting thicker and I still need to separate and add TD and AC,,,and be loose enough for an in the pot swirl. By the time I got my colors mixed in there was no more pouring the batter, it was now pudding. Plopped it in the mold trying to get my design I had last time in this post http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showthread.php?t=59551 but it's not there...It should still be a nice soap, but definitely not the same design that I grew to like so much. Here it is



I also doubled the amount of activated charcoal hoping to achieve a blacker black and it is more gray than it was the first time. I think next time I will mix the shea butter with the rest of my oils and hopefully will not get problems there. I have no idea why I got ricing with my FO this time, its the third time I've used it and the first time this happened.

So many lessons to learn.
 

Susie

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Too many changes all at once leaves people scratching their heads when something goes wrong.

It is still super pretty for a "plop and pray".
 

IrishLass

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I agree- it still came out pretty nevertheless. :)

kc1ble said:
I think next time I will mix the shea butter with the rest of my oils and hopefully will not get problems there.
Excellent plan! If you don't mind me asking- what made you decide to add the shea at emulsion instead of with your other oils? You didn't happen to read something on a FB soaping page, did you? ;)


IrishLass :)
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Agree with the above - it's still pretty for the trouble you had.

I'm one of those soapers that is more restrained and I make single changes to a recipe to see what effect that has. Maybe the Shea would have had time if it wasn't for an FO and the lower water amount? By adding a butter and SL together, plus the water change, you won't know which of them is doing what to your soap in terms of unmoulding, general hardness and longevity. SL can even change the feel of a soap on its own, so are these bigger bubbles from the Shea or the SL? Or is the Shea retarding the bubbly affect from the SL?

When you change more than one thing you make it very unlikely that you can really learn anything. Channing one thing at a time makes it easier to learn.

Besides, that way we get to make more soap! [emoji106]
 

kc1ble

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I agree- it still came out pretty nevertheless. :)



Excellent plan! If you don't mind me asking- what made you decide to add the shea at emulsion instead of with your other oils? You didn't happen to read something on a FB soaping page, did you? ;)


IrishLass :)
I don't remember where I read it, but the theory was to allow the sodium hydroxide to start its work on the other oils first and it would allow the shea butter to remain as the superfat, more or less. It was supposed to be a test, but since it didn't work out as planned, I now have more work to do. Lesson learned.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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I don't remember where I read it, but the theory was to allow the sodium hydroxide to start its work on the other oils first and it would allow the shea butter to remain as the superfat, more or less. It was supposed to be a test, but since it didn't work out as planned, I now have more work to do. Lesson learned.
Alas, it is only a theory. Dr Kevin Dunn made soap that way as well as batches with the oils all added together and had them analysed - there was no real difference in the make up of the superfat between those with it added all together and those with it added later. Hot Process is the only way to get some sort of control on what is the superfat.
 

Susie

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I had to learn the "change one thing at the time" lesson the hard way, also. I had a really ugly mess, and had no idea what happened.
 

penelopejane

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I don't remember where I read it, but the theory was to allow the sodium hydroxide to start its work on the other oils first and it would allow the shea butter to remain as the superfat, more or less. It was supposed to be a test, but since it didn't work out as planned, I now have more work to do. Lesson learned.

It's a good idea to melt the Shea butter at the last minute, add it to the other oils and SB them and then add the lye. This will avoid the Shea butter spots.
It needs to stay warm while you mix it to keep it from separating out.
 
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