Basic PO free soap recipe for beginner?

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lstackho

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Hi everyone,

I'm a complete newbie to the site and the world of soap making! This forum is a godsend! I've been reading up all about the CP process and I've just got a lovely new book through and am hoping to make my first soap very soon.

However, I'm not sure how to go about formulating my own soap recipe. You see I want it to be palm oil free, vegan, and pretty cheap to make. So, not asking much! :)

I also want to use oils that are easy for me to source. So if I can just buy them out of the supermarket that's an added bonus!

My initial idea is to create a soap using three oils... Coconut oil, rapeseed/canola oil, and sunflower oil as these as so easy for me to obtain and are cheap in the supermarket!

I read in my new book that when using rapeseed/canola and sunflower coconut oil is the best ingredient to use to get a hard bar and good lather but I'm not sure if combining both of the oils with the coconut would be a good idea.

I was thinking a base along the lines of:
60% coconut
20% rapeseed
20% sunflower

Anyone have any thoughts if this would make a good bar of soap, or are the percentages completely off? Would I maybe need to add a butter or wax?

Any help is much appreciated! :) I'm still gathering together all my equipment but I'm excited to start my new hobby!

Laura
 

lsg

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Canola oil and regular sunflower oil both contribute to DOS in soaps. I would use no higher than 30% coconut oil, 5% Castor oil and maybe fill in with high oleic sunflower oil, rice bran or olive oil and 15% cocoa butter for hardness.
 

lstackho

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Ooh okay, thanks lsg, that's really handy. I was just looking at a chart giving details on oils and came across info saying you should use coconut oil in quantities no higher than around 35%. So I was way off initially! Maybe I could add olive oil and remove sunflower oil, use a coconut/olive/canola base instead? I really want to try to minimize the amount of oils used in the base, but maybe it will be hard to do this and make a good bar of soap...
 

misskat22

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I used 75% olive, 20% coconut and 5% castor oil for my first bars, with I think (can't remember off the top of my head) a 7% superfat, it was a great recipe to start out with and I've changed it up a bit to make it exactly how I like it. I've also done 100% coconut with a 15% superfat.
 

lstackho

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Hi Krystal, thanks very much for that advice and for that recipe. Really helpful cause I've actually got olive, coconut, and castor oil on hand so that's a one I can easily try. First batch coming up! :)
 

soapmaker4

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I would steer away from Canola-it isnt really a healthy oil regardless of what the "experts"say. Comes from the rapeseed which is poisonous
,I believe

I have also done a 50/50 coconut and olive oil and the clients
love it
 
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misskat22

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I can't take credit for the recipe, it was given to me (actually suggested by a few people!) but it's a really nice one to start out with and just to see what soap does. Enjoy!
 

MikeInPdx

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Another good one would be:

50% Olive Oil
25% Coconut Oil
20% Vegetable Shortening
5 % Castor

Would cut down on some of the sliminess that newer OO bars have.
 

MoonBath

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Another good one would be:

50% Olive Oil
25% Coconut Oil
20% Vegetable Shortening
5 % Castor

Would cut down on some of the sliminess that newer OO bars have.
Don't most vegetable shortenings contain palm oil? I know Crisco does.
 

Tienne

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I love sunflower oil because it keeps the soap white, it's a slow tracer and it's cheap. I use it at max 15 % and I have never ever had a problem with DOS, but I do also use ROE in my liquid oils.

Rice Bran Oil, Soybean Oil, Vegetable shortening, Crisco and so on simply aren't available here, so I have to use what I can get.
 

MoonBath

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New Crisco is cottonseed and soybean, I believe.
From Crisco.com:

Ingredients:
SOYBEAN OIL, FULLY HYDROGENATED PALM OIL, PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED PALM AND SOYBEAN OILS, MONO AND DIGLYCERIDES, TBHQ AND CITRIC ACID (ANTIOXIDANTS).

Is there an actual product called New Crisco that I'm missing? I'd be interested to know if there's a version I can get that's palm oil free. My canister at home (my husband is a chef and bought it before I started nagging him about phasing out palm oil) has those same ingredients.
 

judymoody

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New Crisco is hydrogenated soybean and palm.

If you want easy, try 70% olive and 30% coconut at 7% superfat. Or as has been suggested, use 5% castor and subtract it from either the olive oil or the coconut. Personally I'd subtract it from the olive oil.

Sunflower is OK if it's high oleic. Otherwise it has a short shelf life. Ditto for the rapeseed/canola. If you use the latter, keep it to 10% or less.

Hope this helps!

You can also purchase organic sustainable palm, but probably not at your local market.
 

MoonBath

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Greenpeace: Don't be fooled - 'sustainable' palm oil is a myth
http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/blog/forests/the-myth-of-sustainable-palm-oil-20071128

Beautycalypse: SUSTAINABLE PALM OIL – A MYTH, BUSTED
http://beautycalypse.com/2013/06/06/bad-news-sustainable-palmoil-fail-is-not-cruelty-free/

Rainforest Rescue: The Sustainability Lie – A film about the dirty palm oil business
http://www.rainforest-rescue.org/ne...-lie-a-film-about-the-dirty-palm-oil-business

Judymoody, no offense; this isn't a personal attack on you at all. For people who feel that this issue is important, though, this information is necessary.
 
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wanewillima

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I can't take borrowing for the recipe, it was given to me (actually proposed by a few people!) but it's a really pleasant one to start out with and just to see what lather does.
 

dixiedragon

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Check out www.millersoap.com, she's got a lot of different recipes.

Here is her all veg page:
http://www.millersoap.com/soapallveg.html
Here's her castile page, meaning soaps that are mostly olive oil. Most of them are also all veg.
http://www.millersoap.com/castile.html

Maybe some soapers in your country will show up and tell you what to look for! You may have access to the things we are talking about, but under a different name. For example, if you went into a US grocery store and asked for "rapeseed oil" you would get a lot of confused looks. In the US it's called canola.
 

judymoody

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Greenpeace: Don't be fooled - 'sustainable' palm oil is a myth
http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/blog/forests/the-myth-of-sustainable-palm-oil-20071128

Beautycalypse: SUSTAINABLE PALM OIL – A MYTH, BUSTED
http://beautycalypse.com/2013/06/06/bad-news-sustainable-palmoil-fail-is-not-cruelty-free/

Rainforest Rescue: The Sustainability Lie – A film about the dirty palm oil business
http://www.rainforest-rescue.org/ne...-lie-a-film-about-the-dirty-palm-oil-business

Judymoody, no offense; this isn't a personal attack on you at all. For people who feel that this issue is important, though, this information is necessary.
No offense back, but there are ethical sources of palm oil, for example, places in Central America which used to be devoted to bananas and have been replanted with palm trees. Banana trees have absolutely terrible ecological consequences.

I also think if you buy organic sustainable palm, as I mentioned in my earlier post, you are much more likely to get palm that is not the result of ongoing rainforest destruction.

Any tropical oil (coconut, babassu, cacau, etc.) typically comes from monocrop plantation agriculture and involves deforestation, just as palm does. Cultivation practices for any of them are unlikely to look good with close scrutiny.
 

neeners

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I think you need to look around your stores to see what's fairly priced and available. e.g. where I live, I've had no luck with finding lard or palm oil, and various other more specialty oils. so, after looking around and making mental notes of what I could get, I looked around for recipe ideas.
 

SherrysSoap

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I know if you add 60% coconut oil after 1 hour your soap turning to dark brown. It will make your skin super dry :(
Coconut oil must be only 20% to 25%. You can add olive oil. :)
 

FlybyStardancer

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Coconut oil turning soap brown? I have never heard of that. I have a 100% coconut oil soap, and the unscented portion is still white weeks later. (The scented portion turned a faint peach from the Sweet Orange EO.)
 
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