Best way to dilute mica colorant

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by SunRiseArts, Nov 14, 2017.

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  1. Nov 14, 2017 #1

    SunRiseArts

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    This is perhaps a silly question ..... normally I just throw my mica straight up to the batter. But I want to do a test for a soap that required many different colors, so I am guessing it will be best to dilute it first.

    I am tending to dilute it in part of the oil, and subtract it from the batch, or I have some glycerin ....

    What is you all experience with subtracting the oil? Will that part of the oil not sponcify?

    Thanks in advance for the help.
     
  2. Nov 14, 2017 #2

    toxikon

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    I'm lazy so here's how I do it.

    Grab one dixie cup for each colour. Add the different micas to each cup.

    Prepare lye solution, heat oils for recipe amount.

    Once oils are melted, add 2 tbsp of melted oils to each dixie cup. Stir well with mini spatulas.

    By taking the oil directly from my recipe, I don't need to fiddle with the superfat.

    Then pour my batter into each dixie cup, stir up well, and proceed with pouring.
     
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  3. Nov 14, 2017 #3

    IrishLass

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    I like to use glycerin.


    IrishLass :)
     
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  4. Nov 14, 2017 #4

    penelopejane

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    I do the same as toxicon. I also have a cup for the non coloured portions so every part has the same amount of oil or water from the recipe. So if the coloured/non coloured parts aren't equal I add the right proportion of oil or water from the recipe for that part of the soap.

    I haven't had success with glycerine unless it is in equal proportions so I don't bother with it.
     
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  5. Nov 14, 2017 #5

    MorpheusPA

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    Plus the above; I split into cups and subtract the oil I use to disperse the mica from my recipe (I tend to use the olive to do that since it stays liquid at room temperature).

    The oil you subtract, then add back in as the mix, will end up saponifying. Adding even at moderately heavy trace, much of the lye is still active. At emulsion, most of the lye is still active.
     
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  6. Nov 14, 2017 #6

    Obsidian

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    I also pull out some oil from the recipe but I use as little as possible, just enough to make a smooth slurry.
     
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  7. Nov 14, 2017 #7

    bumbleklutz

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    I do the same. That way I don't have to be concerned with a soap being under super fatted or possibly lye heavy if I don't use all the color I've mixed with oil from the batch. Additionally, if I add the fragrance before separating and coloring my batter; and something happens (i.e. soap-on-a-stick) then I don't need to be concerned my batch is short on oil. I.e. lye heavy.
     
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  8. Nov 15, 2017 #8

    SunRiseArts

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    Thank you all!
     
  9. Nov 15, 2017 #9

    KellySoapCo

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    I usually just use water because I soap at room temp so my oils are a little thicker. They don't like to mix with powders very well.
     
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  10. Nov 15, 2017 #10

    CaraBou

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    I add my micas to a little bit of liquid oil. Depending on the batch size, the planned superfat level, and how many colorants I'm mixing, I may or may not deduct the oil from the main batch. It doesn't take much and might not be worth fretting over. If it is worth it, I just put all the cups on the scale at once so when I fill them with oil, I know exactly how much to deduct from the main batch.

    Like Kelly, I don't use my full oil blend cuz I tend to soap cool and use a lot of hard oils, which won't stay fluid very long when separated into small amounts.
     
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  11. Nov 15, 2017 #11

    jcandleattic

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    This is basically how I do it too, and this way I don't have to add any extra ingredients to my labels, like I would if I mixed with an oil that wasn't part of my recipe or if I used glycerine.
     
  12. Nov 15, 2017 #12

    Traumabrew

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    I also use the dixie cup method (so much easier to toss them out instead of washing them). But I dont take the oil from my recipe. I use 1-2 tbsp of oil, usually sunflower or almond and mix it with my colors. I only calculate my soap with a 5% SF. My mica oils never exceed 1 oz total. So, in my recipes, this adds maybe 1 to 2 % extra which bumps me to a 6 or 7% SF. I have never had any issues with oil separating. Also, I usually unmold after 24 hours. I do use sodium lactate in every batch.
     
  13. Dec 16, 2017 #13

    SunRiseArts

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    I would like to thank you for this, because it never occurred to me to mix it with water. But I had a set of mica gifted to me, that I had issues dispersing with the oil, and I tried the water (subtracted from the amount of water I use in the lye), and realized these micas are water dispersible, and not oil dispersible!

    :shark:
     
  14. Jan 9, 2018 #14

    Highfive

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    I am new to soap making and found it easier to.

    Grab one dixie cup for each colour. Add the different micas to each cup.

    Prepare lye solution, heat oils for recipe. (if necessary) lye melts oils

    Once oils are melted, add 2 tbsp of melted oils to each dixie cup. Stir well with mini battery operated whisk.

    By taking the oil directly from my recipe less for me to worry about.

    Then pour my batter into each dixie cup, stir up well, and than proceed with pouring the batter from the Dixie cup into the container set aside for mixing the color swirls or multi colors.
     
  15. Jan 9, 2018 #15

    toxikon

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    I'm glad my advice was useful to you. :lol:
     
  16. Jan 9, 2018 #16

    amd

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    I used to pre-mix my mica but now I just dump it in unless it is oil dispersable/locking. When I premix, I use plastic snack size baggies and the color and oil or water (water was my preference), zip it closed and mash away until there are no clumps. When I add it to my soap batter I clip a corner of the bag and squeeze it all into the batter. Seems like I get more of the colorant into my batter, whereas when I tried with cups it seemed a lot of color was not getting all the way out of the cups unless I took a bunch of time to scrape it all out. (I'm lazy.) Plus cups take up more space in my garbage (again, lazy. I take my soap lab garbage out as little as possible, nothing stinky goes in there.)
     
  17. Jan 9, 2018 #17

    Kittish

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    I use stainless steel condiment cups to mix my colors, whether with oil or water. I have one of the mini frothers that works great for breaking up clumps and making it nice and smooth. I also have silicone spatulas that are the perfect shape for the cups, only takes a couple of swipes to get almost all of the color out. Two or three more small cups in my soap dishes doesn't make really any difference to me, and no trash piling up! Plus, I can also use the cups to mix fragrance or clay or whatever other add ins I want to prep.
     
  18. Jan 12, 2018 #18

    earlene

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    I use the SS condiment cups, too, Kittish. I like them so much. I use them for fragrances, as well because I don't have to worry about the FO melting plastic. When we closed the restaurant, I kept a couple dozen of those little cups, knowing I would have a use for them, and I am so glad I did. I just wish I'd had the foresight to keep a few more 'monkey dishes' as I only have 3 and use them constantly.
     
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  19. Jan 12, 2018 #19

    Kittish

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    One of the things I really, really like about using stainless bowls and mixing cups and such is that I am a klutz. Seriously a klutz. I have broken more than one of those 'unbreakable' corelle plates and bowls (one of them broke on carpet! ). I broke our dog's food bowl the other day, thick heavy stoneware bowl. She now has a plastic bowl for her food. I have very nearly eliminated actual glass cups and glasses from my kitchen, because I am a klutz (most of the actual glass got put away in the back corner of a cabinet- I know I am a klutz so take proactive precautions anymore). SS is darn near impossible for me to break, or even significantly damage.
     
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