Brittle and Sudsy ZNSC

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SudsyPigeon

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As promised in my first post on SMF, here’s my attempt at Zany’s No Slime Castile. As you can see from the photos, the loaf is very brittle, and was this way by the second day. I’m assuming my fine sea salt filled the tablespoon measure more than others’ salts, making for a harder bar, but suggestions welcome! I’ve included my notes for review.

It’s been two full months, so I wanted to try a bar to see what it’s like. I felt brave enough to try to hack away at it tonight, and luckily a sizeable bar chipped off. The soap is very sudsy, with a dense, lingering lather, but it’s still very drying. I’ll keep letting it cure and hope it’ll mellow out eventually!

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Your recipe looked fine when I ran it through the calculator. While it isn't necessary to have the oils and lye within 10ºF of each other (an old soaping myth), it doesn't hurt anything, either.

Another myth is that there is a set time for unmolding or cutting the soap. You should unmold the soap when it releases cleanly, and cut it when it feels firm with just a bit of give. That could be 12, 24, 72 hours... all depends on the recipe, the ambient temp and humidity, etc. My version of ZNSC is rock hard within 24 hours. Waiting 48 hours to cut could definitely have been part of the problem.

The picture actually looks like a lye-heavy soap to me. That could have been caused by a mis-measurement in the NaOH. Have you zap-tested it?
 

SudsyPigeon

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Your recipe looked fine when I ran it through the calculator. While it isn't necessary to have the oils and lye within 10ºF of each other (an old soaping myth), it doesn't hurt anything, either.

Another myth is that there is a set time for unmolding or cutting the soap. You should unmold the soap when it releases cleanly, and cut it when it feels firm with just a bit of give. That could be 12, 24, 72 hours... all depends on the recipe, the ambient temp and humidity, etc. My version of ZNSC is rock hard within 24 hours. Waiting 48 hours to cut could definitely have been part of the problem.

The picture actually looks like a lye-heavy soap to me. That could have been caused by a mis-measurement in the NaOH. Have you zap-tested it?

I appreciate you re-running the recipe through a calculator, and also the de-bunking of old myths. I tend to remove soaps from molds way too early, and have been trying to be more patient... probably not the right soap to ignore for a day!

I did try a zap test a few times and it just tastes like the rest of my soaps. No tingle/burn/zap. Edit (clicked save too fast!): I do agree with you - zap test or not, the air bubbles and brittle flakes totally looks like a lye-heavy soap. Probably messed up the measurements!
 
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