Castile Slime

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by SoapySuds, Nov 17, 2019.

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  1. Nov 17, 2019 #1

    SoapySuds

    SoapySuds

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    welp, I finally experienced Castile slime.

    I recently made four nearly identical recipes of Castile. No coconut. Scent was used, different for each but at 3%. SF 0%.

    In each recipe the exact same oil was used.

    Currently we’re about 2-3 weeks in with most of them.

    In the first, it was a one pound recipe, two color, no water discount. I did use a mixture of lyes, both NaOH and KOH. This one has good lather, good scent retention, solid bar. No slime.

    Second, three colors, and a pencil line of AC. Same oil. Mixture of NaOH and KOH. CPOP. Scent is good. Good lather, glycerin rivers, but ready to be used faster than the others.

    3rd two colors and one section uncolored, swirl. NaOH and half the amount of KOH of the previous batch. Strawberry scented and mouse approved. (Ugh). Tested it today. As soon as it got wet, it became a goo ball, a slime beast, so nasty to touch. Soap snot cling to my hands, made long strings and nasty. So gross. I will continue to test it for the next six months and see what happens.

    Fourth. All NaOH. Same oil. CPOP no color (tried a lw/hw design and failed miserably still made soap) FO. Here’s the interesting thing, no slime. Solid bar of soap, good lather.

    I do soap at really low temps, and I wonder if some of the slime is due to temp and not just NaOH. Both CPOP batches are about the same, even though one has just NaOH in it. I did note that in the epic Castile super lye post from several years ago, that one of the soapers notes that she hated the slime ropes in her Castile. She lives in the pnw. I live in the pnw. The pnw is famous for colder temps and high humidity. It rains a lot, is damp and it rains. Did I mention it rains? Like a constant drizzle. I personally have super lyed my previous Castile batches and added a bit of coconut, ahhhh bastile... and love that soap.

    I think there may be a few ways to combat slime.

    Change the formula a wee bit - The addition of oils like coconut, babassu, etc. changes things enough for a better soap to deal with.

    Use a combo of lyes - KOH brings a different property, but don’t use less than 5%.

    Heat. Castile soap is usually cooked for a while or HP and may do something to getting rid of slime.

    Either way, that slime is somewhat horrid, and I’m amazed that I have avoided it until now.
     
  2. Nov 17, 2019 #2

    shunt2011

    shunt2011

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    I dislike Castile for this reason as well as It makes my skin feel dry. Once you get into adding other oils it’s no longer true Castile it’s a bastille. For a gentle soap I use Jenny/Lindys shampoo recipe on this forum that I tweaked a bit.
     
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  3. Nov 17, 2019 #3

    MarnieSoapien

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    I haven't made Castile but it is on my to-do list. After doing some reading on the subject, I'm still left wondering if the slimy-ness decreases with a long cure? Does it still feel slimy after a year cure? Or is that just the nature of Castile?
     
  4. Nov 17, 2019 #4

    DeeAnna

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    In the years I've been participating here, a number of people have claimed they have a surefire way to make a high oleic soap that absolutely does not make slime. The methods I can think off the cuff include using various additives such as salt and/or baking soda, saponifying with a large excess of lye, curing for a very long time, using a very high water content or very low water content, and making the lye solution with a small amount of KOH.

    The proof of success is whether other people can use the same technique to reliably get a no-slime result. Every method I've seen people try has failed that test.

    Oleic soap is highly soluble in water and when it absorbs water, it forms a sticky gel. That's its nature. The only surefire way to absolutely and definitely eliminate slimy gel is to reduce the oleic acid content in the soap so it is no longer a high oleic soap.

    If you want to make a high oleic soap, go for it. But accept that you can only reduce but not eliminate its slick/slimy qualities. Give the soap bars a decently long cure to reduce the moisture content of the bars and thus slow down how fast the soap absorbs water when used. Allow the soap to dry thoroughly between uses.

    Oleic gel can also be made less obvious in the bath or at the sink by lathering with plenty of water, using warm water rather than cool or cold, using the least amount of soap needed to get the job done, and lathering with a bath puff or washcloth so the lather becomes well aerated before it's used on bare skin.
     
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  5. Nov 17, 2019 #5

    Zany_in_CO

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    There's your answer. Leave out the KOH. :)

    Members are having excellent results with this recipe:
    Zany's No Slime Castile
     
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  6. Nov 17, 2019 #6

    DeeAnna

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    Not everyone is getting reliably "excellent results" with your method, Zany. Nor is everyone getting reliable no-slime results with the 5% KOH method that I proposed awhile back.

    That's the problem in a nutshell. There's no one method, yours, mine or anyone else's, that ensures a high oleic soap won't be slimy ... except to reduce the oleic acid content. You can manage the slimy nature of a high oleic soap, but you can't reliably, consistently eliminate it.
     
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  7. Nov 17, 2019 #7

    Kosmerta

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    I made my first castille recipe 2 days ago. I noticed you said yours is 2-3 weeks old and producing slime. My goal with the loaf I just made is to cut it into 10 bars and test each a month apart for 2-12 months curing time :)
    My recipe had no additives, just olive oil, water, and NaOH, and no superfat. I'll post results each mo th once I start using it and maybe this experiment can serve to find the best curing time to reduce slime (if that is possible)
     
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  8. Nov 17, 2019 #8

    Dawni

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    I think a lot of people, me including, say we have "no slime" but actually mean we "have gel but not the super thick gross kind I've seen in other's pictures" lol

    I know I said it about my HP Castile somewhere. I've tried wetting it n sticking my fingers and lifting them many times over several months. There is something there, but definitely not snot like, at least not to my eyes.

    So maybe there is something about the heat that helps, but it won't eliminate it.
     
  9. Nov 17, 2019 #9

    Mobjack Bay

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    I keep my soaps high and dry between use and have not seen anything I would describe as slime or oleic gel in any high oleic soaps at home. I’m talking about dozens of soaps in various soap dishes filled with pebbles to keep the soap out of water, or on soap drainers (Dino style). In contrast, I recently took a small bit of a 50% OO soap I’ve been testing at home on a trip. After taking a bath the first evening, I left my soap sitting in a non-draining soap dish. The next morning, the bottom third of the little soap was gel. I imagine that soap would’ve produced plenty of slime if I had tried to use it when it was in that state. I also have the impression that the number of days between use of a high oleic soap affects how it lathers, or doesn’t. If I let a 100% OO soap get really dry between uses, I will get a lather that bubbles on the first re-use, as opposed to the thinner lotion-like lather I get with repeated use. I can build the thinner lather into a bubbly lather, but it takes work. This is for soap made using Zany’s recipe and another batch made with distilled water for comparison.
     
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  10. Nov 17, 2019 #10

    DeeAnna

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    I have gotten every high oleic soap I've made or bought to form an obvious gel/slime in under a minute, including bars that have aged multiple years. OTOH, I can use the exact same soap in such a way that it doesn't create any obvious gel/slime. If I aerate the lather and use a generous amount of warm water, the gel/slime quickly gets broken up to form a low, dense lather.

    It's all in the way the soap is used whether a person perceives the gel/slime or not. That's what I mean when I say the gel/slime of a high oleic soap can be managed, but not reliably and consistently eliminated.
     
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  11. Nov 18, 2019 #11

    SoapySuds

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    I can get a ‘lotion’ type lather with any bar of soap, including a syndet bar.

    Low amount of water + high amount of soap = lotion type lather

    I like to get bubbles, so I use more water. More water = bigger bubbles.

    The slime is super apparent with more water.

    Wash test again today.

    Bar #3 with low amount of wash water doesn’t have the super gross feel, but definite slime, and lotion lather. With higher water it’s disgusting, better bubbles, but so snotty.

    Bars #1 & #2 are really decent bars of soap. Good lather, moisturizing feel.

    Bar #4 there is a slimeiness to it, but is more slippery than true slime ropiness, not anything like #3. It’s not super desirable but passable.

    I plan on keeping up this test for at least six months, even if I don’t always report here.

    I have a syndet bar and a goat milk bar from sprouts to compare ‘lotion’ type lather. And yes, lotion lather happens with minimal amount of soap.

    I’ll test again next week.

    Soap (that gets used) at my house gets stored in a soap dish or above the splash zone in the shower. When the soap is returned to its dish, it gets flipped so that it has a chance to dry out. Even store bought soap,when kept constantly wet, gets a gel type layer to it and disintegrates. A well made homemade soap does not melt as fast as a syndet bar and as we all know is super nice.
     
  12. Nov 18, 2019 #12

    KiwiMoose

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    Try no super fat.
     
  13. Nov 18, 2019 #13

    Mobjack Bay

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    To me a lotion-like lather is thin. The non-bubbly lather I get with lard-rich soap, for example, is thick and creamy and unlike what I get with a 100% OO soap. When I get back from my trip, I’m going to have to try making slime. Maybe I need to look for a YouTube video so I can see the the proper hand movements.:) One test I do with all soaps is to wet them and then rub between my hands for 10 sec. This has not produced slime for me.
     
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