Coconut and Olive oil only - what do you recommend?

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MissPpoodle

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Hi Everyone,

I am wanting to make a simple soap with only Coconut and Olive Oil, no fragrance, no other additives, but not sure what percentage of each oils to try. I have been googling and some say 30/70, some 50/50 - which is better?

What have you tried and liked?

Thanks.
 

MelissaG

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Coconut oil is great for bubbles but has a reaction with lye that makes it very drying unless you have an extremely high superfat. Olive Oil is great but it takes forever to harden. A whole soap that is olive oil will take a year before it's cured enough to use or sell. Either of these ratios will require a high superfat and the 30/70 will take a long time to harden enough to use. The 50/50 will harden faster and give great bubbles but dry out your skin terribly without the high superfat.

If you want something that is going to be good for your skin, I suggest the 30/70 with the 70 being olive oil. I'd use at LEAST a 15% superfat, if not higher. Keep in mind, it will take a good three months (possibly more) to harden enough to use so it doesn't waste away in a short period of time.

There's a reason most of us use at least three oils.
 

MissPpoodle

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Coconut oil is great for bubbles but has a reaction with lye that makes it very drying unless you have an extremely high superfat. Olive Oil is great but it takes forever to harden. A whole soap that is olive oil will take a year before it's cured enough to use or sell. Either of these ratios will require a high superfat and the 30/70 will take a long time to harden enough to use. The 50/50 will harden faster and give great bubbles but dry out your skin terribly without the high superfat.

If you want something that is going to be good for your skin, I suggest the 30/70 with the 70 being olive oil. I'd use at LEAST a 15% superfat, if not higher. Keep in mind, it will take a good three months (possibly more) to harden enough to use so it doesn't waste away in a short period of time.

There's a reason most of us use at least three oils.
Thank you, I have a lot to learn. Didn't realise they would take that much longer to harden. What 3rd oil would you recommend to add to the mix then?
 

MissPpoodle

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Why don't you make Zany's No-Slime castile? You can make it with 90% OO and 10% CO. It uses faux sea water ( or you can do what i do and use real sea water - judging by your location) and so it hardens quickly.
Wow, thank you! I will definitely give that recipe a try tomorrow. Yes, we have real sea water here, just have to wait for high tide. Do you still leave the superfat at 0% if you use 10% CO?
 
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Wow, thank you! I will definitely give that recipe a try tomorrow. Yes, we have real sea water here, just have to wait for high tide. Do you still leave the superfat at 0% if you use 10% CO?
Yup. Don't be tempted to increase superfat, because I did that the first time and I got slime. Trust the process and there will be no slime.

I usually collect my sea water and then boil it. Once cooled to luke warm, run it through a coffee filter ( hard to find those in the supermarket these days - but i found some!). Collect extra and freeze it so you have plenty for next time.

If you can get yourself some castor by tomorrow, use that at 5%, CO at 10% and the balance OO. It's lovely soap.

I tend to use cavity molds for this so there's no issue with cutting soap when it gets too hard:
IMG_9784.JPG IMG_9787.JPG
 

SoaperDeb

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Hi Everyone,

I am wanting to make a simple soap with only Coconut and Olive Oil, no fragrance, no other additives, but not sure what percentage of each oils to try. I have been googling and some say 30/70, some 50/50 - which is better?

What have you tried and liked?

Thanks.
I have used this one from Ellys Everyday Soap Making. I cured it for 2 months and it was soooo lovely. It gets more so (lovely) as it cures longer as well. I’m in BC Canada so perhaps our temps help as I didn’t have to wait a year. Hope it helps! Pin by Debbie Gibson Schuler on Soap | Soap
 

MissPpoodle

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I have used this one from Ellys Everyday Soap Making. I cured it for 2 months and it was soooo lovely. It gets more so (lovely) as it cures longer as well. I’m in BC Canada so perhaps our temps help as I didn’t have to wait a year. Hope it helps! Pin by Debbie Gibson Schuler on Soap | Soap
Thank you, I will try that recipe too. Looks like I will just have to make a few variations and see what happens. Didn't think about climate affecting the curing time. My first 3 batches have all stopped losing weight already, at only 3 and 4 weeks, and are nice and hard, quicker than I expected. So I just looked up what speeds up curing, and without knowingly doing it, I ticked several of the boxes - Put Himilayan salt in last batch, put all on drying racks in my large walk in pantry (couldn't find anywhere else to put them), and I always keep a bowl of Zeolite in my pantry to make sure it stays nice and dry and odour free. Probably also helped that we haven't had much rain lately and the weather is warming up.

Hubby is going fishing in the boat tomorrow, so I will get him to bring back some sea water from further out so it will be lovely and clean.
 

Primrose

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I have done 70/30 oo/co with a 7% sf and it was fine.
Everyone’s skin is different so my advice is to make some batches and see what your skin likes
 

MelissaG

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Thank you, I have a lot to learn. Didn't realise they would take that much longer to harden. What 3rd oil would you recommend to add to the mix then?
Mine is olive, coconut, palm, shea, apricot kernel and castor. The number of oils you can use is almost infinite. You can even use lard or tallow if it suits you. Either way, I suggest googling the properties of oils for soap so you can decide yourself. Everyones recipe is different.
 

MissPpoodle

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First 2 batches of experiment. Just 500g each. Did a mix up of everything suggested just to see what happens, as fresh seawater is coming today to make Zany's no slime mix.

Both have 75% OO, 23% CO, 2% Castor Oil, and 1.5 tspns Himilayan Salt. Both 1.7:1 with discount water.

B1 (the smooth looking one) I put the salt in the Lye mix and it semi disolved and used 3% SF, and used 6 separate little moulds. It took quite a while to come to trace, and did not gel. Hardly any smell.
B2 (the speckly one) I put the salt in after trace and used 5% SF, and used a loaf mould and then cut it. It came to trace quicker than the first and it did gel. Slight smell of olive oil.

Both out of mould this morning, 15 hours after making, both lovely and firm and clean out of moulds, and the loaf very easy and neat to cut.

Now the impatient wait for them to cure.
 

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First 2 batches of experiment. Just 500g each. Did a mix up of everything suggested just to see what happens, as fresh seawater is coming today to make Zany's no slime mix.

Both have 75% OO, 23% CO, 2% Castor Oil, and 1.5 tspns Himilayan Salt. Both 1.7:1 with discount water.

B1 (the smooth looking one) I put the salt in the Lye mix and it semi disolved and used 3% SF, and used 6 separate little moulds. It took quite a while to come to trace, and did not gel. Hardly any smell.
B2 (the speckly one) I put the salt in after trace and used 5% SF, and used a loaf mould and then cut it. It came to trace quicker than the first and it did gel. Slight smell of olive oil.

Both out of mould this morning, 15 hours after making, both lovely and firm and clean out of moulds, and the loaf very easy and neat to cut.

Now the impatient wait for them to cure.
These both look lovey - two variations on a theme. Have you made the seawater ones yet, or is that tomorrow's job?

Just to clarify - you state they are both 1.7:1 water to lye ratio, but then you said that they both have superfat? You realise they will both still get slime with the superfat right? And when you say with 'discount water' did you reduce the water amount suggested by the soap calculator? According to soapcalc.com you should have used 121g water with 71g lye for the first recipe, and for the second one it would be 118g and 69g respectively. By using any less water than this, you are effectively changing the 1.7:1 ratio to something else.
Also the first one sounds like you added the salt to the water after you had added the lye. Is that correct? It means that the salt will have trouble dissolving that way. You should always dissolve the salt thoroughly, before then dissolving the lye.
The second one is referred to as a 'salt bar' by adding grains of salt at trace. You can add a lot more than 1.5 teaspoons if you are doing this - with some people adding up to the same amount of salt as their oils weight. I usually do 50% of my oil weight. Typically, one would use a high amount of CO when making a salt bar (because salt will cut the lather, and CO is the only oil that will still lather with salt) and that is why it's usual to superfat at about 15 - 20% to compensate for the drying effects of high CO.
 

MissPpoodle

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Have you made the seawater ones yet, or is that tomorrow's job?
Tomorrow's job - hubby got back too late today from fishing with my water bottle full.
but then you said that they both have superfat? You realise they will both still get slime with the superfat right?
Well Primrose said she used 70 OO/30 CO with 7% superfat, and SoaperDeb's recipe 95 OO/5 CO - when I put it in the calc, I think was 5% superfat, and they both loved theirs, that is why I thought would experiment, as only 75% OO, and thought having a bigger % of CO it might need a bit of SF?

And when you say with 'discount water' did you reduce the water amount suggested by the soap calculator?
I use the SoapMaking Friend Cal, I keyed in 1.7:1, and all the oils, then I selected Salt with appropriate drop box for trace/lye adding, and there was a box to select discount water, so I ticked it too. Figured if it was an option by the calc, I would try it?
Also the first one sounds like you added the salt to the water after you had added the lye. Is that correct? It means that the salt will have trouble dissolving that way. You should always dissolve the salt thoroughly, before then dissolving the lye
Yeah, still learning, wasn't sure as the drop box said with lye, and I though it heats up so much the heat will disolve the salt.... But it seems to have blended in nice and smooth - liking the look of it.

Had read about salt bars too, but not sure I want to make them yet.

My thinking in adding just a bit of salt was that I read that salt makes the soap harden, and being high OO it would help it harden. And I had no idea if the theory worked if you add in Lye or trace or ?? So, what the heck, give it a whirl with small batches and see what comes out. It is good fun experimenting, and with my lack of knowledge/inexperience and misunderstanding instructions combined, you never know, I might stumble on a winner by accident! 🤪
 
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Experimenting is all good! Try the seawater one to the letter with @Zany_in_CO 's recipe and compare it to your other high OO soaps for slime factor and see what you think.
I'm on a little private mission presently to reduce the slime in all my soaps. I first did this my reducing my superfat down to 3% and my next step was to decrease the amount of oleic/linoleic in my soap which can both contribute to slime.
 

MissPpoodle

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KiwiMoose

2 Weeks since made the 3 batches, have only tested 1 bar of each batch with washing hands, very happy with all of them. All 3 are hard, lovely and bubbly, none are slimey, and they all feel really nice, not really any discernable difference except Zany's recipe (number 3) is darker in colour presumably because it has a lower % of CO. Will test in shower over the next week, but I think I prefer these soaps best of all I have made so far.

1 = CO 115g, OO 375g, Castor 10g, Caustic 71g, Water 113g, 1.5tsp Himilayan salt added to lye mix
2 = CO 115g, OO 375g, Castor 10g, Caustic 69g, Water 110g, 1.5tsp Himilayan salt added at trace
3 = CO 120g, OO 1020g, Castor 60g, Caustic 168g, Actual Seawater 285g (Zany's recipe) - I made a bigger batch of Zany's as was confident it was tried and tested and would be good.

Thank you so much for showing the recipe.
 

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Be careful using himalayan salt in soap. Even when you dissolve it when the soap cures it can still scratch. Adding it after trace is really risky. I've scratched myself and drew blood from himalayan salt in a bar I made. Search the forum for other posts on this.
The best salt to use is sea salt. Pure sea salt without anti-caking agents or iodine is available in bulk food stores. Anti caking agents and iodine don't effect your soap but I personally don't like adding extra ingredients to my soap.

Keep experimenting. It is the best way to find the best soap for you and your skin.
 

MissPpoodle

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Be careful using himalayan salt in soap. Even when you dissolve it when the soap cures it can still scratch. Adding it after trace is really risky. I've scratched myself and drew blood from himalayan salt in a bar I made. Search the forum for other posts on this.
The best salt to use is sea salt. Pure sea salt without anti-caking agents or iodine is available in bulk food stores. Anti caking agents and iodine don't effect your soap but I personally don't like adding extra ingredients to my soap.

Keep experimenting. It is the best way to find the best soap for you and your skin.
Oh! Thank you for that, I hadn't read anything about it before, and saw it in other recipies, so thought it was OK, and I had a bag of Himilayan bath salts in the cupboard, and thought why not... Luckily I haven't made big batches with the H salt, and the test bars do seem ok, so hopefully no sharp bits in them.

As we have really clean ocean water readily available, I will probably stick with it now when I want to add salt.
 
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Oh! Thank you for that, I hadn't read anything about it before, and saw it in other recipies, so thought it was OK, and I had a bag of Himilayan bath salts in the cupboard, and thought why not... Luckily I haven't made big batches with the H salt, and the test bars do seem ok, so hopefully no sharp bits in them.

As we have really clean ocean water readily available, I will probably stick with it now when I want to add salt.
Just to confirm it isn't sharp peices in the himalayan salt it is the salt crystals themselves. Even after dissoving them they reconfigure in sharp crystals.
 

MissPpoodle

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Just to confirm it isn't sharp peices in the himalayan salt it is the salt crystals themselves. Even after dissoving them they reconfigure in sharp crystals.
Thank you, yes, have read all about it now, I will leave my bag of Himilayan Bath salt for the bathtub and steer clear of it from now on in the soap.
 
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