Coffee Soap

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TheGecko

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Hello folks! I'm planning to make a batch of coffee soap and was looking around at some recipes online and would like to know what are some of your preferences and reasons for them. Assuming that i have some grounds that I would like to add into my soap while mixing, here are some differences I noticed in some of the recipes around.

1. Brew with the grounds, freeze it and use it as a water replacement?
2. Add grounds directly to lye water (the exothermic reaction will "boil" the coffee)
3. No coffee water, just add some FO
4. Coffee water (either pre-brew or add grounds during) + FO

I just picked up some fresh grounds from a friend and am wondering if method 1/2 would yield a soap that smells strongly enough.

I'm going to start with your last sentence...neither liquid coffee or coffee grounds will make your soap smell like coffee. It's the same with any other food item or liquid. It's more about 'label appeal'.

As to your numbered items:

1) Some folks will use coffee as either half of their 'water' or full water replacement. Because the exothermic reaction which will burn/scorch the coffee, if it is 'half', it is added to the oils separately or if used as full water, it is frozen.

2) Yes, adding fresh grounds to your water and then adding lye will make 'coffee' (see Item 1).

3) Yes. If you want the 'smell' of coffee, this is your best option.

4) See Items 1 and 3

To continue...coffee grounds are usually added to soap as an exfoliant. It is best to use thoroughly dried 'used/spent' grounds as opposed to fresh grounds because the fresh grounds will have 'halos' (rings) around them. This is because the grounds soak up the water and expel 'coffee' in simple terms.

Also, outside of 'label appeal', it doesn't matter if the coffee is your local store brand or something that is expelled from the south bound end of a north bound furry critter...it's just coffee.
 

Zany_in_CO

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I find the grounds to be very scratchy so I grind them to a powder and use with a light touch. Also, coffee soap is often called "kitchen soap" because it removes the stink from the hands after chopping/cleaning -- garlic, onion, fish, etc. :thumbs: ;)

In the early days of soapmaking, I made "housewarming gifts" of Kitchen Soap, Mechanics Soap, and Gardener's Soap. You can use the same Basic Recipe for all 3. Then change the exfoliant from grounds/coffee to fine pumice/orange EO to herbs/herbal infusion.
 
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