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Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by John Harris, Oct 28, 2019.
What does it mean when we say that an oil is conditioning?
The less "conditioning," the more it will strip away the oils on your skin.
Are you talking about the conditioning number like you see in Soapcalc and other soap recipe calcs? Or are you talking about the word as people use it in general conversation?
At the moment, I'm going to assume you mean the Soapcalc conditioning. Because if you aren't, I really don't know what conditioning means. The word is as vague to me as "natural" is.
If conditioning means what Artemis suggests -- the property of not stripping oils off the skin -- then conditioning means less or no myristic and lauric fatty acids. In other words, high "conditioning" means a low "cleansing" value.
Unfortunately, as Soapcalc et al. defines conditioning, it's the sum of only the polyunsaturated fatty acids in the soap. That means oleic, linoleic, linolenic, and ricinoleic acids.
Stearic and palmitic -- the other main fatty acids that aren't lauric and myristic -- are ignored. I think stearic and palmitic should be included in the conditioning number, in that they add mildness and gentle cleansing. If that was the case, then the conditioning number would be exactly as Artemis defines it -- all of the fatty acids except for lauric and myristic.
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