Crumbly soft soap

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I made some soap using a slow moving recipe (link below). Lye was at 89 F and oils at 95.
It cracked on top after 24 hours. It did not gel though, and they weren’t deep cracks. I used 2% sodium lactate instead of 1% like usual from the recipe calculator amount given. I used EDTA too though that has not given me issues before. I unmolded after 3 days. The soap is soft and chalky/crumbly. I have made soap for 2 years and never had this happen with any other recipe, this one I took from a website and substituted tallow for lard.(adjusting lye)
Any clues? I am leaning to blaming the amount of sodium lactate. Fragrance was energy from WSP.

Recipe:
https://www.lyecalc.com/recipe/fluid
 

DeeAnna

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My guess is that the soap didn't get sufficiently warm during saponification so it developed that crumbly and soft texture. At least that's the problem when I get soap that looks like yours. Over the years, I'm not convinced soap has to actually gel, but if I want my soap to be firm and translucent the soap needs to get "warm enough" during saponification.

If my off-the-cuff diagnosis is right, the soap will gradually firm up during the cure period, but the appearance will stay chalky -- a kind of gritty, opaque look. You could try doing a "rescue" oven processing to see if that improves the softness and texture. It helps my soap a lot. If it works for yours, the next time you make this recipe, try soaping a little warmer and/or encouraging the soap to warm up a little more while in the mold.

Soapish preheats her oven to 275 F (135 C) and then puts the soap in the preheated oven. She carefully monitors the soap and removes it from the oven immediately after the ring disappears. You'd probably want to do about the same thing, even though there isn't a partial gel ring in your soap to deal with.

See her video about her method. It's short -- just under 5 minutes -- and well worth watching.
 
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My guess is that the soap didn't get sufficiently warm during saponification so it developed that crumbly and soft texture. At least that's the problem when I get soap that looks like yours. Over the years, I'm not convinced soap has to actually gel, but if I want my soap to be firm and translucent the soap needs to get "warm enough" during saponification.

If my off-the-cuff diagnosis is right, the soap will gradually firm up during the cure period, but the appearance will stay chalky -- a kind of gritty, opaque look. You could try doing a "rescue" oven processing to see if that improves the softness and texture. It helps my soap a lot. If it works for yours, the next time you make this recipe, try soaping a little warmer and/or encouraging the soap to warm up a little more while in the mold.

Soapish preheats her oven to 275 F (135 C) and then puts the soap in the preheated oven. She carefully monitors the soap and removes it from the oven immediately after the ring disappears. You'd probably want to do about the same thing, even though there isn't a partial gel ring in your soap to deal with.

See her video about her method. It's short -- just under 5 minutes -- and well worth watching.
Thank you, that makes sense. Later last night I also found a blog from soap queen and she also mentioned the low temperatures causing this. I will watch the video and might give the oven a try, though it might be too late. If not it seems this is destined to be soap dust. (A bar broke almost in half as I attempted to plane it)
 

DeeAnna

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Don't give up hope -- give the "rescue" method a try. The batch may not be an example of your best work, but if you can get it to firm up and not be so soft and fragile, it will be perfectly fine "using" soap.
 
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Don't give up hope -- give the "rescue" method a try. The batch may not be an example of your best work, but if you can get it to firm up and not be so soft and fragile, it will be perfectly fine "using" soap.
I will definitely try this, I watched the video and it seems pretty easy. Will let you know if it works.
 
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It worked! it worked! The bars now feel solid and hard, before they felt like somewhat like bathbombs, or compacted sand, fragile and light. Some edges are still a bit crumbly but underneath it I can feel a more solid bar, I planed it and it did not break off like yesterday. Thank you so much!!! I also know what happens if you leave them in the oven too long, they starts melting very similarly to marshmallows in smores. I stopped them before they started oozing out.
 

DeeAnna

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WHEW! I'm glad it worked for you. Thank Saponista for sharing her method with the world -- I'm just passing on her tips.

It's possible this rescue method might work at lower temps. But done the way she does it, the job gets done in a minimum of time.
 
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WHEW! I'm glad it worked for you. Thank Saponista for sharing her method with the world -- I'm just passing on her tips.

It's possible this rescue method might work at lower temps. But done the way she does it, the job gets done in a minimum of time.
True, it did! And I will comment on her video too!
 

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