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curing soap is wet

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JLem

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I made a batch of CP soap a month ago and is has been cut and curing for the past 4 weeks. However, the tops of the bars are damp - they have that slightly slippery/slick feel of a bar that's been used in the shower (like hours after it has been used and has been left to dry). I have not seen this with any of my other bars and the recipe I used for this batch is just a slight variation of my standard recipe. Here's the recipe:

50% Olive oil (part of which was lavender-infused)
20% Palm oil
15% Coconut oil
10% Sunflower oil
5% Castor oil

35% water as percent of oil weight
6% superfat

total oil weight was 680 grams and I added 1 tsp of French green clay and 2 tsp each of peppermint EO and tea tree EO

I had used castor oil in a shampoo bar and had this left over so decided to include it here (normally I do not use it). The shampoo bar did not have this issue however.

This is the first time I have used either peppermint or tea tree EO, but otherwise everything else I did was pretty much my standard operating procedure. I cut the bars after 24 hours. They were still a bit soft, but I do not think overly so.

We have had a relatively hot and humid month...and we don't have A/C...and we were away for 2 weeks so had the house closed up. Could that be it?

Any thoughts about why this is and/or how to deal with it (or even if it is a problem)?

Thanks
 

galaxyMLP

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I brought some soaps to south Florida for my mom with me this weekend and just 3 minutes outside got them slick and sticky from the humidity.

Yep, its the humidity!
 

not_ally

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Well, that just seems weird. I don't see anything in your recipe that might make the bars wet at this point. How long have you been back? I might put them out in a place that maximizes curing and check in a couple of days. Sorry not to be more helpful, but it is an interesting puzzle. Where do you live, ie, what were the climactic conditions that were maximized w/the house shut up?

ETA: More helpful responses from Shunt and Galaxy, yay!
 

JLem

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Wow...thanks for the very quick replies! IT was hot and sticky while we were away. We've been home for a few days now, but it is still humid (southeastern Massachusetts), though cooler than it was.

I would normally start using soap after 4 weeks of cure. Are these still OK to use? Or has the humidity retarded the curing process? Anything I can do at this point other than wait for the humidity to drop?
 

TeaLeavesandTweed

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How about a dehumidifier and a fan? We generally have a dehumidifier to battle the mold growth in the summer where I live. Maybe putting your curing soaps near the dehumidifier, with a fan blowing gently to increase airflow, would help.
 

not_ally

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Good suggestions, Tea Leaves. JLem, I mistakenly used a humidifier instead of a de-humidifier when a friend of mine was throwing his out, I just got confused (I know, I am slow sometimes.) And then was like "hm, my soaps are all so moist and dewy, that does not seem like the right result."

That was not good, don't do it :)
 

Jstar

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Yup, its humidity.

When I was at my mom's house I kept my soaps curing in the bedroom with me in the AC..but when I moved over to my smaller house, the room got really stuffy and my mom started opening the windows off and on..the humidity got em and they got slick..just put a fan on them and they'll dry back up..and they are fine to use :)
 

navigator9

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You said it's only the tops of the bars that are "wet"? I'm wondering if you sprayed with alcohol to prevent ash. When I was doing this, I noticed that sometimes the tops of the bars were to me, "sticky". Not really wet, but more stickyish. Hard to describe, but it used to happen when I'd spray several times with alcohol. Any chance you sprayed?
 

JLem

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You said it's only the tops of the bars that are "wet"? I'm wondering if you sprayed with alcohol to prevent ash. When I was doing this, I noticed that sometimes the tops of the bars were to me, "sticky". Not really wet, but more stickyish. Hard to describe, but it used to happen when I'd spray several times with alcohol. Any chance you sprayed?
No, I did not spray with alcohol. I rarely get a light layer of ash, but if I do, I do not mind it - all my bars are for personal/family use and not for selling.

The humidity seems to be the consensus. I really don't feel the need to pull out the dehumidifier just for these bars, so maybe I'll just try putting a fan on them and seeing what happens. The weather is supposed to dry out the next day or two anyway.
 

shunt2011

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I would just have a fan blow on them. Should help a great deal You could also try using that Damp Rid stuff if you store it in a small area. I've read of others doing it but I've not done it myself. I keep our air going until fall to avoid the humidity as my soaps and salt bars do not like it. Also, they should be more than fine to use.
 

Yooper

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My climate is usually pretty dry, even in the summer. It's very dry in the winter, as even the snow feels dry and doesn't stick together.

This summer, for the first three weeks of August it's been humid. My aged soaps that I just keep in the open in one of the bedrooms are a bit moist from the humidity. It's unusual for us to have high humidity, and I don't have anything like a dehumidifier.

I can't even dry my hops yet, as it's just too damp and humid

So yes, I'd say it's the humidity. The fan should help a lot!
 

TeresaT

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I have absolutely nothing constructive or helpful to add to this conversation. I just want to say:

I live in Tennessee. I laugh in the face of humidity. HaHa!

Anyone from Louisiana, Mississippi, and Georgia wanna chime in?
 

JLem

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I used to live in NE Arizona and it was dry as a bone - so much so that the skin on the heels of my feet would be tough as leather and crack (sort of like excessively chapped lips). I don't miss that at all...so I guess I shouldn't complain about the humidity! Good to know that there doesn't seem anything wrong with my soap.

Yooper - good luck with the hops...maybe you could use an oven on the lowest heat if the weather doesn't improve? Not ideal, but would be better than moldy hop cones!
 

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