Curing times

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Well-Known Member
Oct 29, 2014
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Eagle Point, Oregon
My first CP soap, guest size ovals, have been curing for a month now, but I don't know if I should cure them longer or are they ready?

The CP soaps I'm making have the default 38% water, and I'm doing 7 to 8% Super fatting, using only 45 to 48% hard oils.
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You can actually test your bars out as early as you want, just as long as they don't zap...... although as I sometimes say- you can even test them out even if they do zap just to get the idea of what a lye-heavy soap fees like, but just be aware that the experience definitely won't be as pleasant as when they don't zap. lol

Since you are very new to the craft, my advice would be to take a fresh, new, zap-less bar aside and test it out (wash with it) about once a week all throughout the cure period in order to see and feel the changes going on in the soap (take notes!). Then you will have a better idea of when your particular soap formula is 'ready', or the best it can be in terms of bubbliness, longevity, mildness, etc....

I did the same thing when I was new and found out that my own formulas are at their earliest best at 4 weeks, but they get even better after 6 - 8 weeks have gone by.

Keep in mind that what one considers to be their "earliest best" might be different from what another considers to be their "earliest best", but on average, 4 weeks seems to be fairly normal for an 'earliest best'.

IrishLass :)
My recipes are 60% hard oils, 33% lye solution, and 5% superfat. My bars stop losing a gram of weight per week at 3 weeks and 4 days. However, I'm sure they are still losing fractions of a gram per week. Just comparing my statistics to what I know about yours (without ever having seen them), I would do a couple of things. First, my hypothesis would be that your bars might need closer to the 6 week mark. Second, weigh one now in grams, then each day for a week to see if the weight has changed. Third, cut one in half and see if it's still sticky inside.

Edit -- What IrishLass said, they will only get better with age. I guess I forgot to ask in what regards are you asking about cure time. Do you mean to use personally? Or to give away to friends? I wait until at least 4 weeks to give away to friends, but sometimes I just start using immediately if I'm impatient to use one of my bars.
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Cure times

Thanks for your feedback. One of the bars from my first CP is pretty grungy looking (tried to force it out of the mold and then was given the freezer trick). So I tested that one just now. It seems my beginner recipes worked. It's very creamy. lathery, and has plenty of bubbles, and my hands feel softer after drying than they did before I washed them. Yeah!

The weighing thing is good to know. I have my first coat hanger swirl curing too, so I'll weigh one of those now and every week for another 3-4 weeks or more.
I was asking about curing in general, but definitely more interested in knowing when to give soap to family and friends.