Dissolving lye in hot water

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by gsc, Nov 19, 2014.

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  1. Nov 19, 2014 #1

    gsc

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    I want to steep some herbs in my lye water then strain. Directions for steeping herbs says to pour boiling water over them. When lye is dissolved I don't believe it is quite "boiling" temperature so I was wondering if I could start out with very warm water, add my lye and when completely dissolved add my herbs Any comments if this would work? I thought this might be easier than infusing my oils with the herbs.
     
  2. Nov 19, 2014 #2

    Obsidian

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    No, it can get way too hot if you use warm water. A better option is to steep your herbs in plain water then once its cool, strain and add the lye.
     
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  3. Nov 19, 2014 #3

    Ruthie

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    I agree. Use warm water and you may have a volcano. Steep and strain first. Then use with lye once it's cooled.
     
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  4. Nov 19, 2014 #4

    IrishLass

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    Ditto what Ruthie and Obsidian said.


    IrishLass :)
     
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  5. Nov 19, 2014 #5

    Moody Glenn

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    Hello! I wholeheartedly agree with Obsidian and Ruthie - the chemical reaction of lye and water is very strong and produces an enormous amount of heat. Don't take chances by trying to combine two or more steps involving lye. I also don't like the idea of you straining out the herb/lye mix if you do it. That is one additional hazardous action that could back-fire for you. Safety first is foremost when doing anything involving lye. Just make the solution, let it cool and carefully pour it into the soap batter. Do other things separately. :thumbup:
     
  6. Nov 19, 2014 #6

    Susie

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    Or steep the herbs in half the total water while you mix the lye with the cool remainder of the water.
     
  7. Nov 19, 2014 #7

    DeeAnna

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    Yep, what the others are saying. I'll also add:

    Doing an infusion in plain water is quite different than doing an infusion in a strong alkali solution (aka your lye water). Old time soapers used to float a feather in their lye water to check its strength. It was strong enough for soaping if the lye disintegrated the feather. Our lye water will do the same if you wanted to try. Plain water, boiling or not, is not remotely in the same league. :)
     
  8. Nov 20, 2014 #8

    The Efficacious Gentleman

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    This is a very good point - if you steep the herbs in lye water then strain them out, you'll have very caustic herbs to deal with and that won't be straight forward at all.

    Steep in normal water, strain when cooled and then add lye - this method gets my vote, too.
     
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  9. Nov 21, 2014 #9

    girlishcharm2004

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    I'm glad you asked first! :)
     
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  10. Dec 22, 2019 #10

    Sundos

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    Hello
    I just put the lye over a very hot water after boiling my herbs in it and straining it, what I got is a volcano of a very hot liquid and I burn my hands after that, thanks god for vinegar.

    USING VINEGAR IS NOT ENDORSED BY SMF. DO NOT DO THIS.
     
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  11. Dec 22, 2019 #11

    Deborah Long

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    To be clear - NEVER use vinegar on the skin. It will make the lye burn WORSE! Only clean surface areas with vinegar. Cold water on lye burns for 15 minutes or a trip to the emergency provide in your area if it's bad enough.
     
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  12. Dec 22, 2019 #12

    shunt2011

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    Never ever put vinegar on a lye burn. Your adding acid to the lye. Will make it worse That’s dangerous to even suggest. Also, this post is 5 years old.
     
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  13. Dec 22, 2019 #13

    Lin19687

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    FYI, this post is from 2014
     
  14. Dec 22, 2019 #14

    Sundos

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    Thanks for the advice guys, I'm new member here and saw this thread and thought of sharing my experience :)
     
  15. Dec 22, 2019 #15

    Relle

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    Your first aid information is wrong, please do not share the wrong information, on a public forum.
    Closed thread.
     
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