Do all butters accelerate?


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Well-Known Member
Apr 5, 2020
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Since I’m not using palm/lard/tallow I’ve come up with a few balanced recipes that work but rely on butters for hardness. I usually have a small margin of play time before it thickens up which hasn’t really hindered me thus far but now I’m going to need to figure out a swirl recipe with a good amount of play time. I was wondering if there are butters that don’t tend to accelerate quickly?

I have Cocoa, Shea, kokum butter and a sample of mango butter—yes I know expensive waste in soap.
I’m dreading having to rely on high amounts of Olive oil and wanted to try and give it more longevity with butter in there...I just want some time to design 😅


Well-Known Member
Dec 22, 2018
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Bloomington, IN
I have made a soap once with cocoa, kokum, mango, and shea butters, 10% each, with 0.5% added beeswax, and it was surprisingly slow-moving.
(I was just trying to use up some butters that I had had for a while, but it turned out to be a really nice soap.)
The rest of my oils were sunflower (30%), apricot kernel (10%), castor at 9.5% (which is another thing that people will probably object to, but it worked fine), and coconut (10 %).

I only made this once (so far), so it isn't exactly much experience. But in general, try to soap as cool as you can; with butters it can be tricky, but even a few degrees can make a difference.


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Jun 23, 2020
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Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Hi there @sarahmarah .
I have been reading up on this myself too. I found a really great article that helped me understand how/which fatty acids affect the speed at which the soap goes to trace.

In the article, they explain that Solid oils (that are hard at room temperature) tend to be high in saturated fatty acids (lauric, myristic, palmitic, stearic). Saturated fatty acids contribute to bar hardness and faster-moving trace.

Soft oils (that are liquid at room temperature) tend to be high in unsaturated fatty acids (oleic, linoleic, and linolenic). Unsaturated fatty acids make the soap softer and slow down trace in cold process soapmaking.

So when you are working on creating a recipe on your Soap calculator eg. Soapmaking Recipe Builder & Lye Calculator
You can just keep an eye on your saturated fats vs unsaturated fats.
I made a recipe for myself that is +/- 40:60 saturated: unsaturated fats and It pours nicely.

But check out the article. I have it bookmarked. It helped me out a lot.