Dumb Dumb Moments: Zany's Faux Seawater Recipe

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Well it's 11 o'clock at night I have had along day because every time I went to measure out my ingredients someone came over Or I had to run over to my son's school to fix his schedule for next year today was the last day of school so I had to go. Anyways I have everything ready and measured out to start soaping and now my lye will not dissolve into the faux sea water I don't understand what's happening. The other problem I have never thought of is how will I dispose of this lye now we have a septic tank and we aren't supposed to put lye down the drain what should I do? Oh I was so excited this morning to make this soap and now I feel tired and bummed right out we only have one kinda lye intown the kind that is in pebbles. So I don't know if buying a new batch of lye will help. Well I will have to figure this out tomorrow. Could mixing my lye to slow with really small amounts of lye at a time to cut back on fumes be the problem I usually do this but never had a problem before. 🥱
I can't speak for the septic tank issue, but about the faux seawater/lye solution I can share my experience. I always freeze my liquid, then use the ice. I have regular and mini ice cube trays so weighing isn't an issue, mostly I do it to keep the temp low and reduce fumes and scorching (I mostly use milks) because I have a very small work space with barely any ventilation. When I add lye to ice it typically dissolves slowly, and when I used the brine/faux seawater, the mixture was cloudy and had some pieces that took forever to melt, but you can always pour through a mesh strainer to catch the last few bits that won't dissolve. But for me, it takes 5-10 minutes for all the lye (I use flakes, bought from a soap supplier) to dissolve depending on my concentration, what liquid I'm using, etc. I did use lye from the Home Depot once and those were thicker bits and took FOREVER to dissolve, so I went back to getting it from a soap supplier (usually Brambleberry).
Good luck on your soaping journey! And remember, it's not a failure, but a learning experience!
 
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@CLMP I would try stirring in 1 Tbsp of plain distilled water. The additional water will heat up the lye solution a bit and hopefully assist with dilution. I don’t know what batch size you have, but you could potentially do a second one if needed.

Hopefully that does the trick. Let us know how it goes.
 
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@CLMP I would try stirring in 1 Tbsp of plain distilled water. The additional water will heat up the lye solution a bit and hopefully assist with dilution. I don’t know what batch size you have, but you could potentially do a second one if needed.

Hopefully that does the trick. Let us know how it goes.
Thanks so much @AliOop It's 7:30 in the morning and I'm patiently waiting for the store to open I just hope it's not closed today the rodeo is here this weekend and alot of stores close down when we have the rodeo. With my luck it will be closed like this morning I was out of coffee so I tried the instant coffee I have for emergencys and the coffee didn't want to desolve instant flash backs from last night when my lye wouldn't desolve boy oh boy all I can do is laugh. Oh and I think my lye wouldn't work due to moisture in my garage where I store it so from now on I will store it in the house.
 

Zany_in_CO

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I'm sorry you had so many issues with this batch. I can relate. TIP: Prepare your oils ahead of time so when you have time to soap they are ready to go. When I was selling wholesale, I'd pour 4 batches of oils at a time into 4 buckets, covered and stored in my laundry room.

I made the faux sea water last night.
I often make the lye solution the night before soaping and add it to the warmed oils, cold from the fridge. It always surprises me when the batch heats right up. 😁

Could mixing my lye to slow with really small amounts of lye at a time to cut back on fumes be the problem
Maybe. I add the NaOH all at once, while stirring. I wear a mask and turn my face away. It heats up right away so I walk away for a minute or so until the fumes settle down, then return and stir until clear. At that point, it's generally 160°F. I leave it in the sink while I weigh and nuke my oils. By the time the oils are ready, the lye has cooled to soaping temp or I may have to wait a little longer.

I think my lye wouldn't work due to moisture in my garage
Good thinking. That's likely the problem... If it is stored on a concrete floor, it can take on moisture through osmosis. Not good. :confused:
 
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I'm sorry you had so many issues with this batch. I can relate. TIP: Prepare your oils ahead of time so when you have time to soap they are ready to go. When I was selling wholesale, I'd pour 4 batches of oils at a time into 4 buckets, covered and stored in my laundry room.


I often make the lye solution the night before soaping and add it to the warmed oils, cold from the fridge. It always surprises me when the batch heats right up. 😁


Maybe. I add the NaOH all at once, while stirring. I wear a mask and turn my face away. It heats up right away so I walk away for a minute or so until the fumes settle down, then return and stir until clear. At that point, it's generally 160°F. I leave it in the sink while I weigh and nuke my oils. By the time the oils are ready, the lye has cooled to soaping temp or I may have to wait a little longer.


Good thinking. That's likely the problem... If it is stored on a concrete floor, it can take on moisture through osmosis. Not good. :confused:
So I bought a new jug of lye it's doing the same thing I don't know what to do. Here is a pic of it.
IMG_20230630_132305.jpg
 
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Could this solution of baking soda & sea salt (or even just regular ocean water as I am literally feet from a massive stretch of ocean) be used in a regular batch of soap?

This is yet something else I haven't tried, and which I know would go over very well with customers in my area.
 
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I give up! It did it again. Can I make this Castle recipe with just distilled water and if so what ratio or concentration to soap at? My lye just won't desolve in the faux sea water shoot.
 
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I give up! It did it again. Can I make this Castle recipe with just distilled water and if so what ratio or concentration to soap at? My lye just won't desolve in the faux sea water shoot.
Instead of making faux sea water ahead of time, I just use some of the batch water to add the amount of salt and bicarb needed for my recipe. Here is how I do it:

1. Make a 50% lye solution (same amount of water as lye).

2. Use the remaining water to dissolve the salt (1.9% of total water weight) and bicarb (1.7% of total water weight).

3. While the lye solution is still hot, mix the two solutions together, pour that into your oils, and start blending. The extra heat helps the OO trace faster. ;)

If that sounds confusing, just let me know the amounts of your oils, and I can give you the correct amounts of everything. :)
 
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Instead of making faux sea water ahead of time, I just use some of the batch water to add the amount of salt and bicarb needed for my recipe. Here is how I do it:

1. Make a 50% lye solution (same amount of water as lye).

2. Use the remaining water to dissolve the salt (1.9% of total water weight) and bicarb (1.7% of total water weight).

3. While the lye solution is still hot, mix the two solutions together, pour that into your oils, and start blending. The extra heat helps the OO trace faster. ;)

If that sounds confusing, just let me know the amounts of your oils, and I can give you the correct amounts of everything. :)
Oh thank you so much @AliOop . I will try this. I should be able to figure it out. I like making 3 pound batches. I was thinking of making this soap with just salt in it because I know my lye works with just salt in the water when I make Pinetar. For some reason my lye doest like the baking soda or maybe it's cheap lye I buy it at home hard ware. I don't know but I'm going to go try what you said. I'll let you know how it goes lol
 
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Instead of making faux sea water ahead of time, I just use some of the batch water to add the amount of salt and bicarb needed for my recipe. Here is how I do it:

1. Make a 50% lye solution (same amount of water as lye).

2. Use the remaining water to dissolve the salt (1.9% of total water weight) and bicarb (1.7% of total water weight).

3. While the lye solution is still hot, mix the two solutions together, pour that into your oils, and start blending. The extra heat helps the OO trace faster. ;)

If that sounds confusing, just let me know the amounts of your oils, and I can give you the correct amounts of everything. :)
@AliOop sorry to bug again I can figure out the lye and solution but I'm not sure how to figure out how much salt and baking soda yup I fail at math and I'm not sure how to figure out % and stuff. My batch oils are 979.76g and the water is 232.74g together the batch is 3 Pound's. I'm hoping this works I'm starting to feel excited about this batch again lol
 
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Instead of making faux sea water ahead of time, I just use some of the batch water to add the amount of salt and bicarb needed for my recipe. Here is how I do it:

1. Make a 50% lye solution (same amount of water as lye).

2. Use the remaining water to dissolve the salt (1.9% of total water weight) and bicarb (1.7% of total water weight).

3. While the lye solution is still hot, mix the two solutions together, pour that into your oils, and start blending. The extra heat helps the OO trace faster. ;)

If that sounds confusing, just let me know the amounts of your oils, and I can give you the correct amounts of everything. :)
I think I figured it out I just asked Google lol
 
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@AliOop so did you mean to mix the salt and baking soda that's mixed in the smaller amount of water in the hot lye water and then dump the lye into my oils hot before it cools down. Just want to make sure I got that part right.
 

Zany_in_CO

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It looks cloudy but also has tiny white specs in it I tried to strain it but it is kinda like whit goo in it
Okay. So my next question is, did the lye heat up when you mixed it? If so, then it is "active". Like @KiwiMoose advised, although cloudy, you can pour it through a strainer ( while adding to the oils) to keep the white undissolved particles out and use it to make soap. :thumbs:
 
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Zany_in_CO

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Could this solution of baking soda & sea salt (or even just regular ocean water as I am literally feet from a massive stretch of ocean) be used in a regular batch of soap?
Yes. Several members have made ZNSC with "regular ocean water" instead of faux sea water.
Several members have also used that recipe for other types of soap, although, IMO, it's purpose is best suited for formulas high in olive oil or similar (almond, avocado, carrot root, RBO, hemp, etc.). Meaning, a balanced (SAT/UNSAT) formula generally doesn't need added salt. It's hard enough.
 
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Yes. Several members have made ZNSC with "regular ocean water" instead of faux sea water.
Several members have also used that recipe for other types of soap, although, IMO, it's purpose is best suited for formulas high in olive oil or similar (almond, avocado, carrot root, RBO, hemp, etc.). Meaning, a balanced (SAT/UNSAT) formula generally doesn't need added salt. It's hard enough.
Good to know, thank you :)

The majority of my soap formulations are 40 / 60 saturated to unsaturated - one is 42 / 58 - which I prefer to keep that way as I have been able to finally get successful pull-throughs made using this balance, and changing up from pomace to extra virgin when needing to make these designs.

My olive oil wright is between 50-55% in all soap formulations.

So I guess the question would be, would sea water be doable with these types of formulations, and would I even want to bother? A harder bar is great, the sooner the better in my books, but I also don't wish to be breaking the wires on my various cutters.
 

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