FIRST BATCH!! - looking for feedback!

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NewbiSoaper

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Hi all!

I just made my very first batch of soap tonight! It is now wrapped in a towel sitting in my oven. Just looking for some feedback on my recipe and people's thoughts on what my final product wI'll be! My supplier has been out of olive oil for several weeks and I didn't have tallow or palm as I am not too keen on using them.

Coconut oil 25%
Shea butter 20%
Canola oil 20%
Sweet almond oil 15%
Rice bran 10%
Avocado oil 10%

Oils weighed 30 oz.

I added about a tablespoon of vanilla extract (that's all I had left) and about an oz of ground coffee beans at trace. Not sure if I added enough to make it noticable smell wise.

Ran through a lye calculator.

Any thoughts on what my final product will be ?

soap.jpg
 
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mx6inpenn

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The vanilla extract is not the best idea. It is made with alcohol, which doesn't mix well with soap. Also, the scent doesn't stick well.

As far as the recipe goes, I would drop the coconut to 20% and add 5% castor. What superfat% did you use?
 

NewbiSoaper

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I don't have castor - anything else I could have used instead of that?

I didn't add a superfat either. I was debating but because I added the shea and it has a lot of unsaponifables I leaned away from it. Could I still have superfatted it?
 

earlene

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I don't have castor - anything else I could have used instead of that?

I didn't add a superfat either. I was debating but because I added the shea and it has a lot of unsaponifables I leaned away from it. Could I still have superfatted it?
Did you use a lye calculator? All of them I have used build the SF into the recipe as you add in the oils. If you did not change the default for whatever lye calculator you used, you had a SF built it already.

ETA: You can buy Castor Oil at almost any pharmacy. It usually comes in 2 or 3 ounce bottles, which is enough for one or two batches of soap if you keep it at 5% and do smallish batches.
 
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cmzaha

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I would have lowered the coconut oil to no higher than 20%, I personally do not go that high, and deleted some of the liquid oils. You do not need 4 different liquid oils. I would have added at least 25% lard, tallow or palm to make the bar longer lasting. You can add 1-2 tbs sugar dissolved in your liquid Before adding the lye to help with bubbles. It will certainly be a use-able bar but in a year or so you will see it was not great. You should just put one away to keep to monitor for dos and just to see how soap improves with a long age. Age makes a huge difference with mildness, lather and longevity.
 

Scooter

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You can add 1-2 tbs sugar dissolved in your liquid Before adding the lye to help with bubbles.
Is sugar a good substitute for castor oil? Also, will the sugar caramelize and turn the soap brownish?

Thanks!

--Scooter
 

Dahila

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sugar is not substitute for Castor, Castor is a must for me. sugar will help with bubbles when Castor will keep the bubbles longer. Maybe some reading is required Look for Amanda Gail blog she is very good :)
 

penelopejane

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Hi all!

I just made my very first batch of soap tonight! It is now wrapped in a towel sitting in my oven. Just looking for some feedback on my recipe and people's thoughts on what my final product wI'll be! My supplier has been out of olive oil for several weeks and I didn't have tallow or palm as I am not too keen on using them.
Congratulations on your first batch.

Where do you live? Someone may be able to help you find a cheap, reliable supplier of olive oil.
 

lsg

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I have many times substituted rice bran oil for olive oil with good results. Run any recipe through a lye calculator such as SoapCalc, before making. I use 5% Castor oil in most all of my recipes. You can find Castor oil in small bottles at your local drug store. It is much more cost effective to order it in larger size, Online. I don't use canola oil because it can cause DOS.
You might revise your recipe to include:
5% Castor oil
25% Coconut Oil
15% Avocado Oil
45% Rice Bran oil
10% Shea Butter

This recipe will give you a fairly hard bar with bubbly and creamy lather.
 

NewbiSoaper

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Yes, I used a lye calculator. There was a drop down to choose superfat percentage but I choose 0% - it sounds like that maybe wasn't the right call! I will keep that in mind for next time!
 

NewbiSoaper

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Thanks for the input on the coconut oil! I had read somewhere that under 30% was a good precent age for coconut oil but it sounds like that may be a little high. I add that to my notes! As for the tallow, I have many vegetarians in my family and I am planning on them being my guinea pigs so I have to stay away from it - anything else I could use to help with longevity?

I would have lowered the coconut oil to no higher than 20%, I personally do not go that high, and deleted some of the liquid oils. You do not need 4 different liquid oils. I would have added at least 25% lard, tallow or palm to make the bar longer lasting. You can add 1-2 tbs sugar dissolved in your liquid Before adding the lye to help with bubbles. It will certainly be a use-able bar but in a year or so you will see it was not great. You should just put one away to keep to monitor for dos and just to see how soap improves with a long age. Age makes a huge difference with mildness, lather and longevity.

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Thanks for the input on the coconut oil! I had read somewhere that under 30% was a good precent age for coconut oil but it sounds like that may be a little high. I add that to my notes! As for the tallow, I have many vegetarians in my family and I am planning on them being my guinea pigs so I have to stay away from it - anything else I could use to help with longevity?

Did you use a lye calculator? All of them I have used build the SF into the recipe as you add in the oils. If you did not change the default for whatever lye calculator you used, you had a SF built it already.

ETA: You can buy Castor Oil at almost any pharmacy. It usually comes in 2 or 3 ounce bottles, which is enough for one or two batches of soap if you keep it at 5% and do smallish batches.
I did use a lye calculator but put in 0% superfat. I was thinking that the shea has unsaponifiables so it may not be necessary to add a superfat? However, this was my first batch so I may be totally wrong with that thinking!

I will add castor oil to my list next time I place an order for ingredients but that likely will not be for a few months.

The vanilla extract is not the best idea. It is made with alcohol, which doesn't mix well with soap. Also, the scent doesn't stick well.

As far as the recipe goes, I would drop the coconut to 20% and add 5% castor. What superfat% did you use?
I don't have castor - anything else I could have used instead of that?

I didn't add a superfat either. I was debating but because I added the shea and it has a lot of unsaponifables I leaned away from it. Could I still have superfatted it?

Also, I took a little sniff this morning and you can just smell the oils. Would the coffee bean smell come out more after it is cured? I may not have added enough.

Would it be possible to melt it down and add another essential oil or fragrance oil?

Congratulations on your first batch.

Where do you live? Someone may be able to help you find a cheap, reliable supplier of olive oil.

Thanks! I am in Ontario, Canada.

I have been ordering from CanWax (I have placed two orders over the last 2-3 months and have been monitoring their site every few days, however they are always out of stock on olive oil and a few other popular ingredients) but recently found SaffireBlue and am thinking about placing an order with them for essential oils and fragrance oils.
 
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dixiedragon

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Congrats on your first batch! Pics please!

While I would not have used that exact recipe, I think it will be fine. You may find it a bit drying, but then again you may not! I have a recipe with 50% shea and only a 2% superfat that I am waiting to complete cure.

How do you feel about palm oil? A lot of veggie soapers use it, but a lot of folks choose not to because we (I'm one of them) don't believe it is sustainably farmed and harvested. (No judgment if you choose to use palm.)

Castor is available in pharmacies in with the laxatives. At Wal-Mart it's in a small blue bottle. We have a chain called Vitamin Shoppe and that's the best price I've found that's not from a soap supplier online.

Other options include sunflower (high oleic preferably) and rice bran (you may find it at an Asian grocery).
 

NewbiSoaper

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Congrats on your first batch! Pics please!

While I would not have used that exact recipe, I think it will be fine. You may find it a bit drying, but then again you may not! I have a recipe with 50% shea and only a 2% superfat that I am waiting to complete cure.

How do you feel about palm oil? A lot of veggie soapers use it, but a lot of folks choose not to because we (I'm one of them) don't believe it is sustainably farmed and harvested. (No judgment if you choose to use palm.)

Castor is available in pharmacies in with the laxatives. At Wal-Mart it's in a small blue bottle. We have a chain called Vitamin Shoppe and that's the best price I've found that's not from a soap supplier online.

Other options include sunflower (high oleic preferably) and rice bran (you may find it at an Asian grocery).
I tried to upload a pic from my phone but couldn't, I will try again!

I am steering away from using tallow or palm for the exact reasons you mentioned, my supplier also hasn't have olive oil for a few months (like 3) and I could only find it in grocery stores but I wasn't willing to pay the extra money knowing how much cheaper it is from the supplier.

I do not have sunflower or castor but I do have rice bran.

Next time I put in an order I will order some castor, many people seem to use it religiously so it must be something I should have on hand.

soap.jpg
 

Navaria

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Also, I took a little sniff this morning and you can just smell the oils. Would the coffee bean smell come out more after it is cured? I may not have added enough.

Would it be possible to melt it down and add another essential oil or fragrance oil?
Coffee beans won't leave a coffee smell in your soap. The only way to get that is with a coffee FO.

As far as melting it down and adding fragrance oil, you *could* rebatch it, but since this is your first batch, I don't know that I would start in on that yet. Give it time to cure and see what you like/don't like about it. Rebatching can be a pain in the rear, and if you don't even care for the soap you made, you'd be wasting your time trying to make a not so great product smell better. If you decide you DO like the recipe you made, but want to make it smell better then by all means rebatch then :)
 
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cmzaha

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Coffee beans won't leave a coffee smell in your soap. The only way to get that is with a coffee FO.

As far as melting it down and adding fragrance oil, you *could* rebatch it, but since this is your first batch, I don't know that I would start in on that yet. Give it time to cure and see what you like/don't like about it. Rebatching can be a pain in the rear, and if you don't even care for the soap you made, you'd be wasting your time trying to make a not so great product smell better. If you decide you DO like the recipe you made, but want to make it smell better then by all means rebatch then :)
Or shred it up and add it to a new batch of batter 2 parts batter 1 part confetti. You can then fragrance your new batch without the pain in the backside of rebatching. Fragrance oils and Essential oils are really all you can use to fragrance and have it stay. You might get a little hint of coffee smell if you are lucky.
 

NewbiSoaper

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Coffee beans won't leave a coffee smell in your soap. The only way to get that is with a coffee FO.

As far as melting it down and adding fragrance oil, you *could* rebatch it, but since this is your first batch, I don't know that I would start in on that yet. Give it time to cure and see what you like/don't like about it. Rebatching can be a pain in the rear, and if you don't even care for the soap you made, you'd be wasting your time trying to make a not so great product smell better. If you decide you DO like the recipe you made, but want to make it smell better then by all means rebatch then :)
Aaahhhhh I see! I thought the beans would make it smell - I even used my best smelling coffee!! Haha! Good to know!
 

Dahila

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Newbiesoaper in Ontario there is http://bedessee.com/ca/ it has the best prices on CO and OO, or other , right now site is unavalable. You have to organize the shipper to pick it up and deliver to your place. Even with paying for shipper it comes way cheaper than from suppliers. SB has not bad price on CO but they are pain in the neck, Yesterday after 2 weeks of waiting I got my shipment from them, half of supplies on backorder. I swear never again. OO I buy at costco. Even with 18.99 for 3 l it comes the cheaper in Canada , and it is an awesome oil. The one from NO Frills is greenish, and I think it is mix with some cheap oil..........:)
SB has a few good FO and not so bad Essential oils. If you want good quality, pay a bit more at Candora, they sell WSP colors, EO and FO:)
 
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NewbiSoaper

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Or shred it up and add it to a new batch of batter 2 parts batter 1 part confetti. You can then fragrance your new batch without the pain in the backside of rebatching. Fragrance oils and Essential oils are really all you can use to fragrance and have it stay. You might get a little hint of coffee smell if you are lucky.
I was actually just reading some other threads and somebody was talking about making confetti soap. My mold made 9 bars so I think I will actually use one or two to get an idea of how long they last/see if I like that recipe, I'll keep one to see how they do with time, maybe try confettiing? a few ect.

Many people have commented that they would have decreased the coconut oil as the recipe I used may be a little drying so I think I will try re-jigging the recipe and make another batch.

It was actually really fun and I love that it is not overly time consuming! It is something that can be completed easily in an evening! I am going to try bath bombs next!
 

NewbiSoaper

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Newbiesoaper in Ontario there is http://bedessee.com/ca/ it has the best prices on CO and OO, or other , right now site is unavalable. You have to organize the shipper to pick it up and deliver to your place. Even with paying for shipper it comes way cheaper than from suppliers. SB has not bad price on CO but they are pain in the neck, Yesterday after 2 weeks of waiting I got my shipment from them, half of supplies on backorder. I swear never again. OO I buy at costco. Even with 18.99 for 3 l it comes the cheaper in Canada , and it is an awesome oil. The one from NO Frills is greenish, and I think it is mix with some cheap oil..........:)
SB has a few good FO and not so bad Essential oils. If you want good quality, pay a bit more at Candora, they sell WSP colors, EO and FO:)
Good to know that SB has not been overly reliable. I just looked at Candora's website and it their prices are basically what I was paying, except they seem to have a much larger selection! Thanks!
 

Dahila

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Candora is in my city, when you order today tomorrow it will be shipped:)) awesome products, wonderful customer service and fast shipping:)) I also order all my packaging and surfacants from Voyager, and Xen, Windy Point is fantastic too, when you spend $125 before taxes the shipping is free, the only supplier who carry EDTA
 
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