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Glycerin Soap. Sorbital a sugar solution???

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Lane

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This was sent to me today:
" First let me just comnment on a wonderful product line and say that you are a very talented soapmaker. I wanted to point out a descrepancy to you that you may be unaware of. You claimm that your Double Shea Glycerin soaps contain no added sugar solutions, yet the ingredient list cites sorbitol as an ingredient. Glycerine itself is a sugar solution as is sorbitol. Thought you might want to know this....."

Um... I buy my base from a site that states:
" Our M&P soap bases are natural and contain no detergents, no sulfates, no alcohol, and no sugar solutions."

Does anyone have any info on glycerin or sorbitol being a sugar solution... I do know they are classified as sugar alcohols...but are used to replace sugar.... :? :? :?
 

SoapyGal

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Well, I don't have any answers, but maybe you might want to pm one of our newer members: ghengis151.... he/she is a chemistry major, so might have some helpful info for you.

HTH! :wink:
 

IanT

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This might be kind of confusing...sorbitol is a sugar substitute, and is derived from corn syrup but occurs naturally in many other berries and fruits.....It is NOT sugar in the scientific or nonscientific sense because the molecule has been transformed by changing the aldehyde group ( O=CH-) to a Hydroxyl group(–OH), hence not a sugar solution because the chemical structures differ. Sugar (Glucose) can either be mono or di saccheride (simple sugars).


Basically Sorbitol is derived from glucose but it does not maintain the same properties since the molecule has been changed, It is derived from a form of "sugar" but is not sugar because it is classified as an alcohol due to its molecular structure...this also gives it its properties of half the calories and no worries for tooth decay..


so have i thoroughly confused you?? maybe someone can pop in and give a more concise answer! been a while since ive been in chem as I ve graduated!! :)
 

Lane

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IanT- Um... So I think I should just copy what you just typed and send that as my reply to the person who e-mailed me... :twisted:
 

Tabitha

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If you copy his response I would correct the double negative in the 1st line of the scond paragraph.

...but it doesnt not maintain ...
 
G

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I think that the point is that glycerol (glycerine, glycerin) and sorbitol are sugar alcohols, as stated in the OP, and that as sugar alcohols they share some characteristics of the sugars and some characteristics with with alcohols, but are distinct from either of the two. Technically they are alcohols because they have the -OH hydroxyl groups and the characteristic "-ol" chemical name (glycerol, sorbitol, or even the more common ethanol and isopropanol). Both sugars and sugar alcohols have a sweet taste although the sugar alcohols have fewer calories and weaker sweetness. As far as I know the sugar alcohols do not have the drying affects associated with the stronger alcohols such as isopropyl alcohol and the like.

Technically they aren't sugars although they are alcohols, but not in any negative way. They are commonly used in making transparent soap (glycerol) along with sugar and ethanol, as solvents to minimize grain or string growth to promote transparency.

Transparent soaps are mostly quite mild on skin so the presence of sugar alcohols, or even the presence of sugars and alcohols is not particularly any negative thing, except I think some of the alcohol is left in transparent soap production, unlike the base in the OP which appears to not have any alcohol at all, other than the sugar alcohols.
 

IanT

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Tabitha said:
If you copy his response I would correct the double negative in the 1st line of the scond paragraph.

...but it doesnt not maintain ...
lol just caught that and changed it...lol i dont know what i was thinking!! lol...was a little late....

I think that the point is that glycerol (glycerine, glycerin) and sorbitol are sugar alcohols, as stated in the OP, and that as sugar alcohols they share some characteristics of the sugars and some characteristics with with alcohols, but are distinct from either of the two. Technically they are alcohols because they have the -OH hydroxyl groups and the characteristic "-ol" chemical name (glycerol, sorbitol, or even the more common ethanol and isopropanol). Both sugars and sugar alcohols have a sweet taste although the sugar alcohols have fewer calories and weaker sweetness. As far as I know the sugar alcohols do not have the drying affects associated with the stronger alcohols such as isopropyl alcohol and the like.

Technically they aren't sugars although they are alcohols, but not in any negative way. They are commonly used in making transparent soap (glycerol) along with sugar and ethanol, as solvents to minimize grain or string growth to promote transparency.

Transparent soaps are mostly quite mild on skin so the presence of sugar alcohols, or even the presence of sugars and alcohols is not particularly any negative thing, except I think some of the alcohol is left in transparent soap production, unlike the base in the OP which appears to not have any alcohol at all, other than the sugar alcohols.

I dont think much alcohol could be left, the boiling points of alcohols range from 79-117 degrees Celcius so i would guess alot of it is evaporated off in the sap process....I wonder what happens to the sorbitol molecule when it reacts with NaOH?? hmmm...
 

cdwinsby

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This might be a dumb question but....why don't we want sugar in transparent soap? I used to make it from scratch (Catherine Failors Book) and all the recipes called for quite a bit of it.

Here is a quote from her book:

"The virtues of ordinary table sugar, or sucrose, in the making of transparent soap can't be overemphasized. Many formulations using only alcohol and glycerin for transparency often produce a slightly cloudy bar; a touch of sugar solution will render these same formulations perfectly transparent. Another virtue of sugar is its inexpensiveness. It can be used as a partial substitute for the spendier alcohol and glycerin."

We all know what sugar does for CP soap and that's good so I'm thinking (yeah it hurts when I do!) that it's a good thing! :D Isn't it?
 

IanT

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I dont know to tell you the truth..I personally like it and try to include it in all my recipes...maybe people think they can absorb sugar through the skin??? (which I think is impossible because sugar is basically a crystal and our skin pores are REALLLLLY small...)

pores average at about 50 uM (or microns) For perspective...

1 micron = 1/1000 millimeter

the diameter of human hair is 80 to 100 microns.


the diameter of a sugar crystal is about 1 cubic milimeter...which means its 20times larger on average than a skin pore...just wont fit or pass through the skin membrane :)
 
G

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cdwinsby said:
This might be a dumb question but....why don't we want sugar in transparent soap? I used to make it from scratch (Catherine Failors Book) and all the recipes called for quite a bit of it.

We all know what sugar does for CP soap and that's good so I'm thinking (yeah it hurts when I do!) that it's a good thing! :D Isn't it?
Sure, sugar can be a good thing, in ordinary CP soap or in transparent soap. According to what I recall from reading Failor's book, the sugar, glycerin and alcohol all act as solvents to help dissolve the soap. Perhaps that affects the lather in the finished soap.

Ian, I doubt there is any skin absorption of sugar. The sugar affects some chemical or structural property of the soap, IMO more likely the latter.
 

sunflwrgrl7

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I'm pretty sure that you can absorb a little sugar through your skin, but not enough to make any difference one way or another (you can absorb a lot more through the skin on your gums, though). However, you can get a higher blood sugar reading on a meter after washing your hands with soaps that contain sugar because of sugar residue. Completely useless info, I know. ;)
 

Lane

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Hmmm.... Well sheesh, I suppose I do not know WHY we don't want sugar solutions in our MP...but all of the "natural" bases I've researched so far point out right away "NO sugar solutions" :lol:

*shrug* :roll:

You all are so full of smarts... :shock: :shock:
 

IanT

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lol you should call one of the companies and be like...whats the point of no sugar solution in your product!?!?! whats it do for me and why shouldnt i buy from X who does contain sugar??!?! then theyll go into their sales pitch and give you the info! :)
 

sunflwrgrl7

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Woohoo, I may have totally earned my keep today! I did a little digging and this is what I've found.

There are two ways to make transparent soap:
1. Sorbitol
2. Simple alcohol and sugar solution

You need both the alcohol AND the sugar solution working together to use that method. Since alcohol can be very drying, sorbitol is the better and more expensive option to make transparant soap. Sooooo...

There is nothing wrong with sugar solutions per se, except that a sugar solution would indicate the possibility of the presence of an alcohol, so manufacturers say "no sugar solutions" to make sure you know they aren't pulling a fast one on you. No sugar solution + no alcohol = BETTER SOAP.

Simple alcohol is a short chain alcohol that dries quickly plus has a drying effect on skin. Technically, in soap made with sorbitol you have a long chain alcohol of sorbitol and glycerine (linked together) that is then classified as a humectant because it now has moisturizing properties, and it is not an alcohol or a sugar. I believe, too, that the sorbitol used in the SFIC base actually comes from berries, not from synthesizing glucose.

There you have it! Make sense? :)
 

smengot0

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Woohoo, I may have totally earned my keep today! I did a little digging and this is what I've found.

There are two ways to make transparent soap:
1. Sorbitol
2. Simple alcohol and sugar solution

You need both the alcohol AND the sugar solution working together to use that method. Since alcohol can be very drying, sorbitol is the better and more expensive option to make transparant soap. Sooooo...

There is nothing wrong with sugar solutions per se, except that a sugar solution would indicate the possibility of the presence of an alcohol, so manufacturers say "no sugar solutions" to make sure you know they aren't pulling a fast one on you. No sugar solution + no alcohol = BETTER SOAP.

Simple alcohol is a short chain alcohol that dries quickly plus has a drying effect on skin. Technically, in soap made with sorbitol you have a long chain alcohol of sorbitol and glycerine (linked together) that is then classified as a humectant because it now has moisturizing properties, and it is not an alcohol or a sugar. I believe, too, that the sorbitol used in the SFIC base actually comes from berries, not from synthesizing glucose.

There you have it! Make sense? :)
Yes it does make sense even to those of us with zero knowledge of chemistry. Will like to try my hand at making a batch of cp soap using Glycerine and sorbitol. Please what ratios per pound of soaping oils? Thanks
 
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