Goat milk soap, Is this recipe accurate?

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lallen1940

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I need your expert opinion on a recipe I found a few years ago that has given me a lot of trouble. This recipe is in a soap book from a class I attended, and I'd like to use this particular one because I have some palm oil I'd like to use up.

Here it is:
100% olive oil 46 oz
melted palm oil 25 oz
melted coconut oil 20 oz
lye 12 oz
goat's milk 32 oz
distilled water 17 oz

powdered oatmeal 12 oz
optional EO 4-6 oz

When I entered this recipe into Brambleberry's online calculator the total liquid amount is way off from this recipe. I'm trying to find out if it is because milk is used and there is a reason the liquid amount is so high. This is a large batch that fits a 12x18 mold and yields 25 bars. [Brambleberry measures liquid to be 28.60 oz.] To me, when I see "liquid" I am thinking this includes the water and the milk. Correct me if I'm wrong.

This book also has a small batch that fits a 7x10 mold and yields 8 bars (if you would like to see it as well to compare.) [Brambleberry measures liquid to be 9.38 oz.]

Olive oil 15 oz
Palm oil 9 oz
Coconut 6 oz
Lye 4 oz
distilled water 5.3 oz
goat milk 10.6 oz

powdered oatmeal 2 oz
scent 1.5-2 oz

Could you help me figure out why the liquid measures from Brambleberry's calc are so different from these recipes?
 

ResolvableOwl

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Welcome to SMF, @lallen1940 !

I see your troubles. The first recipe has indeed less than 20% lye concentration (ignoring for the moment if the oatmeal absorbs some of it). This is really very low, and will prolong the waiting to harden up for unmoulding/cutting, and drying/curing times – without any benefit, except higher chances for the soap bars to deform/warp.

You could just leave out the distilled water. Then you'd end up just shy of 28% lye concentration, which is already much better. It appears that the BB calculator tries to push you to 30% lye – about the lower bound of what many people around here would feel comfortable soaping at.

Another point that makes me wonder about the recipe is the lye discount (superfat). It is at some 11% – so much that it likely impairs the bubbling and cleaning abilities of the soap (much of its oil-dissolving capacity is already blocked by the residual oils in the soap), and it isn't beneficial to hardness either.
Actually, I find it unsettling to see instructions to weigh lye rounded to full oz. What are “12 oz”? If your scale doesn't resolve more precisely than 1 oz, this means your superfat ends up somewhere between 7% (OK) and 14% (wut?) – no errors, just the accuracy of reading. What it actually means is that you should rely more on scale precision, and ask another soap calculator in advance for more specific numbers. For the above oil blend, I'd recommend an amount of 12.9 oz NaOH (and we've not even talked about lye purity).

BTW. This is a rather soft recipe all by itself. When you are aiming on getting rid of your palm oil, you can replace some olive by palm, up to the point where they swap places (46 oz palm + 25 oz olive). This helps with hardness and with quicker use-up of palm oil. Use a soap calculator to find out the right amount of lye and liquid.
 

lallen1940

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Welcome to SMF, @lallen1940 !

I see your troubles. The first recipe has indeed less than 20% lye concentration (ignoring for the moment if the oatmeal absorbs some of it). This is really very low, and will prolong the waiting to harden up for unmoulding/cutting, and drying/curing times – without any benefit, except higher chances for the soap bars to deform/warp.

You could just leave out the distilled water. Then you'd end up just shy of 28% lye concentration, which is already much better. It appears that the BB calculator tries to push you to 30% lye – about the lower bound of what many people around here would feel comfortable soaping at.

Another point that makes me wonder about the recipe is the lye discount (superfat). It is at some 11% – so much that it likely impairs the bubbling and cleaning abilities of the soap (much of its oil-dissolving capacity is already blocked by the residual oils in the soap), and it isn't beneficial to hardness either.
Actually, I find it unsettling to see instructions to weigh lye rounded to full oz. What are “12 oz”? If your scale doesn't resolve more precisely than 1 oz, this means your superfat ends up somewhere between 7% (OK) and 14% (wut?) – no errors, just the accuracy of reading. What it actually means is that you should rely more on scale precision, and ask another soap calculator in advance for more specific numbers. For the above oil blend, I'd recommend an amount of 12.9 oz NaOH (and we've not even talked about lye purity).

BTW. This is a rather soft recipe all by itself. When you are aiming on getting rid of your palm oil, you can replace some olive by palm, up to the point where they swap places (46 oz palm + 25 oz olive). This helps with hardness and with quicker use-up of palm oil. Use a soap calculator to find out the right amount of lye and liquid.
Welcome to SMF, @lallen1940 !

I see your troubles. The first recipe has indeed less than 20% lye concentration (ignoring for the moment if the oatmeal absorbs some of it). This is really very low, and will prolong the waiting to harden up for unmoulding/cutting, and drying/curing times – without any benefit, except higher chances for the soap bars to deform/warp.

You could just leave out the distilled water. Then you'd end up just shy of 28% lye concentration, which is already much better. It appears that the BB calculator tries to push you to 30% lye – about the lower bound of what many people around here would feel comfortable soaping at.

Another point that makes me wonder about the recipe is the lye discount (superfat). It is at some 11% – so much that it likely impairs the bubbling and cleaning abilities of the soap (much of its oil-dissolving capacity is already blocked by the residual oils in the soap), and it isn't beneficial to hardness either.
Actually, I find it unsettling to see instructions to weigh lye rounded to full oz. What are “12 oz”? If your scale doesn't resolve more precisely than 1 oz, this means your superfat ends up somewhere between 7% (OK) and 14% (wut?) – no errors, just the accuracy of reading. What it actually means is that you should rely more on scale precision, and ask another soap calculator in advance for more specific numbers. For the above oil blend, I'd recommend an amount of 12.9 oz NaOH (and we've not even talked about lye purity).

BTW. This is a rather soft recipe all by itself. When you are aiming on getting rid of your palm oil, you can replace some olive by palm, up to the point where they swap places (46 oz palm + 25 oz olive). This helps with hardness and with quicker use-up of palm oil. Use a soap calculator to find out the right amount of lye and liquid.
Thank you.
 

TheGecko

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That’s way too much ‘liquid’ and the exact reason why we always advise folks to run EVERY recipe through a soap calculator.

I adjusted your recipe just a tad bit:

48% Olive Oil
27% Palm Oil
20% Coconut Oil
5% Castor Oil

33% Lye Concentration
3% SuperFat
5% FO

I lowered the SF to account for the fat in the Milk…assuming that you plan on using 100% milk and no water.

If you go with 100% milk, you will want to freeze your GM and then make a ice bath (larger bowl) filled with ice, water and a tablespoon of salt. Put you container with the frozen milk in the bath and let it sit for 10 minutes to lower the temp of the bowl. Then adding a tablespoon of Sodium Hydroxide at a time, stir well. It’ll be a little slow going…it takes a bit for the Lye to melt the milk, but you want to take your time so you don’t scorch the milk. You will note that your Lye Solution will be like a thin crepe batter…it’s okay, it’s just the Lye binding with the milk fats. I usually just give it a quick whiz with my stick blender, some folks use a mesh strainer.

You can also do a 50% Water/50% Milk.
 

lallen1940

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That’s way too much ‘liquid’ and the exact reason why we always advise folks to run EVERY recipe through a soap calculator.

I adjusted your recipe just a tad bit:

48% Olive Oil
27% Palm Oil
20% Coconut Oil
5% Castor Oil

33% Lye Concentration
3% SuperFat
5% FO

I lowered the SF to account for the fat in the Milk…assuming that you plan on using 100% milk and no water.

If you go with 100% milk, you will want to freeze your GM and then make a ice bath (larger bowl) filled with ice, water and a tablespoon of salt. Put you container with the frozen milk in the bath and let it sit for 10 minutes to lower the temp of the bowl. Then adding a tablespoon of Sodium Hydroxide at a time, stir well. It’ll be a little slow going…it takes a bit for the Lye to melt the milk, but you want to take your time so you don’t scorch the milk. You will note that your Lye Solution will be like a thin crepe batter…it’s okay, it’s just the Lye binding with the milk fats. I usually just give it a quick whiz with my stick blender, some folks use a mesh strainer.

You can also do a 50% Water/50% Milk.
Thank you for your suggestions. This does help. Being new to soap making, may I asked was FO stands for?
 

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