Hard and Soft Oils Ratio

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bluebirdwing

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So, my stick blender arrived and I am onto my second batch of CP. I have read the soaping oils should have atleast 40% of hard oils. Since I am from tropical region, almost all oils are in liquid form, except butters. I found the soapcalc little confusing. Can anyone help me choose oils for the soap? I can list most common and easily available oils in my city.

Coconut oil
Palm oil
Sunflower oil
Soybean oil
Peanut oil
Sesame oil
Ricebran oil
Mustard oil
Olive oil
Castor oil
Cocoa butter
Shea butter
 

bluebirdwing

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So, I made the second batch yesterday. Melted stearic acid and cocoa butter together, mixed in other oils. Added the lye water and mixed with spatula. Felt it getting thicker, added the FO and it become curdled.:eek: Tried to mix it together with stick blender and it become like churros dough. :(.

Then I remembered I didnt add any color. So, mixed some mica color in alocohol and added to the dough like batter and tried to mix it in. Scooped it into the mould somehow. By the time the soap in the bottom of the pot was hard, still pliable, so, I scraped them and molded to small balls, hoping to use them as embeds in my next CP attempt.

The recipe I used is the following:
Cocoa Butter 52 g (5%)
Coconut Oil 260 g (25%)
Olive Oil pomace 260 g (25%)
Palm Oil 416 g (40%)
Castor Oil 52 g (5%)
Stearic acid 20 g

Water 295 g
Lye 147 g

Fragrance - 73 g

Pink Mica color


I dont know whether its Stearic acid or the FO made the dough like reaction. I am attaching pics.

1615553096266.png
This is just after filled the mould and sprayed with alcohol.



1615553171619.png
This is after 12 hrs, it was still pretty warm.

I was able to unmould after 16 hrs, they came out clean. The soap was firm, but the top portion was bit crumbly.

1615553713192.png
I was able to slice them easily. Do I have to spray the slices with alcohol to prevent soda ash?
 
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Tara_H

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I can't speak to the recipe itself since I'm still getting the hang of these things myself, but I don't think you mentioned anywhere what the FO was that you used? I expect that info will help with troubleshooting.
 

bluebirdwing

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I can't speak to the recipe itself since I'm still getting the hang of these things myself, but I don't think you mentioned anywhere what the FO was that you used? I expect that info will help with troubleshooting.
Since the FO is a local brand, I didnt thought it will help anyone here to identify the issue. Its named Berry Blossom and nothing about acceleration or discoloration mentioned in the bottle. I have used it before in M&P, this is the first time in CP.
 

Soapy_suds

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I am 99% sure its the olive oil. Which brand did you use? I would say try single oil soaps first if you are new to soap making. that ways you understand each oil. Try really small batches.
 
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Alcohol causes acceleration/seizing, and if the FO was for M&P, it wouldn't list it's effects on CP. I'm honestly surprised you got your colorants mixed in as well as you did.
Literally every ingredient in your soap increased acceleration, so I would be extremely proud that your soap turned out as well at did. Congratulations on your first batch!
 
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Very pretty. Why did you mix your mica with alcohol? I dump my micas right into the batter. For oxides and other colorants, I add mica to a tablespoon of a light oil (like sweet almond), stir, and then add to the batter.
I successfully avoid soda ash -- after pouring in the mold, I spray with alcohol, cover with plastic wrap, then cardboard (and towels to gel).
The next day, I unmold and slice, and I do not spray again with alcohol.
Congratulations!
 

earlene

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Mixing colorants with alcohol is good for when you are doing mica painting (painting color on finished soap), and I think some people do it with MP soap because it will evaporate out. But it is not common to add alcohol to colorants being added HP or CP (lye) soap because alcohol heats up the batter.

For HP or CP soap making, pre-mixing colorants in oil or glycerin or even water (depends on which colorants you are using, which medium you choose), is more common. Some do add the dry powder directly into the soap batter; some don't like that method.
 

dibbles

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Stearic acid is a huge accelerator as well. As Gemstone Pony mentioned, all of the fats you used can cause acceleration, but the stearic acid stick out the most to me. The 'blossom' part of the FO name might also give a bit of a clue to an accelerating FO. Not all, but many florals can cause acceleration.

Others have already given good advice to mix your mica with oil, glycerin or even water. You only need a tiny bit - just enough to get the mica pourable. You can add it dry. I don't because I usually don't want to do more mixing with a stick blender to incorporate it at that point.
 
A

amd

Stearic acid is a huge accelerator as well.
I don't think it affected the soap in this case - looking at measurements given
Castor Oil 52 g (5%)
Stearic acid 20 g
If 52g is 5%, then stearic acid is roughly 2.5%. At this amount it's very workable in cold process. I can't remember off the top of my head, but when I did my stearic acid experiments, I think I had to go quite a ways up - I think in the 10% range - before I experienced any kind of acceleration.

My suspicion is that the FO is not made for CP, that's why the batter thickened (as it should when stickblending), and then curdled when adding the FO. Given that the FO has a floral name, well, florals are also notorious for being finicky in CP. I don't see anything that would concern me with the recipe.
 
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I agree with @GemstonePony. Each one of your ingredients has the ability to speed up a CP soap batter, even before you added an FO designed for M&P, and then alcohol.

And although the amounts of each oil on its own would not make a soap batter accelerate, you literally had no slow-moving ingredients (regular OO, lard) to balance them out. The FO and alcohol probably just put it over the top.

M&P is very different from CP because the first has no active lye, and the second one is filled with active lye. That's part of why the fragrances and colors used for one often don't work for the other.

The good news is that your soap is still very pretty! And I'm sure it will be a very nice soap to use after it cures, too.
 
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Congratulations on your pretty pink soap!

I noticed that the stearic acid you listed seems to be over and above the 100% you gave for the other oils and butters. When I put your numbers through the SMF calculator, I get the same lye and water amounts as you did for the recipe without the stearic, using a 33.3% lye concentration and 5% superfat. With the stearic and that amount of lye, the superfat goes up to about 7%.

I agree that this recipe is likely to be a mover. I’ve made recipes with 40% palm a few times and they moved very fast, even without anything else added that would cause acceleration. One way to slow the recipe down would be to try regular olive oil or high oleic sunflower oil instead of OO pomace, or slow it down even more by dropping the stearic out, or dropping the palm by 5% and replacing it with more of the liquid oil. The soap won’t last quite as long, but the difference hardly noticeable if you give the soap a good 4-6 weeks to cure.
 

bluebirdwing

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I am 99% sure its the olive oil. Which brand did you use? I would say try single oil soaps first if you are new to soap making. that ways you understand each oil. Try really small batches.
I used the same olive oil for a baby soap and it took a long time to get trace, and olive oil was 70% in it. The brand is Del Monte.
 
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bluebirdwing

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Alcohol causes acceleration/seizing, and if the FO was for M&P, it wouldn't list it's effects on CP. I'm honestly surprised you got your colorants mixed in as well as you did.
Literally every ingredient in your soap increased acceleration, so I would be extremely proud that your soap turned out as well at did. Congratulations on your first batch!
Alcohol is added after the seizing & acceleration, actually just before putting in the mould, I fogot to add color and thought adding more oil or water will make it worse, so, mixed the mica color in a tsp of alcohol and mixed in the batter. Its good to know that Alcohol is an accelerant too. I am too surprised about the color, didnt know it got mixed in well, I was kind of expecting white swirls when I cut the soap. Hadmade soap is not a well established thing in our country, so, we cannot get anything specified for CP and M&P. Everything is kind of same for both. Thank you @GemstonePony :)


Very pretty. Why did you mix your mica with alcohol? I dump my micas right into the batter. For oxides and other colorants, I add mica to a tablespoon of a light oil (like sweet almond), stir, and then add to the batter.
I successfully avoid soda ash -- after pouring in the mold, I spray with alcohol, cover with plastic wrap, then cardboard (and towels to gel).
The next day, I unmold and slice, and I do not spray again with alcohol.
Congratulations!
Thank you @Zing :). When the last time I used mica color I just dumped in the batter, I got small granules of color sedimented in the finished soap, and the mica color bottle it was mentioned to mix in with alcohol for easy dispersal. Also, I was in a kind of panic mode, I thought oil or water will make the batter worse :D. I do follow all other step you mentioned after pouring to mould, sprayed alcohol, covered with plastic wrap, towel and all.


Mixing colorants with alcohol is good for when you are doing mica painting (painting color on finished soap), and I think some people do it with MP soap because it will evaporate out. But it is not common to add alcohol to colorants being added HP or CP (lye) soap because alcohol heats up the batter.

For HP or CP soap making, pre-mixing colorants in oil or glycerin or even water (depends on which colorants you are using, which medium you choose), is more common. Some do add the dry powder directly into the soap batter; some don't like that method.
Ok, good to know that alcohol can heat up the batter, that explains why my soap was still hot even after 12 hrs. Thank you @earlene :)


The 'blossom' part of the FO name might also give a bit of a clue to an accelerating FO. Not all, but many florals can cause acceleration.
Its really helpful tip, since none of the FO's here comes with any description or warning, there will be only Fragrance name sticked to the bottle. Thank you @dibbles :)
 
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bluebirdwing

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If 52g is 5%, then stearic acid is roughly 2.5%. At this amount it's very workable in cold process. I can't remember off the top of my head, but when I did my stearic acid experiments, I think I had to go quite a ways up - I think in the 10% range - before I experienced any kind of acceleration.

My suspicion is that the FO is not made for CP, that's why the batter thickened (as it should when stickblending), and then curdled when adding the FO. Given that the FO has a floral name, well, florals are also notorious for being finicky in CP. I don't see anything that would concern me with the recipe.
I used 2% Stearic acid. I cannot find any FO's thats specifically made for CP here. And batter got thick as soon as I mixed lye with spatula, and curdled after added FO. Ok, got it, floral FO's accelerate too. Thank you @amd :)


I agree with @GemstonePony. Each one of your ingredients has the ability to speed up a CP soap batter, even before you added an FO designed for M&P, and then alcohol.

And although the amounts of each oil on its own would not make a soap batter accelerate, you literally had no slow-moving ingredients (regular OO, lard) to balance them out. The FO and alcohol probably just put it over the top.

M&P is very different from CP because the first has no active lye, and the second one is filled with active lye. That's part of why the fragrances and colors used for one often don't work for the other.

The good news is that your soap is still very pretty! And I'm sure it will be a very nice soap to use after it cures, too.
Ok, I dont know what is regular OO, the common OO we get are EVOO, Pomace and Extra Light, apart from Pomace all others are expensive, and Lard is not available. So, the list I mentioned in the first post, does it have any slow moving oils? Thank you @AliOop:)


Congratulations on your pretty pink soap!

I noticed that the stearic acid you listed seems to be over and above the 100% you gave for the other oils and butters. When I put your numbers through the SMF calculator, I get the same lye and water amounts as you did for the recipe without the stearic, using a 33.3% lye concentration and 5% superfat. With the stearic and that amount of lye, the superfat goes up to about 7%.

I agree that this recipe is likely to be a mover. I’ve made recipes with 40% palm a few times and they moved very fast, even without anything else added that would cause acceleration. One way to slow the recipe down would be to try regular olive oil or high oleic sunflower oil instead of OO pomace, or slow it down even more by dropping the stearic out, or dropping the palm by 5% and replacing it with more of the liquid oil. The soap won’t last quite as long, but the difference hardly noticeable if you give the soap a good 4-6 weeks to cure.
Thank you @Mobjack Bay:). Oh, I didnt know, I should have to include the additives to the total oils, something new to learn. Do superfat have anything to do with pH. I checked the pH of this soap and it was only 8, where as my first CP was a 10, before curing. If my soap is now 8 and after curing, will it drop further down?
 
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bluebirdwing

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Thank you all for all the advice :). So, summarising......

I need to add a slow moving oil in the recipe.

All/most of the floral FO's can be accelerating, so, do a test.

Alcohol is another accelerant, also it heat up the soap batter. So, mixing mica colors with oil/water/glycerine is better than mixing with alcohol.

Additives should be included along with total oil content to calculate the lye amount.

Some oils acts as slow moving when alone, but, can be fast moving when combined with other oils.
 

Kasuda

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So, I made the second batch yesterday. Melted stearic acid and cocoa butter together, mixed in other oils. Added the lye water and mixed with spatula. Felt it getting thicker, added the FO and it become curdled.:eek: Tried to mix it together with stick blender and it become like churros dough. :(.

Then I remembered I didnt add any color. So, mixed some mica color in alocohol and added to the dough like batter and tried to mix it in. Scooped it into the mould somehow. By the time the soap in the bottom of the pot was hard, still pliable, so, I scraped them and molded to small balls, hoping to use them as embeds in my next CP attempt.

The recipe I used is the following:
Cocoa Butter 52 g (5%)
Coconut Oil 260 g (25%)
Olive Oil pomace 260 g (25%)
Palm Oil 416 g (40%)
Castor Oil 52 g (5%)
Stearic acid 20 g

Water 295 g
Lye 147 g

Fragrance - 73 g

Pink Mica color


I dont know whether its Stearic acid or the FO made the dough like reaction. I am attaching pics.

View attachment 55017
This is just after filled the mould and sprayed with alcohol.



View attachment 55018
This is after 12 hrs, it was still pretty warm.

I was able to unmould after 16 hrs, they came out clean. The soap was firm, but the top portion was bit crumbly.

View attachment 55020
I was able to slice them easily. Do I have to spray the slices with alcohol to prevent soda ash?
What made u add stearic acid to the recipe.?was it because you wanted hard sosp? I am new to Soaping ,just two batch old and not very happy with the results .
 

Soapy_suds

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I used Disano pomace olive oil. It was a castile soap. My oil traced very fast. I had heard that olive oil is very slow moving, so it was very unexpected for me. Did you use virgin or extea virgin OO?
I used the same olive oil for a baby soap and it took a long time to get trace, and olive oil was 70% in it. The brand is Del Monte.
 

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