Hello from Alabama

SoapMakingForum

Help Support SoapMakingForum:

Scarekrow

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
18
Reaction score
11
Location
Alabama
Hi there, Kevin here <waves to everyone>. Have not yet attempted first batch, have some questions first. First up. to scent or not to scent on first batch? if it doesn't matter, can someone tell me if bergemot is a "friendly" sent (meaning it wont make a gooey mess or soapsicle. 2. I've looked at a lot of hand mixers, and not really seeing much out there for 15 or 20 so is better to by a cheapo new for 20 or decent used for 20 or even a vintage model for around same price? that's it for now, thanks y'all.
 

IrishLass

Staff member
Admin
Moderator
Joined
Feb 11, 2008
Messages
17,291
Reaction score
11,093
Location
Right here, silly!
Welcome, Kevin! :wave:

For your first batch, I would recommend going unscented. That way, you can get a feel for the process without any hindrances bogging you down.

I've never soaped with bergamot, so I have no advice to offer. Hopefully others will chime in on that soon.

RE: handblenders: You don't really have to spend a whole lot of money on one. Ten years ago when I first started out, I bought a cheapie stick-blender at Walmart for $19.00 (a Hamilton Beach). Believe it or not, it's still going strong for me to this very day. I have a few back-up stick-blenders just in case, but I've not ever needed to use them yet.


IrishLass :)
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Messages
9,003
Reaction score
9,123
Location
Austria
I have a 9€ SB that is STILL serving me well. I went scented, but used a mix of lavender and sandelwood EOs, which I knew from research would not give me too many issues.
 

Susie

Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
9,713
Reaction score
9,215
Location
Texas
Hey and welcome!

I went to the thrift store and got a stick blenders for cheap. It is still working. I did buy a stainless steel one at Walmart for liquid soapmaking, I think it was about $25.
 

Scarekrow

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
18
Reaction score
11
Location
Alabama
Awesome, thanks for the tips! I might just go vintage, as i love antiques too, rofl, and chances are the seller didn't soap with it so it may yet have plenty of life left in it :p I may check out a soap calculator and scale it down to a manageable 2 bar recipe that way I can make some scented and some not, and see how everything reacts from the same lye/oil recipe, I'm thinking of just a simple straight lye/water/olive oil basic recipe. Oh has any of y'all used marula oil? I love the way dial miracle soap smells and would be awesome if i could make bars that smelled like it but i don't know if its the marula oil or added fragrance that give it that signature scent.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Messages
9,003
Reaction score
9,123
Location
Austria
You are talking about a stick blender rather than a hand or stand mixer, though? The former is good, the latter two are not - they take much longer and mix in too much air.
 

Scarekrow

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
18
Reaction score
11
Location
Alabama
No I wouldn't dream of using a stand mixer, not enough rpm. from what I gather, rpm needs to somewhere in the homemade mayonnaise territory. sorry I am from the south, we call them all mixers, to clarify i am talking about an immersion blender. :) oh and if one comes with multiple "blades" what is the right blade to use? none of the yourtube videos hav ever mentioned it.
 
Last edited:

shunt2011

Moderator Emeritus
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Messages
15,448
Reaction score
9,735
Location
Michigan
Hello and welcome. I've not seen one with more than one blade. I wouldn't recommend making anything smaller than 16 oz. The risk of a measurement error is possible. Also, getting the stickblender into smaller amounts can give you some air bubble issues.
 

dixiedragon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
6,472
Reaction score
4,905
Location
Birmingham, Alabama, USA
*waves* I'm in Birmingham!

Stick blender - I've got a $3 I got at a thrift store that still works fine. If you are going to purchase something new, get one with a stainless steel shaft vs plastic.

Scent - My first batch, I divided in half. I scented half with mint and colored it green and scented half with lavender, and added camellia buds. I don't recommend the camellia buds but the rest worked fine.
 

Bamagirl

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
Messages
230
Reaction score
204
Location
Alabama
Welcome Scarekrow! Always happy to see another person from Alabama :).

Edited to Add: When I first started researching on the forums, I was given lots of great advice. Most importantly ALWAYS wear goggles and safety gear, have a healthy respect for lye, first batches scent and color free so you can get the feel of soaping, and test your soap weekly!
 

lsg

Staff member
Admin
Moderator
Joined
Oct 14, 2007
Messages
14,589
Reaction score
5,973
Welcome to the forum. My cheap Walmart stick blender is still going after 8 or 9 years.
 

Scarekrow

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
18
Reaction score
11
Location
Alabama
Thanks for the tips! I wish i could get finds like that at thrift stores, lol I am so unlucky. ok so, cheap blender, goggles, gloves.. i'm guessing some cheap plastic bowls like old Tupperware or would glass be better so scents wouldn't stick to it? <waves to dixiedragon> bibb co! small world!
 

Scarekrow

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
18
Reaction score
11
Location
Alabama
That was an informative read, looks like stainless and glass for me, just to be on the safe side:)
 

dixiedragon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
6,472
Reaction score
4,905
Location
Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Well, not necessarily. You can't put stainless in the microwave. ANd overtime, lye can cause microfractures in glass and cause it to shatter. Plus, glass is heavy and gets VERY slippery once it gets greasy. My recommendation is a cheap stainless steel pot - check it with a magnet. I got mine at Fred's Discount. They are actually useless for cooking - the bottom is so thin that anything, even soup, burns on the bottom. Only good for boiling water and making soap. Plastic pitchers (I often get them for a quarter or less at Salvation Army) for lye water.
 

LittleCrazyWolf

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2015
Messages
192
Reaction score
142
Location
East Coast
Welcome Kevin! I would recommend going with no scent and no color for your first few batches just so you can get a true feel for trace. I used a lovely FO sample for one of my earliest batches and the soap batter turned into a mashed potatoes consistency within seconds of using the stick blender.

I use a Hamilton Beach stick blender that I bought at Walmart. I don't remember how much it cost but it wasn't a wallet buster. It is very powerful (IMO) even using the low speed. I like that it has a stainless steel shaft.
 

MySoapyHeart

Bee Happy
Joined
Nov 23, 2015
Messages
1,002
Reaction score
1,323
Welcome to the soapy side! *waves back*:)

My very firs soap was a Castile without any fragrance. I quickly got a feel for the process, so two unscented batches later I ventured into a batch of soap with Mango/Mandarin fragrance from Coastal Scents (they stopped selling fragrance oils now).
It went really well, and since then I have only made a few batches without fragrance to gift to a friend with fragrance sensitivities (I cure them separatly and well away from my other soaps with fragrances)

Yes, I have soaped with Bergamott essential oil once, but not since. After three weeks of curing and it was...gone.
It didn`t give me any problems whatsoever, but the smell just disapeared, even though I followed directions to how much to add. I didn`t anchor it though, that may help, but I personally felt it was just a waste of expensive oil.
Bergamott has become really expensive now. So decided to save that for my bathbombs instead. (well, I make them to use as footsoaks as I don`t have a tub. The smell is amayzing and citrusy)

Essential oil combo I love to use in soaps are Lemongrass/Lavender. It smells sooo fresh and clean, and sticks well in soap without having to use too much of it. It smells like cutting the grass in a lavender orchard whilst peeling a fresh lemon. Love.it.to.death.
Just be aware that some folks react to some essential oils, so let people know what is in there, just in case. Good luck:)
 

Scarekrow

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
18
Reaction score
11
Location
Alabama
Oh no, that is short lived. I love the bergemott scent (most any orangy citrus really), my after shave oil is infused with it, badger brand aftershave oils. now that i know these kinds of things can be made at home with "relative" ease, I may make my own aftershave oils for myself, that stuff was 18 bucks for a little 1 ounce bottle.(needless to say i use it very sparingly lol) I never could stand all those walmart special aftershave tonics and goop, the fragrance went straight up my nose and sucker punched me right in the brainbox.
 

IrishLass

Staff member
Admin
Moderator
Joined
Feb 11, 2008
Messages
17,291
Reaction score
11,093
Location
Right here, silly!
Hello and welcome. I've not seen one with more than one blade. I wouldn't recommend making anything smaller than 16 oz. The risk of a measurement error is possible. Also, getting the stickblender into smaller amounts can give you some air bubble issues.
I'm glad Shari caught that. Ditto what Shari said. Unless you have a very sensitive digital scale that can weigh accurately as low as .01 grams or .001 oz., it's best not to attempt a 2-bar batch. The risk of measuring error is huge the smaller you go below a 1-pound batch (which makes about 4 to 5 soaps depending on how thick you cut the bars), and you may very well end up with a lye-heavy soap...... or an extremely super-fatted soap. If your scale only weighs accurately to 1 gram or.1oz, don't make your batches any smaller than a pound.

Also- it's best to refrain from using glass when soaping. Plastic and stainless steel bowls are best. Although it's perfectly fine to use glass when weighing your ingredients out or for heating your oils in the microwave, it's best not to actually mix your lye solution or your soap batter in glass because of the etching/breaking glass issue. Please see Here for further info on this issue (scroll down to #4).


IrishLass :)
 

Scarekrow

Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2016
Messages
18
Reaction score
11
Location
Alabama
I work in a lab so i have access to scales that measure down to 10 thousandths of grams, oz, pounds and some other stuff i don't understand lol, but yeah i wont be making smaller batches , y'all convinced me on the air bubbles alone, I'm sure those are a pain to get out, especially when something gets thicker by the minute.
 

Latest posts

Top