Help my soap didn't work and I don't know why!

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reahez

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Hello everyone, I made a batch of soap the other day, it was a coffee soap with a cinnamon fragrance here is you tube address of video I made for it [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PT-gM8NllB4"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PT-gM8NllB4[/ame]

It never really seemed to come to trace and now the top part has separated from the bottom! I left it for 3 days before I unmoulded it, when I unmoulded it, it was really sticky and soft not what I'm used to. I used a simple bastille recipe and ran it through the soap calc. Could it be because I used coffee? I have attached a photo of it now is there anything I can do to save it?

Thanks I appreciate your help

Reahez

soap gone wrong.jpg
 

lsg

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You could have had a false trace. I would chop up the soap and rebatch it.
 

reahez

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Hello thanks for the reply, I stirred it for ages a good 10 mins with a stick blender, I had to speed it up on the video because it took so long. Can I melt it down and do try it again with the stick blender? It smells great and I don't want to waste all that soap :-(
 
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dixiedragon

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10 minutes may seem like a long time, but it's really not, if you aren't using a stick blender. I can't watch the video b/c my work computer is too slow for video, but here are some problems you may be having.

1) A lot of liquid oils (oils that are liquid at room temperature). Olive oil especially is sloooow to trace.
2) Amount of water. Many soapers on this site use a "water discount" meaning a lower amount of water. I personally like to use a higher water amount, and one of the side affects of this is a slower trace.
3) Amount of lye. Most soapers on this site typically use between 5% and 6% superfat. The superfat percentage is the amount of oil that is not used by the lye to make soap. If you used a higher superfat, it may take longer to trace.
4) Temperature. If your oils and lye are at room temperature, trace will take longer than at a higher temperature. I like to soap between 90 and 100 F.

That's a lot of info, hope it is clear! Run your recipe through a lye calculator (soapcalc is good), and if your recipe was correct (meaning you used appropriate amounts of lye, oils and water), then I think you should be able to melt it down and rebatch it. I am lousy at rebatching, so you may want to Google for some good instructions.

Even if your rebatching doesn't work out, don't be afraid to try again!
 

Lindy

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To do an easy rebatch shred the soap and then put into a crockpot or stock pot for oven and melt it down. You may need to add just enough water to moisten the pieces. Good luck.
 

reahez

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Thanks for the reply. I did use the soap calc and followed the recipe to the letter also I used a stick blender (which is now broken from over heating I think) I soaped at around 25 c which is 77 f. I wouldn't be able to shred the soap because its like soft butter. Should I leave it a while or could I melt it down in a bain marie?
Thanks again
 

dixiedragon

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I googled "Bee Beautiful" and find a ton of hits. Are you sure that fragrance is recommended for cold process soap?

Since it is soft like butter, you could simply chop it up into small bits and put it in a crock pot or slow cooker. I know some people rebatch in the oven, but I haven't done that. I don't think a bain marie is necessary.

10 minutes of stirring with a stick blender is a lot! I usually stick blend in 30-60 second bursts and then stir the soap with the blender off for 30 seconds or so. I suspect the low temperature is the culprit - something to try in the future would be to put the soap pot back on the stove on low. My stove has a "simmer eye" so low on that eye is VERY low and that's perfect. On a regular stove, I would put it on "low" for about 5 minutes, then turn it off and stir some more. I'm always afraid of having a soap volcano on the stove!
 

MzMolly65

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Does anyone think the top may have separated due to the amount of coffee added? I saw a lot of coffee going in to the mix compared to the 1 to 2 tsp per pound of oil that I was taught here, but I'm too new to comment on whether it was too much or not and how that could effect the soap, so I'd love to hear what more experienced soapers have to say on that topic.

BTW .. sorry about your soap Rheaez, fails are always sad but the great thing is there's no such thing as failure in soap. Everything can be salvaged and even ugly soap is still soap!!
 

shunt2011

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I agree with mzmolly, too much coffee, and maybe it overheated too. It's hard to tell from the photo. I would rebatch and hopefully that will work for you. Don't give up though. We've all had minor/major failures.
 

AnnaMarie

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I just watched the video, and I noticed two things: this recipe took a while to trace. Secondly, she waited quite a while to put the top layer on. You don't want your soap to sit long when layering or the layers will have a tendency to separate. She waited a bit longer then I would think I would. Interestingly, she never showed the final results of her soap which makes me wonder how hers turned out? I think those were the two main things to watch if you make this recipe again. Also, you may want to spritz the top of the soap with isopropyl alcohol before adding the next layer. I hope you try the recipe again! Coffee soap is great, and I think the recipe here is probably fine.
Cheers!
Anna Marie
 

reahez

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Thanks for all they replies I will take it all into consideration for the future.
 

reahez

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I just watched the video, and I noticed two things: this recipe took a while to trace. Secondly, she waited quite a while to put the top layer on. You don't want your soap to sit long when layering or the layers will have a tendency to separate. She waited a bit longer then I would think I would. Interestingly, she never showed the final results of her soap which makes me wonder how hers turned out? I think those were the two main things to watch if you make this recipe again. Also, you may want to spritz the top of the soap with isopropyl alcohol before adding the next layer. I hope you try the recipe again! Coffee soap is great, and I think the recipe here is probably fine.
Cheers!
Anna Marie
Hi there I didn't make a cutting video because it didn't work, the video is mine and the photo is how it turned out so not well at all unfortunately. It smells great though, I will have to learn how to re-batch soap now as I have never done it before! Also I cant find a slow cooker in France not sure they use them here! Thanks again for your advice :)
 

AnnaMarie

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Hi there I didn't make a cutting video because it didn't work, the video is mine and the photo is how it turned out so not well at all unfortunately. It smells great though, I will have to learn how to re-batch soap now as I have never done it before! Also I cant find a slow cooker in France not sure they use them here! Thanks again for your advice :)
Lol! I'd better put my reading glasses on! Sorry, I didn't realize it was your video :). On rebatching, this can be done using the plastic bag method and a pot of hot water. Soap queen has a tutorial on this. I don't think you need a crock pot- I didn't use one when I rebatched. Your cinnamon coffee soap idea was lovely and inspired me to try adding cinnamon eo to my coffee soap. I hope you'll try this recipe again!
Cheers!
Anna Marie
Ps- I'm wearing my reading glasses now :-D
 

reahez

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Lol! I'd better put my reading glasses on! Sorry, I didn't realize it was your video :). On rebatching, this can be done using the plastic bag method and a pot of hot water. Soap queen has a tutorial on this. I don't think you need a crock pot- I didn't use one when I rebatched. Your cinnamon coffee soap idea was lovely and inspired me to try adding cinnamon eo to my coffee soap. I hope you'll try this recipe again!
Cheers!
Anna Marie
Ps- I'm wearing my reading glasses now :-D
Thanks that's a great idea I will take a look at the video. I hope your soap turns out better than mine. Happy soaping :)
 

AnnaMarie

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reahez

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Hi again, I've been looking for a video on plastic bag rebatching but I can't find soap queen just mentioned it but there wasn't a video. Does anyone have any more info about it please? Sorry to be a pain!

Happy soaping x
 

reahez

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Here's the link for you- forget the crockpot :)
http://www.soapqueen.com/bath-and-body-tutorials/rebatch-soap-plastic-baggie-technique-2/

There's another thread this week on a separation issue very similar to yours. Timing is key because too much of a "skin" can prevent the soap layers from sticking together. I hope this helps! Have a lot of fun and be sure to have another go at this!
Cheers!
Anna Marie
You do realise you answered my question before I had finished to write it lol thanks again x
 

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