HELP with glycerin soap!!!

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Ravenscourt Apothecary

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Hi all,
So I made a batch of CPOP soap, and the coloring in it didn't work (I used beetroot powder hoping to achieve a nice shade or reddish pink, however, it turned an ugly shade of light brown instead). That, combined with the fact that the scent wasn't great either (jasmine and black pepper, the latter sort of overwhelmed everything), led me to do a rebatch with alcohol (vodka), glycerin and sugared water. The idea and recipe were taken from here: http://www.millersoap.com/glycerinsoap.html
It all seemed to go nice at first: I grated the bad batch, dissolved it in the alcohol, added glycerin and sugared water, and simmered it in my crockpot. I poured it in my mold and went to bed. When I woke up the next morning, I discovered that the soap did not set!!! It formed a sort of skin on the surface but was still liquid on the inside! So I turned on my crockpot again, put the mixture back in, added an ounce of alcohol, and simmered it on low for a couple more hours. At this point the soap was starting to harden on the spatula quite a bit, so I thought I was safe this time. I poured it into my mold - AGAIN - only to discover that it was still soggy and spongy the next day.
Please help!!! What do I do to salvage this batch?! Any information would be greatly appreciated!
 

Soapsugoii

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Sounds like you might be using too much solvent if the soap never set. Glycerin soap is a major pain in the you know what, at least for me. You have to find a sweet spot of sorts with your solvents. Too little and you don't get a clear soap. Too much and it doesn't set or is mushy. It's one of my more frustrating soaping experiences.

As for saying your batch, maybe you can add some stearic acid and a bit more lye? Run it through soap calc tho. Check out Making Transparent Soap by Catherine Failor if you haven't already. Great book with a great trouble shooting section.
 

lsg

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Honestly, these are two of the easiets recipes I have found and they turn out well also.

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2nw4CBN_RC0[/ame]

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHS1V8HIwoE[/ame]
 

Ravenscourt Apothecary

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Sounds like you might be using too much solvent if the soap never set. <...> Maybe you can add some stearic acid and a bit more lye? Run it through soap calc tho.
Thank you for your recommendations - how would I add the lye, just dissolve it in the water the usual way and add to the mixture? I'm really not sure how to use the calc when it comes to things involving solvents, but I'll try.
 

Ravenscourt Apothecary

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Soapsugoii

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Thank you for your recommendations - how would I add the lye, just dissolve it in the water the usual way and add to the mixture? I'm really not sure how to use the calc when it comes to things involving solvents, but I'll try.
Yea, just add it as normal and mix. Melt the stearic in the microwave first, though. If you don't add the stearic your soap will be lye heavy. Apparently once you get the technique down you can "easily" tweak your batch to get a good final product. I'm not that good yet, though. lol
 

Ravenscourt Apothecary

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Melt the stearic in the microwave first, though.
Thanks for the suggestions! You're quite possibly a life saver. I ordered me some stearic acid, it's on its way. As for melting it, I actually *gasp* purposely don't own a microwave, will it melt in the crockpot? (it better)
 

Soapsugoii

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Haha it should but if there's already soap in the crockpot I'd melt in a double boiler first then pour it in with the lye mixture
 
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