Help with Mica

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DomTheDillyHoo

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Hello! How much micah should I be putting into my bars? And should I reserve olive oil to mix with mica? If so, how much oil should I mix in? Should I put my mica into my oils, lyewater, or the soap? Thanks!
 
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Hi! I’m no expert but I’ll chime in. I follow what I think is the general guideline of 1t mica per pound of oil. You might find usage rates for your mica, so that’s also a good reference. I tend to make a bit extra so I can adjust batter color to my liking - a bit less or a smidge more 😉
I mix my mica and pigments in a little cup with either a “bonus” bit of sweet almond oil or other lightweight oil, or I use some of my liquid batch oils. 1t mica/1T oil
I mix my mica in at emulsion after I’ve split my batter (if doing a design) and before I mix in my fragrance oil.
Hope that helps 🌸
 
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Hello! How much micah should I be putting into my bars? And should I reserve olive oil to mix with mica? If so, how much oil should I mix in? Should I put my mica into my oils, lyewater, or the soap? Thanks!
Are you making cold process soap? If so, the guideline is 1 tsp mica per pound of oil. I like as little fuss as possible and dump the mica into the batter (oils and lye solution combined). Some "micas" also contain oxides and other colorants and you can disperse 1 tsp of mica into 1 Tbsp of light oil, then add by 1/2 tsp dispersed mixture at a time until you like the color. I do not take that Tbsp of oil from my recipe -- I use 1 Tbsp of another oil, the effect on your recipe is minimal.

I add my lye solution to my oil mixture and stir until emulsion or light trace. Then I divide the batter if making multiple colors. Then I add colorants and essential oils. Then I stir some more before pouring.
Good luck!
 
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If you are doing a single colour soap you can put your mica directly into your batch oils after melting, before adding your lye solution. If you are doing different colours, you obviously want to wait until after splitting off the different jugs and then colouring each accordingly.
I used to use additional oil to mix my micas, but now I wait until after I've poured in the liquid oils to the melted hard oils, and then use the residue from the liquid oil jug to mix up my colours. If you don't scrape out the liquid oils you'll be surprised how much of the oils 'sticks' to the inside of the jug.
As an aside ( this is purely my own process so it's not gospel) I don't generally mix my micas in oil then add them to the batter. If I'm doing, say, three colours (plus the main batch colour), I get out two 1 litre jugs and put my mica powder in the bottom of those two. Once I have poured the liquid oils into the melted hard oils, I use that same jug and pour off the residual oils into the two jugs to mix up those colours, leaving the remaining oil in that same jug to which I add my third mica. SO all my colours are mixed in oil, sitting in the bottom of my three jugs. Then once my my batter is at the correct emulsion/trace stage, I pour the required amount into each jug ( with the mica/oil mix in the bottom already) and mix them from there. Any batter left in the main bowl ( if I am using it as part of the design) will then be coloured accordingly - either left natural, or I have some predispersed TD in a bottle which I will add to it if I want it more white. The I have my total of three colours plus main batch in separate jugs and start my pour. Bonus: no extra dishes to clean up.
 

DomTheDillyHoo

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Hi! I’m no expert but I’ll chime in. I follow what I think is the general guideline of 1t mica per pound of oil. You might find usage rates for your mica, so that’s also a good reference. I tend to make a bit extra so I can adjust batter color to my liking - a bit less or a smidge more 😉
I mix my mica and pigments in a little cup with either a “bonus” bit of sweet almond oil or other lightweight oil, or I use some of my liquid batch oils. 1t mica/1T oil
I mix my mica in at emulsion after I’ve split my batter (if doing a design) and before I mix in my fragrance oil.
Hope that helps 🌸
1t meaning teaspoon or tablespoon? Thanks!
 

DomTheDillyHoo

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If you are doing a single colour soap you can put your mica directly into your batch oils after melting, before adding your lye solution. If you are doing different colours, you obviously want to wait until after splitting off the different jugs and then colouring each accordingly.
I used to use additional oil to mix my micas, but now I wait until after I've poured in the liquid oils to the melted hard oils, and then use the residue from the liquid oil jug to mix up my colours. If you don't scrape out the liquid oils you'll be surprised how much of the oils 'sticks' to the inside of the jug.
As an aside ( this is purely my own process so it's not gospel) I don't generally mix my micas in oil then add them to the batter. If I'm doing, say, three colours (plus the main batch colour), I get out two 1 litre jugs and put my mica powder in the bottom of those two. Once I have poured the liquid oils into the melted hard oils, I use that same jug and pour off the residual oils into the two jugs to mix up those colours, leaving the remaining oil in that same jug to which I add my third mica. SO all my colours are mixed in oil, sitting in the bottom of my three jugs. Then once my my batter is at the correct emulsion/trace stage, I pour the required amount into each jug ( with the mica/oil mix in the bottom already) and mix them from there. Any batter left in the main bowl ( if I am using it as part of the design) will then be coloured accordingly - either left natural, or I have some predispersed TD in a bottle which I will add to it if I want it more white. The I have my total of three colours plus main batch in separate jugs and start my pour. Bonus: no extra dishes to clean up.
Thanks a lot! Why when I am doing a single color soap should I add it to my oils instead of at trace?
 
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I separate my batter and add my micas straight into my batter until I get the color I want. For dyes and pigments, I premix them in deli cups in glycerin and mix them into my separated batters until I get the color I want. You can also premix micas in glycerin, it will keep longer without the issue of going rancid if you do not use all of it and want to save it. For m&p you can mix micas with alcohol, letting any leftover evaporate back into powder form, but do not mix in alcohol for cp soap.
 
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