High Shea butter cold process soap anyone?

Soapmaking Forum

Help Support Soapmaking Forum:

Funmi

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2020
Messages
20
Reaction score
20
Location
Maryland, Lagos
Happy Easter everyone, new soapmaker here. I was wandering what a high Shea butter soap say at least 70% unrefined Shea butter cold process would feel like. It is cheaper, easily assessible and more affordable where I live. I would use cold pressed palm kernel oil and castor oil for the rest. I am really tired of the high palm kernel soaps popular in my country. They are so hard and very cleansing and stripping.

This was the recipe that looked good to me on the calculator
75% Shea butter
20% palm kernel oil
5% castor oil

Many popular soap making oils like olive oil(especially pomace grade) is very expensive here and hard to get.But I could get neem, baobab, red palm oil, sunflower, heat processed coconut oil(smells like burnt coconut candy) soybean, palm kernel oil(cold and heat processed) and canola oil.


What should one expect? Has anyone made soap with that much shea butter before? I am looking for a very gentle soap for someone with dry skin, non stripping cleansing enough but with a really creamy lather. I am kind of going for that DOVE beauty bar effect. It's quite hot and humid here. Room temperature air is 30°C normally here.


I would really appreciate your input and experiences. Thanks
 

Todd Ziegler

Circle Z soaps
Joined
Sep 10, 2018
Messages
1,481
Reaction score
2,076
Location
Tipton IN
You should expect a very hard soap. What is your super fat set at and what is your lye to water ratio. If you can get some high oleic sunflower oil, you might want to consider adding and reducing the amount Shea butter. I can run it through my calculator and tell you more but I need your lye percentage.
 
Joined
Jan 11, 2020
Messages
1,691
Reaction score
4,499
Location
At The Beach in New Jersey
I’m not sure I did this right, but if this link works it is an older thread talking about using high amounts of SB.
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
12,511
Reaction score
13,004
Location
Southern California
Happy Easter and Welcome to the forum Funmi, the above recipe is mine and it is a lovely soap which you will love better than high Pko or co soaps. I have used higher percentages and they have been fine, I settled on the 57% because I keep the lower Pko/Co total. If the 20% Pko does not bother you and Shea is pretty inexpensive I would certainly try a small batch. It will take a longer cure to get to it best lathering feel. If you can only get regular Sunflower or Canola and it is a decent price you could try using it at 10% which should cause no dos problems. For several years I use regular canola and sunflower with no dos issues and the lower percentages.
 

Funmi

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2020
Messages
20
Reaction score
20
Location
Maryland, Lagos
You should expect a very hard soap. What is your super fat set at and what is your lye to water ratio. If you can get some high oleic sunflower oil, you might want to consider adding and reducing the amount Shea butter. I can run it through my calculator and tell you more but I need your lye percentage.
thank you so much for the reply
Superfat 5%
Lye water ratio=1:2 i.e 33% lye solution.

Is high oleic sunflower the same as the one used for cooking?

Happy Easter and Welcome to the forum Funmi, the above recipe is mine and it is a lovely soap which you will love better than high Pko or co soaps. I have used higher percentages and they have been fine, I settled on the 57% because I keep the lower Pko/Co total. If the 20% Pko does not bother you and Shea is pretty inexpensive I would certainly try a small batch. It will take a longer cure to get to it best lathering feel. If you can only get regular Sunflower or Canola and it is a decent price you could try using it at 10% which should cause no dos problems. For several years I use regular canola and sunflower with no dos issues and the lower percentages.
You are an inspiration.

Is the 20% PKO too much or too little?

I'll try to tweak the recipe and add sunflower oil

I’m not sure I did this right, but if this link works it is an older thread talking about using high amounts of SB.
Thank you
 

Todd Ziegler

Circle Z soaps
Joined
Sep 10, 2018
Messages
1,481
Reaction score
2,076
Location
Tipton IN
Happy Easter and Welcome to the forum Funmi, the above recipe is mine and it is a lovely soap which you will love better than high Pko or co soaps. I have used higher percentages and they have been fine, I settled on the 57% because I keep the lower Pko/Co total. If the 20% Pko does not bother you and Shea is pretty inexpensive I would certainly try a small batch. It will take a longer cure to get to it best lathering feel. If you can only get regular Sunflower or Canola and it is a decent price you could try using it at 10% which should cause no dos problems. For several years I use regular canola and sunflower with no dos issues and the lower percentages.
I would definitely follow this advice.
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
12,511
Reaction score
13,004
Location
Southern California
thank you so much for the reply
Superfat 5%
Lye water ratio=1:2 i.e 33% lye solution.

Is high oleic sunflower the same as the one used for cooking?
Usually not, but is sometimes listed as Fry Oil. I posted a link to a great article written from our resident chemist DeeAnna with the information about determining what type you have. If it is regular Sunflower or Canola oil I would keep within a range of 10-12%.
There is a lot of information on her page
Soapy Stuff: High oleic, mid oleic, and regular oil
 

Funmi

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2020
Messages
20
Reaction score
20
Location
Maryland, Lagos
Usually not, but is sometimes listed as Fry Oil. I posted a link to a great article written from our resident chemist DeeAnna with the information about determining what type you have. If it is regular Sunflower or Canola oil I would keep within a range of 10-12%.
There is a lot of information on her page
Soapy Stuff: High oleic, mid oleic, and regular oil
That was super helpful.

Let me run to the kitchen to check my sunflower oil
 

Saponificarian

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 1, 2017
Messages
620
Reaction score
762
Location
Alberta, Canada
Welcome Funmi.

I am from Nigeria too:) The unrefined PKO you have is great as it is milder than either refined PKO flakes here or even the unrefined Coconut oil. I really do miss the Unrefined PKO, there is nothing like it in soap.

Moving on to the Shea, I will use @cmzaha recipe. I can attest to the fact that it is one of the best soaps I have used and I make a large batch every year with a fragrance she introduced me to too. That reminds me, I need to pm you about that fragrance @cmzaha. I will do 2-3% super fat though like Carolyn does. I love 2% Superfat now.

I have used the normal Canola/Sunflower that you can get at the Supermarkets in Lagos and I never got DOS but at 20% with other oils.

A good Palm oil replacement is Palm Olein. I think the brand I love is Mamador. The Power brand too is fine. I love it more than refined Palm oil especially if you are using it in high percentages. Even at 80%, it is never waxy and I really miss it.

All the best with your Shea soap.
 

Funmi

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2020
Messages
20
Reaction score
20
Location
Maryland, Lagos
Welcome Funmi.

I am from Nigeria too:) The unrefined PKO you have is great as it is milder than either refined PKO flakes here or even the unrefined Coconut oil. I really do miss the Unrefined PKO, there is nothing like it in soap.

Moving on to the Shea, I will use @cmzaha recipe. I can attest to the fact that it is one of the best soaps I have used and I make a large batch every year with a fragrance she introduced me to too. That reminds me, I need to pm you about that fragrance @cmzaha. I will do 2-3% super fat though like Carolyn does. I love 2% Superfat now.

I have used the normal Canola/Sunflower that you can get at the Supermarkets in Lagos and I never got DOS but at 20% with other oils.

A good Palm oil replacement is Palm Olein. I think the brand I love is Mamador. The Power brand too is fine. I love it more than refined Palm oil especially if you are using it in high percentages. Even at 80%, it is never waxy and I really miss it.

All the best with your Shea soap.
Finally, another Nigerian. I will use her recipe then.
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
12,511
Reaction score
13,004
Location
Southern California
Yeah, I was hoping Sara would show up! I knew she would have some good info for you. Un-refined PKO sounds interesting. Is it by chance softer than refined PKO and a creamier color? I ask because I received several lbs from someone going out of business and it was a cream color and softer than my pko. It is quite lovely.
happy-easter-bunny.gif
 

Saponificarian

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 1, 2017
Messages
620
Reaction score
762
Location
Alberta, Canada
Yes Carolyn, Unrefined PKO is the bestest! It is milder than PKO flakes & Coconut. Depending on how much it is filtered, the color can range from very dark colored to the creamy color you have @cmzaha. You can get away with using much more than you would coconut or the flakes without your soap being stripping. I have gone as high as 25% with your Shea recipe and with a 3 month cure, it was so bubbly and still mild.

You can tell I love it right?:cool::cool: :)

I do miss it. It was dirt cheap back home.
 
Joined
Sep 19, 2011
Messages
12,511
Reaction score
13,004
Location
Southern California
I love the softness of it. I received 40 lbs of it so I am going to try it at a higher percentage. I will check but I think it came from Jedwards, but it was not dirt cheap. All I paid was to have it shipped to me. :)

Yup, I can tell you love it. I wish you were here and I would share. It is just so pesky to ship to Canada.
 

Funmi

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2020
Messages
20
Reaction score
20
Location
Maryland, Lagos
The one back home is brown, a little softer than coconut oil in consistency at lower temperatures.

The heat processed one has a very strong burnt nutty smell, worse than Shea butter but not as bad as neem. It's better than coconut oil for hair too. Super penetrating.

@Saponificarian. Yes PKO is wonderful.
I just checked their site and it says it is RBD. Sorry, but it is softer and a cream color. But probably not what you had in Nigeria. Link is below
Palm Kernel Oil - RBD
 

Funmi

Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2020
Messages
20
Reaction score
20
Location
Maryland, Lagos
Update!!

I made a small batch of the high shea butter soap
75% Shea butter, 20% PKO and 5% pomace olive oil.

The soap was very hard, initially had a thin lotion like lather at 6 weeks cure, but it wasn't stripping at all, very mild. I really enjoyed this soap for hand washing. The lather improved greatly at 6month cure
 
Top