If oil will be absorbed into the soap, would glycerin?

SoapMakingForum

Help Support SoapMakingForum:

gigisiguenza

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2015
Messages
1,391
Reaction score
916
I was playing with an idea in my head and I'm curious about the way things are absorbed into the soap as it sets up (after pouring, but before unmolding and cutting).

I know that if you grease the sides of your molds with any fat (Pam, oil, lard, etc) it will be saponified and sort of glue your loaf to your mold. And I know that the reason mica swirls work is because the soap will absorb and saponify the oil the mica is suspended in.

Would the same principle work with glycerin? If I wanted to suspend a colorant in glycerin and use it for a swirl (like the mica swirl), would the soap absorb it the way it does the oils? Or would it cause a problem?

TIA :)
 

mymy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2015
Messages
255
Reaction score
35
if I'm not mistaken, saponification process produces glycerin? theoretically, excess glycerin wouldn't be absorbed, correct?
 

gigisiguenza

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2015
Messages
1,391
Reaction score
916
if I'm not mistaken, saponification process produces glycerin? theoretically, excess glycerin wouldn't be absorbed, correct?
Oh.
Hmmmm.
I must rethink my idea now LOL
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Nov 19, 2013
Messages
9,020
Reaction score
9,169
Location
Austria
Some people do premix their colours in to glycerin. If I recall, they make it strong and then add it to batter so it dilutes and then use the batter for swirls, rather than adding it directly. But I can't be certain as I don't do it
 

gigisiguenza

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2015
Messages
1,391
Reaction score
916
Some people do premix their colours in to glycerin. If I recall, they make it strong and then add it to batter so it dilutes and then use the batter for swirls, rather than adding it directly. But I can't be certain as I don't do it
I've done that TEG, and it works very well. That's why I wondered if it could be used for a swirl on top, like some do with micas and oils. But I think it may just float on top, having considered what was commented earlier. Would hate to waste the effort on it if it's most likely not going to work. I'm determined to try this idea but I'm working out the quirks :)
 

gigisiguenza

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2015
Messages
1,391
Reaction score
916
That's an interesting thought. I too have seen it done with the oil/mica mixture, but can't think of any time I've seen a glycerine/mica mixture used for drizzle.
I want to try it with mica and with a natural colorant and see if I can get a bleed effect, but I'm trying to think how to do it. Pardon the smoke, it happens when I'm thinking hard LOL
 

Susie

Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
9,715
Reaction score
9,222
Location
Texas
Just because glycerin is produced in making soap, that does not exclude the possibility of the soap absorbing some. However, I would worry about it remaining sticky or prolonging the cure time. But there is only one way to know for sure, right?
 
Last edited:

gigisiguenza

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2015
Messages
1,391
Reaction score
916
Just because glycerin is produced in making soap, that does not exclude the possibility of the soap absorbing some. However, I would worry about it remaining sticky or prolonging the cure time.
The cure time I'm willing to wait for, but if it never fully absorbed and made for permanently sticky soap, that's a no bueno.
 

Steve85569

Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 28, 2015
Messages
1,914
Reaction score
2,113
Location
North East Oregon, USA
Now you've got me thinking - which is dangerous.
Glycerin is one of the products of saponification so if I try this with a lower SF recipe would the glycerin "stay put" and not soften the soap too much?
I may want to see how oil and glycerin mix before I ran a batch though. It may work quite well as a carrier mixed into some batter though.

I do know that if you add glycerin and sugar to lye soap that a solvent - usually alcohol is used - which results in a LOT of shrinkage during cure.
 

Muskette

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2015
Messages
104
Reaction score
132
I have done mica/glycerin drizzles on the tops of HP and the glycerin did absorb, leaving just the shimmery mica behind. It wasn't sticky at all, but I didn't use a lot.

ETA: Here is a pic of an HP soap where I worked the mica/glycerin mixture into the top inch or so of soap. After the first week of curing, it wasn't sticky at all.

forum.jpg
 
Last edited:

Arimara

Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2015
Messages
3,441
Reaction score
2,556
Now you've got me thinking - which is dangerous.
Glycerin is one of the products of saponification so if I try this with a lower SF recipe would the glycerin "stay put" and not soften the soap too much?
I may want to see how oil and glycerin mix before I ran a batch though. It may work quite well as a carrier mixed into some batter though.

I do know that if you add glycerin and sugar to lye soap that a solvent - usually alcohol is used - which results in a LOT of shrinkage during cure.
Thinking is only dangerous when you don't do it at all. :)
 

mymy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2015
Messages
255
Reaction score
35
your soap looks edible and delicious! haha
 

DeeAnna

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2013
Messages
13,473
Reaction score
19,392
Location
USA
I've used mica mixed with glycerin. I've drizzled this syrup in pencil lines to add gold flecks simulating "gold ore". I've also used it on top of a loaf to add decorative accents of gold. The lesson I've learned (the hard way, of course!) is to not be heavy handed with the glycerin-mica syrup. Thin drizzles and small droplets are fine. Big droplets of the syrup may not be absorbed by the soap.

When I've over drizzled within a pencil line, the excess glycerin may weep out of that area over time, leaving small cavities behind. When I've over drizzled on top of a loaf, the excess glycerin may leave a sticky spot. Sometimes the sticky area eventually soaks into the soap and disappears, but sometimes it doesn't and I end up wiping it off. When I use it with restraint, the glycerin is absorbed completely by the soap leaving a nice fleck of mica behind. The mica layer is durable too -- it's hard to rub off with a dry finger or cloth.

So I enjoy using this technique but with some caution.
 

lionprincess00

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 21, 2014
Messages
1,672
Reaction score
1,097
I poured glycerin on the top of my soap mixed with mica (please don't ask!), and it pooled terribly. I skimmed it off and drizzled the glycerin and then skewed. It left crevases with mica, similar to mica oil drizzle but deeper crevases. The tops were quite sticky for months where the glycerin I didn't manage to scoop off sunk in. After months (this soap is now well past the 6 month mark, yet after I'd guess 3-4 months) the stickinesss subsided. I'll post my blog on it. It's called Stonehenge. Scroll down for the effect of mica in glycerin drizzled on top of cp soap.
 

Latest posts

Top