Indigo powder and soap rocks

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Seawolfe

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I want to try my hand with the indigo powder from SMR. In my searches it seems that this colorant usually (almost always?) fades to grey or a very light blue. So I want to make a soap where I aim for blue, but grey would work as well.

So hey look - CP soap rocks!
(I'm more interested in the technique than the ingredients).

So I was thinking of "layering" the indigo to see if that would help the color to stick. They recommend 1/4-1/2 tsp per pound of soap (and I want it dark so maybe 1 tsp per lb), and I would add some to the lye water, and some to the oils (as an infusion? or just add the powder?), and maybe disperse some in glycerin and mix in at trace as well? Would adding activated charcoal powder deepen the color?

For the veins I could use clays - bentonite, French green clay or Moroccan red clay. Or charcoal of course. Maybe turmeric or paprika. Haven't decided yet, open to suggestions. I don't want to make this into a scratchy nightmare either.
 

green soap

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The indigo I have is strong, and 1/2 tsp per lb of oils gives me inky black. Midnight blue? and it colors the lather blue. YMMV but I would start with way less.

Add it to the water, dissolve the indigo and then add the NaOH. I pre-crush mine with a little mortar and pestle because some of the indigo crystals do not dissolve and I sometimes get dark blue spots. Adding the indigo to the lye water after the lye has not worked for me, I get no color from it at all. Not sure what adding it to the oils would do, it is not supposed to be used this way but who knows? if you do that let us know how it works for you.

Botanical colored embeds showing what 1/2 tsp indigo in 2 lbs soaping oils looks like (the two dark blue strips). I do not know your supplier though. Mine is made by Jacquard.

natural colored embeds1.jpg
 

Seawolfe

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Thanks! I was admiring your pretty soaps in my search, I adore your colors. Thanks for sharing your supplier. I'll try the indigo I have with your suggestions, and if it's a fader ill try it from your supplier.
 

green soap

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Oh you are welcome and thanks for the compliment!

I told you the manufacturer. You might want to goggle Jacquard and see if there is a supplier near you. I used Dharma trading Co. but I am sure there are others.
 

eyeroll

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I have the indigo from SMR and I always add too much colorant so was determined to use the SMR
recommended amount for my last batch. I was disappointed to find the indigo didn't even register in my batch. I would use at least double the recommended amount to make sure you get any blue at all. Good luck!
 

Seawolfe

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Thanks Eyeroll, from what I've read the SMR indigo is pretty weak, which is why I was thinking of at least doubling the recommend dose.

Tested the SMR indigo powder this weekend. Hubby needed more of his favorite bastille and he likes blue and no scent so this was ideal. Cold process with twice the recommended amount of powder (used 1 tsp per pound of soap instead of 1/4-1/2 tsp) in the water before the lye was added. Also added some bentonite clay at hubby's request. This was CP and as you can see was cut a little early (hubby got to it before I woke up this morning), but thats ok. Its a very deep blue - the color of new blue jeans.

indigo cut.JPG
 

eyeroll

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Seawolfe, thanks for sharing. I'll try again based on your results.
 

Seawolfe

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Seawolfe, thanks for sharing. I'll try again based on your results.
I'll post pics over time to see if it fades. Hopefully it will stick, I like this blue. Oh and hubby already tested the lather, it's white, so we didn't use too much :p
 

yadonm

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I've used Indigo and I didn't have any fading. That's a very nice blue color.
 

Seawolfe

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I've used Indigo and I didn't have any fading. That's a very nice blue color.
I've seen some amazing blues from indigo, my worry is that the blue from this supplier will fade. But its possible that the posts I've seen in another forum where they showed a LOT of fading were done differently as well.
 

clhigh29

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I'm jealous, they all looks so nice. I used my indigo for the first time with an fo, only to have it turn green/brown. I rebatched it this weekend, and now it looks like a light green/grey quartz. I did put the indigo in with the lye water for a darker blue, which basically changed my original thoughts of a layered design to a solid.
 

Jencat

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Seawolfe - Your indigo soap looks great! I'll have to try to remember to double the amount when using the SMR indigo.
 

grayceworks

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I use indigo from soap-making-resource. I have not used it for a solid blue bar yet, but I have used it for ITP swirls, like those salt-bars I mentioned in another thread, and didn't need much at all to get a nice blue swirl, and so far, no fading. Those ones are over 8wks old.

I did try it in a different batch and wasn't thinking about the rules of color-mixing when I had very green olive oil and a fairly yellow-orange FO also.... those turned out a sortof muddy brown swirl in the yellow-green bars. Hmm.
 
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Seawolfe

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I use indigo from soap-making-resource. I have not used it for a solid blue bar yet, but I have used it for ITP swirls, like those salt-bars I mentioned in another thread, and didn't need much at all to get a nice blue swirl, and so far, no fading. Those ones are over 8wks old.
So for those you added the indigo powder to a portion of the soap instead of mixing the indigo with the water before the lye? Was wondering if something like that would work.

On a salt bar you say? I'd love to see a pic, just made some solid blue salt bars with a little less indigo this time.
 

doriettefarm

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Has anyone tried the indigo powder from Brambleberry? I'm curious how it compares to Seawolfe's pic of the SMR version vs greensoap's pic of the Jacquard version. The SMR version looks more 'blue jean blue' and the Jacquard version is a much more vibrant blue.

I'd be good with either outcome but here's why I'm asking. I want to make a Red, White and Brew beer soap for 4th of July. I got some free beer to experiment with but it's rather dark and I'm not sure if adding the indigo powder would be a good idea.

I think the beer base might work for the red portion which I would color with red clay but I'm on the fence about the blue. I definitely wouldn't use this particular beer for the white part and was thinking about doing star-shaped red & blue embeds in a white base. Any advice or opinions on how this might work out?
 

grayceworks

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So for those you added the indigo powder to a portion of the soap instead of mixing the indigo with the water before the lye? Was wondering if something like that would work.

On a salt bar you say? I'd love to see a pic, just made some solid blue salt bars with a little less indigo this time.
Yes, i just sprinkled it in the pot right after i mixed in the salt, gave it enough of a stir to distribute it, and spooned the stuff into the molds. I think I posted the pics around here somewhere...

Here--

http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showthread.php?t=42415&highlight=indigo+salt&p=397945


The ones that turned seafoam green were the ones i mixed with yellowish oils in my shampoo bars. And every time i try to post a pic in a reply it says it's been disabled by forum administrators. I think I post too many pics lol.
 
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doriettefarm

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Here are the results of my experiment with dark beer and indigo powder. I added 1 tsp indigo powder to the beer/lye water solution.

First pic is right after pouring and the color of the beer is dominating. 2nd pic is after unmolding and exposing to air. It's more seafoam green than blue but so far the color is coming thru more than I expected. I'll keep you posted if color continues to morph as it cures.

IMG_0612[1].jpg


IMG_0614[1].jpg
 

Miz Jenny

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Here are the results of my experiment with dark beer and indigo powder. I added 1 tsp indigo powder to the beer/lye water solution.

First pic is right after pouring and the color of the beer is dominating. 2nd pic is after unmolding and exposing to air. It's more seafoam green than blue but so far the color is coming thru more than I expected. I'll keep you posted if color continues to morph as it cures.
How many lbs is your soap?
 

Seawolfe

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Oooo I can't wait to see that cut!
Did you add the indigo to the beer/ water before the lye?
 

doriettefarm

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I can't remember if I added the indigo powder before adding the lye to the beer/water mixture or after. I just thought adding with the lye was supposed to intensify the color instead of adding at trace.

I used 1tsp indigo powder PPO instead of per pound of soap as Brambleberry suggested. Maybe I was too conservative but didn't want to waste my stash of indigo if it didn't work out.
 
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