# INS Value of Soap Recipes

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#### cambree

##### Well-Known Member
Hello. I am interestied in learning more about the INS value of soap recipes.

Does anyone else care about the INS value? Soap making author, Dr. McDaniel suggest 160 as ideal. Anne Watson, another soapmaker, suggest anything between 146-160 as fine.

I did my calculations for my recipes and got between 130 and 140. I am starting to worry that they may not be as ideal now. But am still waiting for it to cure in a few weeks. Also need to test the PH level later too.

Miller's Homemade Soap wrote: "The concept of INS values is borrowed from Dr. Robert McDaniel's book, Essentially Soap. He in turn borrowed it from an unattributed source. In any event, what he says is that an oil's INS value is based on its SAP value and iodine value, and that a soap's INS is the weighted average of the INS values of its constituent oils. What does that mean to you? Probably not much. The important thing is that (as related by Dr. Bob) the 'ideal' INS value to shoot for when formulating a soap recipe is 160. Now remember: 160 is only the ideal. Most recipes, even really excellent ones, won't be at an INS of 160. The majority of the ones I've looked at are in the mid 140's or low 150's. The INS value's real utility is as a sort of rough gauge of how well your recipe is balanced. In other words, if your recipe's INS is much above or way below 160, you might want to take another look at things."

#### MikeInPdx

##### Well-Known Member
cambree said:
Hello. I am interestied in learning more about the INS value of soap recipes.

Hello from a newbie!

I use INS in SoapCalc as just a rough (very rough) gage of how well my recipe is balanced. I've found what Anne Watson has found....basically, that if your recipe is near that 160....the ingredients usually make soap easily.

If they're not....it doesn't mean your bar isn't perfect. I've made castile and the INS is much lower than the recommended range and it's lovely. Plus I've had some stinky batches with a perfect 160. LOL

I look at it, try and get everything to match up pretty well and it usually works fine. But I take it with a grain of salt if I want to experiement.

#### cambree

##### Well-Known Member
Thanks for the info MikeInPdx. Welcome to SMF, I'm a newbie myself

I feel much better about how my soap will turn out now. I guess the real test comes when we start to actually use them.

#### MikeInPdx

##### Well-Known Member
cambree said:
Thanks for the info MikeInPdx. Welcome to SMF, I'm a newbie myself

I feel much better about how my soap will turn out now. I guess the real test comes when we start to actually use them.

You're welcome....how many batches have you done now?

#### mandolyn

##### Well-Known Member
My favorite recipe has an INS of 147 & a conditioning of 60. When I super fat at 7%, it's mild enough to use a few days out of the mold! That's CP.

My skin LOVES it!!!

#### MikeInPdx

##### Well-Known Member
mandolyn said:
My favorite recipe has an INS of 147 & a conditioning of 60. When I super fat at 7%, it's mild enough to use a few days out of the mold! That's CP.

My skin LOVES it!!!

It sounds like a lovely bar. I CPOP most of mine but CP and able to use it that soon. WOW!

#### mandolyn

##### Well-Known Member
MikeInPdx said:
mandolyn said:
My favorite recipe has an INS of 147 & a conditioning of 60. When I super fat at 7%, it's mild enough to use a few days out of the mold! That's CP.

My skin LOVES it!!!

It sounds like a lovely bar. I CPOP most of mine but CP and able to use it that soon. WOW!

Surprised the heck out of me!

#### cambree

##### Well-Known Member
MikeInPdx said:
cambree said:
Thanks for the info MikeInPdx. Welcome to SMF, I'm a newbie myself

I feel much better about how my soap will turn out now. I guess the real test comes when we start to actually use them.

You're welcome....how many batches have you done now?

I've done 4 batches now. My 1st batch recipe was from a soap making book. It had INS value of 145 and PH of 7. Very moisturizing due to shea butter. I love it!

I'm now trying to experiment with my own recipes. I didn't realize "INS" factor was a big deal until I stumble upon Anne Watson's book. So I just had to ask if anyone really looks at them.

My 2nd batch should be ready to use by this weekend. I will see how that one turns out.

#### MikeInPdx

##### Well-Known Member
I lost count somewhere after 30 batches. I'm close to 40 now, if I remember right. I'm getting much more comfortable with the process.

#### robindeb

##### Member
I read the same thing and had the same question. Then I started thinking aboiut Castille Soap and realized it didn't have an INS of 160. Personally I would like to make a batch without Coconut Oil for my personal use and this is when I realized it was very difficult to make a batch without it and get a high INS. The other oils that would achieve the same results like borage or babbasu is just to expensive. Thanks for the info and sharing your experience on the subject.

#### dagnukem

##### Well-Known Member
I think we need a refrence forum on here to figure out what all the initals stand for! lol

#### cambree

##### Well-Known Member
MikeInPdx said:
I lost count somewhere after 30 batches. I'm close to 40 now, if I remember right. I'm getting much more comfortable with the process.

Wow! That is a big number of batches. Congrats!

Soapmaking was scary for me at first (due to fear of lye)... and like you, I am much more comfortable with the process too.

I only wish I found out about SMF much earlier. Everyone here is so helpful and there are lots of good info here too. Thank you SMF!

Btw, I did use my INS 140 soap and it has become my new favorite. No shea butter in this recipe, but replaced with jojoba oil instead. It makes a great shampoo bar too

dagnukem said:
I think we need a refrence forum on here to figure out what all the initals stand for! lol

I agree!

#### MikeInPdx

##### Well-Known Member
I have a shortening bar that comes in at 126, but it's harder than you would expect due to the trans fat shortening, and it's super bubbly and conditioning. I love it. I have some ROE, sodium citrate, and BHT on order right now. I love the soft oils and I'm hoping to improve shelf life.

#### soakandlather

##### New Member
I soap using INS160

I like writing formulas with INS160, I guess because that is how I started and learned how to make a soap. You can reach an INS160 with a minimum of 4-5 oils and butters, coconut oil helps to reach it and it is a lovely soap.

You don't need to soap at INS160, like 100% castille soap will never ever reach this value. But if you ever wanted to write a formula, give it a go. It is a very rewarding effort. Make sure you consider the 5 qualities of soap within range.

You can see my soaps on instagram @soakandlather, it is formulated with INS160.

Give it a try
Elizabeth

#### beardguy

##### Well-Known Member
This thread is almost ten years old, I don't think you'll getmany responses :mrgreen:

#### soakandlather

##### New Member
Forums are for all time, I didn't even check how old this post it. Even after a year from my last post, it is still searchable for anyone looking for topics about INS160.

#### DeeAnna

##### Well-Known Member
Not every forum allows necroposting; it's discouraged here for good reasons. Beardguy was politely trying to help you understand how we do things.

Here is info on the culture here at SMF: https://www.soapmakingforum.com/threads/smf-culture-and-tone.56833/ -- skip down to item 7.

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