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Is this clear enough?

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goodjoan

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Since my second attempt at LS went so well, I decided to push my luck.
I made a new recipe full of conditioning oils, hoping to make something my super sensitive kid can use as hand soap. I ran it through soapcalc because my KOH is from essential depot, which says on the webpage 90% pure and soapcalc has that as an option. At first I used way too little glycerine and ended up with weird KOH mashed potatoes. I upped the glycerine and it finally dissolved. I mixed everything my my warm crock pot and hit it with the stick blender once. it started thickening so weirdly I stopped and switched to a spatula. I ended up with something along the lines of greasy alien snot before I couldn't stir anymore. I left it overnight and most of the next day, unheated save for the residual heat in the crock pot. Oh, I should add here that at 1am I realized I didn't have enough almond oil and I ran to the only open store for miles. I got a couple of small pharmacy bottles of almond oil and used those and didn't realize until later they had a fragrance in them (no idea of this matters)

Today it was not zappy but...burny. No electric zing but a definite "this is probably eating a hole in my tongue". I may never learn what is and is not zap with KOH. I put a glob of soap in a small jar with distilled water and shook it up. It stayed clear but I know the soap wasn't really dissolved in the water. I put a small amount in a jar to dilute and the rest in a container in the fridge. When I got home this evening, the little jar had suddenly turned cloudy.

I don't have any pheno or litmus paper to check it. Does this look appropriately clear for a soap with a bunch of soft oils? (Hemp, almond, olive, coconut, avocado and castor) or do I need to haul it out of the fridge and cook it longer?

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Susie

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If you could post your entire recipe (including all additions and whatever was in the Almond Oil) in weights, it would help us troubleshoot it better. But if it did not zap, it is "done". KOH soap can leave a burny feeling to the tongue, more so than NaOH soap, at any rate.
 

goodjoan

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I don't have the recipe in front of me, I'm taking my grandmother to the Dr today. I'll post it when I get home. I didn't even think about the oil not being just oil but when I started mixing I smelled a strong "almond" scent and looked at the bottle. All it lists is almond oil and fragrance.

The soap I left to dilute last night is still softening/dissolving but it's much more clear than this little bottle.

I appreciate the help! Funny how one can be fairly well versed in one kind of soap and an utter newb in another!!
 

kchaystack

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I made a new recipe full of conditioning oils <SNIP> of small pharmacy bottles of almond oil and used those and didn't realize until later they had a fragrance in them (no idea of this matters)<SNIP> When I got home this evening, the little jar had suddenly turned cloudy.
Just remember that soap is not going to condition or moisturize. You can adjust it so that it does not strip away all your skins natural oil - but it really is not going to add anything to your skin.

As for the cloudiness - What was your superfat %? If that is too high it can cause cloudy dilution. Also, the fragrance in the almond oil can also cause it. Many FO's and EO's cloud up LS when they are diluted down.

I don't have any pheno or litmus paper to check it. Does this look appropriately clear for a soap with a bunch of soft oils? (Hemp, almond, olive, coconut, avocado and castor) or do I need to haul it out of the fridge and cook it longer?
These are not needed to test soap. Phenolphthalein, in the way you usually see it used by soapers, does not tell you if you have a lye excess. Of course if you are using it for titration, then you have a better soap lab than most. :) pH testing is also of limited use - and again won't tell you if you have a lye excess. Your zap test it the best choice.

If the cloudiness is caused by too much superfat there are ways that might fix it, but no guarantee. If it is because of the FO in the almond oil there is not much you can do to make this batch clear. But it will still be perfectly usable.

Personally I do not have an issue with cloudy soap. I know if my paste does not zap, and it lathers and cleans when I dilute and use it, I am happy. :)
 

Susie

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Personally I do not have an issue with cloudy soap. I know if my paste does not zap, and it lathers and cleans when I dilute and use it, I am happy. :)
That's my opinion. I just don't care that much. I have also found that a "cloudy" soap will clear up with some sitting around. Which fits my soaping style perfectly.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Our soap dispensers are not clear, so I really have no need to aim for a clear LS either. It would be interesting, next time I'm at the supermarket, to look at the soaps and see how many are actually clear tater than coloured
 

penelopejane

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Our soap dispensers are not clear, so I really have no need to aim for a clear LS either. It would be interesting, next time I'm at the supermarket, to look at the soaps and see how many are actually clear tater than coloured[/QUOTE


Most are clear, even when coloured. Some brands have a pearly shiny opaque thickness.
It would disturb me to have a cloudy mix if it was supposed to be clear but it all seems so complicated I haven't tried LS yet. I'm watching you all though and learning, I hope.
 

kchaystack

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But most are not soap, they are syndets. And even if they are soaps they have the advantage of mirco filtering - using high pressure to force either the base oils, or the finished product thru incredibly fine filters.
 

galaxyMLP

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Exactly what KC is saying.

All commercial set ups for cosmetic products like to have things as clear as possible when possible. It's called "turbidity". You want this to be as low as possible because consumers associate turbid products with being dirty and, clear products as being pure and clean. A producer will keep running a solution/product through a filter until it is completely clear. They will also only select ingredients that are more likely to make a clearer product. If a manufacture can't achieve the clarity they need to, sometimes they will sell the product "as is" but at a discounted rate.

For personal use and even as gifts, turbidity doesn't matter. But buyers will be looking for clear liquid soap since that's what they've always been sold. Color is another variable in making cosmetics that is monitored. We as hand makers have an even more difficult time controlling that. I've made dark colored, cloudy soap a few times and honestly, it feels just as nice as the clear, lighter colored ones I've made.

Edit: Bottom line, it doesn't matter for us and we can't compare to large producers because we don't make things on the same scale or by the same means. Our soap will be lovely either way!
 
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goodjoan

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Ok, sorry I ghosted, things got busy and I've barely been able to look at soap in weeks. I was only concerned about the cloudiness as a test of doneness, not because I need it to be clear. I don't really mind of it's a little cloudy. The superfat was 3% and I realize it's not really "moisturizing" so much as containing more glycerine. One of my kids has crazy sensitive skin and I gave him a coconut oil soleseife bar a few weeks ago for his bathroom sink and he ended up with a horrible rash. I wanted to aim for something less stripping.

Since it's had time to sit, it's turned out to be a great soap! Perfectly clear with a little green tinge from the hemp. If I leave it unscented it's gorgeous. If I add a little FO it has a tendency to have little flecks in it but I don't really care about that for home use. If I decide it needs to go into the etsy shop in the future, I may add some PS80 to see of that keeps the FO in suspension better.

Thanks for talking me down!
 

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