Looked like it riced?

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Aug 25, 2015
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Hi all, I hope the picture is clear enough to tell.
This soap looked weird, like it riced, just a little bit, during saponification and it only happened in the middle part of the soap block. The bottom piece is the end piece which is nice and smooth. Top piece seems to have some speckle/ riced texture. Could it be the temperature and did not go through a full gel phase? It's made with goat's milk, soaped at about 96F, olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil, Shea butter and castor oil and scented with sweet orange eo.
Would appreciate any thoughts/experience and some pointers, please? Thank you.

I am guessing it overheated and was in the beginning stages of separating. Goat's milk will heat up during gel which is why some, including myself will put a gm soap in the freezer to stop or try to stop gel. Sugars, high liquid, milks, some fo's and honey can cause overheating. Many times when this happens it will leave a soft squishy spot in the middle and than take months to harden up, if it is a fairly small spot, or it can actually have a leaking cavern, (alligator teeth) that is leaking oil and should be rebatched.
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Ricing is not something I think of happening after the soap is put into the mold, although I suppose that might happen. Ricing is usually due to a chemical in your fragrance or some other additive that accelerates saponification (fragrance is the usual troublemaker) and if a batch is going to rice, that will happen pretty quickly while the batter is still in your soap pot.

Carolyn's idea is a good one to check out. Also the soap might have mottling and streaking (aka "glycerin" rivers) going on. Hard to tell -- the photos aren't clear enough for me to be sure. You probably used the default of "38% water as % of oils" and that's the culprit. More water in a recipe increases the chances of mottling and streaking, especially if the soap gets warm enough to gel and then cools slowly. If I'm right, that also explains why the end piece looks smooth and the center piece looks streaky -- the end stayed cooler and cooled off quicker. Try switching to water:lye ratio or lye concentration when you design your recipe and set your lye concentration to about 33% (or the equivalent 2:1 water:lye ratio). You'll see this problem clear up. It's just a cosmetic issue.
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Thank you Carolyn and DeeAnna.
I just keep having different issues occurring when making batches of gm soap, pooling liquid, oily liquid at the sides when unmoulding, and this time, the rice looking thing when it's cut.... They all looked fine when cut though. No oil leaking from inside. Just don't understand where the science when wrong. Zap test was negative too. It's probably the eo that I am using, or maybe the temperature? I left them at room temperature in the mould, it heated up just a little bit and stayed warm, really just slightly warm to the touch, for the next 10 hours or so, at that consistent temperature. I usually let my soap gel, but would like to have pastel colour for the gm soap this time round.... /shrug. Mystery..
I was using 30% lye concentration... Will do it like u said 33%, as u suggested, and try without eo, maybe..
At 28% lye concentration (about what is called "full water" soaping), streaking and mottling is pretty common. My soap will still sometimes get streaking/mottling at 30-32% lye concentration. For example, I did four batches of soap recently, all at 32% lye concentration. All heated up pretty good and reached gel. Three batches didn't show any obvious streaking/mottling but the fourth one has quite a bit. The fourth batch is different from the others in that I used a little bit of titanium dioxide in the main color and two different colors of clay to make secondary colors -- solid colorants like these make the streaking more obvious. When the lye concentration gets up to 33% or more, the streaking pretty much stops, in my experience.

Oily liquid at the sides of the soap can come from a number of causes. I've found using a higher rate of fragrance makes this issue more likely. I did a soap with a 5% fragrance rate. The FO I was using was a discoloring fragrance so I decided to mix the whole FO into half of the batter to get a swirl effect from the FO discoloration. In effect, the fragrance was at 10% in that portion of the batter. That was too much of a good thing -- it got a little weepy on me. Once I backed down a few percent on the overall % for the FO, the problem stopped. Another solution would have been to mix the higher % of FO into the whole amount of batter if I wanted a single-color soap, but that wouldn't have been any fun. :)

Soap is sometimes rather temperamental -- it can be unusually sensitive to things we totally overlook.