Looking for a reliable cp starter recipe + is palm oil needed?

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TheBobbiesRSurly

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Hi all,

I'm just itching to get my soap stuff in and start soaping! I've been up to my eyeballs in starter recipes and I just can't figure out what's a good one to begin with. I'd love one preferably fail proof, that will moisturize and be gentle on skin. I'm thinking maybe a 2 pound recipe to start with until I get comfortable (and successful) with creating soap.

Now... I see palm oil used a LOT in recipes, but not all. Something about it making for a harder bar. What alternatives to palm oil is there that will harden a bar - coconut oil?

I keep thinking maybe a bastille soap would be good to begin with. Is bastille soap on the soft side? How does it behave for cold process?

I'll keep researching, but would appreciate any feedback :D
 
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Susie

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Hi all,

I'm just itching to get my soap stuff in and start soaping! I've been up to my eyeballs in starter recipes and I just can't figure out what's a good one to begin with. I'd love one preferably fail proof, that will moisturize and be gentle on skin. I'm thinking maybe a 2 pound recipe to start with until I get comfortable (and successful) with creating soap.
Hey and welcome!

The first issue is that soap does not moisturize. It cleans. You can, however, make one that is less stripping of the oil on your skin. A 2 lb recipe is a good place to start.

Now... I see palm oil used a LOT in recipes, but not all. Something about it making for a harder bar. What alternatives to palm oil is there that will harden a bar - coconut oil?
Palm, tallow, and lard all are in the same category in soapmaking in that they provide hardness. A high coconut oil bar will be more stripping to your skin. Some people can go higher than 20% coconut oil, but not me. I actually prefer 15% coconut oil as that gives enough bubbles without leaving my skin dry and tight. A high coconut bar will be bubbly, but it will melt faster than one made with high palm/tallow/lard.

I keep thinking maybe a bastille soap would be good to begin with. Is bastille soap on the soft side? How does it behave for cold process?

I'll keep researching, but would appreciate any feedback :D
Bastille soap will take longer to cure than I would advise for a first soap for a new soaper. You need to stick with something that will cure in the 4-6 week range. And no, hot process soap does NOT cure faster than cold process, no matter what those YouTube ladies say. Completed saponification does NOT equal cure.

My suggestion to you for a first bar would be something like this:

Palm/tallow/lard 50%
Olive Oil 35%
Coconut Oil 15%
Castor Oil 5%

Superfat 5%

Then you can play with the percentages from there, go up 5% on this and subtract 5% from that. But this will give you a well rounded bar that will not trace super fast. I prefer a 65% lard bar myself.
 

TheBobbiesRSurly

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Oh my goodness, thank you Susie! That's wonderful input and advice (and quite informative). That's good to know about coconut oil, I have a problem with my skin drying out a lot so I want to avoid soaps that will only accelerate the process.

Thanks so much again, I'll try out the recipe you gave me and play with it :D
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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As a part of your research, go back at least 10 pages in the Begginner and Recipe Feedback sections - look at anything to do with beginner/basic recipes. I would also do it in the Lye-Based section. This might seem a little OTT, but will answer questions around the palm oil issue with a lot of various options and what people used and found out.

This is often better than asking the basic questions again as here in this thread you might get certain viewpoints. By going back over the other posts you will get a great many more viewpoints and so a better foundation.
 

lenarenee

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Do put a Bastille recipe on your list of soap to make soon - and let it cure for a year. It will be scrumptious! 80% olive, 15% co, 5% castor.

If you're not opposed to animal fats, I think lard is far better than palm. But have fun making all types of recipes and comparing.
 

auraindiga

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Hi bobbiesr,
i dont use palm either and i have found this recipe to be quite forgiving

1oz castor
6 oz coconut
26 oz olive oil
10 oz water
4,4 oz lye
it does take a few days to harden nicely and needs a good long cure, but its simple enough.
 
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