Magnesium hydroxide

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The Efficacious Gentleman

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As your website seems to be peddling the "all natural" and "chemical free" gimmicks, I take it that you are looking to make a soap without "chemicals" such as sodium hydroxide? Fatty acids need a stronger alkali, as George said it just won't work for soap making.

All alkalis are chemicals no different from sodium or potassium hydroxide, and all soap (even bases which you just melt down and add things to) were made with it.
 

Gerry

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Sadly we're pretty restricted in the choice of bases we can use in soap making. Like the others said, magnesium hydroxide is likely too weak to saponify the oils we use. It's even weaker than sodium carbonate (soda ash).

Apart from sodium or potassium, one other I know that will effectively saponify our oils is lithium hydroxide. Of course that info is useful only if you want to make your own wheel bearing grease. :mrgreen:
 

DeeAnna

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Magnesium, calcium, and lithium hydroxides will all make greasy paste-like soaps that are insoluble in water. Not soap for cleansing as we think of soap. Yes, these hydroxides can be used directly to make soap, but you're better off to combine them with fatty acids rather than triglyceride fats. It takes a lot of work to break fats apart and NaOH, KOH, and NH4OH (ammonium hydroxide) are best suited for the job.

The calcium and magnesium versions are basically soap scum -- the stuff that makes your skin feel rough and sticky and gunks up the bathtub or shower. Lithium soap would also be similar to soap scum. Magnesium soap and lithium soap are used as lubricants, as Gerry pointed out.

I don't know why a soap maker would care to make these types of soaps, but perhaps you'll explain?
 
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IrishLass

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Welcome PamelasPotions! :wave:

I actually use magnesium hydroxide to make my own deodorant. I mix it with babassu oil and keep it in a jar. I've used as high of a ratio as 50/50 magnesium hydroxide to babassu by weight, and for what its worth, it has remained just a mixture of magnesium hydroxide and babassu oil- no soap, no chemical reaction, etc....

As an experiment just now (just for the halibut), I took some of my powdered magnesium hydroxide and mixed it with some distilled water to make a solution. It dispersed to form a milky solution rather than dissolved to form a clear solution such as with lye, and there was also no exothermic chemical reaction that one would get with lye.

Undeterred, I then used my Badger paint mixer with a serrated disc attachment to 'stickblend' it with some HO sunflower oil I had handy. In the end, all I was left with was milky water with a thin layer of oily white foam on top, instead of the nicely cohesive emulsion I would gotten if I had used sodium or potassium hydroxide. It just didn't want to emulsify for me no matter what.

Conclusion: I can't see how anyone would be able to get any kind of soap using magnesium hydroxide unless one has some extra-special equipment and/or special chemical additives to toss into the mix. As history has proven, sodium or potassium hydroxide are the best ingredients for the job.


IrishLass :)
 

Scooter

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"just for the halibut"
Great! Now I'm hungry... :)

But seriously, thanks for sharing that soapy experiment. I am also interested in that MgOH/oil deodorant. I take it that you add the MgOH in solid powdered form. How would you rate the efficacy of this concoction? I have also heard of people using milk of magnesia for the same purpose. How is your recipe better/different than just using that?

Thanks!

Scooter
 

earlene

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Great! Now I'm hungry... :)

But seriously, thanks for sharing that soapy experiment. I am also interested in that MgOH/oil deodorant. I take it that you add the MgOH in solid powdered form. How would you rate the efficacy of this concoction? I have also heard of people using milk of magnesia for the same purpose. How is your recipe better/different than just using that?

Thanks!

Scooter
Scooter, there's a whole thread on the topic, de-funk de pits. On page 9, post #89, IrishLass talks about how she made her concoction. As you read further into the thread there is more discussion as to efficacy of the different formulas people are using. You may find that thread quite interesting. I did!
 

Arimara

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Makes me think they might be afraid of dihydrogen monoxide.
I told asked my supervisor for some dihydrogen monoxide. You should have seen the look on his face. :lol:

Hey that stuff is no laughing matter...it'll kill the heck out of ya if you're not careful :twisted:
Drink enough of it and it most certainly will kill you dead. :twisted:
 

TeresaT

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Makes me think they might be afraid of dihydrogen monoxide.
Dihydrogen monoxide is in chemtrails, you know!

Goodness knows I'm terrified of it. I rinse thoroughly with lots of running water when ever I come in contact with it. That dihydrogen monoxide stuff will kill you. I heard they're trying to put it into pools. Can you believe that? People swim in pools!! How dare they.

:headbanging:
 

topofmurrayhill

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As an experiment just now (just for the halibut), I took some of my powdered magnesium hydroxide and mixed it with some distilled water to make a solution. It dispersed to form a milky solution rather than dissolved to form a clear solution such as with lye, and there was also no exothermic chemical reaction that one would get with lye.
I looked up the solubility of magnesium hydroxide. At 0.00064 g / 100 ml water @ 25 °C, it's essentially insoluble. A good illustration is milk of magnesia. You mixed up a dilute laxative. :)
 

owendrake01

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Magnesium Hydroxide for (soap) cleaning

I've never even attempted to make soap before but it6 has sparked my curiosity fairly recently and I'll probably be giving it a shot before too long.

Also, I have no formal chemistry education at all (not even hs). But I'm a quick study as needs dictate. Recently I learned about Graphene and what is a modern day gold rush to find ways to put it into practical application. I read in one scientific article that during a study they had the most success by using ammonium sulfate to hydrolyze graphite through. So, I first baked (450) my magnesium sulfate in a toaster oven in my garage until it was no longer showing any sign of containing any water. Then I thoroughly mixed it with a bottle of ammonia (ammonium hydroxide), and strained it. I then added a bit of fresh ammonia to the slimy goop to see if it had completely reacted. It hadn't and I got an exothermic reaction. I added more ammonia and strained again.

Now, I have severe ADHD and always have countless projects underway, usually rarely ever to complete them. After purchasing a significant amount of graphite powder in addition to a couple of graphite rods for electrodes, I started going full crackpot with my experimenting. Tonight I was trying to make some hybrid electrodes by filling a cardboard tube with shredded (partially dissolved) copper, and graphite powder. The tube had already previously been saturated in a copper sulfate solution and conducted current pretty well already. But I've recently had carbon, carbon fiber, and carbon fiber resins on the brain. ---Have you ever seen what happens to Superglue (cyanoacrylate) when you sprinkle it with sodium bi-carbonate?

My goal was to formulate a modified fiberglass resin to coat the copper/cardboard tube in. The main ingredient was Loctite fiberglass resin. I mixed it with Graphite powder, calcium hydroxide, sodium carbonate, borax and a bit of water and hydrogen peroxide (this is actually one of the ingredients in the resin's hardener). ...a little while later my hands were very completely covered in this unholy adhesive and the calcium hydroxide was starting to burn my skin. I didn't have any kind of soap in my garage but was desperate to get the crap off my skin. Then I glanced that slimy goop that i'm fairly sure was relatively pure magnesium hydroxide. i rubbed it all over and it actually felt nice in contrast to the burning. Then I added some borax as a substitute for pumice. It was amazing how easily it ALL wiped right off with a shop rag! That was what caused me to google "magnesium hydroxide soap" and then led me here.

Again, I know next to nothing about the ways of your people, so please take it easy with any criticism.
 

artemis

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That was a really interesting story!

Personally, I think you need to stop what you're doing before you really hurt yourself and start seriously considering furthering your education. If you're that interested in chemistry, you'll probably find some night courses at your local high school. There, you will at least learn safe methods of handling and measuring etc.
 

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