Melbourne, Victoria, Australia Soapers

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chemandcreate

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Hello, I'm new here on the forum and to soaping. I was hoping that I could pick some local soapers brains about suppliers, markets, etc.

I've been making soaps now for about 5-6 weeks and I've been researching suppliers within Australia. I've had quite a few problems which I hope are one offs but before I go back to those suppliers I thought I'd see if anyone else is able to give me some info.

Specifically I was hoping that some of the Aussie soapers could recommend the suppliers they think are best and what they excel at.
 

Dahila

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I think we have some soapers from Australia, but can not remember the names, nothing. Welcome to the forum.
What I know Australia does not have many suppliers and you guys have difficulties to get the thingy needed. Hopefully someone will post here shortly:)
 

penelopejane

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Hi
I am from NSW Sth coast. It really depends on what you want to buy and how fussy you are about prices. Bring a micro manager I am very particular which means I use a few suppliers.

For bramble berry supplies go to: Aussie soap supplies
For FOs and EOs and cheap avocado oil and other different oils go to New Directions.
CO - escentials
For OO go to Aldi

For OO and RB look for specials in woollies and Coles

Lye from Bunnings

What were the problems you had and with which suppliers?
 
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chemandcreate

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I think we have some soapers from Australia, but can not remember the names, nothing. Welcome to the forum.
What I know Australia does not have many suppliers and you guys have difficulties to get the thingy needed. Hopefully someone will post here shortly:)
Thanks for the Welcome Dahlia. I think we do have suppliers, but I am noticing that it's just not as easy to research as US brands.
Hi
I am from NSW Sth coast. It really depends on what you want to buy and how fussy you are about prices. Bring a micro manager I am very particular which means I use a few suppliers.

For bramble berry supplies go to: Aussie soap supplies
For FOs and EOs and cheap avocado oil and other different oils go to New Directions.
CO - escentials
For OO go to Aldi

For OO and RB look for specials in woollies and Coles

Lye from Bunnings

What were the problems you had and with which suppliers?
Hi penelopejane,

I have bought from Aussie and I found that because it's coming from WA it takes quite a while to get here, and Australia Post isn't the best at handling, I had a broken jar of blue mica the first time. I was happy with the response though, ASS replaced the mica without any issues.
I hadn't heard of New Directions so I'll have to check them out.
Escentials... (Rant warning) I put an order into them about three weeks ago, and they told me they didn't have one of the products and I agreed on a replacement colour, they only just mailed PART of my order today (the part they didn't have originally in the original colour), and now I have to wait a minimum of another week for the remaining part. I asked for it express because it was urgent, and I've paid Express post for something I've had to wait three weeks for so far.... communication really sucked as well, and then they blamed the manufacturer.
Aldi - How did we live without Aldi, I also get RB oil from there as well, simply because it's actually not that much more expensive and I don't use a lot anyway. But I do get my OO there as well.
Bunnings - Got my first lot of Lye from there and it's almost all gone, seems to be cheaper from bunnings than elsewhere so if you get yours from there to as least I'm on the right track.
We also have NCS (Natural Candle Supplies), which I loved as they have a warehouse down here and I could go sniff testing. And Auroma, which has a store in Melbourne. I got some oils on sale from there but they are a bit expensive.
CO I actually found an australian website called http://www.coconutoil.org.au/ which has pretty good prices, but I haven't had a chance to test them yet.

I would love to use only one or two suppliers but I think I'm going to be out of luck.
 
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fuzz-juzz

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Micas - My micas obsession (they have FB page) also, most soap supplies websites sell micas, pigments, clays ect
Brambleberry supplies - Aussiesoapsupplies
Fragrance oils - Kodys candles, Bigtreesupplies (both sell some Natures Gardens FOs, not sure where the rest is coming from)
Oils, butters - Heirloom soap supplies, Australian Wholesale Oils, Escentials of Australia, Costco, Aldi, Coles and Woolies (Frymasta is palm oil, Copha is coconut at supermarkets)
Lye - NaOH from Bunnings, KOH from Escentials of Australia
Robyn's soaphouse (she is Knoxfield) sells oils in bulk (coconut, palm etc) for a fair price. That's good if you plan to make soap on a bigger scale.
I'm in Melbourne and never had problems with any of them. Except maybe Escentials of Australia, they take time with order processing, etc but generally, I had pretty good experience with all of them.
Postage from WA is really hit and miss, sometimes stuff arrives within 4-5 days, but it can take longer. I've ordered some soap supplies from WA, parcel was sent last Wed and I'm still waiting.
 
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chemandcreate

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Hi Fuzz-juzz,
You mentioned quite a few places I didn't know about, which is great, I totally going to be researching lots tonight :)

I have to admit I am trying to stay as local as possible, but again I just don't think that is going to work.

I know of Robyn's Soaphouse, but I actually found the pricing to be a bit steep. I thought that was mainly because they seem to focus more on teaching than supply. I know of Heirloom as well, will have to check out Kodys and biggtreesupplies
Oh... also wanted to know if anyone had heard of or used soapmaker 3. It's supposed to be this wizz bang program that help calculate batches, records method, results, photos and helps work out the cost of each bar you make so that you can price for selling.
 
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fuzz-juzz

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Oh... also wanted to know if anyone had heard of or used soapmaker 3. It's supposed to be this wizz bang program that help calculate batches, records method, results, photos and helps work out the cost of each bar you make so that you can price for selling.
I haven't really, as I'm not planning to sell. Hopefully somebody else might be able to chip in with some info.
Have fun shopping. ;)
 

chemandcreate

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I've already done too much of that, my boyfriend is about to disown me! And he says I've starting talking about soap in my sleep (then rolled his eyes in disgust) :)
 

penelopejane

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I've already done too much of that, my boyfriend is about to disown me! And he says I've starting talking about soap in my sleep (then rolled his eyes in disgust) :)

Yes welcome to the world is soap. Friends eyes will glaze over when you bring up soap making but will brighten again at the thought of a free tester.

I got RB 3 Litres at 50% off and OO 50% off in Coles so watch out for sales. Our Aldi doesn't sell RB and there is no costco here.

I don't think it's possible to use one supplier as they each seem to have one or two items that are reasonably priced and the others are priced out of this world. It is weird.

I guess you have to plan ahead if you want cheap postage rates and be patient. New directions gives a little free sample of something which is a nice touch. I have a friend who soaps and we buy things together to save on postage. Most places send back orders for free [emoji26]

It's so annoying if you get a big order ready, order it and then remember an important item that only that company supplies at a sensible price. I have a spreadsheet of supplies, suppliers and prices. So frustrating.

I've heard of that program but don't sell so don't have it and haven't used it.
Being a micro manager I know exactly what each bar costs me and it isn't pretty. [emoji33] But I have enough supplies to make 400 more bars so the price per bar will drop considerably over time IF I don't buy more FOs! I look forward.to telling my DH my soap costs less than a commercial bar. [emoji2]
 
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Steve85569

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I've already done too much of that, my boyfriend is about to disown me! And he says I've starting talking about soap in my sleep (then rolled his eyes in disgust) :)

Welcome to soap making!
And welcome to the forum.
I hope you find as much information and learning ( patience) as I have.
Great place for soapers!
 

Relle

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Hello, I'm new here on the forum and to soaping. I was hoping that I could pick some local soapers brains about suppliers, markets, etc.

I've been making soaps now for about 5-6 weeks and I've been researching suppliers within Australia. I've had quite a few problems which I hope are one offs but before I go back to those suppliers I thought I'd see if anyone else is able to give me some info.

Specifically I was hoping that some of the Aussie soapers could recommend the suppliers they think are best and what they excel at.
Before you go into selling you should read this - http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showthread.php?t=16002

It is not that simple just making soap and selling straight away. You have to comply to Australian Laws before selling or you could get fined.
 

Relle

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Hi
I am from NSW Sth coast. It really depends on what you want to buy and how fussy you are about prices. Bring a micro manager I am very particular which means I use a few suppliers.

For FOs and EOs and cheap avocado oil and other different oils go to New Directions.
QUOTE]

FO's from New Directions in Oz are not Soap Safe.
 

Relle

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Hi Fuzz-juzz,
You mentioned quite a few places I didn't know about, which is great, I totally going to be researching lots tonight :)

I have to admit I am trying to stay as local as possible, but again I just don't think that is going to work.

I know of Robyn's Soaphouse, but I actually found the pricing to be a bit steep. I thought that was mainly because they seem to focus more on teaching than supply. I know of Heirloom as well, will have to check out Kodys and biggtreesupplies
Oh... also wanted to know if anyone had heard of or used soapmaker 3. It's supposed to be this wizz bang program that help calculate batches, records method, results, photos and helps work out the cost of each bar you make so that you can price for selling.
I would hold off with Soapmaker 3 until you become proficient in making soap. You have only made 5 or 6 batches and you are talking about selling - not a good idea.
 

Relle

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I think we have some soapers from Australia, but can not remember the names, nothing. Welcome to the forum.
What I know Australia does not have many suppliers and you guys have difficulties to get the thingy needed. Hopefully someone will post here shortly:)
Dahlia, my location is under my avatar and you can't remember me :cry:.
We do have lots and lots of suppliers you just have to do some homework.
 

Dahila

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Oh Relle I had never look the location of your;) How could I not remember you? Someone was asking about suppliers in Australia, and I had the impression that there is not many suppliers. At least my friend from there complain about it. I can not remember the place he is living:(
Maybe people do not bother to do simple search:)
Relle now I will not forget that your are from this beautiful and hot country :))

BTW I got SM3 after approaching a third year of mastery, I am kidding about mastery,
Many people do not realize how much time and effort is spend on making decent soaps. They find some pages and recipe in volume, lye heavy, and they think they are soapmakers.
I started from lotions, creams, then soaps, shampoos, conditioners, now house cleaners ...I like to make everything I use
 
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Relle

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Dahlia your friend is probably complaining about suppliers, because they are not always on your doorstep, to go and pick things up. Australia has lots of suppliers, they are just not in one place and supplies have to be ordered and delivered. There are lists in the Shopping Recs section for suppliers in Oz if anyone wants to research.

Glad you will remember me, it has been hot here lately - a couple of days at 41 degrees C (106F).
 

chemandcreate

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Before you go into selling you should read this - http://www.soapmakingforum.com/showthread.php?t=16002

It is not that simple just making soap and selling straight away. You have to comply to Australian Laws before selling or you could get fined.
Hi Relle,
Thanks for the post info. I did have a look at it but it is mostly US based and therefore not that informative, other than to suggest you do quite a bit of research and testing before selling a product. And also quite negative toward new soap makers in my opinion. I've been doing research on Australian Laws and so far found that: We do not have to register with the government to sell soap as a hobby, and only register if a chemical reaction is taking place which means MP soaps are exempt from registration. Also as a hobby Aussies don't require a ABN or to keep records of what they are making/selling. As I am not planning on selling anytime soon this is of course only basic research.

Relle: I would hold off with Soapmaker 3 until you become proficient in making soap. You have only made 5 or 6 batches and you are talking about selling - not a good idea.

I am planning on selling my soap eventually, however not anytime soon. I am aware that I need to test and record data for at least 6 months to a year to ensure that I can accurately and consistently reproduce the same results. Soapmaking is at its very foundations a science. Which is why I mentioned Soapmaker 3.
Soapmaker 3 is a program designed to record the facts about your soaps in a organized way as far as my research so far has advised. I am hopeless at recording my data in one place ( I have a million and one notebooks). I was asking as it seems like it would be a excellent program to record all the facts of each batch and therefore a more accurate way to reproduce the results. The fact that it assists in pricing was also a factor as I didn't want to have to purchase a second program at a later date.

That being said, it sounds like you have been soaping for a number of years and also selling. Perhaps you have some suppliers you would like to recommend? Some suppliers that you think I should avoid at this early point in soaping? Some specific websites in Australia for me to check out about legislation, registration and the like. A basic recipe you think I should have perfected before moving onto further studies.

So far I've made a 100% coconut oil soap, a 80% olive oil soap, a mixed bag soap. All my soaps have a superfat to ensure that so long as correctly blended I shouldn't have any free lye floating about. I've also discovered that adding coconut milk powder to a recipe will make a super hard powdery soap when you use too much. Lime and Sandalwood fragrance oil speeds up trace so fast it comes close to soap on a stick. That Rice Bran oil is really easy to weigh out for some reason. That if you see a bulge on the top of the mould and your soap gets really hot, to shove it in the fridge as fast as possible for about 10 mins, then to leave uncovered overnight. To always soap with an extractor fan on as the fumes from mixing the Lye make me cough badly. That I hate the smell of Geranium EO unless it's mixed with something else as it is so strong a scent.
So as you can see I've learnt a lot in making my first 5-6 batches and I know that everytime I try something new I will learn more.

Hope you'll be able to help with some more info soon
 

Relle

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While you think the link I gave you for selling is US based, it is still relevant information for soapers in every country if you read it properly.

Also, if you think its negative toward new soapers then soaping may not be for you. We are here to give you the facts - take it or leave it.

For suppliers look at old posts in the Shopping Recs section , they are there and there is a Sticky about Registrations etc on the forum. The best way to learn here is to go back over old posts, years, back and read, read, read, that's how I learnt.
 

Dahila

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Last year I had some soaps left like 10 of them, different kinds made in 2013 oh, I just opened one and took shower; Holy Molly it is the best soap ever, I think two years of curing should be enough. My friend had one not opened and she did tried, so I was wondering what she is bragging about, Now I know. My soaps 2 years old are incredible but I openned my business just on August and Started to sell some for maybe two months. Most people start with the soaps because they are the easiest, at least for me, Lotions and creams; labeling rules are much complicated. My point is that it takes time to check the soaps or lotions before you sell them. Testing for cross contamination (creams) is important, very important. I wonder Relle with that temps even soap melts, how the people and bunnies are doing:)):?
 

Relle

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Dahlia, thanks for asking, my bunny has been in the garage on the hot days because it's cool on the concrete, we put her in a wire pen with her bunny litter tray, some towels to lay on and food/water. She stays cool most of the day, but she's not sure where she is. I don't think she likes being in there, but at least she doesn't get overheated.

So much for having a fur coat you can't take off.
 
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