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"Mildness" in soap - strange question

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not_ally

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Ok, this is kind of a weird question, I can imagine people rolling their eyes and thinking "uh, it's obvious, dummy!" But as a relatively new - 6 mos - cp soaper, I don't know if I know exactly what "mildness" means w/r/t to cp, especially in conjunction with discussions of cure time.

Ie; when folks discuss minimum cure times, they almost always say that they are necessary for optimal hardness, lathering, and mildness. The hardness and lathering factors *are* obvious to me. But what does "mildness" mean to you? When I've used little samples of soap that are not fully cured they already seem pretty mild, in the sense that they do not irritate, bother or otherwise make themselves known in a negative way. But how exactly is it that the skin feel improves?

Again, sorry if this is a dumb question, but have been wondering so thought I'd put it out for the experts.
 

jcandleattic

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A fresh soap tends to be very drying to the skin, and leave it tight and itchy feeling - aka "harsh"
Where as an older, properly made and cured soap will leave your skin feeling soft, moisturized and clean - aka "mild"

If you've been using fully cured soaps, switch to using a fresh soap, I promise you will be able to feel the difference.

BTW - not a dumb question, but if you use a new soap for a day or two and really observe how your skin feels and then switch to a cured soap, then I believe you will notice a difference.
It's almost like using commercial vs. handmade, but not exactly.
 
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Dorymae

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There are no dumb questions!

For me the feel of newer soap, the things that can be reduced with time are things like a "squeaky clean" feeling or a tightening feeling on the skin. Mildness, to me, refers to a soap that doesn't make my skin feel tight, or too clean or slick as well as not causing rashes, or other negative reactions.
 

IrishLass

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Not a dumb question at all!

Ditto what Jcandle and Dory said. I also gauge mildness by how tight and uncomfortable my skin feels after showering. Whenever I shower with a fresh bar (which isn't very often, btw, lol), I feel the need to run for the lotion poste haste/lickety-split and apply it all over! In comparison, my cured soap doesn't do that to me.


IrishLass :)
 

TeresaT

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Totally not a dumb question; I'm glad you asked. I had no idea what it meant either. Until my Bastille hit the six week mark, that is. Oh. My. Gosh. That is the best feeling soap on Earth! (I've also gotten the best shave of my life using it.) Actually, the Bastille mildness is why I measured out my oils last night and was going to make a 2# batch of it tonight. Everyone on the forum keeps saying Olive oil soaps should cure for a long time to get the best bar, so I'm going to let these cure until around Christmas and see how they measure up.
 

lionprincess00

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Honestly it's a valid question. My soaps after a couple days cure don't itch me, dry me, nor make me feel tight...nor after a 6 month cure...I use below 20% coconut oil and no pko nor babassu. Maybe that contributes? The main difference I notice between a freshly cut soap and one with a long cure is the abundance of lather. That, and how sturdy it is (with regards to dropping, dents etc). I think it probably becomes more mild, yes, but with a very mild recipe it probably isn't as noticeable (or it hasn't been for me thus far). With time a lye heavy soap becomes zap free per a study done here, so that also proves the milder idea.
 

jcandleattic

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Totally not a dumb question; I'm glad you asked. I had no idea what it meant either. Until my Bastille hit the six week mark, that is. Oh. My. Gosh. That is the best feeling soap on Earth! (I've also gotten the best shave of my life using it.) Actually, the Bastille mildness is why I measured out my oils last night and was going to make a 2# batch of it tonight. Everyone on the forum keeps saying Olive oil soaps should cure for a long time to get the best bar, so I'm going to let these cure until around Christmas and see how they measure up.
Yep, most people make their castile or very high % OO soaps in early January for the following holiday season.
 

not_ally

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Thanks to all of you for your input! I donated almost all of my soaps at the 3 mo. mark b/c I was so frustrated at not having kept good notes, I should go back and check the few I kept. It has been 3 mos since then; I don't notice a huge difference w/r/t to skin tightening, etc, in the soaps that have been cured for 3 mos v. 2, but it might not be a big enough difference. I always apply lotion automatically after showering b/c I have such dry skin, maybe that's why I haven't had the lightning bulb moment. Or maybe it is just all the lard :)
 

TeresaT

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Yep, most people make their castile or very high % OO soaps in early January for the following holiday season.
I think that is what I'm going to start doing. I can make a bunch of them this month and next to have ready for next year's "Longest Yard Sale." I should be ready to start selling by then. The yard sale from hell might actually be a great starting point for me.
 
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