Newbie 100% Coconut Oil Experiment

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lalam

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Hello All! Here to share my recent experiment with 100% Coconut Oil. One set of plain bars and one set of salt bars.

I haven't really liked any of the soaps I've made that have +15% CO in them, so this experiment with SF came about because I had +2lbs of CO that expired in 2020. I'm using new CO in my current oil-blend soap experiments, and I figured this would be a great opportunity to learn about my skin's feelings for 100% CO with SF and use up oil that seems fine but that I didn't trust in my "good" soaps. (they aren't good, but they're getting better lol).

Base recipe was
100% coconut (2 lbs)
28% lye concentration
30% SF
Oils were 105 degrees, Lye solution was 110 degrees

Half the mix was poured into my first Pringles can mold at the worlds-lightest trace. The other half stayed in the bowl and was meant to be stick blended until medium trace so that I could add .5 lbs of table salt. ...medium trace did not come. I went for the 28% lye concentration because I was concerned about a 100% CO soap tracing too quickly, and while it reached emulsion fairly quickly it took forever to trace. Eventually the stick blender started to overheat so I switched to stirring for awhile, but eventually I gave up and mixed in the salt at barely-there trace. The salt bars I poured into rectangle cavity molds.


Lessons Learned:
Some folks appreciate a Pringles can mold, but I am not one of them and I will never go through the hassle of trying to line one again lol. As you can see I have some lumpy, lumpy edges on my circles. I'm sure that I could do a better job with some Pringles-can-lining practice, but I'd rather invest in a circle cavity mold in the future if I want a circle soap.
I would try a lye concentration of 33% next time.
The salt bars also took longer to become firm than I expected based on my research. Some of the smushed corners are from my attempts at 2/3 hours to see if they've stiffened.
Based on holding the salt bars up to light at different angles, it appears that the salt didn't sink to the bottom despite the light trace. Considering myself lucky there.


The real test will be in 6-12 months when they're done their cure and I can compare them against one another in the sink.


Thanks again to all here who've provided their knowledge over the years that led to me soaping. :)
 

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Hello All! Here to share my recent experiment with 100% Coconut Oil. One set of plain bars and one set of salt bars.

I haven't really liked any of the soaps I've made that have +15% CO in them, so this experiment with SF came about because I had +2lbs of CO that expired in 2020. I'm using new CO in my current oil-blend soap experiments, and I figured this would be a great opportunity to learn about my skin's feelings for 100% CO with SF and use up oil that seems fine but that I didn't trust in my "good" soaps. (they aren't good, but they're getting better lol).

Base recipe was
100% coconut (2 lbs)
28% lye concentration
30% SF
Oils were 105 degrees, Lye solution was 110 degrees

Half the mix was poured into my first Pringles can mold at the worlds-lightest trace. The other half stayed in the bowl and was meant to be stick blended until medium trace so that I could add .5 lbs of table salt. ...medium trace did not come. I went for the 28% lye concentration because I was concerned about a 100% CO soap tracing too quickly, and while it reached emulsion fairly quickly it took forever to trace. Eventually the stick blender started to overheat so I switched to stirring for awhile, but eventually I gave up and mixed in the salt at barely-there trace. The salt bars I poured into rectangle cavity molds.


Lessons Learned:
Some folks appreciate a Pringles can mold, but I am not one of them and I will never go through the hassle of trying to line one again lol. As you can see I have some lumpy, lumpy edges on my circles. I'm sure that I could do a better job with some Pringles-can-lining practice, but I'd rather invest in a circle cavity mold in the future if I want a circle soap.
I would try a lye concentration of 33% next time.
The salt bars also took longer to become firm than I expected based on my research. Some of the smushed corners are from my attempts at 2/3 hours to see if they've stiffened.
Based on holding the salt bars up to light at different angles, it appears that the salt didn't sink to the bottom despite the light trace. Considering myself lucky there.


The real test will be in 6-12 months when they're done their cure and I can compare them against one another in the sink.


Thanks again to all here who've provided their knowledge over the years that led to me soaping. :)
Wow your soap is BEAUTIFUL 🤩🧼💫
 
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Very pretty white soaps! Thanks for sharing about the 28% lye concentration. I'll have to try that next time I make a 100% CO soap, since those usually trace in a few seconds for me.

I'm with you on nixing the Pringles can. A simple PVC (or ABS) pipe, with a tester cap for the end, works just fine for me, and was available from the local hardware store for less than the cost of buying a cylinder mold online anywhere. The soaps gel with no additional heat needed, and slide right out of the unlined pipe with (usually) nothing more than a good tap on a hard surface. Occasionally I do us the freezer trick if they seem to be sticking.
 

lalam

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Thanks All for your lovely comments!! ❤

@AliOop I hope the 28% works out for you! I'm really attached to the idea of a circle loaf, so thank you for the PVC pipe recommendation!

6 - 12 month wait! Oh wow. Patience is a virtue!

There's that great saying, "The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is today." So in my world it's, "The best time to make soap is 12 weeks ago. The second best time is today." 😄
 

Zany_in_CO

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I'm really attached to the idea of a circle loaf, so thank you for the PVC pipe recommendation!
TIP: Don't fill all the way to the top. Leave a little head room and it will release easier. Here's how Amanda from Lovin' Soap Studio does it:



Some folks appreciate a Pringles can mold, but I am not one of them and I will never go through the hassle of trying to line one again lol.
TIP: No liner needed! YAY Although I do like to lightly grease the inside with mineral oil or J & J Baby Oil for more slip on the release. Optional.
 
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From my experience, I've found there's no need to wait 6-12 months for full cure if making it as a stain remover for laundry. 4 weeks should be sufficient. Others may disagree.
I totally agree, @Zany_in_CO - no need to wait for curing when making it for laundry soap. I also don't line my PVC pipe molds, although I've heard others say that their soaps stick horribly if they don't. There is another good YT video on how to line it with a cutting mat from the Dollar Store - costs only $1, can be cut to fit your mold, and it reusable after a quick wipe down.
 
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@lalam
That's a terrific family convention of bright white soaps!
Pringels cans (or any disposable makeshift moulds like milk cartons) have some appeal to me, since in case they don't want to release, I can get aggressive and tear them apart, even in the very likely case of a very uncooperative soap recipe (Seriously. Who does design all these terrible recipes to tear my hair out???).
That isn't so easily possible with PVC pipes et al.
On the downside, the surfaces aren't coated with soap in mind, so it might stick a bit more than to traditional linings (with silicone as the undoubted king).

What quality of CO did you use? Was it nearly colourless, or noticeably yellowish when molten? I have made pure CO soap some 1½ years ago, and it was initially about as bright as yours, but caught some unsightly tan colour over time.

The other half stayed in the bowl and was meant to be stick blended until medium trace so that I could add .5 lbs of table salt. ...medium trace did not come.
Very pretty white soaps! Thanks for sharing about the 28% lye concentration. I'll have to try that next time I make a 100% CO soap, since those usually trace in a few seconds for me.
For me, CO has well been the one oil with the greatest bandwidth of reaction speed. The organic cold-pressed CO that I'm using in the kitchen right now, is surprisingly slow-moving. I've used it for the February challenge, and it hasn't reached even light trace one hour after combining the batter (25% lye concentration, but fair enough, I added the salt too early 😞). On the other end of the spectrum, my cosmetic-grade 92°F (hydrogenated) CO is really fast-moving, and thickens up within minutes even without stick-blending.
 
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