Olive oil soap - first attempt

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Viarizi

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Hi there guys and gals,

Just joined the forum because we have a ton of olive oil to use in soap making and I just tried for my first time but things didn't go exactly how I expected.

We were trying to make soap for clothes washing and used:

Olive Oil - 8 Liters
Water - 1.5 Liters
Bleach - 0.5 Liters
Fabric Softener - 0.5 Liters
Lye (Caustic Soda, 100% sodium hydroxide) - 1 Kgs
Powder detergent - 0.5 Kgs

Mixed hot water with the lye and then poured everything and stirred for 50 minutes with a paint mixer and got a faint trace with a consistency and appearance like crème brûlée so we put it on molds, after 6 hours it is still with same consistency the only thing different now is that the mix is cooler.

What did do wrong?
 

lenarenee

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Welcome Viarizi

I sure would like to know where that recipe came from. I've never seen anything like. it

I can't help you troubleshoot except to say that lye should be dissolved in cool water, not hot. It creates it's own heat as it dissolves.

Did you use a lye calculator for this? (not that there's any entry to bleach)
 
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Scooter

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If you do not mind me asking, why did you put bleach, fabric softener, and powder detergent in your soap recipe? I have never seen that before. I believe that standard bleach is basic so it probably did not do much except make the recipe very dilute (it is contributing liquid after all) and I would expect the same with the fabric softener if it is pH neutral.

By the way, be VERY careful. It appears you did not do this but never mix an acid with bleach...

2 HCl + NaClO --> H2O + NaCl + Cl2

It produces chlorine gas, which in high concentrations can kill you.

Any time you mix chemicals together try to figure out all the possible reactions, write them down, and take note of the consequences.
 

Kamahido

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Olive Oil does not make very good laundry soap as it does not contribute to cleansing. Most people use a 100% Coconut Oil recipe with a 0% superfat. It is also worth pointing out that you should never measure your oils by volume, only by weight. What is your recipe's superfat?
 

Steve85569

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My laundry soap is either 100% coconut or a 50:50 blend of coconut and lard. Either way I calculate to a MINUS 3 superfat.

As stated above olive oil will not make a very good laundry soap.
That said,
It *looks like* the amount of lye is correct for laundry soap- or at least a low amount of oil left over.
Also *appears* that the amount of water is approximately correct for a 40% lye concentration.
Since I do not know what the ph of the fabric softener or commercial detergent was I can't say what the reaction was with those materials.
Mixing the chlorine bleach in to the batter did react with some of the lye. How much would depend on how pure the bleach was. The more chlorine there was the less lye there would be left to make soap out of the olive oil.

If you must use olive oil to make detergent I would NOT use anything but olive oil mixing the water and lye together and then mixing that into the olive oil. If you weigh the materials to be used you will have much, much better results.

A word of caution:
When making soap wear protective gear and only use materials that are known to make soap safely.
 

Viarizi

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Hi there again.

Thanks for your feedback.

Gonna try to answer all questions.

The recipe was given to me in a Olive oil fair, the only thing I did diferent was adding the fabric softenner as the recipe stated that we could add powder soap and bleach to use for clothes washing.

When searching YouTube I found a lot of Brazilian people using similar recipes but they use used frying oil and dont use the Bleach of fabric softenner and they all heated the water so I did the same.

I did not use any other fat or super fat except for the Olive oil itself.

I mixed the Bleach and powder soap after adding the Olive oil to the mix and didnt watch any visible reaction or even vapors, anyways we did this in well ventilated place.

I have some pics, can I post them?

My laundry soap is either 100% coconut or a 50:50 blend of coconut and lard. Either way I calculate to a MINUS 3 superfat.

As stated above olive oil will not make a very good laundry soap.
That said,
It *looks like* the amount of lye is correct for laundry soap- or at least a low amount of oil left over.
Also *appears* that the amount of water is approximately correct for a 40% lye concentration.
Since I do not know what the ph of the fabric softener or commercial detergent was I can't say what the reaction was with those materials.
Mixing the chlorine bleach in to the batter did react with some of the lye. How much would depend on how pure the bleach was. The more chlorine there was the less lye there would be left to make soap out of the olive oil.

If you must use olive oil to make detergent I would NOT use anything but olive oil mixing the water and lye together and then mixing that into the olive oil. If you weigh the materials to be used you will have much, much better results.

A word of caution:
When making soap wear protective gear and only use materials that are known to make soap safely.
Thanks for your post.

I first diluted the lye with the water outside, then added the Olive oil mixed for a while and then added the powder soap and bleach.

We used as protective gear, gloves, lab coats and glasses and mixed the lye with the water first and outside making sure not to bread in the vapors and with a doctor present (mom's a doctor).

Could I try this recipe again just with Olive oil, water and lye?
 

earlene

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Hi there again.

Thanks for your feedback.

Gonna try to answer all questions.

The recipe was given to me in a Olive oil fair, the only thing I did diferent was adding the fabric softenner as the recipe stated that we could add powder soap and bleach to use for clothes washing.

When searching YouTube I found a lot of Brazilian people using similar recipes but they use used frying oil and dont use the Bleach of fabric softenner and they all heated the water so I did the same.

I did not use any other fat or super fat except for the Olive oil itself.

I mixed the Bleach and powder soap after adding the Olive oil to the mix and didnt watch any visible reaction or even vapors, anyways we did this in well ventilated place.

I have some pics, can I post them?
So the bleach added to the soap was not actually part of the original recipe you received? Same for the fabric softener? At least that's what I am concluding from what you said. I could be misunderstanding. If it was part of the original recipe, I just don't quite understand the rationale for adding bleach in a soap recipe.

Adding bleach when you do the laundry is one thing, but including it in a soap recipe seems really really strange to me.

For one thing, unless you are planning to use this only for whites, is it even useful for colored fabrics?

What I read from your reply above the recipe says you can add powder and bleach for laundry, but in my mind, that would mean to the washing machine, not to the actual soap when you make the soap. Maybe I am interpreting it differently than intended, however.

So you tried making solid bar soap, is that right? How long has it been sitting in the mold and is it still soft or liquid?

Yes, I'd really like to see pictures!
 

Arimara

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Thanks for your post.

I first diluted the lye with the water outside, then added the Olive oil mixed for a while and then added the powder soap and bleach.

We used as protective gear, gloves, lab coats and glasses and mixed the lye with the water first and outside making sure not to bread in the vapors and with a doctor present (mom's a doctor).

Could I try this recipe again just with Olive oil, water and lye?
By all means, please do but if you can, try to get some coconut oil and/or lard for your laundry soap. Olive oil doesn't clean clothes worth a darn. You're going to want a much more cleansing oil for laundry soap. If you're allergic, I'm sorry.
 

Viarizi

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So the bleach added to the soap was not actually part of the original recipe you received? Same for the fabric softener? At least that's what I am concluding from what you said. I could be misunderstanding. If it was part of the original recipe, I just don't quite understand the rationale for adding bleach in a soap recipe.

Adding bleach when you do the laundry is one thing, but including it in a soap recipe seems really really strange to me.

For one thing, unless you are planning to use this only for whites, is it even useful for colored fabrics?

What I read from your reply above the recipe says you can add powder and bleach for laundry, but in my mind, that would mean to the washing machine, not to the actual soap when you make the soap. Maybe I am interpreting it differently than intended, however.

So you tried making solid bar soap, is that right? How long has it been sitting in the mold and is it still soft or liquid?

Yes, I'd really like to see pictures!
Only the fabric softenner was not in original recipe, it is hard to translate but it says something like that in the past clothes were put under the sun to bleach and by adding soap and bleach to the mix that was not necessary.

The amount of soap and bleach was very minute comparing to the rest of the mix, you can smell the soap but the bleach smell disapeared as soon I put it in so I dont think it will stain cothes...

I am starting to think that the reason the soap is not hardening is because of the fabric softenner. I was trying to make solid soap but it is sitting in the mold for 10 hours now and it is not solid yet. It is like melted cheese. Like shampoo but harder.

I am trying to put pics online.

By all means, please do but if you can, try to get some coconut oil and/or lard for your laundry soap. Olive oil doesn't clean clothes worth a darn. You're going to want a much more cleansing oil for laundry soap. If you're allergic, I'm sorry.
I was trying to make laundry soap because I thought it was easier. We are not allergic to lard or coconut we just have a lot of Olive oil. You saying we can use this recipe for handsoap without the lard or coconut?
 

Arimara

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I was trying to make laundry soap because I thought it was easier. We are not allergic to lard or coconut we just have a lot of Olive oil. You saying we can use this recipe for handsoap without the lard or coconut?
To be honest, if this was a soap you made for your hands, the olive oils soap would be fine without the lard or coconut oil. However, since you want to make a soap to wash clothes with, I'm saying that you would make a much better laundry soap with at least coconut oil. Lard alone would also be better than olive oil when used to make laundry soap but coconut oil is still better than lard for the same purpose.

Side note- It's amazing that I can almost read what those products say and I don't speak much Spanish and I have very little exposure to Portuguese.
 
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mx6inpenn

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Since its only been in the mold 10 hours, I wouldn't worry about it not setting yet. Using all liquid oil makes for a longer time in the mold. It should set up with time.

I do have to say I agree with all the others that this won't be a great soap for laundry tho. 100% olive oil soaps are very gentle soap with little stripping effect. Oils from our skin get into the fibers of clothes, dirt sticks to oils. No stripping of oils means a lot of the dirt stays there with it.
 

BrewerGeorge

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...
What I read from your reply above the recipe says you can add powder and bleach for laundry, but in my mind, that would mean to the washing machine, not to the actual soap when you make the soap. Maybe I am interpreting it differently than intended, however.
...
Definitely agree.


After looking at your pictures, when you say "bleach" are you talking about a powder? If so, do you know whether it's chlorine based or peroxide based? In the US, when we say bleach we mean liquid solution of sodium hypochlorite.

If it were me, I'd make balanced soap with only water, oil and lye. Then put the additives into the soap once it's dried, cured and ground into powder.
 

BattleGnome

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I don't have anything to add about the recipe but I will note that it usually takes me at least three days (72 hours) before I unmold my soaps for any recipe. A high olive oil soap takes longer to harden to begin with, I don't think you should be worrying about unmolding yet. If it takes longer than 5-7 days before it hardens enough to unmold then I'd start worrying about hardness.

Like everyone else's concerns, I'm not sure what adding bleach or fabric softener will do to the soap. I am very curious to what this experiment will teach us.
 

Viarizi

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It worked

Soap is hard, it took 72 hours and is ready for cuting, going to leave the rest hardening for a little whileI more.

On related news, I just used it on my pants to clean a stain (Olive oil, no less) and it worked perfectly! When using it with water it smell a bit like bleach but didnt stain the pants.

IMG_20170130_104252.jpg
 
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earlene

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Speaking of using OO for laundry, you might find this link interesting. It appears that using OO for laundry is not uncommon. I use bar soap of unknown oils to do hand laundry all the time when I am traveling. It all works just fine. Some are harsher than others (harder on colors, more stripping of colors), but so far I haven't found any plain white bar soap I don't like for use when I have to do hand laundry in a hotel sink.

I am not quite sure why some people say OO is no good for laundry because it's not cleansing enough. I disagree. Castile soap gets me clean even if it only has a cleansing number of 0, so why won't it get my undies clean? It does get them clean and it does remove stains.

Maybe it's about underarm odors? I don't know. I haven't delved into it. Currently I do use CO when I make laundry soap, but I have used various other soaps in the past and they all got my clothes clean.
 

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