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One month old castile soap causes dry skin. Why???

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FoxySoap

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I have a castile soap batch made from 100% olive pomace oil and after one month it is quite hard already so I think it should be fine to be used. I gave one bar to my friend, she has really sensitive skin. She gave me good feedback of my soap after she used it for shower. However, when she tried it on facial wash it made her skin so dry after use. I don't understand why :sad: Has anyone experienced this before? Please tell me the reason :-(
My soap is 5% lye discount and pH is 7.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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As Coffeetime said, a Castile should not be used after 1 month. As it is morning here, I am not (too) tired :D so my thoughts on the long cure are:

Curing alters the structure of a soap. Castiles have none of the usual oils that produce bubbles - in fact, if you look at the soap calc numbers, a Castile should be a pretty rubbish bar of soap. With a short cure, it usually is pretty rubbish, but after 6 months or a year, they become awesome bars.

As we know, curing soap helps it to improve generally and in the case of a Castile it needs a pretty long cure to improve it enough to make up for the lack of other properties from the other oils.

Coffeetime also said that the pH isn't 7 and I have to agree - how can your lye based soap be pH 7?
 

FoxySoap

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I tested the pH by one of the pH strips. The color match the color of number 7 so I think its 7. Whats wrong with pH 7 and how it should be?
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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pH 7 is neutral. CP & HP soap will always be a little bit alkaline. We take a little bit of a strong alkaline (the lye solution) and add it to a large amount of weak acid (the fats) and the result is slightly alkaline still, due to the huge differences in strength of the two. If we were to add enough acid to neutralise the alkaline, we would have far too much oil and would never get trace.

pH testing is a tricky subject - I will never do it because I don't believe that it is worth one moment of consideration - but to accurately test requires a fair amount of work. Just sticking a strip on a wet bar of soap will not give a reading that can be compared with, for example, the reading that Dove quote.
 

seven

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how can it still be soap with a ph of 7? i'm curious as to how this is possible.
 

IrishLass

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Coffeetime and the Efficacious Gentleman are correct. Lye-based soap, by it's very definition is an 'alkaline salt of a fatty acid'. If your soap is testing out at a pH of 7 (neutral), then either you were testing something other than soap, or your strips are not accurate. I vote that the problem lies with the strips, which is actually not uncommon in the least. If you really want to be accurate, a pH meter is the best way to go.

If you want to go the pH strip route, here is an excellent article that explains how/why pH strips have the bad reputation that they do of being so inaccurate when it comes to testing soap. The article also goes on to recommend the best kind of strips to buy for testing soap- plastic lab quality strips whose readings tend to be the closest to the readings of a pH meter.:

http://www.millersoap.com/phtome.html


HTH!
IrishLass :)
 

Obsidian

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I'll go even further and say that castile is at its best when cured for a year. Yes, thats a incredibly long time but its well known that castile needs 6-12 months cure. Sure its safe to use much sooner but its not at its best. Also keep in mind that some people simply can't use castile. I too have sensitive skin and can't use castile, even if its been aged for a year or more, it dries me out way too much.
 

Seawolfe

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If the pH were 7 then it would not be soap. It wouldn't lather, or cleanse. It would just be a goopy gloppy mess of something that isn't soap.
 

shunt2011

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I agree with the above comments. Soap can not be ph of 7. 8.5-10.5 are usually the norm for soap. Also, I don't think castile is ready until it's a year old. I still don't care for it much but it's certainly better after a long cure. Your friend may just have really sensitive skin on her face and may not be able to use it.
 

IrishLass

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I just wanted to add that my soap feels great on my entire body....except for my face. I have trouble using any kind of soap on my face, whether it's the mildest of my own well-cured batches, or commercial syndets or even Phisoderm. Seriously, the only thing I wash my face with anymore is plain old water and a terry facial cloth. I've been doing the water-only thing on my face for a little over 20 years now and the skin on my face is very happy indeed.


IrishLass :)
 

FoxySoap

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Thank you guys. I thought castile soaps are best for sensitive skins...
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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I make mine for people with allergies - it's literally OO, water and lye so it is great for that. Of course, skin prone to drying and so on is then a different beast altogether
 

Obsidian

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Thank you guys. I thought castile soaps are best for sensitive skins...
Many times it is but there is always people who can't use certain things. Also keep in mind the sensitive skin and easily dried skin aren't necessarily the same thing.
My facial skin dries out if I use too much hot water but its not especially sensitive to things like fragrance or other chemicals.
 

Nevada

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Made a "Castile" last Sept using Coconut Milk as liquid. Hard bar, lather is mostly creamy with fewer smaller bubbles, great on the skin. Used soap calc as 92% Olive Oil, 8% Coconut Oil (provided by Coconut Milk).
 

dixiedragon

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I think even if it weren't a castile bar, your friend might find it drying at only 4 weeks of cure. There is a big change between 4 weeks and 6 weeks. I personally like to wait 8 weeks before giving soap away.

Does your friend have sensitive skin, dry skin, or both?
 

FoxySoap

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My friend has sensitive skin. She cannot use any commercial soaps so she uses water for shower. Her hand skin was so dry and skin kept peeling off. Since she started using my soaps she hasnt had any problem with skin. I meant her body skin. But when she used my soap for facial wash she had the problem I mentioned above. My soap was 5-6 week old. I guess her facial skin doesnt like castile soaps.
 

Obsidian

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A 100% lard soap might be better for her. It will be really mild and is fully cured in 6-8 weeks.
 

GrantLee63

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I can attest to 100% lard bars being extraordinarily mild ... they are a favorite of mine.
 

jenneelk

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Yep... good old lard makes amazing soap but smells yuk. lol
I like my 50% personally with some EO to help mask the smell.

Although.. with a proper cure time for that Castile you have, it might be ok. I wouldn't throw the idea of it not being ok on the face, out the window yet. I have one that's about 8 months old and I just started using it last month and while I don't have sensitive skin, a lot of soap 'bother me' so to speak, and Castile I don't recall ever being a facial issue. Didn't give me that sticky feel.. no dry pulling, or anything.
 

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