QuasiQuadrant's Stellar Method for EO Blends That Stick

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Zany_in_CO

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I'm posting this here for those members who may have missed it. @QuasiQuadrant developed this method of sticking EO blends. Read what she has to say about it here:

I have also started masterbatching my essential oils & fixatives for the most common sizes of batches I make, storing them in sealed glass jars with my clays AND the addition of castor oil as @Zany_in_CO had suggested, which has led to my soap scents lasting for a very long time. The longer they sit & marinate like this, the better. They also develop a lot of depth which I don't find in many scented soaps, if at all.

And here:
https://www.soapmakingforum.com/thr...cold-process-recipes.90843/page-5#post-978737
@QuasiQuadrant: Instead of regular castor oil, you use Turkey Red (Sulfated) Castor Oil, correct?
 
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I'm posting this here for those members who may have missed it. @QuasiQuadrant developed this method of sticking EO blends. Read what she has to say about it here:



And here:
https://www.soapmakingforum.com/thr...cold-process-recipes.90843/page-5#post-978737
@QuasiQuadrant: Instead of regular castor oil, you use Turkey Red (Sulfated) Castor Oil, correct?

Hadn't thought of making this a post by itself, so thank you....again 😁 Actually, it was something @Zany_in_CO had kindly shared - using castor oil to help essential oil based scents last longer in soap - which I then put together with what I was already doing, which has been giving me astounding results. 2 good things came together & created a whole new way of doing things 😊

Nope :) I use the turkey red 🦃 for bath bombs as a non-toxic alternative to polysorbate 80. Works beautifully!

I use regular castor oil for my essential oil / botanical blends / scent fixative in soap. Works like a hot **** 🔥 I have several jars marinating right now for this weekend's soap batches. The last 32 pounds this week nearly did me in 😅 so my essential oil blends are all sitting there waiting for me in their glass jars, doing their thing. Word of warning: USE GLASS ONLY for this purpose - a canning jar, an old honey jar, whatever you have, or find out what essential oils can do to plastic...it's not pretty! It will also be a total waste of essential oils if you use plastic as they will be unusable. Seal that puppy up tight & give it a shake every now & then until you're ready to use the slurry. If there are clays in there, yes, it WILL be thick & milky looking. That's normal. Your botanicals will also soak up some of the castor oil & essential oils. Wide mouth jars are recommended, making it easier to get a spatula in there to scrape everything out.

The awesome thing is, the castor oil softens the botanicals to the point that I am no longer experiencing any drag marks when I cut, despite the fact that I use a lot of botanicals. Beautiful, smooth soap, even with little specs of leaves, spices, roots & flowers in there. I do grind them & sieve them, but there were always chunks of stuff in there which show up as specs & which would still cause drag marks. Not any more :)

I have never tried turkey red in soap as I don't know what it being sulfated might result in when the lye hits it....and idea??
 
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Essential oil slurry example:
  • based on a 2kg batch of soap, with oil weight totalling 1360 grams (this is based on my own recipe)
  • I now use approximately a 3 - 3.5% essential oil load with the slurry (whereas before I was sometimes using up to 4.5% dependent on safety levels of each essential oil, of course)
  • so 1360 total oil weight x 3% = the total amount of essential oils for that batch (using whatever proportions of your essential oils you've worked out in the blend that you like)
  • get your essential oils into a GLASS jar - NEVER plastic as the oils will dissolve / melt your plastic
  • add to that 1 TBSP castor oil
  • add 1 - 2 TBSP botanicals you are using (optional, but I find this helps retain even more of the scent)
  • add up to 4 TBSP clay (you can use less, 2-3 TBSP, depending on your water ratio & the types of oils / butters you are using); I always use kaolin for this base for the entire batch because it's cheaper to buy / kilo
  • I later add any other clays I might be using as colorants to the portions of my soap batter which I have split into individual containers, which also helps with scent retention
  • cap it off tightly, give it a very good shaking, then allow to sit overnight at least - ideally longer if you want a really good result. and especially if you're using botanicals, ground leaves, herbs, spices, flowers etc as the castor oil helps soften the botanicals so you don't get drag marks when cutting your soap
  • this WILL look milky & thick when using clay & castor oil together, which is normal - don't freak out as it will mix beautifully into your soap batter; give another good shake before dumping into your batter
  • PRO TIP #1😂 (as if o_O ): the more clay you use in your essential oil slurry, the quicker your batter will thicken up; if you don't care, proceed as usual - if you want a more fluid batter, you can either increase your water ratio OR adjust your recipe >> I am discovering that staying at my usual 2:4 ratio is a very good idea, as well as blending only til emulsion, even when I'm using extra virgin olive oil, because it gives me far more time to work on my design, which I learned quickly 😲 with my most recent 32 pounds of soap
  • TIP #2: use a wide mouth jar for slurry making so that you can easily get a spatula in there to scrape out the thick, milky slurry; you can also put some of your melted oils in there, shake, then dump back into your oils
 
Hadn't thought of making this a post by itself, so thank you....again 😁
My pleasure. 😁
Nope :) I use the turkey red 🦃 for bath bombs as a non-toxic alternative to polysorbate 80. Works beautifully!
Thanks for clarifying that! I'm happy you found an acceptable alternative.
I have never tried turkey red in soap as I don't know what it being sulfated might result in when the lye hits it....and idea??
I have an idea but it's been ages since I first researched TRO. I need to read through my files to see what I can find.

Keeping in mind that it is, among other things, a solubizer it is unlike regular castor oil in that sense and not conducive to sub one for the other.

That's one of the reasons I was curious about whether or not the "castor" in your slurry/EO blend was TRO (sulfated castor) or not. My zany mind dances at the thought, "what if"... :nodding:
 
My pleasure. 😁

Thanks for clarifying that! I'm happy you found an acceptable alternative.

It's beautiful stuff used as a solubilizer :) I remembered it from using it many years ago, and it has always worked for me.

I have an idea but it's been ages since I first researched TRO. I need to read through my files to see what I can find.
I would very much like to hear about what you were researching in regards to turkey red. I have not yet found any info regarding toxicity or any associated dangers. If I do, I will look into it more & may just stop making bath bombs altogether until another viable alternative comes up.

Keeping in mind that it is, among other things, a solubizer it is unlike regular castor oil in that sense and not conducive to sub one for the other.

That's one of the reasons I was curious about whether or not the "castor" in your slurry/EO blend was TRO (sulfated castor) or not. My zany mind dances at the thought, "what if"... :nodding:

Yes, which is exactly why I haven't yet tried it, thinking of what might happen to the oils & water / lye mixture. What will the lye do? What will the mixture of sulfated castor oil to the mixture of waters & oils when it begins solubilizing the mixture?

I was initially thinking it could be a total disaster, but it also could turn out to be a very beautiful thing :) It's worth an experiment on a small scale, I do believe 😁
 
I would very much like to hear about what you were researching in regards to turkey red. I have not yet found any info regarding toxicity or any associated dangers. If I do, I will look into it more & may just stop making bath bombs altogether until another viable alternative comes up.
Have you tried a bit of liquid soap instead? A fair number of bath bomb makers use liquid soap instead of PS80 or turkey red. Most use syndet dish soaps, but some swear that their KOH-based LS solubilizes well enough to disperse EOs, oils, colorants, etc.
 
Have you tried a bit of liquid soap instead? A fair number of bath bomb makers use liquid soap instead of PS80 or turkey red. Most use syndet dish soaps, but some swear that their KOH-based LS solubilizes well enough to disperse EOs, oils, colorants, etc.

Actually, no I haven't....hadn't even thought of that 😁 I may have to try that next time I make bath bombs with my granddaughter. Maybe castile soap, actually....or maybe a blend of castile liquid soap & turkey red? I can't see myself making liquid soap any time soon with everything else going on, but may one day.

Yet another interesting experiment to try! Thanks for the suggestion 😊
 
Essential oil slurry example:
  • based on a 2kg batch of soap, with oil weight totalling 1360 grams (this is based on my own recipe)
  • I now use approximately a 3 - 3.5% essential oil load with the slurry (whereas before I was sometimes using up to 4.5% dependent on safety levels of each essential oil, of course)
  • so 1360 total oil weight x 3% = the total amount of essential oils for that batch (using whatever proportions of your essential oils you've worked out in the blend that you like)
  • get your essential oils into a GLASS jar - NEVER plastic as the oils will dissolve / melt your plastic
  • add to that 1 TBSP castor oil
  • add 1 - 2 TBSP botanicals you are using (optional, but I find this helps retain even more of the scent)
  • add up to 4 TBSP clay (you can use less, 2-3 TBSP, depending on your water ratio & the types of oils / butters you are using); I always use kaolin for this base for the entire batch because it's cheaper to buy / kilo
  • I later add any other clays I might be using as colorants to the portions of my soap batter which I have split into individual containers, which also helps with scent retention
  • cap it off tightly, give it a very good shaking, then allow to sit overnight at least - ideally longer if you want a really good result. and especially if you're using botanicals, ground leaves, herbs, spices, flowers etc as the castor oil helps soften the botanicals so you don't get drag marks when cutting your soap
  • this WILL look milky & thick when using clay & castor oil together, which is normal - don't freak out as it will mix beautifully into your soap batter; give another good shake before dumping into your batter
  • PRO TIP #1😂 (as if o_O ): the more clay you use in your essential oil slurry, the quicker your batter will thicken up; if you don't care, proceed as usual - if you want a more fluid batter, you can either increase your water ratio OR adjust your recipe >> I am discovering that staying at my usual 2:4 ratio is a very good idea, as well as blending only til emulsion, even when I'm using extra virgin olive oil, because it gives me far more time to work on my design, which I learned quickly 😲 with my most recent 32 pounds of soap
  • TIP #2: use a wide mouth jar for slurry making so that you can easily get a spatula in there to scrape out the thick, milky slurry; you can also put some of your melted oils in there, shake, then dump back into your oils
1) Do you strain the mix before adding it to the batter? 2) Do you put the EO as part of the weight of the total oils or put it down in the EO section of the calculator?

I'm trying to do this with lavender flowers.
 
1) Do you strain the mix before adding it to the batter? 2) Do you put the EO as part of the weight of the total oils or put it down in the EO section of the calculator?

I'm trying to do this with lavender flowers.

Sorry, late response. Have been very busy getting ready for next year's gardening season, buying a lot of equipment in off season in case prices go up again next year. Lord almightyyyy....I am feeling tired 😩 Too much driving, hauling, loading & unloading, which is NOT my idea of exercise 🏋️‍♀️

1) No, absolutely not, no straining. The clay / botanicals suck up a whole lot of the essential oils, which is one of the reasons to be using them in the first place. Trying to strain thick, viscous, muddy-textured clay mixed with castor oil & essential oils would be a gong-show. The entire slurry goes into your soap.

2) No again regarding EOs as part of the total weight of the oils. They are not being saponified, so this is absolutely unnecessary. I simply calculate using either a pen & paper for this or my own digital calculator.

I do weigh my oils based on the usage percentage I choose, as mentioned in the original post.

Your lavender flowers will wind up looking like mouse 💩 - this has got to be my all time favourite, multi-purpose emoji, I tell ya 😁 Just a heads-up regarding lavender flowers.
 
Will this work with Fragrance Oils as well?

Can't see why not.

Is the castor taken from the batch oils or is it considered to be part of the super fat? Thanks to all!

I don't bother calculating this as extra super fat as I normally use only 5% super fat to begin with. A little extra castor oil ain't gonna hurt, as I have found. Your choice. Some people like to be very exact in their super fat measurements.
 
Sorry, late response. Have been very busy getting ready for next year's gardening season, buying a lot of equipment in off season in case prices go up again next year. Lord almightyyyy....I am feeling tired 😩 Too much driving, hauling, loading & unloading, which is NOT my idea of exercise 🏋️‍♀️

1) No, absolutely not, no straining. The clay / botanicals suck up a whole lot of the essential oils, which is one of the reasons to be using them in the first place. Trying to strain thick, viscous, muddy-textured clay mixed with castor oil & essential oils would be a gong-show. The entire slurry goes into your soap.

2) No again regarding EOs as part of the total weight of the oils. They are not being saponified, so this is absolutely unnecessary. I simply calculate using either a pen & paper for this or my own digital calculator.

I do weigh my oils based on the usage percentage I choose, as mentioned in the original post.

Your lavender flowers will wind up looking like mouse 💩 - this has got to be my all time favourite, multi-purpose emoji, I tell ya 😁 Just a heads-up regarding lavender flowers.
Thank you!
 
@QuasiQuadrant and @Zany_in_CO , I have been experimenting with adding my fragrances to kaolin clay as you mention above. I have been adding this to the soap batter. My issue is getting it evenly dispersed without getting the soap batter too thick. The last time I tried it, when I cut my soap, I found pockets of clay in parts of the bars. I have not tried adding castor oil to the slurry. I generally soap at 5% SF and 35%-40% lye, I find that if I use a lower lye percent I usually get a lot of soda ash, so I really don't like the idea of using more water.
1) Should I be adding the slurry to the oils first, before adding the dissolved lye?
2) Will the addition of castor help it disperse a little better?
3) Maybe, it would work better to hand whisk it into the batter before I do any stick blending? For example, pour lye water into oils, hand wisk, pour in fragrance slurry, hand whisk again, then stick blend in bursts until get to trace desired.
Would love your suggestions and thoughts.
 
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