Question about HP

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samirish

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I have made ungelled cp soap for last 3 years and was considering trying to gel my soap. However I really like making my soap with decorative tops, peaks, valleys and embeds. Is this possible when forcing gel? I read I could stick my soap in a 170 degree oven, Ive also read all I really need to do is put the mold on a heating pad. Would forcing gel ruin my fancy tops? Here is a pic of the kind of soaps I make.
Thank you!

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snappyllama

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Bumping since this is a great question about CPOP. I've only rarely used that method to force gel. Normally I just prevent gel since I like the feel of ungelled soap, but sometimes I want my colors to have more oomph.

Does CPOP mess up piping? The soaps I most want to CPOP are all cupcakes... Related question: How do M&P embeds do in the oven?
 

Arimara

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Nice soaps. I wish I could provide an answer but I don't really CPOP and I use individual molds mostly.
 

Seawolfe

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I don't CPOP, because my oven seems to run too hot. For me it does tend to mute the tops. I gel using a heating pad and insulation, and that doesn't loose me my fluffy tops. But I bet it would make M&P squishy - I wouldn't dare try to CPOP with M&P embeds.
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Cpop and hp would make it harder/impossible to do these tops, but as the others have said, you can get full gel without either of them. It will take some trial and error, but you'll find the right combination of additional heat and recipe/process
 

cmzaha

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I put my molds in a low plastic storage container cover with a lid and blanket and set it on a heat pad that is covered with a towel. This will force gel nicely but you have to check periodically for overheating. I would Not gel a soap with mp embeds.
 

IrishLass

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Right here, silly!
I read I could stick my soap in a 170 degree oven, Ive also read all I really need to do is put the mold on a heating pad. Would forcing gel ruin my fancy tops? Here is a pic of the kind of soaps I make.
Thank you!
Beautiful soaps! :)

Speaking as one who likes to gel all my soaps, I can say unequivocally that you definitely don't need to stick your soap in a 170 degree oven to ensure full gel. Based on my own experience, that high of a heat is totally unnecessary, unless of course you are cooking your soap, as with HP. When I HP, I always set my oven to between 170-180F.

With CPOP, however, I'm not cooking the soap, i.e., my goal is not to force gel, but to gently coax the batter to gel (there's a difference), by providing just enough gentle heat to get the ball rolling.

I'm not sure what % of lye solution you use with your batches, but generally, 'full-water' batches gel more easily than batches made with a water discount. I myself use a water discount with just about all of my batches (33% lye solution), which means that my soaps need a little extra help to fully gel, which I achieve thusly:

1) I soap between 110F and 120F
2) I pour into wood molds with a wood cover, which I insulate by covering over with a few cotton diapers.
3) I place my soap in a preheated 110F oven, which I turn off as soon as the soap is placed inside (my oven has a digital read-out that keeps track of the temp is as it's heating up. As soon as it reaches 110F, I turn it off. For what it's worth, it takes about 3 minutes for my oven to reach 110F from the time I turn it on).
4) Once my soap is in the oven, I leave it in there to sit undisturbed overnight (I soap right before I go to bed), and then I unmold some time the next day- usually about 18 hours after pour. Nine times out of ten, I get full gel (there's always that occasional 1-percenter that falls about 1/8" - 1/4" short of full gel).

RE: MP embeds: For what it's worth, I have never had a problem CPOPing with MP embeds. Mine have all come out perfectly fine without melting.

I don't make a lot of textured tops, but when I do, they stay perfectly intact through CPOP/gel just as long as I texture when the soap is at thick trace.


IrishLass :)
 

samirish

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Thanks so much Irishlass, I will try your technique :)
I am using wooden molds, do you use a silicone liner with these to do your method or just line with freezer paper?

Thanks
Samirish
 
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dillsandwitch

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I cpop most of my soaps. I have done both high fancy tops and piped tops and they have never sunk or disformed. My ovens lowest is 75 degrees c and i just turn it off once the soaps are in.
 
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