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Question about Water/Lye ratios

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Misschief

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I was browsing soap recipes on Pinterest and came across a German soapmaker whose soaps look wonderful. One of her recipes in particular has me fascinated and I'm trying to understand what she's doing.

From her website:

34 % Kokosöl,
33 % Reiskeimöl
33 % Shea Butter
Wasser : NaOH = 1:1
Thussa Seide, Kokosnussmilch
8% überfettet
PÖ Rosehip Jasmine (BB)

Translation:
34% Coconut oil
33% Rice Bran oil
33% Shea Butter
Water:Lye = 1:1
Tussah Silk
Coconut milk
8% superfat
Rosehip Jasmine FO

My question is regarding the 1:1 ratio and trying to understand why that ratio. Am I correct in assuming that she's using that ratio for incorporating the lye and then using coconut milk as the remainder?

I woke up a couple of times throughout last night and that was the question on my mind each time. If I don't ask, I won't know, right?
 

Obsidian

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Yes, I would think she is making up the remainder of her liquid with the coconut milk. This is the same thing I do when I use milks or beer,
 

kchaystack

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It is not obvious from what you posted if she was using the milk as the liquid, or if she was adding the milk in with her oils and using a 50% lye solution (which is the strongest you can make fyi). But that is what I am guessing. Many people on this forum use this 'split method'. It keeps the milk from scorching. She might even be using powdered milk and adding enough powder to make a full milk recipe.
 

Misschief

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It is not obvious from what you posted if she was using the milk as the liquid, or if she was adding the milk in with her oils and using a 50% lye solution (which is the strongest you can make fyi). But that is what I am guessing.
That's the reason I'm asking. In none of her recipes does she explain... at least from what I could find. My German is only rudimentary; that's why I thought I'd ask.
 

cmzaha

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I would guess she is making a 50/50 lye solution and using the coconut milk for the remainder of her liquid. I can pretty much guarantee she is not soaping with a 50/50 lye solution. You can either add in the extra liquid to your oils or wait until you mix the lye in lightly then add in the extra water/milk/puree etc
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Post a link and I'll have a look. My ability to read German is known for being rather rudimentary, but if I can't work it out then I'll get The Admirable Lady to look it over.
 

DeeAnna

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I don't read German, but here's what Google Translate says with my additions in brackets [ ].

In this soap [I have] stuck [more] goodies from sheep. Lanolin, sheep's milk yogurt, and wool from mountain sheep.

The [lye] ... I have 1:1 mixed with water... [and in that lye solution I have then] dissolved in the wool.
The amount of ... [water is] supplemented by the yogurt.
[Since she doesn't say how much yogurt she used, you're on your own there for how much to add. I'd say it's pretty clear she did add the yogurt in addition to the water in the 50% lye solution.]

Perfumed it is [with] the last remaining one of my favorite scents, PoE Milk of Grace Fruit, which is no longer available, unfortunately....

"The Golden Sheep"

35% babassu
25% almond oil
20% olive oil,
10% cocoa butter
5% lanolin
5% castor oil

Water: NaOH = 1: 1
Sheep's milk yogurt

Superfatted 8%

Berschafwolle [sheep's wool] naturally dissolved in lye

PÖ Milk (GF) [this is the Grace Fruit fragrance she mentions above]

ETA: I'm not sure where you're getting the idea that this recipe calls for coconut milk, unless you're mistaking the FO name to be coconut milk and not a fragrance? It's pretty clear her theme for the soap is to celebrate all things sheep-y -- lanolin, wool, and sheep yogurt.
 
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spenny92

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I don't read German, but here's what Google Translate says with my additions in brackets [ ].

In this soap [I have] stuck [more] goodies from sheep. Lanolin, sheep's milk yogurt, and wool from mountain sheep.

The [lye] ... I have 1:1 mixed with water... [and in that lye solution I have then] dissolved in the wool.
The amount of ... [water is] supplemented by the yogurt.
[Since she doesn't say how much yogurt she used, you're on your own there for how much to add. I'd say it's pretty clear she did add the yogurt in addition to the water in the 50% lye solution.]

Perfumed it is [with] the last remaining one of my favorite scents, PoE Milk of Grace Fruit, which is no longer available, unfortunately....

"The Golden Sheep"

35% babassu
25% almond oil
20% olive oil,
10% cocoa butter
5% lanolin
5% castor oil

Water: NaOH = 1: 1
Sheep's milk yogurt

Superfatted 8%

Berschafwolle [sheep's wool] naturally dissolved in lye

PÖ Milk (GF) [this is the Grace Fruit fragrance she mentions above]

ETA: I'm not sure where you're getting the idea that this recipe calls for coconut milk, unless you're mistaking the FO name to be coconut milk and not a fragrance? It's pretty clear her theme for the soap is to celebrate all things sheep-y -- lanolin, wool, and sheep yogurt.
I think it's actually this recipe that the OP is referring to: http://bbeessoapsite.blogspot.ca/2015/09/silk-milk.html?m=1
 

Misschief

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It doesn't really matter which of her recipes you look at; most of them have the lye water ratio at 1:1. That's what puzzled me; that's what my original question was about. Obviously, if you're making soap at a 1:1 lye/water ratio, it will be a lye heavy soap; I'm relatively new at making soap and even I know that. My real question is along the lines of, "is she adding other liquid(s) to the mix to bring the moisture level up/lye level down?"
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Why would it be lye heavy? Your amount of lye doesn't change, just the amount of water that it is dissolved in to.

If I have a 1,000g batch that needs 150g of lye, I can use 300g of liquid (1:2) or 450g (1:3) or, if I was feeling crazy, 150g of liquid (1:1). My lye amount doesn't change when I change my water amount.

A 1:1/50% solution might be very tricky to work with, but that is another matter.
 

DeeAnna

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"...if you're making soap at a 1:1 lye/water ratio, it will be a lye heavy soap..."

No, it really won't be lye heavy. The Gent's explanation says it all.
 

kchaystack

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It doesn't really matter which of her recipes you look at; most of them have the lye water ratio at 1:1. That's what puzzled me; that's what my original question was about. Obviously, if you're making soap at a 1:1 lye/water ratio, it will be a lye heavy soap; I'm relatively new at making soap and even I know that. My real question is along the lines of, "is she adding other liquid(s) to the mix to bring the moisture level up/lye level down?"
No, a 1:1 ratio will not make lye heavy soap, unless she is using more lye than the oils call for. the 1:1 just refers to equal parts lye and water.

More liquid does not change the amount of lye in the soap. that is fixed. it does change the concentration of the solution.

If you have 100g of lye and mix it with 100g of water that is a 1:1 or 50% solution.
If you have 100g of lye and mix it with 200g of water that is a 1:2 or a 33% solution.

There is no less lye because you added more water.
 

Misschief

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I have learned something today; I'm glad I asked. Some experimentation (my husband will be SO thrilled... and yes, that was sarcasm) may be in order.
 

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