Refined vs Unrefined oils in cp soaps

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winusuren

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Hi seniors..I've been soaping for the past 3 years and started selling this year. So far no complaints from customers and all going good. I'm using olive(pomace), RBD palmolein, coconut (cold pressed), castor(cold pressed), approx 10% of butters(Kokum & Shea) in my recipes. I made a test batch recently in which I increased the palmolein percentage and removed the butters completely. After about 2 months cure, I don't find much difference in the soaps. As butters are expensive, I just have a thought to increase the palm percentage in my regular recipes . Mean while I read few articles saying that using refined oils in soaps are not good for skin. In a interview by an ayurvedic doctor, she said " if I won't eat refined oils( usually we use only cold pressed oils like peanut, coconut and sesame for cooking), then I won't use it on my skin too. Even our skin has little mouths(pores), so why should we use unhealthy stuffs on our skin?" ( I just translated what she said😀). Though I know soaps are a wash off product, I'm afraid that it might lead to skin problems when used in long term.

Please share your suggestions..
 
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Regarding the changes to your recipe, many soapmakers use only small amounts of butters for label appeal to their customers. Depending on your customers, seeing "shea butter" or "unrefined oils" on the label might make a difference to them. But if you don't believe that will be the case, then it makes sense to save money using less expensive ingredients.

I have very sensitive skin, and use almost all refined oils. For some reason, I can get unrefined CO here more cheaply than refined, so that's what I use. My skin is much better using my handcrafted soap, and I notice no difference from refined oils myself. :)
 

TheGecko

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I think your doctor would have a caniption over your soap. Pomace Olive Oil obtained through solvent extraction. RBD Palm Oil is a refined bleached Palm Oil and RBD Palmolein Oil is fractionated RBD Palm Oil.

Cost isn’t everything. I use Olive, Coconut, Palm and Castor Oils and Cocoa and Shea Butters; the butters are 20% of my recipe and they do make a difference (IMHO). And the cost of my oils/butters is reflected in the price of my soap…a 4oz bars sells for $7.00 and I’m making a profit. Of course, I’m making more of a profit today than I was when I started out, but a lot of that has to do with making larger batches (reduced labor costs) and buy ingredients and supplies in larger quantities.

As for refined vs unrefined. It’s soap. It’s a wash on/rinse off product that is going to be on your skin for 10 or 15 minutes. It is not going to be eaten by your skin or eat your skin. It’s sole purpose is to get you clean and if it is a well-made soap, it will do that without stripping your skin of its natural oils.

Now I cook with EVOO, but I won’t make soap with it…partly because because of the discoloration, partly because the ‘benefits’ that make EVOO good for eating are destroyed during the saponification process. And it’s that way with a lot of other ingredients…put directly on your skin or ingested there are a lot of ‘benefits’ that you can take advantage of, but mix them with something else…not so much. Oxygen is great…wonderful stuff, breathe it in all day, but mix it with two part Hydrogen and you’ll drown.

I make Lotion Bars…the main recipe is bees wax, cocoa butter, shea butter and some different soft oils depending on my mood. Sometimes I used ‘natural’ cocoa butter, sometimes I use ‘refined’ cocoa butter (bleached and deodorized) and the only reason why…is because the cocoa smell can interfere with the scent I use. Otherwise…it’s just cocoa butter.

Again, cost is not everything. And it’s soap…you’re not supposed to eat it.
 
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Hi seniors..I've been soaping for the past 3 years and started selling this year. So far no complaints from customers and all going good. I'm using olive(pomace), RBD palmolein, coconut (cold pressed), castor(cold pressed), approx 10% of butters(Kokum & Shea) in my recipes. I made a test batch recently in which I increased the palmolein percentage and removed the butters completely. After about 2 months cure, I don't find much difference in the soaps. As butters are expensive, I just have a thought to increase the palm percentage in my regular recipes . Mean while I read few articles saying that using refined oils in soaps are not good for skin. In a interview by an ayurvedic doctor, she said " if I won't eat refined oils( usually we use only cold pressed oils like peanut, coconut and sesame for cooking), then I won't use it on my skin too. Even our skin has little mouths(pores), so why should we use unhealthy stuffs on our skin?" ( I just translated what she said😀). Though I know soaps are a wash off product, I'm afraid that it might lead to skin problems when used in long term.

Please share your suggestions..
Ayurvedic doctors will always take the 'all natural' approach. Those sorts of questions will always be raised in any environment. Just do what you think is best for you and your customers. You could always make to batches almost identical - but one with refined oils and with unrefined - and then price them accordingly. Your customers will soon tell you which ones they prefer! (I'd bet it's the cheaper ones)
 

Alondrielle

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Now I cook with EVOO, but I won’t make soap with it…partly because because of the discoloration, partly because the ‘benefits’ that make EVOO good for eating are destroyed during the saponification process. And it’s that way with a lot of other ingredients…put directly on your skin or ingested there are a lot of ‘benefits’ that you can take advantage of, but mix them with something else…not so much. Oxygen is great…wonderful stuff, breathe it in all day, but mix it with two part Hydrogen and you’ll drown.

Can you please define EVOO? Starting out and looking at purchasing unrefined cold pressed coconut oil.
 

dibbles

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Now I cook with EVOO, but I won’t make soap with it…partly because because of the discoloration, partly because the ‘benefits’ that make EVOO good for eating are destroyed during the saponification process. And it’s that way with a lot of other ingredients…put directly on your skin or ingested there are a lot of ‘benefits’ that you can take advantage of, but mix them with something else…not so much. Oxygen is great…wonderful stuff, breathe it in all day, but mix it with two part Hydrogen and you’ll drown.

Can you please define EVOO? Starting out and looking at purchasing unrefined cold pressed coconut oil.
EVOO = extra virgin olive oil. There is an acronym and abbreviation thread here that you might find helpful.
 
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I think most people who use handmade soaps (and not the cheapest industrial product found in the shop) are looking for something special in a handmade product. People are starting to look for natural and ethical products so why not make it your advantage and use unrefined, fairly traded, natural ingredients? I don't see that the price for making a natural, ethical, quality product is so much more expensive that it would turn away the customer, when you can at the same time attach all these good qualities to your soap.
 

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