Shaving Soap - Puck to Cream

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HorseCreek

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Hi all, it's been awhile since I've been on here. I have a shaving soap recipe that's gotten rave reviews. Very simple recipe.
52% Stearic with the rest being 30% Coconut, 15% Lard, and 3% Castor. KOH and water of course. My brother is a traditional shaver, and really really wants it in a cream version. He says he gets a better shave with mine that with AOS, but just really likes the cream version they have. SO my question is.... how to I turn this "puck" recipe into a "cream" recipe? Add more water?
Shaving soap and cream soap are so much alike, I apparently just don't have the mental capacity to figure this out today.
 

doriettefarm

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Have you ever made cream soap before? I've only made one batch from scratch . . . not because the process is difficult but I'm impatient and the amount of time required for rotting/curing cream soap is even longer than for CP soap!

The technique for making HP shaving pucks is fairly similar to making a cream soap but you'll use more water & glycerin in the cream soap. Cream soap also uses KOH and NaOH (some folks like me also use this combo for making pucks). There are also differences in the terminology . . . for example, superfatting is equivalent to supercreaming when making cream soap. You either supercream with additional stearic acid or neutralize some of the lye by adding boric acid.

Below is the recipe I used from Catherine Failor's book 'Making Cream Soap'. It's recipe#4 High-Foaming Cream soap. The percentages of stearic and coconut are pretty close to your shaving puck recipe. It calls for 5oz of soft oils but if I was making a shave soap I would probably choose tallow with a smidge of jojoba or avocado oil.

18oz stearic acid
8oz coconut oil
5oz soft oils of choice
9-12oz glycerin
1oz NaOH
5oz KOH
Supercream: 1-1.5oz melted stearic acid OR .5-.75oz boric acid powder or crystals dissolved in 4oz hot water
Additional Water: up to 12oz (possibly more) depending on desired consistency
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Lindy posted a great thread on cream soap which would be well worth a read. Maybe park turning this shave soap in to cream for now and just look at cream soap in general and then with a basis in cream soaps look at converting the recipe
 

HorseCreek

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Thanks guys. I've made cream soap already, and have read and reread the ENTIRE cream soap thread as well as the ENTIRE shaving soap thread, probably 6 months ago now. I'm not brand new to either product, was just having a mental block earlier. I'll figure it out.
 
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DeeAnna

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To change a croap recipe to a cream shave soap, I'd do these things:

reduce the lye concentration to about 15% (more water than the usual)
use about 20% NaOH, 80% KOH blend
make sure the combined stearic + palmitic acids is around 60% (usually not a problem with shave soap)
keep the solid fats + fatty acids above 50% of the total fats (again usually not a problem)

The stearic + palmitic content in the soap itself is what makes a cream soap or shave soap what it is.
Many cream soap recipes also call for adding stearic acid as the supercream. This added fatty acid largely does not become soap. It acts as a thickener, just like it is used in a hand and body lotion. Too much stearic as supercream and the soap will have an odd waxy texture that doesn't feel good on the skin.
Glycerin is also added as supercream in amounts higher than what's in a typical soft shave soap. Glycerin adds softness and flowabililty as does the extra water, but doesn't evaporate like water. You wouldn't want the whole amount of extra water to be as glycerin, however. It would be sticky and probably not lather as well.
 
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HorseCreek

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DeeAnna, thank you! That was perfect.
My concern was also too much glycerin and making things feel weird/inhibiting lather.
I'll do some testing and see what I come up with.
One of my cream soap recipes, I already use as a shave cream, but I love the above recipe for the simplicity and the rave reviews it's received from every single shaver that's used it. Obviously the recipe isn't anything special, and of course derived from information gleaned off the shave soap thread, but it's hard to argue with results.
 
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