Soap holding its shape

SoapMakingForum

Help Support SoapMakingForum:

wearytraveler

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2016
Messages
233
Reaction score
164
So this morning while I was showering I thought about something; why is it that no matter what home-made soap I've used/use (be it made by me or someone else), they never wear down the same as commercial soaps? By this I mean that any home made soap I've used has always gotten to a point where it eventually breaks into pieces where as a commercial bar will always, from my experience, retain its shape till it's a tiny little sliver of its former self. What ingredient/chemical in commercial soap causes this? Just curious.
 

mx6inpenn

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2015
Messages
602
Reaction score
608
Location
NW Pennsylvania
I don't know, but I also don't have that happen. Mine and other homemade soap I've used wear down to slivers. Maybe it's something to do with water?
 

shunt2011

Moderator Emeritus
Moderator Emeritus
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Apr 2, 2012
Messages
15,447
Reaction score
9,735
Location
Michigan
Mine too get to small slivers before the break in half. I just put them in a soap saver and collect them until I have enough to scrub with.
 

DeeAnna

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2013
Messages
13,469
Reaction score
19,369
Location
USA
It may be your recipe or something. Hard to say. My handmade soap seldom breaks or crumbles even when it is next to paper thin. I wet the sliver and a new bar of soap, then rub the sliver against the bar until it sticks. After letting the whole thing dry, the sliver will usually stay stuck to the larger bar until it's used up.
 

TeresaT

I see you.
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 7, 2015
Messages
2,269
Reaction score
2,456
Location
Chatta-Vegas, TN
The ony one I've had break so far is the one I did as a three layered soap. The middle layer was colored with activated charcoal. That part of the soap dissolved quicker than the other two parts and the soap separated at that section. I've actually just pulled iut my last bar of that a few days ago and it's at the bathroom sink. It's a year old now, much harder than it was before and makes better bubbles. I'm wondering if it will break like the others did. I'll have to remember to report back on this thread if it does. Do any if your soaps have AC in them?
 

earlene

Grandmother & Soaper
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Apr 30, 2016
Messages
8,113
Reaction score
8,326
Location
Western Illinois, USA
So far the only artisan soap I have had fall apart was a M&P with some kind of geometric làyers. It happened the first time I used the it, too. But my own soaps and any others have always worn normally to a little sliver just like sender bars.

I have not yet used a layered CP soap, or soaps with embeds, so don't know what would/will happen with them.

I have wondered if the mosaic soap I made will stay together, but since it was CPOPed I am hoping that helped meld it together well. Of course only time will tell.
 

dixiedragon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
6,472
Reaction score
4,905
Location
Birmingham, Alabama, USA
Mine don't break either? Mine basically wear into a smaller, thinner rectangle. I am wondering if it is how you hold or use the soap, or store the soap in your bathroom between baths? Do you use a concave soap dish? If so, the middle of the soap is suspended over the curve and maybe the soap is gradually weakening there?
 

Susie

Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2013
Messages
9,713
Reaction score
9,214
Location
Texas
Mine don't break, either. I use them down as far as practical, then I stick them to the new bar. Sort of like DeeAnna, but without the rubbing.
 

snappyllama

Supporting Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2014
Messages
3,910
Reaction score
3,040
Location
Near Charlotte NC
DH's bars normally end up breaking in half. I blame his manly scrubbing action.... Sydnet bars do the same thing with him. My bars wear away to nothingness.
 

queennikki

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 4, 2016
Messages
51
Reaction score
9
I haven't had any of my soap break on me, but I am still new so not sure why.
 

dibbles

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Joined
May 6, 2015
Messages
6,906
Reaction score
7,684
Location
Minnesota
It may be your recipe or something. Hard to say. My handmade soap seldom breaks or crumbles even when it is next to paper thin. I wet the sliver and a new bar of soap, then rub the sliver against the bar until it sticks. After letting the whole thing dry, the sliver will usually stay stuck to the larger bar until it's used up.
My sister does this! I thought she was the only genius to think that up. I should have known...

My bars always wear down to a sliver too. I don't think I've ever had one break - handmade or otherwise.
 

Guspuppy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2016
Messages
528
Reaction score
787
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
my 100% CO bars seem to break apart when they wear down close to slivers. Not the salt bars but I made some laundry soap that I kept a few bars whole from. No other recipe has done this as yet, so i think it must be that.
 

earlene

Grandmother & Soaper
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Apr 30, 2016
Messages
8,113
Reaction score
8,326
Location
Western Illinois, USA
I just realized that my first salt bar soap breaks apart. But I'm sure it was either something to do with the recipe or the technique. It was the first time I made them, after all. Actually I have only made them twice. I seem to be one of the few not particularly fond of salt bars.
 

wearytraveler

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2016
Messages
233
Reaction score
164
Maybe it is in the way I hold the bar. I happen to love long showers and I always lather more than once (which is why my soaps never last long). I know some people that lather up then put the bar down and continue to lather with their hands only. I'm in the camp that says never let that bar out of your hands! All of my soaps seem to wear at the middle which, after a while, cause the bar to weaken and then just break. I normally fold the halves together and move on from there. Maybe shape has a lot to do with it since I don't treat commercial bars any differently and those never wear the same as home made soaps I've tried. Maybe I'll just start using the soaps more gingerly... NOT!
 

Guspuppy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 20, 2016
Messages
528
Reaction score
787
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
Maybe shape has a lot to do with it since I don't treat commercial bars any differently and those never wear the same as home made soaps I've tried. Maybe I'll just start using the soaps more gingerly... NOT!
If this is the case then maybe you just need to make oval soap bars instead of rectangular/regular? keep the middles from wearing more than the ends?
 

Saipan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2016
Messages
154
Reaction score
189
I think it depends on the ingredients of the soap, the shape, the cure time, and the overall stress on the bar.

I've been told Stearic Acid and Beeswax help make strong bars, and well as hard butters and oils.

If you have strong hands, you maybe scrubbing and stress the structural integrity of the bar.
 

Arimara

Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 29, 2015
Messages
3,434
Reaction score
2,545
I think part of that may be your recipe. I would look at how much brittle oils make up your recipe. I've had a handful of soaps do that but that was mostly cure-related (they were all under the 3 month mark I set).
 

Latest posts

Top