Soap is making me break out...help!

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Happysoap

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Hi everyone,

I have encountered a huuuge problem. My last batch of bastile soap has made my face break out horribly. Please, help me by pointing out what could be the proble .
My recipe:
312g pomace olive oil
88g coconut oil
31g castor oil
10g s.almond oil
63g lye
63g of water
10g French clay
4ml of mint and lavender eo

I have used 1:1 water-lye ratio. Never had a problem with it. I use very little eo. I didn't want a strong scent but just enough to kill of the oily scent. Processed the whole thing until thick trace then added almond oil. Poured it into molds and oven processed the whole thing. I let it cure for a week and then I used it. At first i had an intense incase in blackheads which foolishly i did not pay attention to and then the full blown case of painful acne. Others have used the soap with no reported issues but me... Uh... Any advice?
 

paillo

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It needs a longer cure, for one thing. At least a month with that high amount of olive oil. Most who make castile and bastille give them a much longer cure. I don't make them, so no expert here.

Can you use other soaps on your face without breaking out? You may just be one of us who can't use even our nicest soaps for facial soap. I'm one of them, alas, can only use salt bars for my face.

EDIT: Ooops, I missed that you'd CPOPd it. Will let others chime in on how long they cure high-olive oil CPOP or HP soap and why.
 
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Happysoap

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This may be a silly question but I am new to this. I thought that cpop soap especially with such a discount was safe to use a few days later. How long do I need to cure it and why?

I have used commertial soaps with no problem (dove, nivea baby etc). But same recipe but with goat milk did produce some blackheads but no breakouts. Just the face, everthing else is fine. No one else seems to have a problem. Maybe I am one of the unlucky ones :(
 

Candybee

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I think there is misunderstanding about the difference between a cured soap and soap that went through a cook process such as oven or crock pot. Yes you can use the CPOP soap right away if you want. But keep in mind that a CPOP soap has gone through the saponification but has not cured. The only way to cure a soap is to allow it to sit on a shelf for several weeks. Some like to cure theirs for 4-6 weeks. Others 6-8 weeks, and so on. For a high olive oil soap you need a much longer cure time. The reason curing a soap is so important is that it allows the soap to get milder.

So when you used a week old bastile it was probably to harsh for your skin-- especially extra sensitive skin types like your face.

Another factor to consider is the EOs you used. You may be sensitive to them or at least your face may be. I would wait at least 5-6 more weeks before you try the soap again. Then only try it on a small patch of skin. If that skin doesn't break out you should be okay. If it starts to feel itchy, raw, or sensitive at all don't use the soap.

Also, for a face soap I use only about 10 or 15% coconut oil in the recipe. I am one of those that is sensitive to CO. You may be too.

Personally I use an unscented castile or lard soap on my face. Its the only soap I really trust won't hurt my face and helps keep it clear and in good condition.
 
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houseofwool

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CP soap, no matter if it is forced to gel in the oven still needs a minimum of 4-6 weeks to cure. While the majority of the saponification takes place in the first 24-48 hours, there could still be a bit left to happen. Secondly, the water needs to evaporate to get a good hard bar. You use a very steep water discount which is fine for a castile/bastile, so there isn't quite as much water in your bar to begin with, but there is still some excess.

With a true castile, there is some weird magic that happens over the course of time. I my my first batch about 6 months ago and have been testing a scrap every month or so to see what happens. Months 3 and 4, the lather was still very creamy and not terribly pleasant. At 6 months, the lather has bigger bubbles, but I would hesitate to call them fluffy. The soap seems more mild, less drying, and is generally "nicer". I cannot wait to see what this does in another 6 months to a year!
 

sistrum

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Lack of a long cure should not have anything to do with causing blackheads. I would look to formula and superfat levels for answers to that problem.

If her soap was formulated correctly and has gone thru full gel it should not be harsh at one week. Will it get even better with more time? Yes. But it should not be harmful to use it now.

You might want to try subbing out coconut oil for PKO and see if that helps.

I would up my water to at least 40% lye solution especially with coconut oil soaps.
 
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shunt2011

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I too only use salt bars on my face. I break out from all soap that I've tried over the years. I too would look at your formula and superfat as well as a longer cure time. Perhaps once cured longer it will be milder for your face.
 

judymoody

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I ran your recipe through soap calc and you have no lye discount (superfat). It is 0%. I suspect that your soap might be a bit lye-heavy and that is contributing to the irritation and the breakouts. I would use a minimum of 5% superfat. For a facial soap, including my acne soap, I'd use at least 8% SF.

Also letting it cure for at least a month is preferable. If your soap gelled fully, it is safe to use after a week but it will be better still a month or two out.

Personally, and everybody's risk threshold is different, I'd not use a 50% lye solution. That's cutting it too close with respect to full dissolution of the lye. Maybe back off to 40% or 45%?
 

sistrum

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I agree! A zero super fat AND/or a 50% lye solution is not the way to go.

Was that done on purpose? If so what were you you aiming for? Maybe we can help you find a safer way to archive your goals.
 

Hazel

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I wanted to emphasize houseofwool's reply that a cure period isn't just for the soap to become milder. It does allow excess water to evaporate which helps the soap to last longer and with my recipes, I've noticed the lather improves.

BTW, I find it hard to believe a week old bastile would be too harsh for anyone's face unless there was too high of a percentage of coconut with too low of a superfat or too low of a lye discount or sensitivity/allergy issue. I agree with the others that it is the 0% superfat that caused the problem.
 

lizflowers42

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I am slowly learning that having oil on the skin is not a bad thing--clean oil that is. Stripping your face of all oils increases your body's natural production of oil, which can get gummy with daily pollutants and cause blackheads.
 

Kansas Farm Girl

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I find 20% CO in a soap much for my face. It strips too much of the oil off my skin and I end up with blackheads and pimples. I like 15% or less CO for my face. And now I only use soap on my face in the shower but I do use an olive oil/grape seed oil cream on my face morning and night and rarely have a blackhead or pimple. This is after fighting my oily skin and my face being broken out all my life.

Happysoap - I think it may be that this soap is too stripping for your face, it is removing too much of the natural oil from your skin and now your face is working overtime to replace that oil, causing the breakouts. You may be me and need to stop fighting to remove the oil and try to only remove the dirt, makeup and whatever else is on your skin without stripping your skin. Try a recipe that gives you a very low cleansing number on SoapCalc, like under 10% (cut your CO in half if you keep this recipe) and use a 5-8% superfat. Allows a month cure for your soap and you will like it better.

If you are not opposed to cleaning your face without soap give this a try: http://www.crunchybetty.com/trying-...ng-method-tips-for-flawless-oil-cleansed-skin

I don't actually use this method, but my version of it works for me.

Good luck
 

Happysoap

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Thanks everyone! I appreciate all your answers. You have given me a lot to think about. I guess now i will go back to redesigning my recipe. Thanks again! :D
 

jade-15

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Bumping an old thread...
I am looking at attempting a home-made version of my current soap cleanser. I have oily skin, and this one I'm using must be followed by a moisturiser (I was told this when I bought it) but I do love the clean feeling I get from using it. I was wondering if when I make my own soap I should use a low superfat level (2-3%), just to account for inaccuracy. Then use the soap to cleanse my face, and follow up with a small amount of plain oil to moisturise.
Does this sound ok to experienced soapers? Or is my logic flawed... ??
 

seven

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I find 20% CO in a soap much for my face. It strips too much of the oil off my skin and I end up with blackheads and pimples. I like 15% or less CO for my face. And now I only use soap on my face in the shower but I do use an olive oil/grape seed oil cream on my face morning and night and rarely have a blackhead or pimple. This is after fighting my oily skin and my face being broken out all my life.

Happysoap - I think it may be that this soap is too stripping for your face, it is removing too much of the natural oil from your skin and now your face is working overtime to replace that oil, causing the breakouts. You may be me and need to stop fighting to remove the oil and try to only remove the dirt, makeup and whatever else is on your skin without stripping your skin. Try a recipe that gives you a very low cleansing number on SoapCalc, like under 10% (cut your CO in half if you keep this recipe) and use a 5-8% superfat. Allows a month cure for your soap and you will like it better.

If you are not opposed to cleaning your face without soap give this a try: http://www.crunchybetty.com/trying-...ng-method-tips-for-flawless-oil-cleansed-skin

I don't actually use this method, but my version of it works for me.

Good luck
thanks for the link, i just read it, and although i'm not going to try the method myself, i did learn a lot about the types of oils to used for face, etc.

been wanting to make a facial soap for myself for a while. i've been seeing the same dermatologists for 2+ years (a quite expensive one), and at 1st it worked fine, my skin cleared up, everything was good. then, for the past 6 months or so, my skin started breaking out again (mostly white and blackheads, with the occasional pimples). btw, my skin is always like this when i used a product, good at 1st then stopped working after a year or two. it's like my skin is becoming immune to the product.

there's also the case of ingredients that i'm a bit wary. the cleansing milk i've been using (from the doctor) got loads of chemicals in it: laureth 7, isoparaffin, and a whole bunch of parabens to name a few.

so, yeah... i want to try a more natural way of cleansing my face.. i feel that my skin deserves it..
 

Lin

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I use the oil cleansing method, it works great for me. You DO have to find the right oil, I started off with olive which my skin did not like. I currently use grapeseed. Also need to find the right ratio, I use about 1/5 castor oil to the grapeseed and if I use too much castor my face is noticeably too dry and starts flaking. After washing I follow up with a teeny bit of avocado oil to moisturize.

The only problem I have is the water at my place, so I tend to break out after I take a shower... I'm hoping to get another shower head filter, plus I'm working on not putting my face under the stream of water! My skin is so much better when I shower at my bfs place! But all in all the oil cleansing has gotten rid of breakouts, decreased bumps on my face, and shrank the pores on my nose. My skin feels so much smoother and more even now.
 

DeeAnna

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"... I was wondering if when I make my own soap I should use a low superfat level (2-3%), just to account for inaccuracy. Then use the soap to cleanse my face, and follow up with a small amount of plain oil to moisturise. ...

I think you'll be happier in the long run if you use a more typical superfat of 5% to 8%. It is not wise to lower the superfat below about 5%, unless you have a real accurate handle on the saponification values of your oils. A 2% to 3% superfat is just not enough insurance against a lye heavy soap. I second Kansas Farm Girl's recommendation: "... Try a recipe that gives you a very low cleansing number on SoapCalc, like under 10% (cut your CO in half if you keep this recipe) and use a 5-8% superfat. Allows a month cure for your soap and you will like it better. ..."
 

jade-15

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Thanks DeeAnna, I will try it with 8% superfat. I have run my recipe through soap calc and was happy with the numbers but will do it again to double check.., just as soon as I find the recipe I worked out... (Hopefully its not lost forever as I recall doing a fair bit of tweaking to get the numbers "right" :/ )
 

Happysoap

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Well, here is a curve ball. It turns out my acne problem had nothing to do with my soap. I had a serious case of Candida overgrowth which caused the acne. It just took me a while to figure it out. LOL !
 
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