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Zing

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Soapers, I am waiting for my lye liquid and oils to cool down. My question to you all is, is my lye liquid okay? I dissolved sugar in distilled water, then added lye. It is a very light yellow, like really weak lemonade. It's only the 2nd time I've used sugar. Is it okay? Should I start over?
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KiwiMoose

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You need to dissolve the sugar fully in the distilled water before adding the lye. Usually about 1 tsp per 500 gms of soap. Make sure you stir well after adding the lye too - otherwise you could end up with a hard layer of toffee on the bottom of your lye solution. Be careful because it will heat up quicker than plain water.
 
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ResolvableOwl

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My question to you all is, is my lye liquid okay?
Alkaline solution accelerates caramelisation, to a point where it can start browning at room temperature. It is expected that just about any sugar might yellow. Fresh, highly purified cane/beet sugar shouldn't be very prone, but small amounts of glucose/fructose (the natural decomposition products of sucrose) can already cause discolouration.
Nothing to worry about – except in case the colour interferes with ambitions for a maximally pale soap.

When in doubt, sugar alcohols (read: sorbitol) work at least as good as lather boosters, and don't discolour in the alkaline at all.


Btw, your lye is not okay. The crossed bones are missing under the skull ☠. Seriously, the “toxic” pictogram isn't the accurate warning sign, since lye is not toxic, but corrosive. But being overly drastic in deterring uninvolved/careless/distracted flatmates, outweighs toxicological nitpicking in any case. I'm always happy when I see people in YouTube videos, here, or elsewhere, to take chemical burn precautions seriously.
 

CpnDouchette

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I add a top of sugar to my water before adding lye and it always goes that colour. Its the sugar caramelising. It doesn't seem to affect the end product as far as I can tell.
 

KimW

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What would be really funny is if one of them decided to be a hmmmmm....I'll use the term from over the pond here.... cheeky monkey and wrote "TRUTH!" at the bottom (get it?)... or "NO LYE!".....yeah - be glad I never baby sat for you. 🤣 🤣
 

TheGecko

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My main thing was warning my two very smart but often clueless teenagers from unintentional chaos and destruction.
I can't draw so I just wrote "Danger!!! Danger!!! Drinking this will kill you!!" all over my gallon jug. Which reminds me...it's empty. Daughter used the last of my Lye Solution for the kitchen drain.
 
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