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Davo51

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Hi all.

I am new to the forum as well as soap making. This is my first post and many of you probably already know from the title the problem I am having.

I made my first batch yesterday, and was a bit of an unexpected disaster.

I am learning soap because I want to formulate a soap that is good for acne and also has skin lightening properties. I currently live in Thailand and there seems to be a huge demand for soaps and/or creams etc that are good for complexion and also skin whitening is also in very high demand.

It seems everyone here wants to be a white as possible, they also have complexion problems due to the climate and their diet which seems to make their skin clammy and oily.

I made up the oils and the lye water separately as I have learned from many videos, but when it came time to add the lye mix to the oils, the whole thing went stiff like mashed potatoes. I tried to put the mix in a crock pot and heated on low for over an hour but it did not melt again.

I looked up the problem on soap making blogs and determined that the mix 'seized'... Possibly due to adding the lye too fast and the temps wrong.

I started a second batch today after learning the ideal temps and opted to trickle the lye mix in as slowly as possible, however once I had added about half the lye, the thing stated to gloop up once again.

I am now thinking perhaps it is my recipe, I am rather limited to what ingredients I can get here in Thailand, and I am also limited by cost, many things that are cheap in the west seem to be stupidly expensive here.

I need to do this on a cost, as my wife wants to sell on the internet here and if successful wants to approach the big retailers.

I am quite heavy on Lauric acid, I need this to add hardness and also bubbliness, I am now thinking it is a reaction with too much of this ingredient and the lye. I could be wrong, but I am sure many on this forum can look at my recipe and see exactly what i am doing wrong.

I will add an image of my soapcalc recipe... I also add 70 grams of lactic acid at the end for the skin lightening properties. But the seize happens before i add this.

I have still molded both batches and the first has firmed up nicely and will be ready for cutting tomorrow. I will cure it and use it at home.

Any tips and help would be appreciated.

Thank you all in advance.



clay and acne soap.jpg
 
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Davo51

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Strangely the image has not come up.... OK added it now :)

By the way, I did not add the fragrance because of the seizing.
 
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galaxyMLP

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Where did you purchase straight lauric and oleic acid??

If what you have are truly lauric and oleic acid, that would be the cause of your soap seize. Pure fatty acids instantly saponify which would lead to a big mash potato like pot.

You are better off using oils (triglycerides) to make soap instead of the pure fatty acids. I would look for coconut oil, olive oil, or any other oil. If you post a list of what is easily available to you we can help you come up with a decent recipe.

As for skin lightening, soap won't really do that. Soap will get you clean and might leave a faint scent behind in scented soaps. That's about it.
 

Davo51

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Where did you purchase straight lauric and oleic acid??

If what you have are truly lauric and oleic acid, that would be the cause of your soap seize. Pure fatty acids instantly saponify which would lead to a big mash potato like pot.

You are better off using oils (triglycerides) to make soap instead of the pure fatty acids. I would look for coconut oil, olive oil, or any other oil. If you post a list of what is easily available to you we can help you come up with a decent recipe.

As for skin lightening, soap won't really do that. Soap will get you clean and might leave a faint scent behind in scented soaps. That's about it.
Thank you for the reply.

I will go through the soapcalc options and check what is available here.

The skin whitening quality comes from the added lactic acid which is a very common ingredient in whitening lotions and creams as an effective exfoliator.

I added the lauric acid for cleansing and bubbles. The lauric acid came from a reputable chemical supplier, biggest in the country and cam in granulated form. The oleic acid came in liquid form from a local pharmacy that sells a lot of soap making ingredients and equipment.

Olive oil and coconut oil were to be my first choice but they are very expensive here, way more than in the west.
 
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Davo51

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I did a look for what is available here within reasonable cost.

I got the following.

Palm oil
Myristic acid
lauric acid
Castor oil
Canola oil
Oleic acid (liquid oil form)
Rice Bran oil.

I can also get plenty of propylene glycol and vegetable glycerine here, I already have them at home i use for making my own e-cigarette liquids.

And that is about the lot.

I want to make bentonite clay / Activated charcoal marbled blend bars with 7% added lactic acid. Hopefully deep cleansing with a decent bubble to cream ratio.

If anyone can come up with a recipe from that short list of ingredients, I would be eternally grateful. :)
 
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mx6inpenn

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I did a look for what is available here within reasonable cost.

I got the following.

Palm oil
Myristic acid
lauric acid
Castor oil
Canola oil
Oleic acid (liquid oil form)
Rice Bran oil.

I can also get plenty of propylene glycol and vegetable glycerine here, I already have them at home i use for making my own e-cigarette liquids.

And that is about the lot.

I want to make bentonite clay / Activated charcoal marbled blend bars with 7% added lactic acid. Hopefully deep cleansing with a decent bubble to cream ratio.

If anyone can come up with a recipe from that short list of ingredients, I would be eternally grateful. :)
I would go with 60% palm, 35% rice bran, 5% castor.
 

Steve85569

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Palm kernel, Palm oil flakes, coconut or babassu would help for raising the cleansing value since none of the listed oils have cleansing value.
You could try using a low amount of lauric acid ( around 5%) and expect to need to beat the soap into submission to get the ricing broken up and blended back in to the rest of the soap.
Look at something around
30-40% Palm
20-30% Rice bran oil
20-30% canola
5% castor oil
5-10% lauric acid.

Mix the oils and acid together.
You may also want to use a 2:1 water to lye ratio.

** I have NOT used lauric acid in soap so I am estimating**
 

Davo51

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Palm kernel, Palm oil flakes, coconut or babassu would help for raising the cleansing value since none of the listed oils have cleansing value.
You could try using a low amount of lauric acid ( around 5%) and expect to need to beat the soap into submission to get the ricing broken up and blended back in to the rest of the soap.
Look at something around
30-40% Palm
20-30% Rice bran oil
20-30% canola
5% castor oil
5-10% lauric acid.

Mix the oils and acid together.
You may also want to use a 2:1 water to lye ratio.

** I have NOT used lauric acid in soap so I am estimating**
Hey thanks for the suggestions. I have to have at least 10% lauric in there as it is to be a medicated soap so i fiddled with your recipe and come up with this as a possible next try out. But the fatty acids have been hugely reduced from the original recipe.

I do have a stick blender, obviously only works at the lower viscosity rather than the mashed potatoes, I also have a regular blender for making milkshakes and things... Would that be a better option to beat out any coagulations and disperse the lardy bits into the rest of the soap?

Untitled.jpg
 

earlene

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I have never used straight lauric acid, so I don't know what it is like to work with. I do really like Rice Bran Oil. How nice that it is reasonably priced and accessible for you.

10% Castor Oil seems awfully high to me. It contributes to faster trace. I wouldn't go above 5% myself, and prefer even lower, usually 3%.

Have you considered using papaya in your soap for its skin lightening properties? I can't attest to that, of course, but that was one of the claims I found when I was researching adding it my soap.

Anyway, I hope you are making small test batches until you find the recipe you love. Less waste that way. And that you have a few volunteers lined up to test your soap and give you feedback on what they do and don't like about each formula.
 

snappyllama

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I haven't used straight lauric acid, but from your description... it sounds like it behaves similarly to Stearic Acid. When I use that in my shaving soap recipe... this is my process:

1. Make lye solution.
2. Melt Stearic Acid over a double boiler.
3. Melt all other oils in a crock pot on low.
4. Add lye solution to crock pot and mix thoroughly.
5. Add Stearic Acid just a little at a time into crockpot - mixing as I go. As soon as I start putting it in, it saponifies so this is a workout to get it incorporated.
6. Cook on low until vaseline phase, test for zap. If no zap, mold.

Good luck!

I don't really think soap can lighten skin, but you can try...I guess. One thing, you'll need a lot of batches under your belt and months and months of testing before contemplating selling.
 

Davo51

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I haven't used straight lauric acid, but from your description... it sounds like it behaves similarly to Stearic Acid. When I use that in my shaving soap recipe... this is my process:

1. Make lye solution.
2. Melt Stearic Acid over a double boiler.
3. Melt all other oils in a crock pot on low.
4. Add lye solution to crock pot and mix thoroughly.
5. Add Stearic Acid just a little at a time into crockpot - mixing as I go. As soon as I start putting it in, it saponifies so this is a workout to get it incorporated.
6. Cook on low until vaseline phase, test for zap. If no zap, mold.

Good luck!

I don't really think soap can lighten skin, but you can try...I guess. One thing, you'll need a lot of batches under your belt and months and months of testing before contemplating selling.
Thanks a bunch, I will follow that exact routine on my next batch and report back.

The whitening comes from the lactic acid that I will add at 7% of the total weight of base soap once I have it ready to pour...

I hope I am right because there is no product on the market that combines a medicated acne soap with skin whitening properties as a two in one, and the skin lightening market is said to be worth around $160 Billion a year alone.

My background is actually in food science and me and the wife have a few products already out there in Thailand in a small way. We know the route to market on this 2 in 1 soap venture. We have a good contact in the FDA, and if clinical trials are a success we will go for our FDA number, and once you have an FDA number on a product like this, it could boom.

Just have to get the science right... We have plenty of guinea pigs... lol
 

galaxyMLP

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Just an FYI, lactic acid won't stay as lactic acid in soap. It will become sodium lactate, a salt. I'm not sure if that will work for you.

Also, with 7% lactic acid added, some of your lye will be consumed and will raise your SF (superfat). You will need to adjust the SF for that.
 

Davo51

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Just an FYI, lactic acid won't stay as lactic acid in soap. It will become sodium lactate, a salt. I'm not sure if that will work for you.

Also, with 7% lactic acid added, some of your lye will be consumed and will raise your SF (superfat). You will need to adjust the SF for that.
What a great response and you are 100% correct.... Around 50% will be converted to sodium lactate, and the rest should pretty much remain pure so long as the lactic acid is added pretty much at the final stage..

However, sodium lactate is still considered an effective skin whitening property.

http://www.makingcosmetics.com/Sodium-Lactate_p_661.html

So I am hedging my bets on this one.
 

topofmurrayhill

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What a great response and you are 100% correct.... Around 50% will be converted to sodium lactate, and the rest should pretty much remain pure so long as the lactic acid is added pretty much at the final stage...
There will be no lactic acid in your soap. It will all be converted to sodium lactate no matter the stage at which you add it. In the cold process, most of the alkali is uncombined at the time the batter goes into the mold. But even if that was not the case, lactic acid would happily just react with your soap to form sodium lactate and liberate free fatty acids.

I can assure you the only purpose of the lauric acid in the soap is to make it bubbly, so it serves the exact same purpose as coconut oil. Due to the difficulty of working with free fatty acids in the cold process, you could consider using the hot process method so you don't have to worry about seizing.

However, there is something notably unusual about your ingredient list. The idea that you can't afford to obtain coconut oil in Southeast Asia, where it comes from, is hard to believe. I predict it is waiting for you in the local supermarket, maybe with the shortenings. I would also point out that the manufacturer you are dealing with is DEFINITELY making lauric acid and myristic acid from coconut oil -- huge quantities of CO. The fatty acids are typically more expensive to use in making soap than the raw materials that they are derived from.

I have lauric acid and myristic acid that I use for making certain types of soap for my own purposes, but If I was still selling soap I'd go broke using that stuff.
 
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