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milky

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What is a salt bar for?

What kind of sugar do you add to help bubbles? What exactly does it do and when do you add it?

I read BB's article on using different brands of olive oil after buying a big Great Value bottle. Has anyone used that kind and had issues?
 

Arimara

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LOL, You actually don't need sugar for a salt bar. Usually they are 80-100% coconut oil soaps with at least 30% oil weight's worth of salt in it. If you have the link to the article, I'd love to read it. :)
 

The Efficacious Gentleman

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Salt bars are for washing with! They are a very different recipe and make an interesting soap. Well worth a look.

I use normal granulated sugar. How exactly it does it, I am not sure - other than that it makes the bar more soluble which increases bubbles.

As for olive oil, I of course use local brands here. Do you just mean "Brand" or also class of olive oil?
 

Arimara

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Good point, TEG. Ideally, you'd want to use light or regular olive oil since it's a bit of a waste of money to use extra virgin olive oil, which also traces the slowest of the different classes to my knowledge. If you can get your mitts on some olive pomace for a decent price, try it. It's actually very nice in soap but it does discolor a bit.
 

earlene

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What is a salt bar for?
Here is a thread that might help with this question.
Another soaper here likes using popcorn salt for his salt bars because of its very fine grain. Here is his post about it. I haven't used it yet myself, but plan to order it soon.

What kind of sugar do you add to help bubbles? What exactly does it do and when do you add it?
Here is another of many threads addressing the sugar question. You will see in that thread, that at least one of our members even uses confectioners (powdered) sugar. And here is another thread with some discussion of when to add the sugar (or honey, etc.) as well.

I read BB's article on using different brands of olive oil after buying a big Great Value bottle. Has anyone used that kind and had issues?
I have not had any luck finding that article, so would also like to see the link.

Great Value brand is from WalMart, is that correct? I have used it, but usually I buy the Daily Chef brand at Sam's Club because it is the least expensive bulk Olive Oil I can find. But I have not really noticed any noticeable difference in any of my soaps. I did a single oil soaps test about 8 or 9 months ago, including one bar each of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) and plain OO (olive oil). There was no noticeable difference to me.
 

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Re: salt bars. They produce a rich, almost lotiony-lather. A lot of people report that they help with skin problems, even skin tone, etc. My recipe:
95% coconut
5% castor
20% superfat
50% of oil weight in salt. (you want a fine grain salt).
 

TeresaT

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What is a salt bar for?

What kind of sugar do you add to help bubbles? What exactly does it do and when do you add it?

I read BB's article on using different brands of olive oil after buying a big Great Value bottle. Has anyone used that kind and had issues?
1. Salt bar is for luxury. That's about all I can think of for that. According to what I've learned many people use a high coconut oil content (therefore a high SF) because coconut oil soap will produce bubbles with a high salt content. Whereas other oils used for soap will not. However, many Europeans do not use high coconut oil content. They do salt bars in their regular soap formulations. (My take on it is apparently they don't care if the soap makes bubbles. It's soap it will get you clean. The bubbles are just a fun part of washing? I know Americans tend to equate the amount of bubbles a product produces with the effectiveness of the product. That's why a lot of people totally overdo the shampoo.)

2. Any sugar is fine, white table sugar is the norm, I would imagine. I'm going to have to try a bit of brown sugar in my recipe - it is only white sugar colored with molasses. Dissolve the sugar in your water before you add your NaOH to it. Make sure the sugar is completely dissolved before you add the NaOH. When I use sugar, I usually use 2% ppo. (I weigh everything in grams, so I guess I'm actually doing 2% pkgo.) A normal batch for me will be 20 gm sugar mixed in with the water before I add the caustic. What exactly does it do? I have no idea. It just makes more bubbles. I think technical term for it is "magic."

3. Great Value is fine for making soap. I used that brand of olive oil before I found a friend that had a membership to Costco and bulked up on their olive oil. Now that she's no longer working in my building, I'm probably going to go back to the GV brand. I found that using their "extra light tasting" made the whitest soap for me. I started out with the extra virgin because I wanted nothing but the best; and what could possibly be better than Walmart extra virgin olive oil? :lolno: However, that always discolored my soap. So I tried the extra light tasting and that gave the whiter color. I haven't read BBs article on olive oils, so I'll have to check it out.

I hope this helps a little bit.
 

earlene

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Not part of your questions, but a point of interest I have noticed lately and because it relates to bubbles. Well something about sugar..

I have an egg yolk soap recipe that creates fabulous bubbles IMO. And a carrot juice soap I made last month bubbles just as well (not done curing, but I had to try it.) I was surprised how well it bubbles with only 15% CO, no Castor Oil and only 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar dissolved in the lye solution (total oils was 26 ounces). I used carrot juice instead of water in the lye solution, so there is some additional sugar in the soap from the carrot juice.
 

milky

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Wow, thanks for all the replies! That helped a lot!

Sorry i didn't put the link. Here it is. It's a Soap Queen article but I said Brambleberry... Different? Found it when looking up what "DOS" means, lol. I couldn't tell if they just wanted to promote BB olive oil or not.

Yep, Great Value is the Walmart brand. I meant to ask also which kind of olive oil (extra virgin or other) was preferred so thank you to those who answered that, too! I just now thought that maybe its performance in soap could have to do with smoke point, and I think extra virgin has the lowest of olive oils.
 

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Wow, thanks for all the replies! That helped a lot!

Sorry i didn't put the link. Here it is. It's a Soap Queen article but I said Brambleberry... Different? Found it when looking up what "DOS" means, lol. I couldn't tell if they just wanted to promote BB olive oil or not.

Yep, Great Value is the Walmart brand. I meant to ask also which kind of olive oil (extra virgin or other) was preferred so thank you to those who answered that, too! I just now thought that maybe its performance in soap could have to do with smoke point, and I think extra virgin has the lowest of olive oils.
It's likely. They are a business.
 

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I use the Great Value or the Daily Chef from Sam's. My experience is that the more I pay for Olive Oil, the less I like the soap made with it. I use the lightest color/cheapest OO available. It soaps exactly the way I like for both bars and liquid soap.
 

earlene

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Wow, thanks for all the replies! That helped a lot!

Sorry i didn't put the link. Here it is. It's a Soap Queen article but I said Brambleberry... Different? Found it when looking up what "DOS" means, lol. I couldn't tell if they just wanted to promote BB olive oil or not.

Yep, Great Value is the Walmart brand. I meant to ask also which kind of olive oil (extra virgin or other) was preferred so thank you to those who answered that, too! I just now thought that maybe its performance in soap could have to do with smoke point, and I think extra virgin has the lowest of olive oils.

Thank you for that link. Interesting. I would tend to think that going to the shelf of 'just any' grocery store, especially if they have a low turnover rate of a particular oil might be part of the problem. Alluded to but not mentioned specifically was the 'olive oil scandal' and surely that would effect one's resulting soap, when olive oil is not pure as labeled. When I go into a store and see 50 different brands of olive oil, I wonder.

Choosing a reputable company from whom to purchase your olive oil is a good suggestion, but that doesn't mean that that reputable company doesn't sometimes end up putting something less than perfect on their shelves. They don't always know. What I would suggest is to try it and see if it behaves as expected. If not, perhaps avoid that Brand in the future. If purchased from a soaping supply company, of course I would provide feedback about that particular oil, but if from a grocery store, I am not so sure I would talk to the manager about their oil possibly being fake. Maybe I would in my small town, but probably not in a big city. I would avoid that brand, though.

I made castile soap (100% olive oil) last year using the Sam's Club olive oil (Daily Chef brand) and it is still curing. It is 8 months old and has not developed any DOS, nor did it develop ash as mentioned in the Soap Queen article. If anything, it has become whiter looking that it started and I am just waiting for a few more months to test it out. I would be pretty disheartened, however if it had turned out looking like some of those soaps in her test batches!

PS. I've been trying to read the reports from UC Davis on Olive Oils, but one of them keeps crashing my browser when I get to page 7, so I am giving up on trying to read the rest of that report.
 

Arthur Dent

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For what it's worth, I made a batch of "castile" with Sam's Daily Chef 100% Pure Olive Oil last July. Now it's very white, very hard, and a very nice bar. I don't get the infamous castile slime, so I'm not sure what's really in it. But I like it.

ETA: And not a spot of DOS.
 
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milky

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I made castile soap (100% olive oil) last year using the Sam's Club olive oil (Daily Chef brand) and it is still curing. It is 8 months old and has not developed any DOS, nor did it develop ash as mentioned in the Soap Queen article.
:shock:What?! 8 months+ to cure?! I'm feeling pretty naive now, lol. I've seen 10 weeks pretty often, but... Is that just for castile? Is there a chart somewhere that estimates how long different kinds of soaps cure?
I'm glad your soap is looking good so far.
 

milky

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I have another question and I'm not sure if I should make a new post or not. Kinda think it's probably a dumb one that I could look up if I tried hard enough. So if nobody answers... guess I knew better. lol.

What's the difference between and body bar and a shampoo bar and can you make either "pH adjusted?"
 

Navaria

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Castile really needs a good year to cure. With that being said, most all soaps will continue to get better the longer they cure. There really isn't a chart, because there are so many variables. A bar with high water will take much longer to fully cure and harden than the same oil combination made with lower water. The way/place they are stored will also make a difference. High humidity will of course mean it takes longer for the water to evaporate. It's very much a case of YMMV.

ETA: As far as body vs shampoo bar, soap is soap. Some feel there are certain oils/superfat levels that will work in hair. Some feel you need to use an apple cider vinegar rinse no matter what kind of soap you use, and some feel that even with the ACV, you will damage your hair over time. Without a ph meter, you can't accurately check the ph of soap, and even that will vary depending if you're on the edge of the bar or the middle. Plus if you reduce your ph to the point where hair likes it, it will no longer be soap. By nature, soap is alkaline. If you take it to neutral (or lower) the fatty acid chains break down and you no longer have soap. I've never done it, but from what I understand, you get greasy snot instead.
 
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cmzaha

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I use and make salt bars to help with my itchy eczema, my daughter uses them for her face.

Shampoo is Not Soap, the ph is to high. Shampoo in solid form are syndet bars and work nicely, but cost more to make than a good OTC shampoo. If you have long hair you will most likely experience and notice damage within a year. Not so much with short hair that is cut regularly. Keep in mind, hair is very resilient but once you damage hair it simply cannot be repaired not matter what you do. Once hair grows through the scalp it is actually dead so there is no actual repairing it
 

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:shock:What?! 8 months+ to cure?! I'm feeling pretty naive now, lol. I've seen 10 weeks pretty often, but... Is that just for castile? Is there a chart somewhere that estimates how long different kinds of soaps cure?
I'm glad your soap is looking good so far.
8months is young for Castille.
Stick around and keep asking questions.
There's the New Year's day batch of Castille coming up. That way you know when to use last year's batch.:)
 

earlene

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:shock:What?! 8 months+ to cure?! I'm feeling pretty naive now, lol. I've seen 10 weeks pretty often, but... Is that just for castile? Is there a chart somewhere that estimates how long different kinds of soaps cure?
I'm glad your soap is looking good so far.
As others said, castile does like a looong cure time. It is totally worth it, I have read. I still have not used mine.

I was reading last night about a goat's milk castile; GM instead of water in the lye solution. I am tempted to make that one soon.

What's the difference between and body bar and a shampoo bar and can you make either "pH adjusted?"
It seems that an attempt is made to include oils with high conditioning and 'nourishing' attributes, as well as one that gives a creamy lather. Although I made a shampoo bar that lathers beautifully and feels absolutely luxurious when I use it, over time I have noticed that I don't like how my hair feels or looks when I used it exclusively. But alternating a shampoo bar with store bought shampoo seems to defeat the purpose altogether. So I am planning on making a liquid shampoo instead. In fact I am working on that today.

I will use the 'shampoo bar' as a luxurious body bar from now on. Well, darn I just noticed I don't have any pictures of that bar. I will have to remedy that. (I never took photos of my soaps until recently, as I just never thought of it before.)

P.S. My hair is below my waist in length, blond with a lot of white and although I don't really care that much if is shines, I do like it to feel clean and softish without feeling greasy or straw-like. And I don't like my scalp itching, which it does too soon after using the shampoo bar. With liquid shampoo I can go for several days before my scalp starts to itch, and my hair looks and feels clean, not straw-like or dull the way it has begun to look with the shampoo bar. I do not and cannot use commercial conditioners because every single one of them I have ever used causes red blotches on my face & neck. I have used ACV as rinse, but don't really like doing so. I'm very much a 'minimal personal care products' kind of gal. The less there is to clutter up the shower, the better.
 
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