Trying to run before I can walk!!

Discussion in 'Beginners Soap Making Forum' started by The Cat Lady, Apr 1, 2019.

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  1. Apr 1, 2019 #1

    The Cat Lady

    The Cat Lady

    The Cat Lady

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    Well well well - I think I learnt a lesson the hard way!! I'd only ever made two batches of soap before so thought I would then try and do a Taiwan swirl!! Oh dear!!!!!!
    Lessons learned include- Do not use cheap fragrances you bought on EBay - Don't stick blend to a thick trace - maybe add the fragrance and the sodium lactate after mixing the colours! Do I even need sodium lactate? Not sure?
    As soon as I added the fragrance it seemed to set . I could barely pour it out. It was lumpy and setting fast. No time for any kind of swirl or pattern - more like can I even get this into the loaf mould!!! I managed to squidge it in and 24 hours later I've cut it and it's not quite as horrendous as I thought it would be! It's vanilla, caramel and chocolate.
    So - thought I'd try again and had white, pale blue, blue and purple coulr in jugs all ready to make a Taiwan swirl. Thinking in my head -blend to a light trace --- oops!! There we go again - it's setting - and fast. Quickly get it into colour jugs and by now it's almost solid. Squidge it like mashed potato into the mould!!! lol

    I think they're going to be useable and friends I may gift them to won't know the mess up!

    Main lesson learnt - don't run before I can walk. Or KISS - keep it simple stupid!!! I need to master the basics first!
     

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  2. Apr 1, 2019 #2

    Deborah Long

    Deborah Long

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    Looks great! I love how when we think we're messing up it still is soap! lol
    No, sodium lactate is not a requirement. It helps the soap harden faster so you can unmold sooner. I add it to my cooled lye water just before combining. Sounds like your FOs got you good this weekend! Maybe try your swirl with no fragrance first?

    Have you seen the video on stick blending just to emulsion? It sure helped me...
    https://www.soapmakingforum.com/threads/stickblending-to-emulsion.60618/
     
  3. Apr 1, 2019 #3

    dixiedragon

    dixiedragon

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    Even if it's not what you were going for - still looks good! What fragrance?
     
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  4. Apr 1, 2019 #4

    cmzaha

    cmzaha

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    It is much better for you to purchase Fragrances from a company such Natures Garden where you have reviews available to read. What you had was a seizure considered soap on a stick, which is almost always caused from the fragrance. Even buying quality fragrance from suppliers florals, rain type, spicy and some herbal tend to accelerate trace, which you will usually find out by reading the reviews.
     
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  5. Apr 1, 2019 #5

    Dawni

    Dawni

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    My first born did that. Tried to run before walking. Or rather, tried to skip before walking.......

    Anyway haha.. Sometimes soap can surprise you. I had planned a really nice swirl but my batter sped up even without an FO and I ended up with a soap everyone thought was awesome haha. I don't know if I should even attempt to duplicate it lol

    I think it's great that you still managed layers.. And I like that color combo :)
     
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  6. Apr 1, 2019 #6

    The Cat Lady

    The Cat Lady

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    For the brownish one I used chocolate, caramel and vanilla fragrance and tried to replicate the colours of them. For the blue/purple one it was an ocean spray type fragrance. I've just been watching a youtube video on using fragrance and interestingly she let her lye cool overnight and had the oils at room temperature. I think I mixed mine at about 120F so next time will make sure it's a much lower temp before mixing. And might try essential oils instead. I think it was a seizure as it happened so quickly and solidified in a few seconds!!
    Thanks so much for all the helpful words x
     
  7. Apr 2, 2019 #7

    snappyllama

    snappyllama

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    I think your soaps came out really nice. Don't worry - I've been making soap for a while and still have a lot of Plan B (or Plan C or Plan D or OMG - JUST GET IT IN THE MOLD :hairpulling:) batches.

    A few suggestions for trying out more intricate swirls...

    Spend more time stirring and less time pulsing with your stick blender. Before I started soaping, I watched a lot of videos and then would mimic how long they pulsed. The trouble is - the videos were for gigantic batches and mine were a measly 2lbs. I was stick blending the beejesus out of my batter.

    Some FO scent types tend to be problematic... spicy, floral, and sea scents often accelerate. Plan your design to match how the FO should behave - and then get ready for those plans to sometimes go out the window. :)

    Soap at room temperature.

    Premix your colorants in some batch oils or water/glycerin. You won't have to blend nearly as much.

    Pre-blend your FO into your cooled batch oils. If I have a seriously misbehaving FO, I feel like doing this buys me a little more time and at least I got all the scent mixed in. :)

    Happy Soaping!
     
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