Ugly soap

Discussion in 'Beginners Soap Making Forum' started by ElaineJones, Jul 19, 2018.

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  1. Jul 19, 2018 #1

    ElaineJones

    ElaineJones

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    I'm new to soap making. I have made 3 batches now using recipes I found in a book that I bought. First I tried a hot process soap, I colored it with some orange coloring that I bought in the craft store, but I soon as I added Orange and cinnamon essential oils it seized up. I left it in the crock pot for several hours till it softened up enough to mold it. The end result was usable but ugly.

    The 2nd batch was cold process, I decided to use lavender and no colors. My lavender flowers all turned brown, so my soap looks like it is full of dead moths. I use it, but it's ugly.

    Make my 3rd batch today, another cold process. I used lavender infused water which I colored purple. As soon as I added the lye it turned brown, so I added more purple and it ended up a really weird shade of pea green. Another ugly batch.

    Thinking I should go back to buying soap at craft markets.
    20180719_135428.jpg 20180719_135432.jpg 20180719_134021.jpg
     
  2. Jul 19, 2018 #2

    lindakschickens

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    I actually like the way they look. I have made 5 batch's I only started making soap in the last week or 2. My first peach scented orange domes and 3rd soap milk honey and ground oats. Made one today specially for hair looks like mud with yellow petals and green leaves also forgot my soap molds but a scone box came in handy IMG_20180712_101453.jpg received_10217049430530910.jpeg Burst_Cover_GIF_Action_20180714054718.gif
     
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  3. Jul 19, 2018 #3

    dixiedragon

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    Elaine, don't give up! But STOP using craft store colorants! Nurture Soap sends orders of colors over $35 free shipping in the lower 48. Their colors are excellent! Also, you can save yourself some trouble and google, such as "cold process soap and lavender buds" and you'll find some info about it.

    I only buy my colors from soap companies, meaning they have pictures of their color in MP and CP soap. Another good company is Brambleberry.
     
  4. Jul 19, 2018 #4

    lindakschickens

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    forgot to add maybe look at natural colorants? I know Alkanet root does a pinkish-purple to purple grey from what i have read. Annatto seeds give a yellowish orange color carrot will give a pale to golden orange color. Tumeric will be from yellow to gold in color. Madder root depending on how it's infused and the amount can range from a pinky red to a redish purple. Tomato paste can do a yellow-orange red. Sea buckthorn oil can give a nice yellow color. You could use Indigo and the color will ranger from dark blue purple to a light blue. Gromwell root gives a purpley color. Maybe try clay's to if you don't want to buy dyes.
     
  5. Jul 19, 2018 #5

    soapmaker

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    Any kind of botanicals will turn brown in soap. Buy only colorants from a reputable supplier that's made specifically for soap. Do a search on this site for any question you may have or browse the beginners soapmaking forum or even the lye based soap forum before making more soap. But please don't give up. Use your ugly soap and be pleased that it's useful! Just don't give up, there's so much to learn and so much pleasure to have!
     
  6. Jul 19, 2018 #6

    dixiedragon

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    Natural colorants are less reliable and very persnickety. For example, to use alkanet, you have to infuse it in oil, then strain it out unless you want the bits in your soap. Then you have to just guess at how dark it will end up. And after all that - in my experience, it fades in about 6 months. Micas and oxides are easy to use and last.
     
  7. Jul 19, 2018 #7

    amd

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    I'm going to throw out a slight correction to this statement. I know calendula petals will hold their color in soap. I THINK (but can't verify because I've never used it) that cornflowers are another that will hold their color. Otherwise, yes, the more common botanicals such as lavender and rose petals will turn brown in soap. Chamomile does as well, but never to the extent that it's unattractive - I actually don't notice much of a difference as I think chamomile is ugly to start with, ha ha.

    There is also another more economical source for micas: Micas & More. It is a group buy, so she opens the group buy the first week of the month January through October, and then orders ship three weeks later, so if you are a patient sort of person it is worth the wait as her prices are about half of what I have seen at the ship on demand suppliers.
     
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  8. Jul 19, 2018 #8

    lindakschickens

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    That maybe true for some natural colors but if your into the whole all "natural" thing like me and don't mind color fade at some point then this is a option. Yes alkanet root is commonly infused in oil at 1/2tsp PPO. Some can be added to the lye solution others need to be infused in oil like alkanet root, others can be mixed with water an put in at trace. carrot juice used as a full replacement for water in soap etc. Yes to some they are a pain and can be less reliable and some fade more then others but they should not be discounted. but I do like mica's.

    Also I agree with amd chamomile is ugly to start with.
     
  9. Jul 20, 2018 #9

    earlene

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    Sometimes what you read about 'natural' colorants is not what you get.

    The madder root powder I have turns lye soap a brown with a reddish tinge, sort of like mahogany wood.

    [​IMG]

    Tomato paste for me gave no visible color at all, strangely enough. I really expected at least a pale orange, but what I got was whitish soap, except the part I colored with green mica. So I called that soap 'Green Tomatoes' since there was tomato paste in the soap; a very dark red tomato paste, incidentally. The soap is pretty, though, just not at all what I expected.

    [​IMG]
     
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  10. Jul 20, 2018 #10

    SoapAddict415

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    I've used spirulina infused in oil for CP. It was for the secret heart swirl challenge a while back. It was a gorgeous dark blue green for awhile then it morphed into a brownish green. I've used tumeric infused in oil too. The first soap was a creamy pale yellow so I used twice as much the next time and got a dark orange. It's not what I expected but it's still pretty. My first lavender soap looked exactly like yours. When working with natural colorants and botanicals I've learned to embrace the unexpected.
     
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  11. Jul 20, 2018 #11

    lindakschickens

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    I really like the color of your madder root soap how much did you use and what infusion method did you use? Read some place about making it into powder and chucking the powder in at thin trace and they got a bright bar. Also how much tomato paste did you use? Green tomato soap lol now I'm going to go dig out my friend green tamtoes movie lol.

    But yes natural colorants can go wonky some times they give you something really neat other times u can sit there and think how did I come to this color. Its just like soap you need to figure out how much you need ppo and what method of adding it to your soap works best for you the item your using to color your soap with and possibly the soap base. But don't give up seriously it's fun and you get a useable soap (normally) at the end of it.
     
  12. Jul 20, 2018 #12

    earlene

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    I wish I could remember. My hard drive died a few months ago & I lost all my formulas & detailed notes that I kept on the HD. I do have my handwritten notebook, but the details were typed into the copies of my formulas that I kept on the computer. I have since replaced the HD, but the loss of that information was unrecoverable. Only a few formulas had been backed up on the cloud.

    Anyway, I did an oil infusion, but don't recall how much madder root I used. The color gradations were obtained by adding more color to each container as I made the layers, so that part was 'by eye' as I wanted a gradient effect. It wasn't my most successful gradient soaps, but it was fun and I was learning a new-to-me process.

    As far as the Green Tomato Soap, thankfully my hand-written notes are more detailed. This was a dual lye soap, using a master-batched NaOH solution, so I didn't have a lot of liquid available for replacement to use as tomato paste. With the [40% lye concentration] that I used with this formula, only 3.5 ounces of liquid remained to be added & some of that was needed as water to dissolve the KOH. My notes show I added 78 grams of tomato sauce. OOPs, it wasn't tomato paste! I think I did not have any tomato paste at all on hand, so used tomato sauce instead, that's probably part of why it didn't add much color. Also the amount used. I also made other tomato soaps, but used darker micas & Dragon's Blood FO, so of course that soap was darker than the Green Tomato Soap in those cases. I guess maybe I never did actually use tomato paste, just tomato sauce.
     
  13. Jul 20, 2018 #13

    Obsidian

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    @ElaineJones the reason your first soap seized is the cinnamon essential oil. Spicy EO's like cinnamon and cloves are know for seizing. They are also skin irritants and should be used in small amounts.

    Not sure what you used to color your third batch with but lavender or purple colorants can be tricky. They need to be specifically for CP or they will morph. As mentioned, stay away from craft store colorants and fragrances.

    Brambleberry has a really nice lavender mica that stays true in CP. Even when buying colorants from a soap company, make sure to read the description, not all are stable.
     
  14. Jul 20, 2018 #14

    lindakschickens

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    I'm totally going to try what you did with the madder root it looks great I love it. Lol we all try stuff on the fly heck knows I do. But I think it was 1-2 tbs tamto paste ppo. ATM I'm playing round with infusing alkanet root and indigo in olive oil with white sage,Palo Santo and sandalwood. Also got a fine bag strainer specially for ppl who make their own oat milk and nut milks.
     
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  15. Jan 24, 2019 #15

    Sharon Patterson

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    Don't give up. This is a learning experience and those aren't failures, they are lessons. Just keep working at it and you will "get" it. It takes a while but just don't give up.
     
  16. Jan 24, 2019 #16

    Dawni

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    Keep soaping @ElaineJones you'll get there! If you saw some of the soaps I've been making, even now several months into it, you'd probably roll your eyes and ask yourself why does she keep doing it haha

    But seriously.. None of those look bad at all, in my opinion. Probably just not what you're expecting (research, research, research!), but if they feel nice then you can put all of it down as experience. At least you've got that part down, right? That's what I tell myself lol coz I suck at coloring haha

    I am only now venturing into natural colorants, aside from activated charcoal which seems to be the easiest to use. Turmeric sometimes gives me yellow, sometimes a tannish color depending on how I used it and my base oils. Same with moringa, different shades. Today I tried red sandalwood two ways. One did absolutely nothing and one turned a lovely fruit jam/date paste color hehe.
     
  17. Jan 25, 2019 #17

    Jeannie Hinyard

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    I don't know what kind of colorant you got at the craft store, but all the ones I ever seen at craft stores are meant to color Melt and Pour not cold or hot process soap. When you add lye to those colors, they usually morph into something else. Whether you want natural colorants such as alkanet, turmeric, etc., micas, or soap dyes, you are better off buying any of these from a soap supply. Places like Brambleberry show you what the colors look like in melt and pour or cold process and you know they are soap safe colorants. You don't waste so much money making soap that turns out a strange color.
     
  18. Jan 25, 2019 #18

    Marilyn Norgart

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    crafts direct here has both--they keep them semi separated on the shelves but not far enough for me, I only made that mistake once.
     

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