Water pools on top of soap

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saturday

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Hi there, this is my fourth batch of soap I have made. I noticed that water pools on top of soap few hours after I pour it to my mold. Last three batches that I made didn't do this. My recipe:



How it looks like after few hours of pouring it to the mold


I mixed the lye water solution to melted beeswax and oils at 48 C (118 F), then I hand stirred it until it reached light trace and proceed to add fragrance. After adding fragrance, the soap thickens rapidly and appears to be ricing. So I speed up the mixing and poured to the mold.

Is this soap usable? What can I do to save this batch? Help is very much appreciated. Thank you!
 

shunt2011

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It could just be the fragrance sweating out of it as it wasn't mixed in enough. I've had this occur a time or two. Just let it sit and see if it reasorbs. Mine has in the past.
 

MySoapyHeart

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I may have misunderstood something, but add my two scents anyway : P

You may have separation because of false trace. You have Palm, Coconut and Beeswax, those are all hard in room temp. You say you handwisked until trace? If you handwisked and reached what you perceived to be trace, it was in fact not trace, but what we call FALSE trace. False trace is when solid oils and waxes start to cool off quickly and harden to make a slurry that may look like trace. When you added the cooler fragrance oil in the cooling batter, it got even cooler and started to rice as you said. Your hard oils/wax clumped up.

As soon as you put something like that in the mold and let it sit, things will separate out. If you handstirred this batter, and did not using a stickblender, your oils and lye did not incorporate enough, thus separating water and oils out in the mold.

Depending on how long ago you made this you need to take this soap out of the mold and stickblend it into submission (if possible) and then see if it will get together. I personally would then cook it in a crockpot to ensure the saponification is fulfilled, especially with all those hard oils.

Others may have something else to add. Good luck! : )
 
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Susie

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Please clarify what you mean by hand stir. If indeed you stirred with a non-stickblender, you got false trace as said above. And you need to dump the entire thing into a crock pot and hot process it. Use gloves to handle it, as you probably still have lye floating around.
 
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saturday

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By hand stirring, I mean that I stir it using spoon, I didn't use stick blender.

In the place where I live, palm oil and coconut oil are liquid at room temperature because of our climate is hot and humid where it reaches 82-94 F all year long.

I just poured this soap to mold 4 hours ago. How long do I have until it can't be saved using hot process anymore? Would you guys care to explain how to hot process it? Thank you very much.
 

Susie

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If you have a crock pot, dump it now into there, turn to high to get it heating (wear gloves!). Continue heating and stirring frequently, but not constantly until you see it turn to gel. At that point, pour/plop it back into the mold and allow to set up about 12-18 or so hours.

If you do not have a crock pot, dump it into a stainless steel pot and heat and stir over med-low heat until you get gel.

If you intend to use beeswax, palm, lard, or tallow, you need to use a stick blender or plan to HP. They harden back up too fast for hand stirring. I understand that palm is liquid at room temperature there, but you are still going to get false trace with beeswax.

By the way, why are you using beeswax and corn oil? What do you intend them to bring to the soap? If you don't know, try making a batch without them to see if you like the soap without them. Make every ingredient prove to you that you LOVE it, or eliminate it.
 
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saturday

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I just reheat it and got this sad looking soap :mrgreen: At least all I care for now is that it's usable since I'm going to use it myself. Next time I will make sure I'm using a stick blender. I have it but my last batch seem to be fine without it, I decided not to use it. My first two batches of soap seem to trace too fast using stick blender, especially after pouring fragrance. Will it work if I use the stick blender to reach trace, then hand stir it using spoon after adding fragrance?

I'm trying beeswax because my previous batches are too soft. First batch is unusable; it's very soft and jelly like, I can't even unmold it since it's too soft and sticky. Second batch is hard after curing, but turns mushy & dissolves too fast after few shower. Third batch is better all around but still need to be harder. Corn oil is said to be conditioning, so I tried to use it.
 

shunt2011

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I just reheat it and got this sad looking soap :mrgreen: At least all I care for now is that it's usable since I'm going to use it myself. Next time I will make sure I'm using a stick blender. I have it but my last batch seem to be fine without it, I decided not to use it. My first two batches of soap seem to trace too fast using stick blender, especially after pouring fragrance. Will it work if I use the stick blender to reach trace, then hand stir it using spoon after adding fragrance?

I'm trying beeswax because my previous batches are too soft. First batch is unusable; it's very soft and jelly like, I can't even unmold it since it's too soft and sticky. Second batch is hard after curing, but turns mushy & dissolves too fast after few shower. Third batch is better all around but still need to be harder. Corn oil is said to be conditioning, so I tried to use it.
1. did you use the same recipe for your other batches?
2. When were they made. If they were just recently made they will melt quickly when used. You need to give them a good cure of at least 4 weeks.

Corn Oil is not an oil I would use. I would discontinue it as it's prone to DOS. I would just add the difference into your Palm or Olive. But, be sure to run through soap calculator for changes.

Yes, you can stickblend to emulsion and then hand stir in your fragrance. Just be sure you are using skin safe fragrances that are made to be used in soap.
 

cmzaha

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I am guessing it is separation and mostly oil pooling. When a fragrance decides to be hateful and rice and/or separate you cannot just stir and pour it into the mold, because it will continue to separate. You need to SB it into submission and if that does not work pour it into a crock pot and cook. If you do not have a crock pot, but a cover on it and let it sit for awhile, go back and SB, keep doing this until it comes together, them quickly pour into your mold. Also, when a soap goes soap on a stick you can cover the container and let it sit until it starts to gel, stir and quickly pour into the mold. The resulting soap will look like a rustic looking hp soap.
 

Susie

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If you will give us your recipes on the other batches, as well as the name and brand of fragrance you are using, we can try to help you troubleshoot them.
 

saturday

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1. did you use the same recipe for your other batches?
2. When were they made. If they were just recently made they will melt quickly when used. You need to give them a good cure of at least 4 weeks.

Corn Oil is not an oil I would use. I would discontinue it as it's prone to DOS. I would just add the difference into your Palm or Olive. But, be sure to run through soap calculator for changes.

Yes, you can stickblend to emulsion and then hand stir in your fragrance. Just be sure you are using skin safe fragrances that are made to be used in soap.
1. I used different recipes for every batch.
2. They have been unmolded and cured for 4 - 6 weeks before using.

Thanks for the info! I will try not to use it in the future. We had quite a lot of corn oil because our father prefers to have his meals cooked with it :) My fragrances are all cosmetic grade but I am not sure if it's 'soap friendly'.

I am guessing it is separation and mostly oil pooling. When a fragrance decides to be hateful and rice and/or separate you cannot just stir and pour it into the mold, because it will continue to separate. You need to SB it into submission and if that does not work pour it into a crock pot and cook. If you do not have a crock pot, but a cover on it and let it sit for awhile, go back and SB, keep doing this until it comes together, them quickly pour into your mold. Also, when a soap goes soap on a stick you can cover the container and let it sit until it starts to gel, stir and quickly pour into the mold. The resulting soap will look like a rustic looking hp soap.
When I dumped it to stainless steel pot, it appears to do well without a SB. I do have prepared it beside me just in case but I see no separation after I reheat it. Thanks for the tip. I'm sure it will be handy in the future.

If you will give us your recipes on the other batches, as well as the name and brand of fragrance you are using, we can try to help you troubleshoot them.


This is my second batch. It is firm after curing, but it went mushy too fast after few uses. It's also very drying for the skin. I'm guessing I'm using too much coconut oil and castor oil; also lack of hard oils in the recipe.



This is my third batch that is all around better. It's no longer drying to the skin and lasts longer in the shower. However I would like a firmer bar.

Both second and third batch didn't need SB. They were fragranced using something called 'X for Men' from Chemarome Spain; a woody aromatic fragrance. The fourth batch, which this thread about, is fragranced using something called 'Floral Herbs' from company called Reka.
 

penelopejane

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This is my third batch that is all around better. It's no longer drying to the skin and lasts longer in the shower. However I would like a firmer bar.

Both second and third batch didn't need SB. They were fragranced using something called 'X for Men' from Chemarome Spain; a woody aromatic fragrance. The fourth batch, which this thread about, is fragranced using something called 'Floral Herbs' from company called Reka.
I've made a 30% OO, 30% CO, 30% palm and 10% Castor. i used the same SF and the same Lye concentration. It was as hard as a rock 4 weeks after cure. It took a lot of stick blending. I can't believe 1.5% of Corn oil made that much difference but perhaps it did.

I think the first thing you should do is buy a SB and experiment with trace. I also think you should try and buy FO's from a soap supplies place. Just to see if that is the cause of your problems.
 

Susie

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I've made a 30% OO, 30% CO, 30% palm and 10% Castor. i used the same SF and the same Lye concentration. It was as hard as a rock 4 weeks after cure. It took a lot of stick blending. I can't believe 1.5% of Corn oil made that much difference but perhaps it did.

I think the first thing you should do is buy a SB and experiment with trace. I also think you should try and buy FO's from a soap supplies place. Just to see if that is the cause of your problems.
I have made a 33% lard, 30% CO, 32% OO, 5% Castor Oil with 5% superfat. It took a lot of stickblending. I think you are not getting to trace. I also would highly suggest that you only purchase FOs from soapmaking companies that are specified as suitable for making soap.

Try a recipe more like this:

50% Palm, or Lard, or Tallow
30% Olive Oil
15% Coconut Oil
5% Castor Oil
5% Superfat

This should give you a good firm bar that is not drying.

You can then try going up on the palm, lard, or tallow, and down on the olive oil to see which blend you prefer. After that, you can try adding one of the other oils and/or butters at the time to see what they bring to the soap. Try 5-10% of one at the time (substitute out for some of the olive oil).

I would also add my fragrances to the oils before adding the lye water. This will allow you to see problems coming and not have to scramble at the end.
 

saturday

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I've made a 30% OO, 30% CO, 30% palm and 10% Castor. i used the same SF and the same Lye concentration. It was as hard as a rock 4 weeks after cure. It took a lot of stick blending. I can't believe 1.5% of Corn oil made that much difference but perhaps it did.

I think the first thing you should do is buy a SB and experiment with trace. I also think you should try and buy FO's from a soap supplies place. Just to see if that is the cause of your problems.
I have a SB but I just didn't use it at my second and third batch. I will surely use it on my next batches to come! The reason why I used my current fragrance oil is because I have loads of them as I use them for my other project :mrgreen: I'll try looking for one that is purposed for soap making.

I have made a 33% lard, 30% CO, 32% OO, 5% Castor Oil with 5% superfat. It took a lot of stickblending. I think you are not getting to trace. I also would highly suggest that you only purchase FOs from soapmaking companies that are specified as suitable for making soap.

Try a recipe more like this:

50% Palm, or Lard, or Tallow
30% Olive Oil
15% Coconut Oil
5% Castor Oil
5% Superfat

This should give you a good firm bar that is not drying.

You can then try going up on the palm, lard, or tallow, and down on the olive oil to see which blend you prefer. After that, you can try adding one of the other oils and/or butters at the time to see what they bring to the soap. Try 5-10% of one at the time (substitute out for some of the olive oil).

I would also add my fragrances to the oils before adding the lye water. This will allow you to see problems coming and not have to scramble at the end.
Wow, thank you very much for the sample recipe and tips! I'll try them in the future :)

Anyway the reheated soap doesn't seem to gel. Is it normal?
 

Susie

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If you look at the pictures you posted of the "reheated" soap, it did gel, in the pot, where it was supposed to.
 

DeeAnna

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Yep, Susie's right -- the reheated soap did go into gel. The waxy translucency of the soap in the mold is proof.

There are a LOT of fragrances that work great in many products but are terrible in lye-based soap. The website for Chemarome Spain doesn't say they have any fragrances specifically suitable for lye-based soap. They mention their scents are used in detergents, shampoo, shower gel, but these products are often synthetic detergent based, not lye-soap based. Reka looks like they have a few lye-resistant scents and they do mention they formulate scents for use in soap, but they don't give specifics.

Like the others have suggested, I'd look for scents that have been tested in soap and choose a few to try that are known to behave nicely. SMF has a fragrance oil database that might be helpful to you. See: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet...yaTdRf1M/edit?authkey=CMTEtswL#gid=1231634072
 

DeeAnna

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Well, gel Is what happens when the soap melts. :D
 

DocMar

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Quite frankly, and don't want to sound negative, I personally would have thrown it in the bin. You can remould, crockpot and reheat/cook the hell out of it, but in the end, are you prepared to allow your families to use it on your there skin, or if your selling it ready to answer for any personal damage caused to someone else. At the end of the day its your call.

I have thrown a few big batches out due this type of mistake, as my Mentor once said, Is trying to fix this going to help the mistake or make it worse and or unsafe. And treat it as a learning curve.
 
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cmzaha

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There is really No reason to toss a batch of soap. Almost all can be saved, whether you choose to or not. Some people to not have the luxury and finances to just waste supplies. Most soap is fixable. If it does not zap it will not harm you as far as the soap goes.
You are welcome to your opinion but this is not a thread to start a Palm pro or con discussion. You don't like it don't use it, :silent:
 
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