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Q-Lee

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Hello fellow soapers. Now I really need your knowledge, help and good ideas.
2 days ago (29.01.2019) I made a second attempt of liquid soap, and again had some challenges.

A bit history first.. The first batch I made did not work out very well, and I found two possible mistakes I made. (or so I thought). The changes I've done between attempt 1 and 2 is to increase the water amount from 50% to 65% and soap of heat instead of on the "heating pad" (such one the restaurants use to keep plates warm - temp between 120-140F).

1.batch attempt (with heat)
The soap batter did not behave according to any recipe I've read about at all! In short it said "tzap" after 5 -7 min with stick blending and went from liquid to semi hard and a not very pliable mass that was far from transparent :(
I very carefully added about 3oz with water, and gently squeezed and worked in the water (for an eternity of time) before it got transparent and tested neutral. From this batch I diluted a small amount in a glass. 3-4 days later it was clear, but with a milky residue at the bottom. Then I diluted a larger portion. Same result, but this time I got small white flakes floating on top (unsaponified oils I guess). Dilution rate 1:2,5 by the way.

Then batch 2 and now the recipe I've been using.

82% Olive oil
9% coconut oil 92*
9% Castor oil

Water as % of oil weight=65%
Glycerin as % of oil weight =30%
Super fat = 2%

Recipe run through SoapCalc. KOH checked at 90% purity

I mixed the glycerin in the oils and the KOH in the water. I feel this is the safest.
The oils and glycerin had a temp of 160F - the KOH solution 140F. I added the KOH solution gently to the oils. After about 45 min (the pot was of heat) with alternated stick blending and mixing the batter looked like thick curdled milk. Then I switched from stick blender to spatula and put the pot on my heating pad since..well something felt not quite right with the appearance and consistency. After 5 minutes with spatula mixing the batter changed from curdled thick milk to a thick velvety porridge and 5 minutes after that it became so thick that it was more like I scooped and kneaded it around in the pot. I then turned the heating pad of and assumed that time would do its thing over the night.

I zapp tested next morning (30.01.2019) -no zapp, so that must certainly be good, but the paste was not transparent.

TODAY 31.01.2019 MY SOAP PASTE IS STILL MILKY- WHITE -YELLOW -ISH AND NOT TRANSPARENT AT ALL! WHAT HAVE I DONE WRONG!
 

DeeAnna

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Why do you think something is wrong? I don't expect the paste should be transparent, but apparently you do? Have you tried diluting a sample? What does the diluted soap look like?
 

IrishLass

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Take heart! It's not necessary for paste to be transparent in order to end up with transparent liquid soap. In other words, milky-white, yellowish, opaque paste does not equal failure. :) Case in point- I make a formula with olive, castor, coconut and glycerin (different proportions than yours), and depending on how I incorporate my glycerin to this particular formula, my paste will either turn out a fairly firm, beautiful transparent amber color, or else end up a more soft-ish opaque and yellow color- much like the appearance of a pot of vanilla pudding, actually. lol But no matter what the paste ends up looking like, my finished, diluted soap always ends up a beautifully transparent, light amber hue.

Basically, I end up with the beautifully transparent amber paste whenever I've used the 'pharmacists's method of mixing the KOH and glycerin together and bringing to the boiling point on the stove to dissolve the KOH, and I end up with opaque, 'vanilla pudding' when I instead dissolve my KOH in water first before adding my glycerin to the solution, and then adding the solution to my oils.


IrishLass :)
 

Clarice

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Agree with paste need not be clear to get clear soap!

I followed this recipe and was very glad for her pictures because several times I was 100% sure I had complete crap on my hands - her pictures encouraged me to persevere!

https://thethingswellmake.com/easy-beginner-diy-liquid-castile-soap-recipe/

I used her 100% olive oil recipe to create a true castille soap, and also because I find Dr. Bronner's soap very drying, so I assumed I would find her "replica" drying as well.

My paste ended up looking / feeling sort of like those semi-opaque pencil erasers I had as a kid (I can smell them now! YUM!). I was 100% sure I had failed when i carved it out of the crock pot the next AM

Today I looked at a jar into which I had put chunks of soap concentrate and distilled water and it is beautifully clear.

Ah, the many mysteries of soap!
 

lenarenee

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I've found that the more mixing I do with the paste, the more opaque it seems to end up. Probably contains more air; honey does the same thing (whipped honey). But with a recipe like yours with a low sf, it should be nice and clear after diluting.
 

Q-Lee

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Why do you think something is wrong? I don't expect the paste should be transparent, but apparently you do? Have you tried diluting a sample? What does the diluted soap look like?
Sorry for late reply. My idea of LS paste to always be transparent comes from reading numerous webpages regarding LS.Most of them show beautiful transparent or amber paste :oops:.
Since it I posted my tread (and did not get any replies within a couple of days) I decided to put the pot on my heating pad for 6 hours-Not much changed in appearance. So then I decided to dilute in ratio 1:2,5 to see what happened.The diluted soap is pro 08.02.2019 opaque with some ...small tiny,tiny specs of particles. But not quite so much white residue at the bottom like in my first attempt. Very thin but superb in a foamer bottle and it feels very nice:)

I also posted the same questions on a Norwegian soap making forum -It may in fact be that some of my LS problems (residues etc) are due to the KOH.
KOH is not easy to buy in Norway,and I got mine from an other soap maker. Probably it is lower than 90% :(
 

Q-Lee

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I've found that the more mixing I do with the paste, the more opaque it seems to end up. Probably contains more air; honey does the same thing (whipped honey). But with a recipe like yours with a low sf, it should be nice and clear after diluting.
That is something I've also noticed. But still not clear soap after diluting :(
 

Q-Lee

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Take heart! It's not necessary for paste to be transparent in order to end up with transparent liquid soap. In other words, milky-white, yellowish, opaque paste does not equal failure. :) Case in point- I make a formula with olive, castor, coconut and glycerin (different proportions than yours), and depending on how I incorporate my glycerin to this particular formula, my paste will either turn out a fairly firm, beautiful transparent amber color, or else end up a more soft-ish opaque and yellow color- much like the appearance of a pot of vanilla pudding, actually. lol But no matter what the paste ends up looking like, my finished, diluted soap always ends up a beautifully transparent, light amber hue.

Basically, I end up with the beautifully transparent amber paste whenever I've used the 'pharmacists's method of mixing the KOH and glycerin together and bringing to the boiling point on the stove to dissolve the KOH, and I end up with opaque, 'vanilla pudding' when I instead dissolve my KOH in water first before adding my glycerin to the solution, and then adding the solution to my oils.


IrishLass :)
Thank's for uplifting comments.:) It's on my list to try "your recipe",but I wanted to get a bit experience with LS by making an easy recipe or two first. As mentioned in an other reply, the residue and clarity problems after diluting can relate to the purity of the KOH. I'll try to experiment a bit to see if this is really the case.
 

lenarenee

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That is something I've also noticed. But still not clear soap after diluting :(
Since your SF was 2%, my next thought was the KOH purity was not 90% for some reason. Nothing you stated made me think there was anything wrong with the color of your paste. Since the diluted soap was cloudy - there excess oils is a possible culprit. Or possibly there's more ingredients in the glycerin than just glycerin?

I've had cloudy stuff on the bottom of my clear diluted soap - but it was from using a fragrance that didn't mix in well (some do, some don't without polysorbate). Did you add fragrance? Or was there fragrance in any of your ingredients?
 

Clarice

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Ultimately, my Humblebee paste yielded a 100% clear and beautiful liquid - and that was with me making some major errors. Have you tried her recipe? I used the one for Castille liquid soap, NOT the Dr. Bronner "copy" as I personally find Dr. Bronner rather drying.

Next I am going to try IrishLass Creamy Cocoa Shea GLS recipe!

https://www.soapmakingforum.com/threads/my-creamy-cocoa-shea-gls-tutorial.57974/
 

lenarenee

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I've used the Dr. Bonner real stuff and it about peeled my skin off - it was so drying!

The only ls I've made is Susie's version (but I think it was Irish Lass's recipe) - where the KOH and glycerin are NOT heated. It makes the most beautiful liquid gold soap that I lost interest in trying any others.

And we're completely out too - and need to make more paste. I prefer bar soap, but my youngster is 11 and prefers to scrape her nails into the bars - so I make her liquid to use.
 

Q-Lee

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Since your SF was 2%, my next thought was the KOH purity was not 90% for some reason. Nothing you stated made me think there was anything wrong with the color of your paste. Since the diluted soap was cloudy - there excess oils is a possible culprit. Or possibly there's more ingredients in the glycerin than just glycerin?

I've had cloudy stuff on the bottom of my clear diluted soap - but it was from using a fragrance that didn't mix in well (some do, some don't without polysorbate). Did you add fragrance? Or was there fragrance in any of your ingredients?
The glycerin is bough from www.thesoapkitchen.co.uk -So I'm pretty sure that's checked of the list. I haven't added any FO or EO
 

Q-Lee

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Ultimately, my Humblebee paste yielded a 100% clear and beautiful liquid - and that was with me making some major errors. Have you tried her recipe? I used the one for Castille liquid soap, NOT the Dr. Bronner "copy" as I personally find Dr. Bronner rather drying.

Next I am going to try IrishLass Creamy Cocoa Shea GLS recipe!

https://www.soapmakingforum.com/threads/my-creamy-cocoa-shea-gls-tutorial.57974/
When you refer to Humblebee- The website or? If it's to the web site,I haven't found any recipe for pure LS Castille soap there.
 
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