would a lye soap disintegrate

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by LazerBottle, Sep 9, 2019.

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  1. Sep 9, 2019 #1

    LazerBottle

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    Does a hard lye soap disintegrate/dissolve/become unusable quickly if its hardness is well within recommended values but its condition, creamy or bubbly values are far above recommended? Or is it only the hardness value which defines if the soap bar will turn into mud after a few uses?
     
  2. Sep 9, 2019 #2

    DeeAnna

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    I think you need to give specific information about your question to get decent advice. You're asking a general question and you're going to just get guesses.

    First off, hardness tells you nothing about solubility or longevity of the soap. Second, there are some "not within the recommended limits" types of soaps that perform decently and some do not.

    So what's the fatty acid profile? What is the actual recipe including additives? How do you make and cure the soap? How do you use it? Is the soap allowed to drain and dry between uses? Anything you can offer by way of specifics will get you more and better responses.
     
  3. Sep 9, 2019 #3

    LazerBottle

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    This is the particular recipe, no dyes or scents 45% lye to oils.
     

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  4. Sep 9, 2019 #4

    DeeAnna

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    One thing that jumps out at me is the lye concentration is low -- only 25%. That's tolerable for a hot process method where there's a fair bit of water evaporation, but it's excessive for a cold process method. This soap will require a longer cure to be at its best.

    It has almost no palmitic or stearic acid in it so it's going to be fairly water soluble and won't have an especially long life. Again a long cure will be beneficial.

    It's an odd recipe. What were your goals for this soap?

    On a related note, I strongly recommend using lye concentration or water:lye ratio and ignoring "water as % of oils". You will get more consistent results in your overall soap making if you make this change.
     
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  5. Sep 9, 2019 #5

    LazerBottle

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    Trying to get this to be very bubbly while not overly soft to prevent it from disintegrating/dissolving rapidly. No longer using lye to oils rather lye concentration.

    Almond butter better suits this making it harder whilst retaining its other properties especially the conditioning which it needs since its cleaning value is above recommended range. Is this butter is fine? https://www.amazon.com/dp/B074M9M2F1/

    Ingredients labels says only almonds. https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41J2E1ccwRL.jpg
     

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  6. Sep 9, 2019 #6

    DeeAnna

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    Hmmm. I suspect you're letting "the numbers" drive you to this solution, and I want to caution you to avoid this mindset.

    A physically hard-like-a-rock soap is not necessarily long lived, so you need to let go of that idea. Soap needs a decent % of palmitic and stearic acids to be harder AND have a longer life. Coconut oil "marine" soap and classic olive oil soap are hard soaps, for example, but they are not long lived recipes because they don't have much palmitic and stearic acids to offset the highly soluble oleic or lauric-myristic acids.

    Your recipe doesn't have much stearic-palmitic either. The recipe will certainly make soap, no doubt about that, but it's unrealistic to expect this recipe will make a super bubbly, hard, and long lived bar.

    Another unrealistic expectation is a high conditioning number can compensate for a high cleansing number. For one thing, as cleansing (myristic + lauric acids) goes up, conditioning (oleic, linoleic, linolenic, and ricinoleic acids) must go down, all other things being equal. All of the fatty acids have to add up to 100%, so increasing some fatty acids means the others have to decrease.

    For another thing, a high conditioning number does not make the soap necessarily milder. I know the name "conditioning" implies this is the case, but that's not accurate and is one of the big failings of this system.

    If you want to add castor, I suggest limiting it to 5% -- no more than 10%. Castor does NOT make a soap more bubbly. Again, I know "the numbers" imply this is the case, but that's yet another failing of this system -- we do not see this effect in real life soap. If your soap isn't very bubbly without castor, it won't be any more bubbly with castor. What castor can do is make the lather more stable.

    I'm not saying "the numbers" aren't helpful, but the names for "the numbers" cannot be taken literally. "The numbers" are basically various percentages of fatty acids. If you want to use these values meaningfully, you have to look at each number as a group of fatty acids, and understand the qualities that those fatty acids provide. More on my website: https://classicbells.com/soap/soapCalcNumbers.asp

    Many soap recipes have a medium amount of stearic and palmitic acid -- maybe around 30% or a little higher -- a lower amount of lauric and myristic acid -- anywhere from zero to 25% -- with the remainder of the fatty acids being mostly oleic acid. There are good reasons for this. I'm not saying every soap recipe meets these criteria, but the ones that do not are known for certain limitations.

    I don't have an opinion about almond butter and how it works in soap. I've never used it and have no idea how it performs.
     
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  7. Sep 10, 2019 #7

    earlene

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  8. Sep 10, 2019 #8

    LazerBottle

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    Are there any decently formulated combinations which make mentioned properties? Perhaps there is a database of combinations available depicting their properties.
    Recipe was amended mentioned oil isn't included.
     
  9. Sep 10, 2019 #9

    shunt2011

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    Both of your recipes are very odd for most soapmakers. Why are you using fractionated CO instead of regular CO? High CO soaps will be more water soluble and won't last as long. You need higher palmetic/stearic qualities to make a harder longer lasting bar of soap (palm, lard, tallow, soy wax). Also, that high of a cleansing # will be extremely stripping of the skin. Too much castor oil will make for a softer bar as well. Keeping it 5-10% is adequate in most cases. With that much CO your superfat is too low as well.
     
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  10. Sep 10, 2019 #10

    srenee

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    This has been a very informative post. Thank you for sharing your knowledge on the science of soaping. Many people in general just think putting together a few nice oils will make a good soap but they fail to think about how they play together.
     
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  11. Sep 10, 2019 #11

    LazerBottle

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    Whats a decent recipe for aforementioned properties - from greatest to least bubbly, hardness, cleansing, conditioning. Prefeably with any of Coconut oil (ordinary or fractionated), pistachio castor olive canola oils. There are many practical considerations typically obtained from practice which calculators do not provide.
     
  12. Sep 10, 2019 #12

    amd

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  13. Sep 10, 2019 #13

    shunt2011

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    There are many recipes shared on the forum. You can make a soap with olive, coconut (not fractionated), and castor. However adding palm, lard, tallow or wax will make a better bar. High liquid oil soap will need a longer cure.
     
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  14. Sep 10, 2019 #14

    IrishLass

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    A 'classic', time tested, foundational/beginner recipe is one that is called the 'basic trinity' formula because it uses only 3 oils/fats. Forum member Zany started a thread about it a couple of years ago here: https://www.soapmakingforum.com/threads/trinity-of-oils-starter-formula.64910/

    It's a great basic formula that you can learn a lot about formulating from and use as a jumping-off point in designing your own. That's how many of us started out. It produces a generally hard, long-lasting bubbly bar.

    One of my favorite keeper recipes is a tweak of the basic trinity that ended up turning into a quaternity for me. It's made with lard (good source of stearic/palmitic), olive oil, coconut oil and castor oil. Eventually, my quaternity became a jumping-off point of its own as I developed even more lovely tweaks of it.

    If you want a long-lasting soap, you really do need to have some fats with a high percent of stearic and/or palmitic in them as part of the formula. Either that, or the addition of something like beeswax or soy wax, but you need to be careful with waxes because too much can diminish your lather.....and can also make soaping tricky (more so with beeswax than with soy wax from what I understand).


    IrishLass :)
     
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  15. Sep 11, 2019 #15

    Dawni

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    You're right, but the results from the calculators are good baselines for beginners, as long as they're not taken literally. The link DeeAnna gave you is a good starting point but you will still need to know what properties the oils you're using will be contributed to the soap.

    When I was starting I wanted to get all my numbers within the safe zones... And with experience, meaning you will have to make soap successfully and sometimes not, you'll find where you can adjust and still make good soap.

    Also, by experimenting, you'll find what numbers actually work for you. For example, a 15 cleansing number with 5% superfat might work for some people but not for some who like a 12 cleansing 3% superfat instead.

    As far as hardness goes, I don't look at it anymore once I discovered how to calculate longevity, from that same link above. This calc does it for you also. I use cocoa and/or shea and/or mango butter to increase my longevity. Others use palm, others use soy wax. Lard also increases it some.
     
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  16. Sep 23, 2019 #16

    LazerBottle

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    There is lots of coconut oil in this to make up for the low palmitic or stearic. The avacado butter is a filler would wouldn't cause it to become too soft.

    For the hot process is the amount of super fat too much?
     

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    Last edited: Sep 23, 2019
  17. Sep 23, 2019 #17

    DeeAnna

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    Yes, that is way too much superfat, whether hot process or cold. The method doesn't make any difference -- it's the recipe that you should look at when determining superfat. Why do you want that much superfat in this recipe?

    I don't see how coconut "makes up for" a low amount of palmitic and stearic acids. Explain your logic?

    All of the fats you're using are edible. Why is edibility a point in favor for almond butter? Maybe almond butter is cheap in LA, but it's expensive everywhere I've ever looked.
     
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  18. Sep 23, 2019 #18

    LazerBottle

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    It was simply perdue the great amount of the coconut oil which is a strong cleaner along with the 45% lye content.

    Considering the many oils/butters which may be employed in its place almond butter is certainly inexpensive also readily available. It can be self served at stores with turning machines making butter from the variety of nuts inputted into it the machine.
     
  19. Sep 23, 2019 #19

    DeeAnna

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    "...It was simply perdue the great amount of the coconut oil which is a strong cleaner..."

    The coconut oil is only 25% of the recipe and the lauric and myristic acid content is only 17%. I fail to see why that is a "great amount".

    "...along with the 45% lye content..."

    I don't understand this phrase. I don't see 45% anywhere in your recipe except for the almond butter.
     
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  20. Sep 23, 2019 #20

    shunt2011

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    I also think you've got almond butter you eat confused with almond butter made for soap making. Almond Butter for soapmaking is generally a blend of Sweet Almond Oil and Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil.
     
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