Zinc Oxide to whiten soap?

Discussion in 'Lye-Based Soap Forum' started by GardenGirl, Jul 15, 2010.

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  1. Jul 15, 2010 #1

    GardenGirl

    GardenGirl

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    I have a boatload of Zinc.

    Does it whiten soap? Any downsides? I've read about Titanium Dioxide being used for this purpose. Just wondering if Zinc does the same thing.
     
  2. Jul 15, 2010 #2

    Woodi

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    Never tried it, so I guess you can be the guinea pig and report back to us.
     
  3. Jul 20, 2010 #3

    GardenGirl

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    I'm certainly happy to try stuff. I'm certain I'm not the first to ever use zinc oxide in my soap, though!

    Well, I made a batch using about 1 TB of zinc oxide to color half of my 1 pound mold. (1 TB per 1/2 lb oils)

    I would not be able to compare to titanium dioxide as I've never used it.

    (The zinc certainly needs to be stick blended if there's any hope of not having small clumps.)

    So, I stick blended it into half the batter to make a two layer bar. This base soap recipe usually yields the standard handmade creamy-colored bar.

    Unfortunately, I decided to experiment with vetiver eo, which changed the base color of the soap to a much deeper cream color. So, my zinc part is definitely whiter than the non-zinced part, but it's still creamy because I used vetiver. Oops.

    It's only been curing a few days so I don't know how it'll feel being used.

    After cure, I'll report back if anyone is interested.
     
  4. Jul 27, 2010 #4

    jessicammorton

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    I am in the same quandry tonight...thought I had some titanium dioxide on hand but really what I have is zinc. My base formula produces a neutral, honey-wheat colored soap and I am hoping to whiten up part of it to make a a cream, or more opaque caramel-colored marble against a chocolate-colored base. I think a small amount of zinc should be OK, as it is used in many face creams (including the ones I make) as a natural sun protectant factor. I use a waaaay higher % of zinc in my creams than I would use to lighten a soap swirl, so I am not too concerned about the irritation factor - but it never hurts to research it. I'll let you know how mine turn out!
     
  5. Jul 28, 2010 #5

    Lindy

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    Zinc Oxide will add a very soothing quality to your soaps. It's often used in diaper rash creams and ointments. I've never heard of it being used to whiten soap - make sure you read what the maximum % is for usage.

    IF I need to whiten a soap I use Titanium Dioxide....
     
  6. Jul 28, 2010 #6

    jessicammorton

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    I used 2 tsp zinc oxide + 4 tsp cocoa powder in a 5.5 lb batch to give my soap a milk chocolate color...it worked very well, the soap I was making came out looking EXACTLY like chocolate cake batter, as I intended! My base is naturally honey-wheat colored.

    Good to know zinc is soothing...I did a little research and saw that it is used in an acne treatment soap. So I guess if you use a lot, it can be astringent? I will definitely get some titanium dioxide to have on hand, but the zinc seemed to work well for giving my soap the milky-opaque quality I was looking for. Not sure how it would perform as a whitening agent, you'd probably have to use a lot!
     
  7. Jul 28, 2010 #7

    Lindy

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    Actually Jessica when making an acne soap the last thing you want is astrigant - you're looking for something that will clean gently without upsetting the oil mantle otherwise you make it worse. The problem is that if you strip the oil mantle you cause the skin to create even more oil so then you have to use even more and the skin produces even more creating a snowball effect. The best thing you can do for acne is use the oil cleansing method a couple of times a week. The oil cleansing method is using 3 parts Grapeseed Oil (some people use Olive but I find it too heavy) and 1 part Castor. Keep in mind that Castor in its natural state is a little more drying so if the skin is really not all that oily then you want to change the recipe to 4 parts grapeseed or even jojoba to 1 part castor....
     
  8. Jul 28, 2010 #8

    Woodi

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    When testing for color, it's preferable to make a non-scented soap, cuz many of the scents do impart color.

    This soap testing is a never-ending barrel of fun! Hope you enjoy the process.
     
  9. Jan 28, 2016 #9

    Dyoder

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    I didn't see a specific answer to say that Zinc oxide works as well as Titanium, so I thought I'd offer my two cents.

    I've never tried using Zinc to whiten my soap, but I am an artist and I know that Zinc white paint is a more transparent white than Titanium white. In painting if you are trying to lighten a color, Titanium white is the way to go because its whitening power is much stronger. I would guess that the same thing applies in soaping. You can probably still use it, but I would venture to say that titanium will get the job done more readily.
     
    Sandra@SS and goldflds like this.

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