ZNSC with Well Water

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Well-Known Member
Apr 5, 2022
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Lyons, Colorado
I made 4 loaves of Zany's No Slime Castile this past week.

I've had a few customers request Coconut Oil Free soap, so I thought this would be a good opportunity to try Castile. The short curing time of Zany's method (supposed to be 2 weeks) was also very appealing, as my sales have been much higher than anticipated and I'm scrambling to keep up.

100% Olive Oil
10g Kaolin Clay per loaf (mixed with some of the olive oil and essential oil to help the scents stick)
Zany's Faux Sea Water (1 Tbsp sea salt and 1 Tbsp Baking Soda per 1 quart well water)
1.7 : 1 ratio of Faux Sea Water to Lye

I used my well water because after the discussions on distilled versus tap water, I thought it would be interesting to see. I'm very lucky that my well is directly from an aquifer and tests very clean, although a bit high in calcium. Since someone mentioned calcium (and magnesium) as necessary in salt water fish tanks, I thought this might help to even better simulate sea water.

One loaf I left unscented, and the other three I scented with essential oils only.

The unscented loaf was fairly slow to trace which surprised me, due to the salt and clay used. I did switch from stick blending to hand mixing sooner than I normally would have, so that probably contributed. I was also worried it would turn out quite green, but it mellowed out to a very nice cream color.

The second loaf was lemongrass green tea, which traced very quickly. This didn't surprise me as I have found that my lemongrass EO accelerates trace.

The next batched were lavender and eucalyptus, which also traced very slowly. I was worried I had poured them at too light of a trace, so I CPOPed them at 170F+off. I'm not sure this step was necessary, but they turned out beautifully.

I cut the unscented and Lemongrass green tea loaves on Thursday night after a market. I was pretty tired and didn't cut evenly. Got some flaking from the unscented loaf but not the others.

This morning I cut the Eucalyptus and Lavender loaves. They cut beautifully and smell great.

In conclusion, I will DEFINITELY be using this recipe in the future for my Castile soaps. I'm really happy with how they turned out, and I'm excited to see how they perform after curing.

I am also very impressed with the scent. I've had some issues with essential oils sticking through saponification. I think the kaolin clay really did help, and I think I will be adding this step to all of my EO scented soaps in the future.

My natural colorants didn't work out very well, but I'm pretty inexperienced with them so that's on me. I used Matcha, Acai Powder, and Moringa powder. The only one that stuck was matcha, which turned brown after cutting. I probably could have predicted this, and I'll be doing more research into better suited natural colorants.

You can definitely tell which bars I cut while super tired 😩. Luckily, I don't think my target market will mind the rough cut or "natural" look of the failed colorants.

(The little rose was not a Castile - it's just an experiment I did with some extra rose scented soap batter)


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100% Olive Oil
10g Kaolin Clay per loaf (mixed with some of the olive oil and essential oil to help the scents stick)
TIPS: 100% olive oil takes longer to trace & cure. You might want to bump up the lather with 10% coconut and 5% castor. That's the combo I like best and use. Also, I cool my lye and warm my oils to 100°-120°F for this recipe, just in case you want to get to trace sooner.

I do believe 1 tsp- 1 Tbls White Kaolin Clay PPO not only happens to lay down a good foundation for colorants but also seems to help stick the scent.
Thanks! I definitely want to do the coconut and castor version next time.

For this round, I had a number of clients specifically request no coconut oil, so I thought this would be a good chance to test this recipe at 100% olive oil. I think this batch will be good for that section of the market which wants really simple ingredients and no artificial colorants or fragrances (hence why I used EOs and attempted natural colorants).

I did hot lye in room temp oil for all three batches, and ended up at a combined soaping temp of 118F and 117F. I usually soap around that temp anyway, so I was pretty happy with it.

I did switch from stick blending to whisking sooner than I normally would on both the first batch and the batches 3 and 4 (after the lemongrass accelerated batch #2), so I think the trace issue was really just a matter of me not stick blending long enough.

All four loaves turned out beautifully. I had a bit of flakiness with the first batch, but it really wasn't too bad. I may shoot for 0.5 to 1% SF next time instead of 0%, just to counter any measuring errors that may lead to a lye heavy soap.
A friend loves my CO-free ZNSC which is 80% OO, 15% PKO, and 5% castor. But that only works if your clientele are ok with palm products. I also add sorbitol for more bubbles, and sodium citrate as my chelator.


One of my big selling points is that I don't use Palm Oil, so unfortunately I don't think that substitution would work for me.

I may try Babassu as a sub for the 15% Coconut Oil, since I have some on hand and don't use it in any of my main product lines. I'm not sure if people with coconut oil sensitivities would still have an issue with babassu, since it is also a tree nut?

Thanks for the suggestion of sorbitol! I'll probably add sorbitol and citric acid in my upcoming batches, as I use both in my regular base recipe. For this batch I wanted to see how the base recipe performed without those additives.

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