After making my first successful soap, I was hooked! That weekend, I went soap-crazy and made these:
1. Oatmeal and milk – I repeated Anne L. Watson’s formula, but substituted the water with frozen whole milk, and added old fashioned oats that I pulverized using my coffee/spice grinder. I just left this on my kitchen table, uncovered, to complete saponification. I was able to pop them out from their silicone mold only after 5 days. Even then, they were still a tad soft. I left this unscented and the smell of the oatmeal really came through. Used this after 4 weeks. It is a good moisturizing and exfoliating soap, but has a tendency to become soft.
2. “Master Batch Basic Soap” recipe from Gregory Lee White’s book – contains vegetable shortening, coconut oil and olive oil. I made this in my shoebox mold, covered, but not insulated. Of all the soaps I made from my first week of soap making, this produced the palest and hardest bar. Weeks after I made this, I found out that the shortening I used was made from coconut oil, not the usual soybean or cottonseed or palm oil that is normally used in the States. Given this fact, the soap actually has a 13% superfat, instead of the intended 5%! It’s a nice soap to use, has great lather, and remains hard in the shower. The only downside is that it leaves a residual laundry bar scent even though it smells wonderfully of lavender and eucalyptus as is. It must be because of the high coconut oil content that reminds us, from this part of the world, of Perla, a popular laundry bar made with coconut oil.
Wrapped up and ready to be given to family and friends…
3. Green Tea and Tea Tree – made with olive oil, vegetable shortening, coconut oil and sesame oil. I replaced the water with brewed green tea and added green tea leaves that I ran through my spice grinder. Because this was not insulated and in small individual molds, I had a hard time removing the soaps from their silicone mold. Still soft after 5 days, I had to freeze them for an hour so they could be unmolded. My husband likes the exfoliating quality of this soap. I like it too but I wish it were harder and smelled stronger of tea tree.
4. Activated Charcoal – I have no photo of this. I used the same mini mold as the green tea and tea tree, and encountered the same problem with the soap not setting up properly. This was made with olive oil, coconut oil, castor oil, and peppermint oil.
Lesson learned from my soap marathon weekend? Aim to gel, or at least whenever possible.