Swirl Not

I have been wanting to make soap with a swirl design, but so far I have not been successful.  I made this three weeks ago with annatto seed powder and cocoa powder as my colors.  I used the “easiest” in-the-pot swirl method, but I ended up with a marbled look. I should have waited for a thicker trace to get the swirly pattern.

I mixed the annatto and cocoa powders in a little glycerin before adding them into the soap batter.  I think this was a mistake.  The cocoa didn’t color the soap brown but simply made it look dirty.  And speaking of which, it smelled awful like dirty laundry. I covered up the stink with eucalyptus mixed with kaolin clay as a fixative.  Right now I can’t tell if the kaolin really works to hold down the scent.

marble soap1

I will be taking a break from making more soaps until my rosemary oleoresin, fragrances and essential oils arrive.  With our heat and humidity here, I am afraid my soaps will turn rancid fast.  Based on Kevin M. Dunn’s Scientific Soapmaking, rosemary oleoresin is the only natural antioxidant that has been proven to work.  Will talk more about his book in another post…

If you haven’t noticed, I have been working with only 3 scents: lavender, eucalyptus and peppermint.  My soaps are all smelling the same.  Can’t wait to try something different!


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