Monday, August 11, 2008

Twenty One Steps To Making Handmade Cold Process Soap

Gather all your equipment. I have my gloves, goggles, scale, lye, beer (making beer soap), and various containers.
Getting ready to pour the beer into the pitcher.
Measuring out the beer. All materials are measured by weight and not volume.
Measuring out the Lye. You can see that I have covered my counter tops with newspapers. It keeps my counters free of soap and makes cleaning up much easier. I just gather the paper and throw it in the recycling bin.
Adding my lye to the beer. I always do this in the sink since it's safer and easier to clean up.
Mixing the lye into the beer.
Watching and stirring in horror as my beer reacts to the lye and foams up and spills all over the sink...see why I mix in the sink!! This is the first time this has happened with any of my batches! It was flat (or so I thought) and has been open (and poured) for two days. Sigh....
Starting over with water this time. LOL!
Measuring out the Lye...
Pouring the lye into the water.....again....
Stirring the solution...again.....! I always wear rubber gloves and (knock on wood) have never been burned from the lye. I also wear goggles at all times.
Here I have my coconut oil measured in the pitcher.
Added the Palm Oil.
Added Palm Kernel Flakes.
Added the Shea Butter. This is 8% of the batch.
All melted and ready to go! At this time I usually leave everything and go about my day for a few hours. My kids are not home, and hubby is away at work. What I didn't show were pictures of adding the other oils in the recipe. These are added to the melted oil and help cool off the oils.
All set to go! I have measured the oils. I'm using lemongrass and black tea.
JUST stirred the lye mixture into the oils. I stir by hand for a bit to see how everything reacts.
I use the stick blender to finish up the batch. You can see it coming to "trace" right here. See how the blender is leaving a "wake" in the mixture....all set to pour!
All poured! Now I cover the mold with a piece of cardboard and then place a few blankets on top. I don't uncover until the next morning.
Thanks for taking the tour with me!


Melissa said...

Wow, looks like a mad scientist experiment! :-)

Scott Bulger Photography said...

Nicely done. I feel like I could make soap now.

Angelia said...

Great job. I just had someone do a a workshop like this at my studio. Nice blog.

GreenSpaceGoods said...

wow. that is really cool.

BeadedTail said...

Extremely interesting process!

ABreathOfFrenchAir said...

Thank you! I have a great time making soap!