Raspberry Jam soap in drop swirl, with raspberry embeds on top

Description of Bramble Berry fragrance oils:
Raspberry Jam (RJ): This fragrance is a beautiful blend of wild raspberry, grape, loganberry, rose nectar, lily, cranberry, sugar syrup, and white musk. CP: 0.71% Vanilla, discolors yellow at first, then fades to a light tan. Performs beautifully.
Sun Ripened Raspberry (RR): This is a basic raspberry with a “ripe” note to it – like a berry that is just ready to fall off the vine into your hand. CP: moves really quick, some ricing.

The Plan:

The Plan:
3 lb silicone mold
Drop swirl into white with 4 CP raspberries on top of each bar (36 total).
Colors: white, red mica and raspberry mica, with smaller amounts of hunter green and purple.
Pour off 6 oz for samples.

Master batch Oils #20: 40 oz Oils (Makes 56 oz/ 3.5 lb soap)
MB Oils: 40 oz/ 1134 grams
NaOH/ Lye 5% SF: 5.64 oz / 160 grams
Distilled Water: (1.62 oz disc/ % disc): 11 oz / 312 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 11 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 11 grams (in oils)
Avocado Extract (1%): 11 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Carrot Extract (1%): 11 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

50 oz Batter/Colors/ 3.2 oz FO: (used 2.95oz RJ + 0.35oz RR = 3.3 oz FO)
26 oz TD White
8 oz BB Plum
8 oz BB Raspberry mica
5 oz CC Apple green mica (save 1 oz for top)
4 oz BB Queens Purple
Pour 3/4 of white
Drop swirl with colored batter
Add lines of green color on each bar for vine look
Top with 36 raspberries (4 on each bar) (4.2 oz)

The Reality:

I soaped the lye and oils at 86F & 88F stick blending until just emulsified, (using an immersion blender). I divided and colored the batter, separated out a little bit of green for the top, then added the fragrance oil. I expected some acceleration from the Sun Ripened Raspberry fragrance, but nothing happened for a while.

I waited for the soap to thicken to the exact consistency needed for a drop swirl – it stayed thin for a long time, then started thickening slowly, then took off and got really thick, going from too thin to too thick quickly. I had to scramble, pouring 2/3 of the white, then drop swirled the colors and adding more white in the swirl and on top.

After I pored lines of green to represent vines, I then added 4 berries on each bar; spritzed with fine iridescent glitter, covered with plastic wrap and a towel, and put in a room to set for two days. Then I uncovered and un-molded and let it set for several more days before slicing into bars.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

Wow! This fragrance is amazing and I’m glad I made a batch of these soaps.

The drop swirls are not as impressive as what I would have liked, but they turned out nice anyway. I like the variety of colored berries on top and the green adds a touch to it.

Tropical Fruit Smoothy – layers with embeds on top

Description of Bramble Berry FO: This tropical fragrance smells of melons, pineapple, acai berry, ripe nectarine, dripping guava, baobab fruit, pomegranates with herbs, grapefruit, cassis and tropical water top notes, plus a hint of raspberry. It’s a mix of of all the best fruits of the tropics without any of the calories. Deliciously tart, sweet and fruity all at the same time. CP: Accelerates, Discolors Yellow, Rices, Separates, Light scent.

The Plan:

The Plan:
Pour off 22 oz for embeds and samples
Use 48 oz batter for 9-bar mold plus 5.75 oz embeds.
Layers (to make use of acceleration

Master batch Oils #20: 50 oz Oils (Makes 70 oz /4.4 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 50 oz/ 1417 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 7.05 oz / 200 grams
Distilled Water: (2.77 oz disc/ 17.6 %): 13 oz / 369 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 14 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 14 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (1%): 14 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Avocado Extract (1%): 14 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

48 oz batter/Colors/3.3 oz FO:
10 oz BB Queen’s Purple, 0.75 FO (bottom layer)
5 oz BB Caribbean Blue, 0.5 FO (next layer)
8 oz BB Raspberry Mica,, 0.5 FO (3rd layer)
20 oz TKB Shimmer Lemon Pop, 1.25 FO (4th layer)
5 oz TD White, NO FO (top layer)
Embeds on top

The Reality:

I soaped the lye & oils at 74F & 88F degrees and stick blended (using an immersion blender) very lightly until just emulsified. I divided and colored the batter, then added some of the fragrance oil to the purple, mixed well, and poured into the mold, and carefully put in the refrigerator to help it set.

When that layer was firm, I used the same procedure for each successive color until complete. The slight accretion of the fragrance oil helped speed up this process a bit and fortunately I did not get any ricing. But by the time I poured the white on top, it was thicker than I wanted, so the layer was not as straight as the others.

The embeds I used were from other soap projects, which gave each bar a unique look, but still stuck with the theme of tropical and fruity.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

Because of the potential acceleration and ricing of the fragrance, I made this a layered soap. The colors are a little bolder than I would have liked, but the scent also discolored a slight yellow, so I wanted them to be bold and not get muddied. And the layers went well with the bright embeds.

I first wished I would have made the white a sandy color, like the beach, but that would not have gone well with the other colors. This fragrance has been discontinued, so it’s my final batch.

Sea Clay Avocado Facial Detox Milk soap with Easter Island head embeds

Essential oils and Fragrances:
A very light Essential (and Fragrance) Oil Blend of Lime, Grapefruit, Lavender, Sweet Basil & Litsea Cubeba (May Chang). 

The Plan:

The Plan:
Use 9-bar slab mold with silicone liner & dividers.
Use 47 oz soap + 5.8 oz Easter Island Heads.
Pour off 18 oz extra batter for embeds & FO testing.
Pour lines of color, then swirl with chopstick in star & circle pattern. Add embeds.

Master batch Oils #21: 46 oz Oils (Makes 64 oz soap) 8% SF
MB Oils: 46 oz/ 1304 grams
NaOH/Lye 8% SF: 6.28 oz / 178 grams
1:1 Frozen Half & Half & Frozen Distilled Water: (3.18 oz disc/ 21%): 12 oz / 340 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 13 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Avocado Extract (2%): 26 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 13 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

Essential Oil Blend:
2 oz/ 58 grams
29% 17 grams Lime FO (used 17 grams)
21% 12 grams Pink Grapefruit FO (used 14.5 grams)
21% 12 grams Lavender EO (used 18 grams)
17% 10 grams Sweet Basil EO (used 10.5 grams)
12% 7 grams Litsea Cubeba (May Chang) EO (used 7 grams)

48 oz (use 47 oz) Batter/Colors – use sparingly/ EO Blend 2 oz
12 oz French Green Sea Clay in water & Moringa Leaf Powder
12 oz Yellow Brazilian Clay in water, + hint of TKB Shimmer Lemon Pop
12 oz Red Brazilian Clay in water, + hint of red mica
12 oz Purple Brazilian Clay in water, + hint of Queens Purple
Pour lines of color, then swirl with chopstick in star & circle pattern. Add embeds.
Easter Island Head embeds on top (5.8 oz)

The Reality:

I combined the lye and oils both at 86F, and stick blended until emulsified (using an immersion blender). I bit of a tricky soaping session, as I wasn’t sure if the Litsea Cubeba (May Chang) essential oil would accelerate or not. Milks and clays also thicken the batter.

I worked quickly, adding the colors, then the scents and poured lines of batter into the mold. When all the batter was in, I made a circle swirl and then a starburst swirl, and added the dividers. By now the soap was pretty thick, as I placed the Easter Island Head embeds on top. And set in a room covered with towels for 2 days.

I removed from the mold, then 2 days later, pulled out the dividers, a week after that, I trimmed and steamed the soaps, then photographed them.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

The colors in this soap are well defined and I am very please how these turned out.

I haven’t used Moringa in the facial soap, but do use it in shampoo bars, as it’s good for the skin and hair.

Here’s what I have learned:
Moringa Leaf Powder is known as the Miracle Tree and the Tree of Life because every part of it can be used in some way. The leaves are packed with vitamins A, B, & C, folate, calcium, potassium iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, manganese, and protein, and has the potential to fight inflammation, boost our immune system, and protect sensitive tissue. It is helpful in protecting skin cells from damage. It also contains hydrating and detoxifying elements, which also boost the skin and hair.

Sweet Meyer Lemon Blackberry soap in diaginal layer with yellow heart tube embed

Description of Bramble Berry Fragrances:
Sweet Meyer Lemon: A lush, Caribbean garden bursting with the aroma of sweet lemons, horned melons, succulent kiwis, and ripe pineapple wedges. Sweet tropical florals complete this island wonder. CP: Discolors to a light ivory/tan, may get slight acceleration.
Blackberry Cybilla: This ripe and juicy fragrance oil will take you back to the days of picking sweet blackberries off the vine during the long days of summer. CP: No A or R. .5% Vanilla. turns very green. (No green with VS added)
Black Tea: Smoky tea leaves with tobacco overtones; top notes of Bergamot, Sicilian Lemon, & orange; jasmine, cedar wood, amber, musk. CP: No discolor.

The Plan:

The Plan:
5 lb mold – 1.6 Yellow Heart Tube embeds
Yellow on bottom angle (weigh soap container before & after pouring)
Queens Purple on top with 1 Fat & 0.6 Skinny Yellow Heart Tubes)
Use 78 batter. Pour off extra 20 oz for embeds (11 oz for heart tubes)

Master Batch Oils #20: 70 oz Oils (Makes 98 oz/6.2 lb soap)
MB Oils: 70 oz/ 1984 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 9.87 oz / 280 grams
Distilled Water: (4.08 oz disc/ 18% disc): 18 oz / 510 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 20 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 20 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (1%): 20 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Avocado Extract (1%): 20 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

New FO Blend (5.2 oz FO):
0.7 oz Black Tea
1.15 oz Blackberry Cybillia
0.9 oz Blackberry Sage
2.2 oz Sweet Meyer Lemon
0.4 oz Vanilla Stabilizer

78 oz Batter/Colors/FO Blend (5.2 FO)
1st Layer:
42 oz TKB TKB Shimmer Lemon Pop
2.2 oz SM Lemon, 0.4 oz Black Tea, 0.4 VS
2nd Layer:
36 oz BB Queens Purple; 2 oz Blackberry & 0.3 oz Black Tea FO’s
1 Yellow Fat Heart Tube & 0.6 Skinny Heart Tube Embed (7.35 oz) (TKB Shimmer Lemon Pop)

1st layer at an angle, let set. (First weigh bowl with batter, pour & re-weigh to get right amount of soap into mold.)
After set, pour 1/3 of 2nd layer, add embed, pour rest.
Top with gold & purple mica oil drops and pull through with toothpick for hearts.
(BB = Bramble Berry; TKB = TKB Trading; VS = NG Vanilla Stabilizer)

The Reality:

I soaped the lye & oils at 90F & 94F degrees and stick blended (using an immersion blender) very lightly until just emulsified. After dividing up the batter, I put only the Sweet Meyer Lemon & a tiny bit of black tea fragrance oils into the yellow batter. This is a departure from my usual and worked very well, as the SML discolors a slight yellow/tan and accelerates trace a bit.

After mixing, I tilted the five pound mold to almost 45 degrees and used something to hold it in place, then poured 42 oz of batter into the mold. (I weighed the container of batter before & after pouring to get the correct amount.)

While that was setting up, I made some tube mold embeds and tested a couple fragrances with the extra batter I had.

When the yellow was set, I mixed up the purple batter (adding the coloring & fragrance oils) and poured 1/3 over a spatula to prevent any break through into the yellow. I let that set for a little bit, then added the yellow heart tube embed and the rest of the batter.

I then added some gold & purple mica oils to the top and swirled with a toothpick.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

I love the brighter, deeper colors produced by just having the blackberry fragrance oil in purple and not including the Sweet Meyer Lemon FO. The slight discoloration of the Lemon muddied the purple a tiny bit in the past.

I also prefer the gold & purple mica oils on top, instead of yellow soap batter. I makes the top pop more too (although the photos don’t do it justice).

I think this batch turned out really well!

Lavender Lemongrass Peppermint Pink Himalayan Salt Soap (9 in White Planes)

Description of Bramble Berry & Bulk Apothecary Essential Oils:
BB & BA Lavender 40/42: Similar to Lavender Provence essential oil, this is a mixture of lavender’s: 40/42 blends different kinds of Lavender for a consistent blend. The aroma can have a soothing effects on people suffering from stress, anxiety, and illness. CP: Water White, no A, D, R.
BA Lemongrass: Known for its invigorating and antiseptic properties, its astringent properties help fight acne and greasy skin. CP: has staying power; discolors yellow.
BB Peppermint 1st Distill: Smells minty fresh, like peppermint gum; herbaceous, sweet smelling; can improve mental performance, cognitive function, & digestion. CP: Water White, very potent.

The Plan

The Plan:
Make 86 oz batter.
18 bar mold: 86 oz soap, 28 oz salt, & 3 oz (9 embeds – 9 bars embed free)
(4:1.5:1.5) EO Blend Lavender, Lemongrass, Peppermint.

Salt MB Oils #4: 60 oz Oils (Makes 86 oz/5.375 lb – plus 28 oz PH Salt=114 oz/7.125 lb)
SMB Oils: 60 oz/ 1701 grams
NaOH/Lye 10% SF: 9 oz/255 grams
Distilled Water: (2.8 oz/14% disc): 17 oz/482 grams
Kaolin Clay (1%): 17 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (2%): 34 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Fine Pink Himalayan Salt: 28 oz (by weight)

Essential Oil Blend (4:1.5:1.5) = 7 oz:
4 oz Lavender
1.5 oz Lemongrass
1.5 oz Peppermint

86 oz Batter/Colors/28 oz PH Salt; 6.5 oz EO’s:
21.5 oz TD White, 7 oz PH Salt
21.5 oz BB Caribbean blue, 7 oz PH Salt
21.5 oz BB Aqua pearl mica, 7 oz PH Salt
21.5 oz BB Radiant Plum mica, 7 oz PH Salt
(28.5 batter total each container, including salts)

Add EO Blend into all of batter, then divide.
Pour lines of color.
Starburst swirl and then circle swirl with chopstick.
Add Airplane Embeds on top of 9 bars.
CPOP 6 hours, un-mold.

The Reality

I added the essential oil blend into the oils and soaped the lye & oils both at 100F, stick blending until emulsified (using an immersion blender). After dividing up the batter, it started to accelerate quickly. This happened last time I made it and I thought it was because of a different peppermint oil I used, but now I am sure it was the Lemongrass.

I worked as quickly as possible, but the batter was very thick throughout the process and very difficult to work with. (I just purchased a new Lemongrass scent, so I look forward to using that next time and hopefully going back to a relaxing pour and designing.)

After getting all the soap in the mold, I did a starburst swirl and circle swirl – and fortunately the batter on top swirled nicely. I added 9 white plane embeds to half the bars, sprinkled on a little fine iridescent glitter and put in a pre-heated 150F oven (that was turned off) for 6 hours, turning it back on briefly at the mid-way point.

I then removed and let sit for about one hour to slightly cool, then un-molded all the bars. After several days, I trimmed them, then steamed, and photographed.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

The Lemongrass essential oil caused some acceleration, which made the batter thicker than usual and difficult to work with. So I struggled a bit, and overcompensated, making the bars much bigger than usual.

The colors and scent are beautiful and the planes are cute.

Four Thieves #25 in Advanced Tiger Stripe and Layers

Information on Essential Oils used:
Clove: Is an aroma stimulant and an aphrodisiac; it helps with fatigue & depression, the respiratory system, muscle pain, and nausea. And it has analgesic properties.
Litsea Cubeba (May Chang): Used for a Lemon, or a base note in more elusive citrus notes, this is a lovely, uplifting & rejuvenating essential oil. It can also be used to treat acne or oily skin. Its antibacterial and antiviral properties are said to make it effective against common infections like cold and cough. The oil is a tonic for the nervous system and can help with digestive problems as well.
Cinnamon: Properties: Analgesic, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, insecticide, stimulant, stomachic.
Eucalyptus: It awakens the mind and opens the lungs. It helps remove exhaustion & mental sluggishness and rejuvenates the spirits of the sick. It has a pleasant aroma and is effective as a deodorant, antibacterial, antiseptic, and antimicrobial agent. Helps to clear sinuses.
Rosemary: Used as decongestant and for muscle pain, it is stimulating & energizing. Best known for its aid in memory and hair loss. (It is also considered a symbol of love, and the sprigs have been traditionally used in wedding ceremonies.)

The Plan:

The Plan:
Use 86 oz batter Pour off 13 oz for embeds.
5 lb mold in 3 layers
1st layer white with eo blend
2nd layer tiger wall pour (no eo, 6 colors)
3rd layer white with eo blend
Use 4 oz EO Blend

4 oz – 114 grams Four Thieves Oil: (accelerates trace)
34% Clove leaf: 1.36 oz 39 grams
30% Litsea 1.20 oz 34 grams
16% Cinnamon: 0.64 oz 18 grams
12% Eucalyptus: 0.48 oz 14 grams
8% Rosemary: 0.32 oz 9 grams

Master Batch Oils #20: 70 oz Oils (Makes 98 oz/6.2 lb soap)
MB Oils: 70 oz/ 1984 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 9.87 oz / 280 grams
Distilled Water: (4.08 oz disc/ 18% disc): 18 oz / 510 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 20 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 20 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (1%): 20 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Sea Buckthorn Extract (1%): 20 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

86 oz /Colors/4 oz EO Blend:
1st Layer:
34 oz TD white 2.2 oz EO
2nd Layer: 24 oz total – use 18 oz; No EO (2.5 oz & .5 oz for top)
4 oz TKB Shimmer Lemon Pop
4 oz BB Nuclear Orange & BB Racing Stripe Orange (yellow)
4 oz BB Fuchsia Pink & BB Raspberry mica
4 oz BB Queens Purple
4 oz BB Caribbean Blue
4 oz CC Granny Smith Apple Green Mica
3rd Layer:
28 oz TD White 1.8 oz EO
Top with lines of colors (swirled) & fine Iridescent Glitter.
(BB = Bramble Berry; CC = WSP Crafter’s Choice; TD = Titanium Dioxide; TKB = TKB Trading)

The Reality:

I soaped the lye & oils at 84F and 94F, stick blending until a little past emulsified (using an immersion blender). I was really focused on the look of the mix, and didn’t pay enough attention to the time I was blending, which was not the way to go with this soap – but it was minimal, so no huge side effects.

I separated out the batter, then added titanium dioxide to whiten the 34 oz for the first layer – had the mold on the scale, tarred and ready to go. I added 2.2 oz of EO blend, then mixed thoroughly and quickly by hand, and poured into the mold. The pour was perfect, and the acceleration was easy to work with, due to the thin batter.

I then colored the soap for the second layer, titled the mold on it’s side and poured each color on the edge of the mold 3 times for an advanced tiger pour. The batter was a bit sturdier than usual, so I got thicker layers and a nice definition between each layer. I titled upright and put in the fridge to set for about 15 minutes.

When ready, I again set the mold on the scale, tarred and added the rest of the EO blend to 28 oz of batter and mixed quickly. The soap accelerated through medium trace, so it was difficult to get a perfect blend. I had to glop the batter into the mold, trying to do this over a spatula, so as not to disturb the 6 colors underneath.

With the leftover colors I had, I added a tiny bit of oil in each to thin them out and be able to pour one line of each color on the top of the loaf. I then did a figure eight swirl width-wise with a skinny chop stick and a zig-zag swirl length-wise with a toothpick. Spritzed with 91% Isopropyl alcohol, dusted on some fine iridescent glitter, waited for the top to set, then put plastic wrap on top and covered the whole thing in two towels to gel. (I typically use the CPOP method in the oven, but with the high acceleration, I didn’t want this to overheat.)

The Cut:

Conclusions:

Over stick blending a few seconds made this batch more difficult to make than usual. Next time it will be easier to do a very minimal blend, separate all the batter, and pour the first layer. Then mix all the colors for the next layer, pour off 1/2-1oz of each color for the top, stick blend the rest a little, then pour that layer. This will give the very defined colors and still have some soap that will be thin enough to work for the top.

Even though the middle layer got slightly wonky, due to the thickness of the top layer, the soap looks and smells wonderful. I really like the new yellow color I am using, it is a brighter yellow than the one I used to use.

The Story Behind The Four Thieves Blend:

The Bubonic Plague wreaked havoc in Europe off and on for about 600 years before peaking in the 1300s. Century after century, as late as the 1700s, outbreaks claimed up to half the population.

During the plague a group of four brothers began robbing the dead. At first, they were largely ignored, as everyone knew they would eventually pay the price by catching the contagion themselves but, to everyone’s surprise, they managed to avoid the disease and continued robbing graves, amassing a great deal of wealth. They became legendary and everyone wanted to know how they evaded the sickness.

When they were finally captured, they were asked for their secret during questioning. After much debating, they agreed to share their methods in return for their pardon.

These men were the offspring of a perfumer and herbalist. They learned about essential oils from their parents during their childhood. They knew these oils would protect them so they rubbed them on their bodies and used them to clean anything they brought back. The powerful blend is now called Four Thieves. (They did use these oils & herbs in vinegar, and the vinegar probably played a big part in their wellness too).

An interesting note: There is a period of time when physicians wore dark robes, wide-brimmed hats, & masks with long beaks. These beaks held dried herbs, spices and essential oils which the physician breathed. The robe was doused with a similar fragrant concoction. (Scientific evidence today is building support for these actions.)

Lavender eo soap with layers and 2 heart tube embeds

Description of Bramble Berry & Bulk Apothecary Lavender 40/42 essential oil:
The scent of lavender has shown to have positive effects on mood and can help to alleviate mild feelings of agitation or distress. Lavender has been thought for centuries to arouse passions as an aphrodisiac. This is a bold yet fresh smelling Lavender essential oil, very similar to Lavender Provence. CP: No A, D, R.

The Plan:

Use 74 oz batter for 5 lb mold plus 12? oz heart tube embeds.
Embed Heart Tubes: 1 fat Queens Purple, 0.6 Skinny Queens Purple, 1 fat Plum, 0.6 Skinny Plum.

Master batch Oils #20: 55 oz Oils (Makes 77 oz /4.8 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 55 oz/ 1559 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 7.76 oz / 220 grams
Distilled Water: (2.35 oz disc/ 13.5 % disc): 15 oz / 425 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 16 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 16 grams (in oils)
Avocado Extract (1%): 16 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Sea Buckthorn Extract (1%): 16 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

74 oz batter/Colors/5 oz EO: (Use 2.5 BB & 2.5 BA eo’s)
Add EO to batter, then separate:
48 oz TD White (in distilled water)
15 oz BB Queens Purple (pour off 1 oz for top)
11 oz BB Plum (pour off 1 oz for top)

Layers:
14 oz layer of Queen’s Purple on bottom (stick blend & in fridge to stiffen) (20 min)
10 oz layer of Plum (next layer) (put in fridge to stiffen) (20 min in fridge)
1/2 white, add heart tube embeds & rest of white.
Top with lines of colored batter swirled on top, spritz fine iridescent glitter.
Refrigerate until set, then put in freezer for 24 hours to prevent milk from overheating.
(BB = Bramble Berry, TD = Titanium Dioxide)

The Reality:

I soaped the lye and oils at 88F & 94F, stick blending until emulsified (using an immersion blender), then mixed in the Lavender essential oil. After separating out the batter, I colored & blended the Queens Purple layer a bit more to thicken, put the mold on the scale, tared, and poured 14 oz of the purple. Then put in the fridge for 20 minutes to stiffen.

I prepped the plum color (no extra stick blending), and when the first layer was ready, put the mold on the scale, tared again, and added 10 oz of the batter in the mold – pouring over a spatula to prevent break through into the other layer. Then put back into the refrigerator for another 20 minutes to set.

I prepared the white soap and spritzed the heart tube embeds. I added about half of the white (pouring over a spatula again) and then attempted to set the hearts in it, but it was too thin, so I waited 10-15 minutes, then slowly set the heart tubes into the batter. Then topped off with more white soap.

I took the extra purple & plum and poured 2 rows of each lengthwise across the top of the loaf, then swirled with a thin chopstick in a figure eight pattern widthwise. I used a toothpick to create a zig-zag pattern lengthwise down the mold; spritzed with 91% Isopropyl Alcohol, then with fine iridescent glitter and put in a pre-heated 150F oven (turned off) for 4-5 hours, bringing back up to temperature at the half way mark.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

These bars turned out quite lovely. I am especially pleased with the Clyde Slide swirl inside each of the heart tube embeds – they are very well defined and have some beautiful patterns. I could have possibly put the embeds slightly lower, but in the last soap I made, they were a bit too low. Working blindly, it’s difficult to tell how deep they are in the mold.

Lavender Lemon Mint soap with heart tube embeds

Description of Bramble Berry, Bulk Apothecary & NDA Essential & Fragrance oils:
BA Lavender EO: The scent of lavender has shown to have positive effects on mood and can help to alleviate mild feelings of agitation or distress. Lavender has been thought for centuries to arouse passions as an aphrodisiac. This is a bold yet fresh smelling Lavender essential oil, very similar to Lavender Provence. CP: No A, D, R.
BB Spearmint EO: Believed to be an uplifting oil, great for alleviating fatigue and depression. Medicinally it is known for its effects on the digestive system, and for relieving aches and pains. CP: No D, R. (May fade/ accelerate due to age.)
NDA Lemon Myrtle EO: A strong lemon scent that can be used for an uplifting and cleansing effect. Research has shown Lemon to enhance the ability to concentrate.
BB Sweet Meyer Lemon: A lush, Caribbean garden bursting with the aroma of sweet lemons, horned melons, succulent kiwis, and ripe pineapple wedges. Sweet tropical florals complete this island wonder. CP: Discolors to a light ivory/tan, may get slight acceleration.

The Plan:

The Plan:
Use 75 oz batter for 5 lb mold plus 11 oz tube embeds
Embed Heart Tubes: 1.4 skinny Aqua and 1.4 skinny Plum = 11 oz.

Master batch Oils #20: 55 oz Oils (Makes 77 oz /4.8 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 55 oz/ 1559 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 7.76 oz / 220 grams
Distilled Water: (2.35 oz disc/ 13.5 % disc): 15 oz / 425 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 16 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 16 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (1%): 16 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Avocado Extract (1%): 16 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

5 oz Scent Blend: Lavender Lemon Mint (Spearmint) 2:1:1
2.5 oz BA Lavender essential oil
1.25 oz BB Spearmint essential oil
0.75 oz BB SMLemon fragrance oil
0.5 oz NDA Lemon Myrtle natural identical essential oil

75 oz batter/Colors/5 oz EO:
42 oz TD White, 2.5 oz Lavender
15 oz BB Plum, 1.25 oz Spearmint, (pour off 1 oz for top)
10 oz BB Aqua Pearl, 0.75 SMLemon, (pour off 1 oz for top)
8 oz TKB Yellow Lemon Pop, 0.5 oz Lemon Myrtle, (pour off 1 oz for top)
(BB = Bramble Berry, TD = Titanium Dioxide, TKB = TKB Trading)

Layers:
14 oz layer of Plum on bottom (stick blend) (put in fridge to stiffen)
9 oz layer of Aqua Pearl (middle) layer (put in fridge to stiffen)
7 oz layer of Yellow last layer (don’t stick blend, put in fridge to stiffen)
1/3 white, add heart tube embeds & rest of white.
Top with lines of colored batter swirled on top, spritz fine iridescent glitter.
CPOP, 4 hrs, turned on at halfway.

The Reality:

I soaped the lye liquid and oils at 83F & 93F, stick blending very briefly, until barely emulsified (using an immersion blender). I divided up the batter and added the plum color, pouring off an ounce and adding in the spearmint essential oil, then stick blended again until almost medium trace (I knew it would keep thickening after I stopped blending.)

After putting the mold on the scale & taring it, I poured in 14 oz, then banged the mold down to settle it and put it in the fridge to thicken even more.

I then prepped the Aqua color, adding Sweet Meyer Lemon FO, which slowly accelerated and thickened it. When the plum was set, I put the mold on the scale, tarred, and poured in 9 oz of aqua over a spatula. I don’t think the first layer was completely set, as it seemed to move just slightly while doing this.

Back in the refrigerator it went and I prepared the yellow soap. When ready I put the mold back on the scale, tarred, and poured the yellow over a spatula to prevent break through. The yellow really needed to be extremely fluid to pour a perfect layer, but it was not. And it was very thin 7 oz layer, so it was difficult to cover completely and evenly. Put back in the fridge to set.

When it was time to pour the white, the combination of adding titanium dioxide in oil to whiten the soap and using Lavender essential oil, created a very nice thin consistency of light trace. I poured about 1/3 to 1/2 of the batter (again, over a spatula), spritzed the heart tube embeds with alcohol, laid them on top, then poured in the rest of the while.

The 1 oz of aqua set aside was very stiff, so I mixed in a little oil to thin it out. I poured a line of each color of soap lengthwise over the top, then used a thin chopstick to make figure eight swirls, followed by a zig-zag swirl through each color with a toothpick. I spritzed with 91% Isopropyl alcohol, dusted on some fine iridescent glitter, and put in a preheated 150F oven (after turning off) for 4 hours to CPOP.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

I could have waited slightly longer before adding the aqua layer over the plum, as the latter wasn’t completely set up. And I mistakenly added the FO to the aqua before pouring off 1 oz for the top, which got really thick with the FO in it.

I chose to keep each scent separate, as I did not want to discolor the plum and white colors with the yellow of the Lemon fragrances. I put some of the lemon in the aqua, as I was okay if it discolored it to a slightly more green hue. (From previous experience, using lemon in purple muddies it up, so I expected it might do the same in the plum or give it a slight orange tinge.)

I should have poured more white into the mold, let it step up longer before placing the heart tube embeds, as they ended up lower than I wanted and in a few bars, the heart went into the yellow layer.

The layers turned out nicer than I expected and the soaps smell wonderful. I love the subtle Clyde Slide swirl in the heart embeds.

POGY – Pineapple Orange Grapefruit Yuzu Shampoo bars

Description of Bramble Berry Fragrances:
Pineapple Cilantro: A ripe, realistic pineapple scent, with hints of coconut, orange, cilantro, vanilla, musk. CP: Slight peach color.
Orange Essential Oil: The scent of Sweet Orange is warming, comforting and “fodder for the heart”. It encourages you take things in good humor and absolves emotional confusion. It is stimulating & uplifting and good for colds & other ailments. CP: Discolors orange (after curing turns beige).
Pink Grapefruit: This is an exhilarating, wake-me-up citrus, with a juicy grapefruit aroma. Grapefruit is believed by aromatherapists to be a spiritual up-lifter, and to ease muscle fatigue and stiffness. It is also said to be a purifier of congested, oily and acne prone skin. Grapefruit is reputed to ease nervous exhaustion and relieve depression. CP: Water white.
Yuzu: A fresh and sparkling light Japanese citrus. It is also referred to as Japanese Grapefruit; with top notes of mandarin, tangerine, lemon satsuma, and ruby red grapefruit. A very subtle fragrance. CP: No A, R, D Very light. Water white.

Additives that Helps Promotes hair growth and decrease hair loss:
Aloe Vera liquid: Restores scalp health by conditioning it while balancing sebum production and pH levels. This, not only curbs hair loss, but it also promotes hair regrowth.
Argan oil: Contains lots of vitamin E, omega 3 and 9 fatty acids, and antioxidants, all of which do amazing things for damaged, dry, coarse or otherwise unmanageable hair.
Avocado oil: The proteins will help fill in damaged areas in your hair’s cuticles, repairing damage that’s already been done and preventing future breakage and frizz
Coconut oil: High in vitamin E and other nutrients, and your hair can absorb them all. The result will be hair that is thicker, shiner, healthier and has stronger roots. It also contains lauric and capric acid, which have amazing antimicrobial powers – meaning it will make your hair and scalp healthier and prevent dandruff, itchy scalp and infections.
DL-Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B-5): Improves stratum corneum hydration, reduces redness and inflammation, increases wound healing by stimulating skin epithelialization, improves skin barrier mechanism repair, mitigates itching and soothes irritation, and behaves as a humectant.
Jojoba oil: High in vitamins A, E and D and is great for all hair types. It helps repair damage to your hair and promotes new, healthy hair growth.
Moringa oil and powder: Contains thiocyanate which strengthens the hair follicles and prevents hair fall. It is used as a natural conditioner and promotes new hair growth.
Neem oil & powder: Has high anti-bacterial properties and improves blood circulation to the scalp, which is helpful in tackling thinning hair and premature graying. It also helps to boost hair growth.
Nettle extract: Stimulates the scalp, improves blood circulation and protects against further damage and breakage.
Olive Oil: Promotes hair growth.
Silk Amino Acids: Can penetrate very deeply into the hair cortex to strengthen and repair hair. It protects hair from moisture loss and conditions it to provide a silky smoothness.

The Plan:

6 Chrysanthemum & 6 Sunflower molds – with clyde slide swirl or layering.

Shampoo Master Batch Oils #3: 34 oz oils, 50 oz soap/3 lbs
SMB Oils: 34 oz/ 964 grams
NaOH/Lye 3% SF: 4.86 oz/ 138 grams
1:1 Cold Aloe Juice & Cold Distilled Water: (1.88 disc): 10 oz/283 grams
Nettle Extract (3%): 28 grams (add to oils)
Sodium Lactate: 10 grams (add to oils)
Silk Amino Acids: 10 grams (add to lye water when hot)
DL-Panthenol (3%): 28 grams (add to lye water 130F)

Note: Add NaOH to 5 oz cold water, then added silk hot and panthenol at 130F.
When dissolved, slowly added 5 oz cold Aloe to side of container.
Combine Oils & Lye: Stick blend for 2 seconds, add EO blend, then mix by hand.

Scent Blend 3 oz Total:
Mix together:
1 oz Pink Grapefruit (water white)
1 oz Yuzu (water white) (if not enough, use more grapefruit)
Mix together:
0.5 oz Pineapple (slight peach discolor)
0.5 oz 10x Orange (discolor orange

50 oz Batter/Colors/ 2.4 oz EO/FO blend:
26 oz TD white, 1.5 oz Yuzu & Grapefruit
8 oz BB Fired Up Fuchsia Pink, 0.5 oz mix Yuzu & Grapefruit
8 oz TKB #10 Yellow, 0.5 oz mix pineapple & orange
8 oz BB Chrome Green Oxide, with 0.25 tsp Moringa powder & 0.15 tsp Neem powder in oil, 0.5 oz mix pineapple & orange
Clyde Slide swirl and/or layers.

The Reality:

After mixing the lye in 5 oz of water thoroughly, I added the silk amino acids and had to mix the fine powder in methodically to get it all combined. At 130F, I added the DL-Panthenol, which clumped up quite a bit and was difficult to get combined. Then I added the cold Aloe liquid, which raised up the temperature 20F degrees.

I soaped the lye liquid and oils at 90F degrees, stick blending (using an immersion blender). Problems started immediately, as I forgot to start counting the seconds of blending. I stopped, assessed and stick blended for 2 more seconds – which was way too much! The first blending was probably more than I needed (I was wanting only 4 seconds maximum, as this mixture sets up fast.).

I divided the batter, colored, added fragrance blend and it was very thick, so I just tried to get in as many colors and layers as possible into each mold. As stiff as it was, I un-molded the next day.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

In hindsight, I should have had a heightened awareness of how short the stick blending needed to be and error on the lesser side. In spite of setting up fast and the stiffness of the soap, I also should have waited a couple days before un-molding, as the soap touching the bottom of the mold tore away in places.

I also realized that I can the Aloe liquid before the DL-Panthenol, as adding the aloe raised the temperature of the lye liquid and having more liquid would help incorporate the Panthenol easier.

Lavender Lemongrass Peppermint Pink Himalayan Salt Soap (6 with white plane embeds)

Description of Bramble Berry & Bulk Apothecary Essential Oils:
BB & BA Lavender 40/42: Similar to Lavender Provence essential oil, this is a mixture of lavender’s: 40/42 blends different kinds of Lavender for a consistent blend. The aroma can have a soothing effects on people suffering from stress, anxiety, and illness. CP: Water White, no A, D, R.
BA Lemongrass: Known for its invigorating and antiseptic properties, its astringent properties help fight acne and greasy skin. CP: has staying power; discolors yellow.
BB Peppermint 1st Distill: Smells minty fresh, like peppermint gum; herbaceous, sweet smelling; can improve mental performance, cognitive function, & digestion. CP: Water White, very potent.

The Plan:

Make 86 oz batter.
18 bar mold: 86 oz soap, 28 oz salt, & 3 oz embeds (6 embeds – rest of bars embed free)
(4:1.5:1.5) EO Blend Lavender, Lemongrass, Peppermint.

Salt MB Oils #4: 60 oz Oils (Makes 86 oz/5.375 lb – plus 28 oz PH Salt=114 oz/7.125 lb)
MB Oils: 60 oz/ 1701 grams
NaOH/Lye 10% SF: 9 oz/255 grams
1:1 Aloe Juice & Distilled Water: (2.8 oz/14% disc): 17 oz/482 grams
Kaolin Clay (1%): 17 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (2%): 34 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Fine Pink Himalayan Salt: 28 oz (by weight)

Essential Oil Blend (4:1.5:1.5) = 7 oz:
4 oz Lavender (1:1 BB & BA)
1.5 oz Lemongrass
1.5 oz Peppermint

86 oz Batter/Colors/28 oz PH Salt; 7 oz EO’s:
21.5 oz TD White, 7 oz PH Salt
21.5 oz BB Caribbean blue, 7 oz PH Salt
21.5 oz BB Aqua pearl mica, 7 oz PH Salt
21.5 oz BB Radiant Plum mica, 7 oz PH Salt
(28.5 batter total each container, including salts)
Add EO Blend into all of batter, then divide.
Pour lines of color.
Starburst swirl and then circle swirl with chopstick.
Add Airplane Embeds on top of 6 bars.
CPOP 6 hours, un-mold.

The Reality:

I soaped the lye liquid and oils at 90F & 95F, stick blending (using an immersion blender); then adding the essential oil blend and stick blending a little more. The salt soap seems to always be very fluid and takes a long time to come to a light trace where it is pourable without getting muddied. But that was not the case this time. Blending a bit longer and the fragrance accelerating were both contributing factors.

By the time I had divided up the batter to add coloring, it was already thick. I quickly added colors (mixing the white last, as titanium dioxide tends to thicken a bit more.) Then added the salt, which usually thins the batter out, but it only helped a tiny bit this time. So the process turned into globing lines of color in the mold and banging it down frequently. It was frustrating and disappointing.

I then did a starburst swirl and a circle swirl with a thin chopstick and pounded down the mold some more, added the dividers, and put the six airplane embeds in the 2 middle bars and the four corner bars, as I figured they would be the lightest bars.

I spritzed with 91% Isopropyl alcohol, then sprinkled fine iridescent glitter on top; put in a 150F preheated oven, turned it off for 3 hours, brought back up to heat, then off again for 3 hours. Then un-molded when still slightly warm.

The Cut:

Conclusions:

Obviously next time I need to add the scent blend before doing any stick blending – and blending until just emulsified. If no acceleration from the fragrances, I can blend a little longer or just wait for it to set up to the desired consistency (which is what I usually do).

Despite the difficulties I had making this soap, I think it turned out really nice.