Watermelon & Cucumber soap with poppy seeds

I was very pleased with how last year’s batch turned out and I wanted to repeat that here. I mixed two Watermelon fragrances I’ve used separately and really love.

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Description of Bramble Berry and Natures Garden Fragrances:
BB Cucumber Melon: Juicy and ripe, not too sweet; much more watermelon than cucumber: a clean, crisp watermelon scent combined with cool refreshing cucumber. CP: No D. Behaves beautiful.
NG Pink Watermelon: The aroma of fresh, crisp watermelon begins with top notes of watermelon and strawberry; followed by middle notes of jasmine, rose, and green notes; sitting on base notes of cassis, oakmoss, white woods, and vanilla. CP: No A, R, D.

Why Poppy Seeds? Besides the great look in soap, some say it’s a comforting home remedy for dry and itchy skin. It’s also exfoliating – exfoliation is key to maintaining smooth, soft and healthy skin. The process of exfoliating involves using a “scrubby” material coupled with manual scrubbing to remove dead skin. Removing dead skin allows moisturizer and other skin care products to absorb better. Removing dead skin also create a more even and radiant skin tone.

 

The Plan:
Use rest of MB oils #14 (9 oz) plus MB oils #15.
Pour off extra batter for testing.
86 oz soap in 5 lb mold.
Layers for rind & poppy seeds for exfoliation.
2.45 oz BB Cucumber Melon FO & 2.55 oz NG Pink Watermelon FO (last of this FO).

Master batch Oils # 14 & #15: 65 oz Oils (Makes 92 oz/5.75 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 65 oz/ 1843 grams
NaOH/ Lye 5% SF: 9.17 oz / 260 grams
Distilled Water: (2.5 oz disc/ % disc) 18 oz / 510 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 18 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 18 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (1%):18 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Cucumber Extract (1%):18 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

86 oz Batter/Color/FO 5 oz:
1st Layer (rind): (put in fridge 15 min to set up)
11.5 oz dark green MM Hunter Green & MM Blackish Green, 13 ml FO (used 11 oz batter)
11.5 oz light green CC Granny Smith Apple Green & MM Fruit Green, 13 ml FO (used 11 oz batter)
2nd Layer (rind): (put in fridge 15 min to set up)
8 oz TD white, 9 ml FO
3rd Layer:
55 oz TKB #30 True Red, MM Pink Lemonade, & BB Raspberry mica, rest of FO
13 grams poppy seeds
CPOP 4 hrs in 150F oven.
(BB = Bramble Berry; CC = Crafters Choice WSP; MM = Mica’s & More; TD = Titanium Dioxide; TKB = TKB Trading)

 

The Reality:
I soaped my lye liquid and oils at 75F & 85F, stick blending until just past emulsified (using an immersion blender). I measured out and mixed up my batters for the first layer, and waited a bit until it was thick enough to pour.

I poured lines of green in the mold until all used up, which was a bit more than I had used in the past. It was getting pretty thick, so I didn’t need to put in the refrigerator to set up (I think the FO’s gave me some acceleration – since I was soaping at such low temperatures, it was a slow acceleration.)

I prepped my next layer and poured into the mold over a spatula to prevent break through and then got the last of the batter ready, using about 2/3 red to 1/3 raspberry mica. After adding the poppy seeds and the rest of the fragrance, I waited about 10 minutes until the white layer was set before pouring (once again, over a spatula to prevent breaking through to the white layer.)

I put in a 150F pre-heated oven for 4 hours (oven turned off after preheating, then brought back up to temperature at the half-way mark.) CPOP (Cold Process Oven Process) helps promote gelling, which can intensifies the colors and speeds up the curing.

 

The Cut:

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Conclusions:
I thought about doing black rain drops instead of poppy seeds, but I just haven’t mastered that technique yet and didn’t want to ruin a 5 pound batch if they came out too big or too small, or not “drop looking” enough.

This smells amazing. I like the combination of the two FO’s – the Pink Watermelon always seemed a little too floral for me (although everyone else seemed to like it.)

I’m not sure if I made the watermelon too red – it looks really juicy to me. You can see previous versions here and here.

 

Master Batch Oils #15 for soap

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The Plan & Reality:
I prefer a soaping recipe of 60% hard oils. Coconut & Palm (or Tallow or Lard) are in that category, as well as all butters (even though some are harder than others). I typically use 25% each of Coconut oil and Palm – a mix of Palm Kernel Flakes & Palm oil.

Just as in the last two batches, I kept the Palm down to 20%, as with 92F Coconut oil, the soap is really hard. (15% Palm oil and 5% Palm Kernel Flakes.) I used 12% butters, with 4% each of of Avocado, Cocoa, and Shea. That drops my hard oils down to 57%. (I replaced the Mango butter I had been using with Avocado butter, as I ran out of Mango and have lots of Avocado.)

I always like to include 5% Castor oil for lather (above 5% seems to cause acceleration – same with Rice Bran oil). I like Rice Bran oil, as it is similar to butters for luxuriousness and healing properties. I recommend you use your favorites for the rest of the oils. I have a variety of oils that have some wonderful skin loving properties and like to use a little of each.

For this batch, I swapped the percentages of Olive Oil and Sunflower, using 8% Sunflower Seed Oil and 10% Olive Oil. I’ve never been much of a fan of Olive oil (preferring Sunflower and Avocado), however my thoughts have changed on that, as I made a batch of Castile soap (100% Olive Oil – the only oil). I used 100% Extra Virgin Olive oil in that batch and have a bar for personal use that I am really loving. And Costco keeps dropping the price of Olive Oil too (it used to be $32 for 6 Liters, then $26, now it’s $24.)

Here’s the new formula/recipe:

Recipe: 600 oz oils/37.5 lb (makes 880 oz/ 55 lbs of soap):
5%     Apricot Kernel Oil                 30 oz       850 grams
4%     Avocado Butter                      24 oz       680 grams
5%     Avocado Oil                            30 oz       850 grams
5%     Castor Oil                                30 oz       850 grams
4%     Cocoa Butter (Golden)          24 oz       680 grams
25%   Coconut Oil (92 degree)     150 oz     4252 grams
5%     Grape Seed Oil                       30 oz       850 grams
10%   Olive Oil                                  60 oz     1700 grams
5%     Palm Kernel Flakes               30 oz       850 grams
15%   Palm Oil                                   90 oz     2552 grams
5%     Rice Bran Oil                           30 oz       850 grams
4%     Shea Butter (refined)             24 oz      680 grams
8%     Sunflower Seed Oil                48 oz     1361 grams
Total oils: 600 oz/ 17,006 grams

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I melted all of these oils in containers in a microwave oven, then mix them together in a huge bucket and divide into five – 1 gallon jugs, then put in a refrigerator until needed (this slows down the aging of the oils.)

I entered this recipe into a Lye Calculator (I used Bramble Berry’s (found here) (https://www.brambleberry.com/calculator?calcType=lye#) at my usual 5% Super Fat and then resized the batch two dozen times to get different batch sizes. (I also adjusted the super fat on some for facial soap.) I then copied those down, with calculations included for the additives – here are some examples:

Master Batch Oils #15: 100 oz Oils (Makes 142 oz/8.87 lb soap)
MB Oils: 100 oz/ 2835 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 14.11 oz / 400 grams
Distilled Water: (3.55 oz disc/ % disc): 28 oz / 765 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 28 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 28 grams (in oils)
Extract (1%): 28 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Extract (1%): 28 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

Master Batch Oils #15: 80 oz Oils (Makes 113 oz/7 lb soap)
MB Oils: 80 oz/ 2268 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 11.29 oz / 320 grams
Distilled Water: (4.4 oz disc/ % disc): 22 oz / 624 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 23 grams (in in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 23 grams (in oils)
Extract (1%): 23 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Extract (1%): 23 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

Master batch Oils #15: 60 oz Oils (Makes 86 oz /5.3 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 60 oz/ 1701 grams
NaOH/ Lye 5% SF: 8.46 oz / 240 grams
Distilled Water: (1.93 oz disc/ % disc): 17 oz / 482 grams
OR Distilled Water: (3.8 oz disc; 19.2 % disc): 16 oz / 453 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 17 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 17 grams (in oils)
Extract (1%): 17 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Extract (1%): 17 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

Master batch Oils #15: 40 oz Oils (Makes 56 oz 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)
Extract (1%): 11 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Extract (1%): 11 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

Master batch Oils #15: 30 oz Oils (Makes 43 oz soap)
MB Oils: 30 oz/ 851 grams
NaOH/ Lye 5% SF: 4.23 oz / 120 grams
Distilled Water: (1.46 oz disc/ % disc): 8 oz / 227 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 9 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 9 grams (in oils)
Extract (1%): 9 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Extract (1%): 9 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

 

 

Conclusions:
I mistakenly defrosted some Hazelnut oil (I freeze all my oils to stop the ageing process) – although I think it really was my sub-conscious suggesting that since I’ve upped the Olive oil to 10%, it might be good to lower the green from the Grape Seed and Olive oils, by replacing the Grape with the more neutral Hazelnut. However I didn’t figure that out until after adding the Grape Seed and in the middle of pouring in the Olive oil, so I will save the Hazelnut for another time.

I will see how this works out, but something to think about for the next batch.

 

For Additional Resources – click on the links below:

Soaping Oils Recipes:

Master Batch #13 & #14
Master Batch #12
Master Batch #10 & #11 oils – plus additional information on oils & butters
Master Batch #8 & 9 oils
Master Batch #7 oils
Master Batch #6 oils
Master Batch #5 oils
Master Batch #4 oils
Master Batch #3 oils

Shampoo Recipes:

Shampoo Master Batch Oils #3 (formulated to promote hair growth & decrease hair loss)
Shampoo Master Batch Oils #2 – new and improved!
Shampoo Master Batch Oils #1

Salt Bar Recipes:
Salt Master Batch Oils #3
Salt Master Batch Oils #2 (“Everything But the Kitchen Sink”)
Salt Master Batch Oils #1

 

 

Pina Colada Coconut Milk soap with tropical embeds, in drop & hanger swirls

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Description of Bramble Berry, Bulk Apothecary, and Natures Garden Fragrances:
BB Pineapple: A very realistic pineapple scent: ripe pineapple complemented with coconut, orange, cilantro, vanilla, musk. CP: no issues. Slight yellow discolor.
NG Coconut Craziness: Begins with top notes of lemon, orange, pineapple, and lime;  rounded-out with middle notes of caramel and coconut, with base notes of buttercream, coconut milk, vanilla bean, and musk. CP: 2% Vanilla, accelerates quickly, then stops. No R, S, D – tan.
BB Coconut Cream: Sweet coconut with mid-notes of vanilla & almond; finishing with papaya & cocoa bean. CP: D – dark tan. No A.
BB Coconut Cybilla: Toasted coconut fragrance. CP: 1% Vanilla: discolors to beige. Very light.
BA Coconut Kiwi: An addicting tropical blend of creamy coconut and juicy kiwi. Like coconut lime verbena with fresh, clean & sweet scent. CP: 2% Vanilla. Some A.

 

The Plan:
80+ oz soap, plus 6 oz embeds on top.
Use VS for Coconut FO’s.
Combo Accelerates trace.

Master batch Oils #14: 60 oz Oils (Makes 86 oz /5.3 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 60 oz/ 1701 grams
NaOH/ Lye 5% SF: 8.48 oz / 240 grams
1:1 Frozen Coconut Milk & Frozen Distilled Water: (2.8 oz disc/ 14.14% disc): 17 oz / 482 grams (used 9.3 oz CM & 7.7 oz H2O)
Sodium Lactate (1%): 17 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 17 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (1%): 17 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Dulse Extract (1%): 17 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

FO Blend (7 oz total):
2 oz Pineapple (used 2.1 oz)
.7 oz Coconut Craziness (finishing bottle)
3.15 oz Coconut Cream (Very light)
.4 oz Coconut Cybilla (Very light – finishing bottle)
.7 oz Coconut Kiwi (finishing bottle)
2.2 oz Vanilla Stabilizer

81 oz Batter/Colors/FO:
1st layer:
15 oz BB Fizzy Lemonade & CC Yellow mica, 1.2 oz FO blend
2nd layer:
8 oz BB Fuchsia Pink, .8 oz FO blend
Body – with rest of FO blend:
44 oz TD White
6 oz BB Fizzy Lemonade & CC Yellow mica
4 oz BB Fuchsia Pink
4 oz BB Radiant Plum
2 layers, then drop & hanger swirls.
Add Embeds on top: 15 Pineapples, 8 Pink Flamingos, 6 Hibiscus, 1 starfish.
Spritz with fine iridescent glitter.
Refrigerate to prevent milk overheating.
(BB = Bramble Berry; CC = Crafter’s Choice WSP; TD = Titanium Dioxide; VS = Vanilla Stabilizer)

 

The Reality:
I had several bottles of a variety of Coconut fragrances in tiny amounts, so I wanted to use them up. I first tested different combinations, which is how I learned that some accelerate trace and that most are extremely light (hence the large amounts).

I thought I would use the acceleration to my advantage and make a couple of layers on the bottom, then work at lightning speed to do a drop swirl and hopefully a hanger swirl.

I soaped the lye milk-liquid and oils at 78F & 94F, using a strainer when pouring the lye liquid into the oils, as when using frozen milk, occasionally the lye will not completely dissolve (no issues in this batch). It’s always best to keep the lye and oils within 10F of each other, but that was not the case (breaking rules today). I stick blended until just emulsified, using an immersion blender.

I poured out enough batter for the first layer (15 oz), colored it yellow, measured out 1.2 oz of the FO blend, put my mold on a scale & tare; added the FO and mixed well, then quickly poured 15 oz into the mold. It stayed surprisingly very fluid and I put it in the refrigerator to set.

By the time I divided up all the batter and prepped for the second layer, the first one was very stiff. I repeated the process, but didn’t even bother to put in the fridge, as when I had all the other batter colored, the second layer was already set up.

I was afraid I wouldn’t get the four containers mixed with the FO blend before they got too stiff, so I worked as fast as possible. Fortunately, everything accelerated slowly, so I got most of the white poured, drop swirled the colored soap and still had enough time to do a hanger swirl and add a little white on top. Things started getting thick when I was meticulously putting the embeds on top.

After spritzing with alcohol and fine iridescent glitter, I put in my dedicated soaping refrigerator to prevent the milk from overheating (which also precludes gel):

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The Cut:
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Conclusions:
I love the way this design turned out – the layers on the bottom, with the drop and hanger swirls above seem perfect to me. The pineapples, pink flamingos, and hibiscus flowers finish off the tropical theme. (I purposely left some of the pink & purple colors on top (instead of all white) to boost the contrast of the yellow pineapple embeds.) The fragrance combination of mostly pineapple, with hints of coconut in the background are wonderful.

The only thing I can think of that might look better would be to alternate the pineapples from top to bottom (like what was done with the sea shells and turtles/fish in Island Time soap here.) Another alternative is to put all the pineapples on the bottom, as they bigger & heavier looking than the little flamingos and delicate flowers. Though this is not an issue when looking at individual soaps.

 

Margarita Lime Coconut Milk in layers, drop & hanger swirl, with lime embeds & dead sea salt on top

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Description of Nature’s Garden and Bramble Berry FO’s:
NG Margarita: A fresh lime fragrance with hints of lemon rinds and fresh greenery. This fragrance oil has high levels of essential oil of lime for a true-to-name aroma. Reviews: slight yellowing; very limey with a touch of salt; dead on margarita. CP: NO R, A, D.
BB Lime FO: Zesty, fresh and full of verve, this Lime is bursting with energy and dripping with juiciness. Tart but not so tart that it’s bitter. It has a touch of sweetness that balances out those ‘pucker’ notes so often found in Lime. Review: Gets Thick, yellow color. CP: Performs well, no A, D, R.

 

The Plan:
5 lb mold; 86 oz batter plus lime embed.
Use 4 oz NG Margarita FO & 1.5 oz BB Lime FO (light scent)
Layers, with drop & hanger swirl.
White on top.
Add 1 small & 1 large lime wedge & course dead sea salt in between.
Put in refrigerator to prevent milk overheating.

Master batch Oils #14: 60 oz Oils (Makes 86 oz /5.3 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 60 oz/ 1701 grams
NaOH/ Lye 5% SF: 8.48 oz / 240 grams
1:1 Frozen Coconut Milk & Distilled Water: (3.8 oz disc; 19.2 % disc): 16 oz / 453 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 17 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 17 grams (in oils)
Cucumber Extract (1%): 17 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Green Tea Extract (1%): 17 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

Batter/Colors/FO 5.5 oz:
47 oz TD White
20 oz TKB Chrome Oxide (Dark Green) – use 15 oz for bottom layer, 5 oz for swirl
15 oz CC Granny Smith Apple Green – use 10 oz for second layer, 5 oz for swirl
30 Lime embeds & course Dead Sea Salt on top (15 small, 15 medium embeds)
(CC = Crafters Choice WSP; TD = Titanium Dioxide; TKB = TKB Trading)

 

The Reality:
I used a strainer when pouring the lye-milk liquid into the oils, as when using frozen milk & water, occasionally a tiny bit of the lye will not completely dissolve. I soaped the lye and oils at 85F and 91F, stick blending just past emulsified (using an immersion blender). Using any kind of milk will accelerate the batter a bit, which was okay for what I was doing.

I mixed up the dark green, added some of the FO blend and poured 15 oz into the 5 lb mold, then put in the refrigerator to set up for 15 minutes. I then mixed up the lighter green, added FO and poured 10 oz over a spatula to prevent breaking through the first layer. Once again, I put in the fridge to set up – since the batter was now thicker than the first one, I only waited 8 minutes.

By now the rest of the soap was pretty thick. I added TD and then the remained of the fragrance blend, which thinned the batter out a bit. I poured most of the white, then dropped swirled the leftover greens and used a thick hanger (gear tie) to do a horizontal hanger swirl, taking great care to not go too deep and disturb my first two layers. (I had also tried to do shallow drops with the colors, so as to get a layer of white above the green layers.)

I topped with more white soap and then one small & one medium lime embed; sprinkling with course Dead Sea Salt, then put into a dedicated soaping refrigerator to prevent the coconut milk from overheating (which also precludes gelling).

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The Cut:
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Conclusions:
The top looks a bit boring to me and I wondered if I shouldn’t have done some mica swirls before adding the embeds.

The scent is wonderful and very strong. You can see more Margarita Lime soaps here, here, and here.

 

Island Time Coconut Milk soap with tropical embeds in drop & hanger swirls

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Description of Bramble Berry & Essential Depot Fragrances:
BB Coconut Cybillia: A toasted Coconut scent. CP: 1% Vanilla, discolors to beige. (Very light).
ED Frangipani:
A blend of muguet, ozone floral, citrus, juicy pineapple, ripe banana, raspberry, bergamot, and plum; with notes of jasmine, lilac, plumeria, ylang ylang, rosemary, chamomile, honeysuckle, hyacinth, & camphor. CP: No information.
BB Mangosteen: A blend of mangosteen, guava, & green melon swirl to unite with a succulent undertone of juicy yuzu nectar & coconut palm. CP: A, D tan to yellow. (Very light).
BB Papaya Coconut: White Nectarine, Mango Juice, Mandarin Balm and Yellow Starfruit. A hint of Vanilla Bean adds a sweet note. Reviews: some separation; worked great soaping low temps. CP: 2% Vanilla, Discolors light Brown. (Very light).
BB Pineapple Papaya: Top notes of mandarin, pineapple and coconut palms; mid notes of papaya guava and pomegranate; rounding out with a base of sugarcane, sandalwood and cypress. CP: A (slow A, then very thick) & D (light tan).
BB Pineapple Cilantro: A very realistic pineapple scent: ripe pineapple complemented with coconut, orange, cilantro, vanilla, musk. CP: no issues. Slight yellow discolor.

 

The Plan:
Pour off 8 oz for FO testing
84 oz soap plus embeds on top: Shells, turtles, fish, tropical leaves.
Small amount of VS for Papaya Coconut & Mangosteen discoloration.
Drop & Hanger Swirls.

Master batch Oils #14: 65 oz Oils (Makes 92 oz/5.75 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 65 oz/ 1843 grams
NaOH/ Lye 5% SF: 9.19 oz / 261 grams
1:1 Frozen Coconut Milk & Frozen Water: (3.45 oz disc/ 16%): 18 oz / 510 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 18 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 18 grams (in oils)
Aloe Extract (1%):18 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Cucumber Extract (1%):18 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

FO Blend (6.5 oz total FO)
1.3 oz Frangipani
2 oz Mangosteen (very light)
1.7 oz Papaya Coconut (very light)
.8 oz Pineapple Papaya
.7 oz Pineapple FO
.3 oz Coconut Cybilia
1.2 oz Vanilla Stabilizer

84 oz Batter/Colors/FO:
60 oz TD White
4 oz BB Fizzy Lemonade & CC Yellow Locking mica 2:1
4 oz BB Aqua Pearl mica
4 oz TKB Coral Reef Blue + hint of BB Zippy Blue
4 oz BB Fuchsia Pink + hint of MM Pink Lemonade
4 oz BB Radiant Plum
4 oz BB Queens Purple
Drop & Hanger Swirls.
Add Embeds on top (2 on each bar): 7 Fish, 8 turtles, 12 shells, 3 tropical leaves.
Spritz with fine iridescent glitter.
Refrigerate to prevent milk overheating.
(BB = Bramble Berry; CC = Crafter’s Choice WSP; MM = Micas & More; TD = Titanium Dioxide; TKB = TKB Trading; VS = Vanilla Stabilizer)

 

The Reality:
I had several fragrances that were really light in scent, with a small amount of each, but mixed all together, they made a nice blend.

I soaped my lye milk-liquid and oils at 84F & 94F, using a strainer when pouring the lye liquid into the oils, as when using frozen liquids (milk & water), occasionally a tiny bit of  lye will not completely dissolve (no issues in this batch). I stick blending until emulsified (using an immersion blender).

After dividing out the batter and coloring it, I worked on some fragrance testing with the extra soap, while the main batter made it’s way to the consistency I was looking for. I waited until this moment to add the FO blend – in case of acceleration. The fragrances in the white discolored it very yellow – I had wanted it to be a cream color, and needed a lot of TD to get it there.

I poured most of the white soap into the mold, than drop poured in all the colors from over a foot above the mold (the batter was starting to thicken, so I used gravity to penetrate the white). I then used a gear tie for my hanger swirl; topped off with a little more white, then added embeds:

IMG_7761

1/3 of the soap loaf – adding iridescent glitter after taking this photo really made it shine.

I spritzed fine iridescent glitter on top, which took it from okay to beautiful. I put in my dedicated soaping refrigerator to prevent the milk from overheating (which also precludes gelling).

 

The Cut:
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Conclusions:
To get a white layer on top, I went overboard with the amount of soap I used. I also didn’t take into account the total weight of all the embeds (6+ oz), so these are very hefty bars of soap (after curing, each bar is about 6 oz).

I tested a few variations of these fragrance combinations before deciding on this blend, but I was surprised when the batter got so yellow (fortunately it finished in a nice light cream color). I love all the little embeds on top, as well as the color combination and swirls.

You can see the first version of this soap here.

Electric Lemonade Cocktail with Impression mat top

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Description of Bramble Berry & New Directions Aromatics Fragrance & Essential Oils:
BB Electric Lemonade Cocktail (EL): This fresh, fruity fragrance is just the right blend of sweet and tart. It is a blend of essence of Mandarin, Orange and Verbena infused with Fresh Pumpkin, Bergamot and Granny Smith Apple; all wrapped in a soft veil of Vanilla, Neroli and Amber. A fresh, bright, wake me up citrus. CP: Discolors tan. No R. Accelerated to thick trace last time using.
NDA 5x Lemon Essential Oil (L): A very strong lemon citrus scent. CP: no information.

 

The Plan:
Pour off 20 oz for embeds & FO testing
52 oz in 3 lb silicone mold with mat on bottom.
2 oz (used 2.15 oz) Electric Lemonade cocktail & 1 oz (used .9 oz) 5x Lemon eo.
Paint Mat with orange, add yellow over.
Cosmic swirl with yellow & orange, into white. (Drop Swirl if accelerates.)

Master batch Oils #14: 50 oz Oils (Makes 73 oz /4.5 lbs soap)
MB Oils: 50 oz/ 1417 grams
NaOH/Lye 5% SF: 7.07 oz / 200 grams
Distilled Water: (2.5 oz disc/ 15.15%): 14 oz / 397 grams
Sodium Lactate (1%): 14 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 14 grams (in oils)
Ginseng Extract (1%): 14 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Green Tea Extract (1%): 14 grams (in oils – can add at trace)

Batter/Colors/FO-EO 2 oz ELC + 1 oz L eo:
32 oz BB Buttercup Yellow (turned peachy/orange; added TD & Yellow, no help)
8 oz TD White
6 oz BB Nuclear Orange
6 oz CC Yellow Locking mica
Paint Mat with orange, add Buttercup yellow on top.
Cosmic swirl? (cosmic swirl, then drop swirl)
(BB = Bramble Berry; CC = Crafters Choice WSP; TD = Titanium Dioxide)

 

The Reality:
I soaped the lye & oils at 82F & 84F, stick blending to emulsified (using an immersion blender). I hoped that the low temperatures would slow down the acceleration, (and I never got any).

After separating & coloring all the batter, I poured out a little orange, blended it with the tiny mixer (used to mix colors) for a slightly stiffer batter. I then “painted” the mat with it and let it rest (stiffen) while making some embeds.

I had some major difficulties with the Buttercup yellow color in my main batter – it turned very peachy. I added some TD and the other yellow to lighten it up and make it more yellow, but to no avail – it seemed to get even more orange!

After adding the EO/FO blend to all the colors I moved quickly pouring a little of the base on top of the mat and then attempting a cosmic swirl – but the batter was too thin. I gave up on that and did a drop swirl of white, yellow, & orange into the peachy soap.

With the mat taking up space in the bottom of the mold I was barely able to get all my soap into it. This was a frustrating session, as I also managed to spill some soap several – fortunately I had extra, but it was a mess to clean up.

I spritzed with alcohol, put plastic wrap on top and covered with towels, putting in a little room with a heater running for 3 hours to promote gel.

 

The Cut:
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Conclusions:
When I sliced this soap, all the peachy color inside was yellow and after several days the outside of the soap also turned back to yellow.

After full cure, the darker areas in the soap have turned beige – which gives more contrast, while the rest is very yellow. But the fragrance is wonderful – the EO/FO blend really made this scent sophisticated and yummy smelling.

You can see some other designs of this soap here and here.

Baby Buttermilk Bastille Unscented Carrot & Oatmeal Soap with Impression Mat & ITP swirl

What is Bastille soap?
Bastille is soap made with 70% (or more) olive oil and contains other oils or butters. Olive oil is extremely gentle, making it the perfect oil for delicate or sensitive skin. This recipe also uses luxurious and emollient buttermilk. Buttermilk is an excellent skin softer. It has lots of moisturizing properties, along with alpha hydroxy acids that are great for dry, sensitive, and delicate skin.

Carrot puree (which is known for its antioxidant properties) is included to give the soap a soft natural color. (It is also used for anti-aging, preventing wrinkles, speeding scar reduction, and can add elasticity & tone to skin.) Colloidal Oatmeal is wonderful for extra dry skin, is non-abrasive, and it also alleviates itchiness. All these skin-loving and gentle ingredients make this bar great for babies, young children, adults with sensitive skin, and those who want to really pamper their skin.

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The Plan:
Pour off 18 oz for fragrance testing.
Use swirl impression mat, 3 lb silicone mold & 52 oz soap

Recipe/Formula: 50 oz Oils (Makes 70 oz soap/4.4 lbs):
5%    Castor Oil:           2.5 oz/ 71 grams
5%    Cocoa Butter:     2.5 oz/ 71 grams
20%  Coconut Oil:       10 oz/ 283 grams
70%  Olive Oil:            35 oz/ 992 grams
NaOH/Lye 6% SF:    6.72 oz / 190 grams
1:1 Frozen Buttermilk & Distilled Water: (2 oz disc/ 13%): 13 oz – Less 2 oz (for carrot puree) = 11 oz/ 312 grams; 5.5 oz each
Sodium Lactate (1%): 14 grams (in oils or Lye water at 130 degrees)
Kaolin Clay (1%): 14 grams (in oils)
Calendula Extract (1%): 14 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Chamomile Extract (1%): 14 grams (in oils – can add at trace)
Colloidal Oatmeal (1%): 14 grams

Carrot Puree: 2 oz

52 oz Batter/Colors:
38 oz Natural with 2 oz Carrot Puree added
14 oz Natural
ITP swirl.

 

The Reality:
I used a swirl impression mat on the bottom of a 3 lb silicone mold and discounted the lye-liquids an additional 2 oz to take into account the carrot puree to be added.

I soaped the lye and oils at 94F & 90F, stick blending (using an immersion blender) until emulsified and poured off 18 oz for fragrance testing. (This worked extremely well, as with the high olive oil content, the soap stayed at emulsified and light trace for a very long time while I worked on the FO testing bars).

I then stick blended to light trace and divided up the batter, adding the carrot to one container for a slight variation of color in an In The Pot swirl. I had to stick blend several times, as each time it came up to a light to medium trace, it would reverse trace again.

When both were the consistency I wanted, I poured the uncolored soap into the carrot colored batter in several places and made one pass with my spatula for an ITP swirl, pouring into the mold. Once again, the batter reversed trace again and it took quite a while for the top to get hard enough to move to the gelling room, where I wrapped the soap in towels and had a little heater going for 4 hours to promote gel.

 

The Cut:
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Conclusions:
I was surprised that the batter kept on reversing trace – I could have easily stick blended it a lot more. Next time I would like to do a more dramatic water discount of 30-40%. This would quicken the tracing and the cure.

There is a slight color contrast in the impression mat swirls, which gives it more depth. The carrot puree & higher water content in two-thirds of the batter, with no carrot color & lower water in other parts, created some texture and color variation.