Today we finally got back into making soap. I love a lot of rich and creamy lather in my soaps so I created a new recipe for my Lavender fragrance oil. Every oil used in the making of soap contributes certain qualities that affect the finished bar of soap.Some oils.. like Olive.. are very conditioning. Olive Oil however does not produce a rich later. I choose Coconut oil and Palm Kernel Flakes to give me the rich lather I desire in my soaps. Other characteristics given to soap from oils are hardness, cleansing ability and creaminess. Hardness is important as too soft a bar results in the soap not lasting as long during use.
There are desired ranges for any basic soap in these qualities. They are:
- Hardness – [29-54]
- Cleansing – [12-22]
- Conditioning – [44-69]
- Lather – [14-46]
- Creamy – [16-48]
To see where the Lavender soap falls in these ranges please check out the Additional Information tab on the soap. The Lavender soap recipe has Coconut and Palm Kernel oil for the lathering qualities they bring. A pure coconut oil bar will actually suds up in salt water. Coconut Oil also produces a hard white bar with moisturizing properties. It is also a nice light and non greasy oil for the skin. Palm Kernel is similar in that it produces a hard white bar of soap that has great lather. Palm Kernel is less drying than the Coconut Oil and lends a smooth texture to soap.
I have also chosen to use tallow.. or lard in the recipe. It is a cost effective addition to soap and it makes a gentle white bar of soap but is a bit low in the ability to produce a good lather. Olive Oil is added in to produce a long lasting and non drying bar of soap. The lather is fine but very creamy. Olive Oil retains moisture to the skin by forming a breathable layer that does not block the skins function. Olive Oil is great skin care especially for those of us with mature skin. It provides disinfectant, anitwrinkle and wound healing properties. Every bar of soap I make has some Olive Oil in it because it is such a great oil for the skin.
Next I choose Castor Oil because it is rich in fatty acids and gives me the rich and creamy lather I love. It is a very soothing oil and acts as a humectant by attracting moisture to the skin. Combined with other oils it makes an emollient bar of soap.
We finish off the recipe with two additional oils… Sweet Almond and Canola. The Canola is a good moisturizer at a reasonable price. It is rich in vitamins, specifically E, has minerals and contains essential fatty acids. The Sweet Almond Oil is a great emollient for softening and conditioning the skin. It is rich in fatty acids, Vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E. It is easily absorbed leaving the skin smooth instead of greasy. This oil makes a mild soap with a stable thick and dense lather.
Coloring for this bar of soap is Purple Mica as well as Purple Brazilian Clay. Clays act to detox and regenerate and their natural absorbing proplerties draw out harmful particles from the pores of the skin.
The next fragrance we made up today is Devine. I love this fragrance and was excited to get this bar back in my shower. We used a little different recipe on this soap. We still used Coconut Oil for the lather, but dropped the Palm Kernel Oil. We also still have the tallow, Olive Oil, Castor and Canola Oils. Instead of the Sweet Almond Oil we used Avocado Oil instead. Avocado is a heavy oil that is deeply penetrating and rich in vitamins A, D and E. It is a very good oil for dry skin. It is a greenish oil and tends to color the soap so I used it in this bar that I have colored green and burgundy.
Another nice oil I like to use has been added to this recipe. As a more “mature” woman I like things that are good for aging skin. So you will find I like to add in Grapeseed Oil because it is rich in vitamins, minerals and other essential fatty acids. It is a good oil for dray and damaged skin so I tend to use it in the recipes that have higher conditioning values. Compared to the previoius recipe this has less lather but more conditioning properties. Please see the Additional Information to see its numbers in the 5 areas that contribute to a bar of soap.
I also chose to add in two egg yolks to this recipe. They are a fat and their contribution is to produce a rich thick lather. For the coloring of this soap I chose to do a swirl with two colors and the base. The fragrance will turn the soap a light tan so I chose green and burgundy to swirl in. The little bit extra I had that did not fit in the mold and I poured into a plastic container looks really neat. The burgundy is a mica and the green coloring comes from Spirulina. It is a natural product that should give a nice green color to the soap. It contains n B12, Vitamin F, natural beta-carotene, and iron.
Right now the two batches of soap are sitting up covered with a towel. I am trying to insulate it some as it goes from lye and oils to soap. I will check them out tomorrow night when I get home from work and see if they are ready to unmold. I am very excited to once again be making soap and look forward to testing these bars in the shower in about a month.