How To Make Soap At Home
Homemade soaps can be great gifts for love ones and of course to your own self. The best way to ensure that your skin is getting the best of care, from the purest of ingredients. In this article we shall discuss the recipes of making homemade soaps to suit your skins needs. The possibilities are endless and you can make soaps specially customized to suit exclusive needs.
The basic ingredient
Lye is the basic ingredient used it all soaps. You cannot replace Lye with anything. It is basically sodium hydroxide. Lye is caustic in nature. It is basically 100% Sodium Hydroxide. It cause hole is fabrics and can burn your skin. So one has to be very careful while using it.
Things to remember
- Do not use equipments that will react with it. Like aluminum and copper. You can use glass, stainless or enameled bowls.
- Wear gloves and fume masks while using the product.
- Use silicone for spoons while working with lye.
- Always add Lye to water. Not water to Lye. And start stirring immediately and keep stirring continuously. If allowed to lump, then it will explode.
Though it is caustic in nature, when mixed with oils the caustic nature dies away.
Things that you will need
- Silicone spoon,
- Plastic soap moulds
- Pint and Quart canning jar
- Stainless steel thermometer
- Mixing bowls( glass or stainless steel)
- Fume mask
And all the essential oils, and other additives that you want to put .
Now let us make some soap!
There are two methods of soap making. The HOT PROCESS and THE COLD PROCESS. For the Hot process you would need a crock-pot to cook your soap in. And for the cold process a glass bowl to mix the ingredients. The basic difference between the two are that, in the Hot process where you have to cook the ingredients the Saponification happens faster. The cold processed soaps are smoother in texture, but time taken is a bit longer than the hot process. And some prefer the hot process cause the cooking completes the Saponification process. But in this article we are going to discuss only the cold process method as it is safer and a little less hassle free.
Cold Process method for Simple Hand and Body Soap
We will need:
⅔ cup coconut oil (this produces good lather)+ ⅔ cup olive oil – (to make your soap hard yet mild) + ⅔ cup other liquid oil – (you can use almond oil, grapeseed,etc)+ ¼ cup lye (or it is also called 100% sodium hydroxide)+ ¾ cup cool water (distilled or purified )
First of all make sure you are wearing the necessary protections required to deal with Lye. Then cover the work area so that it’s easier for you to clean it later on.
Take the quart canning jar, pour in the water, and then pour in the Lye in to the water. Keep a spoon ready, and start stirring immediately. DO NOT pour water into Lye! It is ALWAYS lye into water. DO NOT let it lump. It will start fuming up. When the water starts to clear up, then move on to the oils.
Take a pint Jar and pour the three oils into it so that together they measure upto a pint. Now heat this in the microwave or you can also double boil it, till it reaches 120* Celsius.
The temperature of the Lye and the temperature of the oils should be the same. Let the temperature get to a 105-95dergree. But remember too low temp will make it clump faster, make it crumbly and you won’t be able to work with it.
When both Lye and the Oils reach the right temp. first pour the oil into the mixing bowl an then slowly add the lye. Stir as you add. Stir continuously for about 5 mins. And then you can use a hand blender if you want or keep using your hand. But initial 5 mins hand mixing is important. Then you will notice that the mix is getting to a custardy consistency, this phase is call the “trace” phase. This is the phase were you can add the essential oils or other additives like oatmeal or coffee powder or dry herbs or what ever you want to use.
Now mix the additives and after you are done pour the mix into the soap moulds. And cover them with plastic wraps. Now place the moulds in a towel and wrap it up. This will help trap the residual heat and also start the Saponification process.
Leave the mould there for 24 hours. After which unwrap and check. If its cold and hard, it means the Saponification process it complete. Un-mould it and keep t on a rack. The soap needs to be aired for 4weeks. This is called curing. At this stage the soap creates its own glycerin but taking in the moisture from the air. After its done wrap up your soap in wax paper and keep it in a air tight jar.
Additives that you can use
This was a very basic soap recipe. To this you might want to add colour, fragrance or additives to suit your skin need, like oatmeal or or herbs like chamomile, lemongrass, etc . For the above mentioned measure use 1/4th cup of these additive.
If you want to add essential oils like Lavender/ Lemongrass/Rose, etc then for the above given measure use 15-20 drops.
For colour, additives like coffee powder, cocoa powder can be mixed, these will add colour as well as fragrance to the soap. Or you can also use turmeric powder or beet root powder. But avoid using food colouring.
That’s it folks! Happy soap making.
What soap are you planning to make?
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